There are few things more powerful than a businesswoman. What it takes to keep a business afloat with dozens of other priorities fighting for time, space and attention is an awesome thing to imagine, and some women make it look easy. Their businesses are like icebergs floating peacefully along, while most of what’s floating with them lies deep below the surface. Women like these keep their businesses together with all the seams, glitches and machinery that are part of the process, neatly tucked away, worked out or well-oiled.
Most of these women — the ones who make it look easy — weren’t always that way. They became this way after years of practice, hours of motherly guilt and times of self-doubt. Many of those who regret the hurried half-moments spent with their children while the worries of work nagged at their minds are rewarded with children who admire everything their mothers have accomplished, and they love their mothers even more once they’re mature enough to appreciate the hard work they didn’t see.
Novelist Toni Morrison would get up at 4 a.m. to write because she was a single parent. She said one day, her baby threw up on her manuscript, but she felt so compelled to write at that moment that she wiped the vomit off and kept working. When you feel that strongly, work you shall … some way or another.
Then there are the women who defy the clock, meet impossible deadlines, spring from bed after five hours of sleep to crunch numbers, pay bills, email invoices, organize files — then they head out to their day jobs. These women give their best to those jobs but may stop from time to time to jot down a design idea, a topic to write about or a prospect to approach. Sometimes, it’s these moments of inspiration that can make the rest of the day worthwhile, enabling the dream of the day when they can give their business their complete focus.
Good businesswomen do whatever they can to keep current on the best ways to market themselves and their work, dividing their efforts amongst networking breakfasts, social media platforms, blogging and anything else that’s good for raising the business profile. For businesswomen who aren’t tech savvy, staying on top of exposure can mean humbling themselves into asking a 12-year-old for help.
Personally, I write, and I’m also into photography and art. I know women who are devoted to activities just as awesome; one woman helps others stay healthy through better nutrition, whereas another woman is a tireless and prolific painter and someone else is a caterer. What we all have in common is that mysterious fire within, the one that says, “Get up. Get out there. Keep going. Build yourself a business.”