The social revolution that's resulting in the empowerment of women is increasingly a political, industrial and economic one. It's not just a rebalancing of gender roles and opportunities but an integration of feminine energy with the masculine in more people and more institutions. How do we best support the rise of both women and feminine energy in the work place so they work better for everyone?
I am a white, well-educated, middle-aged man born in the West. I've had every imaginable advantage and opportunity to augment whatever talent and ability I might have. The members of my group have dominated the world for many millennia and that hegemonic presence is drawing to a close. I'm not asking for sympathy. I recognize how offensive that would be, but there are some tough days ahead for me and my kind. I'm excited for the opportunity. Like everyone else living in a connected digital world, we have to adapt or go the way of the dinosaurs.
My strategy is to partner with women. You will get to meet my awesome new business partners in the coming months as we roll out our new model and brand, but for the time being I'd like to talk about my mother.
I started my coaching business in the fall of 1997 at the age of 33, 22 years after my parents divorced. I had been working to grow a personal growth seminar business and it was ironically not growing. In the middle of August, we embraced the epic nature of our failure and shut down the business. I was on the hook for personal guarantees and I had no money left. Rent and child support were due in 14 days and I had tapped out every source of cash I had.
My mother, meanwhile had been watching me circling the drain and evidently figured out long before I had that I was going to go down it. So she quietly put aside some cash for me to use to recover and restart. But the only catch was, she never told me it existed. I had to figure out that I had to ask for support.
My questionable choices finally forced my hand that summer and I asked for a loan. The small $3500 "grant" she gave me covered my first-of-the-month obligations and 4 weeks of working capital. With fresh air in my lungs and the pressure off, I figured out what I wanted to do next and got busy quickly with a refreshed sense of mission.
I learned from my father how to sell and capitalize on opportunities: I enrolled six coaching clients in that two week period and was in business. I added another six the following month and I've never looked back.
There are a great many differences between the genders and how much feminine and masculine energy each person accesses and expresses, regardless of gender. The prime directive of masculine energy seems to be about overcoming obstacles and completing the mission successfully. The prime directive of feminine energy seems to be about supporting loved ones and making sure they have everything they need to be happy. Interestingly these are the yin and yang of coaching. I started with plenty of ambitious mission accomplishing energy and have spent the last several decades learning to integrate my empathetic feminine energy into my work process.
I think the world will work much better with more ambitious women in it (and more empathetic men). There is already more than enough masculine energy and men in positions of power. I think the empowerment of women will go along way to forcing men to work to fill the gap in empathy that limits the flourishing of a great many more people.
I think women have the unique opportunity to help men develop their empathy and other feminine traits and I think it is the duty of men to support women in bringing these traits into all of our institutions and to help them develop the ambition and other masculine traits to accomplish that mission.
This month I am happy to announce the release of book 5 with Rachel Mielke and Shane Evans. These amazing women have something to say worth hearing. Books and videos available soon.