Bring It! The Yang and Yin Approach to Business
- June 11, 2019
- Lis Williams
I’ve spent most of my life in the left side of my brain. 🧠
My natural tendencies favor anything analytical and logical. And growing up I didn’t think I possessed an ounce of creativity. Maybe you can relate.
So going to business school made perfect sense. I majored in finance in both undergrad and graduate school. I worked at a bank. Numbers were my friend.
As I gained more experience, I realized that I also love anything to do with strategy. I LOVE setting goals in both my business and personal life and then figuring out the path to achieve them. It’s a gratifying process for me.
The first half of my life has been characterized by the pursuit of knowledge, common sense, and frugality. All traits that lend themselves well to entrepreneurship.
The years I spent as a stay at home mom challenged my innate abilities.
As much as I tried to maintain order, my children had different plans.
And motherhood naturally encouraged me to explore my more feminine traits – those of nurturing, caring, and compassion.
It was like re-discovering a piece of myself that I didn’t remember existed. And it’s always a good thing to come to know yourself more fully.
However, there were still things that were not in my wheelhouse. I remember going across the street to my friend Mo’s (who is very creative) to pick up my kids. The kitchen floor was covered in artistic paraphernalia and Mo informed me that the kids were doing collage work. “Really”, I responded, “that’s a thing?”
Do it the way you’ve always done it? No way! 🙅♀️
So when I launched AWE Partners, my wise friend Bridget said to me, “You’re going to want to go back and do things like you used to. Don’t!”
What she meant was that I would likely go straight back to running my business from my head exclusively. And although that might garner some level of success, it would no longer be representative of who I was fully.
I was a different person than I was when I worked in the business world. There I fit in by displaying my more masculine traits.
Now to be successful and fulfilled, I need to bring my whole self to the business. The masculine and the feminine. My head and my heart.
In some ways this has been easy. Like when I write, I find it very easy to share things from the depths of my soul. Or when I work with my clients or have conversations with partners and colleagues, being authentic happens naturally for me.
But when I’m making strategic decisions, my tendency is to go back into my head and figure out what makes sense.
Here’s the problem when you’re creating a business…
The problem is that when you’re “creating” a business the answers don’t always emerge from your head. Very often they come from a deeper place within.
And it’s rare that the answers are clearly laid out for you in a straight line that’s easy to follow. More often, if you’re listening, they come as an intuitive sense or gut feel about what to do next.
In truth, what you “hear” may not make sense at all. It may, in fact, be uncommon sense that’s filled with uncertainty.
It may sound risky and force you to step outside – sometimes way outside – your comfort zone.
And it feels a lot like trust and surrender, two words you are unlikely to encounter in business school.
Try a new, holistic approach to business.
But this, my friends, is the new approach to business. A more holistic approach that allows you to incorporate both your masculine and feminine sides. Your yang and yin.☯️
An approach that encourages you to focus on both profit and purpose in your business.
Because we don’t want to start a business or go to work and leave a portion of ourselves out of the equation. We’ve been doing that for too long and if you look around you can see it’s not working.
It’s time for a paradigm shift – a new approach to business. One that blends the best of our masculine and feminine traits. One that allows us to show up, take our place, and share fully with the world all of who we are and what we represent.
Because that’s what the world needs right now. It needs you, in all your magnificence, sharing all your gifts and talents, and helping solve our problems. Are you up to the challenge?
Be Bold. Be Daring. Be AWE-dacious!