What separates winners and losers? What makes some women successful when women with the same skills can't make it past the start line? It's easy to look at successful people and think they got there because they are so smart and they know exactly what to do, they have the knowledge.
The truth is we all have access to relevant information. We can read books on how to be successful, we can learn how other women have built their lives from blogs. The internet is packed with information on the importance of health and exercise, and we all know we should be cutting down on sugar and refined carbs. We can read about the state of the economy and get stock tips on how to invest our money. We can inform ourselves about how to work efficiently or how to advance our career in the digital world. The list goes on and on.
So if success was based on knowledge we'd all be skinny multi-millionare super-women living happy and healthy lives in harmony with our surroundings.
Anyone can hand you a piece of paper with a recipe to success but that piece of knowledge may still be worth nothing to you.
Firstly, everyone's definition of success is going to be completely different. And it should be. Are you looking for career success or do you define success based on the time you can spend with your family? Or perhaps you haven't yet figured out what your success looks like?
The same way as everyone's success looks different, so does everyone's circumstances. There are people who are immensely successful who started with nothing and there are people with lots of money in the bank who still aren't content with their lives. Beautiful people succeed but so do the ugly. The extroverts and the introvert. The intellectually gifted and those who's only asset is hard work.
Success in life comes in all shapes and sizes.
So why do we still hang onto this notion that somewhere someone is hoarding the knowledge of how to get there. We go to networking meetings expecting other people give us the contacts that will make us succeed. Like someone is going to give us the key to everything we ever wanted!
Why should we even rely on the knowledge that has worked for someone else?
An example. A good friend of mine, Avril (founder of Feel Brave), mentors a group of startup women. She asked if I could tell her what would be a great source for social media marketing. Her mentees should put together a marketing plan. Sure, I can help, there are great sources out there and brilliant people to follow on Twitter. But this discussion made me realise that this piece of information is likely to be completely worthless for them. Yes, they will learn something about social media marketing, but unless they are committed to actually doing it and then fine tuning their approach once they learn what works for them, they are wasting their time.
Avril later interviewed me for her video series (part of her mentoring program). Watch the video where I explain the importance of attitude vs knowledge.
A second example.
At the Wealthy Woman Workshop last autumn our moderator Terhi focused on everyone's attitude towards money. Our workshops are open to both members and non-members and it was interesting to see how differently the two groups experienced the session.
The non-members arrived to the session expecting Terhi to hand over the secret to wealth in those 3 hours. All they'd have to do was to take notes. It would be straight forward, here's a woman who has done it so they'd just have to copy her steps. But that's not what Terhi delivered and the non-members didn't like what they heard.
The road was going to be long and rocky and they'd have to find their own answers.
What kind of workshop was this?! The group of women left disappointed.
The DrivenWoman members who attended the session, however, having worked with our methodology, they understood this workshop would be an opening shot to their journey to wealth. Terhi helped them to work on their attitude and commitment, and to make a firm decision to focus and learn how to improve their personal finances. They understood it was their own responsibility to find the right knowledge and to apply it to their own circumstances. They had to make it happen!
These women left excited and enthusiastic. And they wanted more. We ended up organising a second session and now the group is on their way, enjoying their journey to wealth. All the knowledge is out there, and they are now committed to finding out what investment types are best for them, and making the daily changes to save and invest.
What comes first - knowledge or attitude? And which one is more important?
If you expect success is based on knowledge you will always be missing the point. And you will always be disappointed and blaming others for not making it. What if Terhi had told people what to do and they wouldn't have adapted the advice to their own life, it would have failed. They would have blamed her for their failure.
Attitude and commitment must come first.
Do you have the fire under your belly? Are you hungry to find the answers? Have you found your 'mojo'? Are you determined to succeed?
Work on your attitude. Find your fire.
The rest will take care of itself.
PS. It's easier to be in the zone, to find your fire, if you surround yourself with people who have the same desire to succeed, who are willing to share some of their experiences and attitude.
Get infected by motivation and join one of our Introduction evenings to see what DrivenWoman is all about. Next session is on 21. May 6:45 pm in Soho, London.