Too many of us grew up only seeing one kind of boss or leader in the media. The lack of representation for other groups reinforced harmful stereotypes and acted as a self-fulfilling prophesy, but would our opinion of what a leader looks like be different if the media did a better job at representing the true diversity of leadership in America?
Women and other under-represented groups are already leading many great companies, organizations, & academic institutions; others are authoring best-sellers, building engaged audiences, leading movements and more.
We had the honor of connecting with many of the best and brightest female leaders from in and around the city and we asked them our question of the month: What is the best advice you have for someone who feels like they are facing insurmountable odds.
We encourage you to check out the female leaders we’ve highlighted below, follow them on social media if you find their work or story interesting and most importantly do your part to #fightstereotypes.
Regina Rodman, MD, Facial Plastic Surgeon
We are only limited by our own thinking. Our true limits are usually far beyond what we at first think is possible. Dream big, and then take small daily actions towards that goal.
Destiny Reed- Entrepreneur in the Making
The best advice I can give someone who is facing an insurmountable challenge is to keep on pushing. Always pray and keep God first. Pray for what you want and let God take over.
Lori-Lee Elliott – CEO, Creator and Co-founder
If you’re faced with a challenge that feels insurmountable I would suggest a couple things. The first is to break the big challenge or roadblock down into smaller, more achievable steps. In business you hear that phrase ‘you can’t boil an ocean’ a lot and it’s true, so start with something smaller that’s in your control and go from there. The second thing is to double down on your strengths. Figure out what you are really good at and what your not good at. Partner with people that have strengths where you lacking and tackle the challenge together.
Sara Ahmed – Writer & Blogger
The best advice I can give for facing insurmountable challenges is to persevere through the hardship with unwavering love and mercy for yourself. The only person who can get you out of the rabbit’s hole is yourself so focus on the strength within because no external force will be able to help until you can do it first.
Lucia Hisse – Registered Dietitian and Yoga Instructor
I would tell them to have trust and faith in themselves and in God. God never presents us with a challenge we don’t have the strength or ability to handle. The challenges that help us grow and make us who we are are the ones that seem insurmountable in the moment. They only seem insurmountable because we’ve never encountered them before. This is our opportunity to grow, to try something, to get it wrong, to get it right. Most importantly, this is our opportunity to discover who we truly are and to create and live our life trusting that it unfolds just as it needs to.
Rachel Nannola | Registered Dietitian
If you’re facing a huge challenge, try to break it down into smaller actionable steps so you can visualize what you need to do to get it done. Once you do this, take action on these steps and have confidence in yourself that you can get it done!
Dr. Yasi Pujols – Clinical Psychologist and BJJ competitive athlete
At first glance, any given challenge may appear to be insurmountable. It may induce feelings of fear, anxiety, hopelessness, or possibly a desire to avoid the whole thing all together. Begin by taking a deep breath and deciding to tackle the challenge head on. You’ve got to have the right mindset to keep yourself in positive pursuit of your goal. Then break down the big picture into manageable chunks or tasks – this is the game plan or road map for the challenge. Prioritize tasks and follow through on the plan. Try not to get discouraged when it gets harder. Keep in mind how accomplished and proud you will feel once you attain the challenge. And finally, reward yourself for your hard work along the way.
Narumi Shikiya | MBA student/YouTuber
Sometimes, stop and breath are the most important strategies.
Danielle Callendar – Soul-Fueled Business Coach for Smart, Multi-Passionate Women
Never forget your power. It’s so easy to believe that we’re powerless, even when we’re faced with unexpected challenges. But we’re not. So look for the places where your relinquishing your power to the circumstances and do what you can to support yourself.
Rukmini (Vinaya) Rednam, MD – Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon
We all at one time or another can feel like we are faced with a challenge that is just more than we think we can tackle. Being a woman in surgery this is something I have faced often, but I have always found if I keep my eye on the end game and look at each day I move towards my goal as a small victory, before I know it I have reached my goal. The most important thing to remember in that process though, is to to never be afraid to fail because only by taking chances can you achieve great things in life.
Kimberly Carpin, M.D. Board Certified Plastic Surgeon & Mother of two
Never give up. We all fail, but what we learn from our failures is so important. Keep moving forward and forgive yourself. What would you try if you could never fail? This is the mindset to have when approaching a new challenge. I once overheard a Chinese doctor teaching a young student. He said the more failures you have, the more success you will have in the future. Think of a failure as a lesson learned.
Ashley Ray— Podcaster & Entrepreneur
Even if you are scared, do it. Don’t let fear control you.
Sarah Davis, EdD, and Evie Granville, MEd, are the “Modern Manners for Moms and Dads” moms, known everywhere as Evie + Sarah
Our advice is to hold on tightly to your best friend. Find that person in your life who’s there for you in the highs and lows, and who will listen to you, laugh with you, comfort you, and motivate you to keep going when things get really hard. Sometimes calling your best friend can make everything feel a little lighter.
Teresa Nguyen | Professional Makeup Artist and HIIT Instructor
I would say that challenges are necessary to help you grow. Embrace the challenge and consider what steps need to be taken to help you overcome it. Stay focused, determined, confident, and optimistic.
Lam Le Todd – Founder of Social Media Management Agency, LLT Creative
My advice is to go back to prayer or meditation. Quiet your brain and ask for help from a higher power or the universe. Then you have to put in the work and put one foot in front of the other to move forward! When you put in the work and ask for help from above, you can move mountains.
Stephanie Chua – Specialty Cake and Donut designer
Most challenges involve the fear of failure, so my best advice would be embracing that fear. You will never regret trying – but you will most definitely regret not trying.
Perla Andrade | very positive person and future nurse
Take a second to breathe- there is no challenge you can’t overcome, just clear your mind and make a plan.