Strong women are having a moment. Despite having to juggle work, family, and social lives, many of us have figured out how to get ahead of the pack.
How to excel and leave the mediocre floundering around in the dust.
Now, I know I said “figured out” like it’s a hack or a magic trick, but in reality, it’s a result of consistent and daily practices.
I’ve adopted these habits myself, and I can say that they are really worth the extra effort. I just feel so much more in charge of my life.
What exactly are these daily practices of strong women that put them ahead of the pack? Let’s check them out!
1) They have a solid morning ritual
Raise your hand if this scene looks familiar to you…the alarm blares out and instead of getting up, you hit the snooze button. Over and over.
Before you know it, you’ve overslept and now you jump out of bed in a panic, splash some water on your face, dress up, and out the door you go!
No judgment here, I used to be guilty of the same thing myself. But when I looked at the strong women I know, the ones who arrive to work early, looking fresh and polished, I knew I had to get my act together.
So, what does a morning ritual look like? It’s going to look different for each one of us, but the idea is to give yourself a routine that sets your mood for the day.
But I’d like to add, whatever your routine is, making your bed definitely has to be in there.
According to Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business, making your bed each morning makes you more productive and gives you a greater sense of well-being.
2) They make room for regular exercise and self-care
Aside from their morning ritual, strong women who get ahead of the pack also have a solid self-care practice.
So, exercise? Check.
Nutritious food? Check.
A good night’s sleep? Check!
If there’s anything strong women know, it’s that they can’t be at their best if they’re running on empty.
3) They are constantly learning and pursuing their passions
Speaking of fullness, one thing you’ll notice about strong women who are way ahead of the pack is this – their brains are always brimming with knowledge and their hearts are always full of passion.
Not just about their field of expertise, but about the world in general.
It all comes down to having a growth mindset. They’re always excited to learn something new, and they’re quite intentional about it.
So they do things like attend webinars and conferences, read books and magazines, engage in hobbies…practically anything that satisfies their curiosity and passions.
The goal is to always be growing, always pushing themselves to new heights.
4) They assert themselves and set boundaries
Of course, you can’t get to the top if you keep going with the flow. This used to be my default mode – going along to get along.
But after a while, it just felt like I wasn’t in charge of my life. Because that’s what it really is, isn’t it?
Going with the flow can be cool from time to time, but at a certain point, it’s going to make us feel lost. Much like hiking in a strange forest and letting other people decide where to go.
In contrast, strong women know what they want and have no qualms about expressing them. If they’re not comfortable with something, they’ll speak up about it.
It’s all about self-advocacy. Advocating for your needs and rights empowers us to be independent and take control of our path.
5) They make the first move
This one’s connected to the idea of assertiveness, but takes it a step further. Strong women don’t just sit back and wait for lucky breaks or happy happenstances.
No, they go out there and get proactive, even if it means making the first move.
So at work, they’d ask for a raise if they feel like they deserve it. Or they’d put their hand up for a promotion or to spearhead a challenging project.
The same “take-the-bull-by-the-horns” attitude goes for their personal life, too. If there’s a guy they’re interested in, they’re perfectly okay with walking up and sparking a conversation.
Simply put, they make life happen, not the other way around!
6) They do positive self-talk
How exactly do they have the confidence to make the first move, you ask? I mean, the thought of walking up to a guy and saying you’re interested can be downright terrifying!
Well, it’s because they’ve got a positive dialogue going on with themselves. That’s something many women struggle with, given all the demands and expectations society places on us.
But strong women have already realized they don’t need to listen to the negative thoughts that insert themselves, especially when things aren’t going well.
I’m not saying they suppress or ignore their feelings; acknowledgment is actually second nature to them.
But they do know how to flip the script – instead of dwelling on failure or on things they can’t control, they see the silver lining. They think about all the other things they’re good at and use that thought to pick themselves up and move forward.
That said, they are also realistic, which is why…
7) They plan for the worst
I think this is probably going to sound familiar to a lot of women. That’s because many of us are taught from a young age to be conscientious, prepared, and to look out for potential risks. To literally be Girl Scouts.
So, it often falls on us to think of all the possible things that could happen and prepare for them.
And that’s something strong women harness to the max. It shows up in every area of their lives – from having a backup plan in case a project at work falls through to planning a road trip with family.
So naturally, they’re more resilient. And as we all know, the more resilient you are, the farther you get ahead in life!
8) They define their idea of balance
Here’s something interesting: strong women who get ahead of the pack have their own definition of balance.
It’s a common misconception that balance means devoting an equal amount of time and energy to every area of life.
For some people, balance might look like 50% work/50% family. For others, it might look like 40% work/40% family/20% self.
The point is, balance will differ based on our individual needs, values, and goals. Your life might not look balanced to someone else, but if it does for you, then that’s all that matters.
9) They delegate
A huge part of having a balanced life is having the ability to delegate. Many people think of strong women as do-it-all figures – almost like Wonder Woman.
But behind every strong woman is a cast of characters who help her navigate life. Because the truth is, no matter how strong you are, you will always need help. You can’t and don’t have to do everything yourself.
So, don’t be afraid to delegate tasks to other people. For example, if you’re hard at work on a project, allocate some tasks to your team members. Don’t go crazy trying to take it all on.
And how about at home? Who said you have to do all the chores by yourself? Assign household duties evenly among your family members.
That way, you’ll have enough energy to focus on the tasks you do best and be more productive. And get ahead of the pack!
10) They say no to multitasking
Ah, multitasking. Another topic rife with misconceptions.
There’s a popular belief that multitasking is a wonderful skill to have. People really take pride in their ability to multitask.
But you know what? It’s not quite the badge of honor they think it is.
Research has shown that multitasking can actually reduce productivity and increase stress. That’s why you won’t find it a common practice among strong women.
To get ahead, strong women do the opposite – they focus on one task at a time. It’s just the smarter way to work!
Not only do you produce higher-quality work and fewer mistakes, but you also get none of the stress that comes with multitasking. In contrast, there’s a tremendous feeling of satisfaction as you tick each task off your list.
11) They stay connected
So, we now know how strong women stay driven to excel in their field – smart work habits, a positive and proactive mindset, self-care practices and all that.
But as focused as they are on their career goals and ambitions, strong women also never forget what truly matters – their relationships.
I used to be such a workaholic that this was something I lost sight of for a while. I barely had time to spare for family and friends, and I would even go months without calling my mom!
Fortunately, I saw the light sooner rather than later. I realized that none of the work I do would matter if I left my loved ones feeling unloved.
I hope that never happens to you. I hope that however high you go in life, you’ll remember to invest in your relationships. Because at the end of the day, your time is always the best gift you can give of yourself.