This weekend, dear friends and I immersed ourselves in the richness of Portland Oregon. These friends and I know one another because we are all part of an organization with the mission of supporting Female Executives globally.

These women: Diverse, wildly successful by conventional measurements, and brilliant.

They, like me, have led businesses, bought and sold companies, rolled up, downsized, scaled, vertically integrated, divested, repositioned, capitalized, won big, lost big, and again and again, said YES to big opportunities even if it scared them a bit.

They are high achievers in every sense of the word, and here’s what they each embody and thus teach:

  • Acknowledge your fear and step forward anyway.
  • Believe in yourself; even when you belly flop.
  • Actively and boldly ask for the “At Bat.”
  • Include IMPACT in your goals. Meaning matters.
  • Practice the AND: humble AND confident, cautious AND courageous, space holder AND activator.
  • Infinite curiosity & enthusiasm are the spice of life.
  • Advocate fiercely for equity and opportunity.
  • Know the lines you refuse to cross.
  • Lead others with a “get it done / you’ve got this” compassion.
  • Balance heart and brain intelligence.
  • Do not sacrifice your health for progress.
  • Play: travel, dance, sing, knit, cook, belly laugh.

These women are masters in their professions, and yet, they tend to their spirits in their own way with their own rituals. They’ve learned, sometimes the hard way, to make themselves part of the success equation; caring for their own well-being. They take impact seriously and themselves lightly.

They are incredible teachers, and I feel blessed to have them as friends. And they exude qualities we can all emulate every day; finding the way we make them our own.

Choose Well!