The elements of success are often granular and as much as we’d like to simply follow a ‘success formula’, everyone has to find their own unique path to success. The role of compassion in success is not much talked about but I believe it plays a vital role. It’s the secret ingredient that unlocks your potential, removes obstacles and builds confidence to pursue your goals. Let me share with you what I’ve learned in the hundreds of DrivenWoman groups I’ve now hosted and the countless member stories I’ve followed.
One of the core principles at DrivenWoman is that every dream was created equal. This means that all members respect and support each other without judgement. It sounds easy enough on the surface level but is not so easy when you look a little deeper.
Most of us have based our life view on evaluating people based on where they are in their journey. When you meet a new person do you first pay attention to her job tittle, or her looks, or how experienced she is in a certain field? There is no judgement in my question, and I know we all do this to a degree, sub-consciously. We’ve been programmed over the years by people around us, our family and the society to do this!
Even if you don’t mean to judge the other person, in your mind you may place yourself either below or above her, based on what criteria you are operating from (career success, better mother, prettier, richer, smarter, more intellectual, more creative, more spiritual and so on). This is our ego’s way to create an attachment. It does this to feel safe.
Ego’s way of judgement separates us from others, and from our own true success.
Why is this a problem? If you are looking to be successful this feeling of separation detaches you from multitude of opportunities that would naturally appear.
It was only through DrivenWoman that I learned to be fully present and stop putting people into categories based on the stories my ego was telling me. I started feeling compassion for everyone who came to the groups and approached situations without any kind of judgement.
And an amazing thing happened! When I had no need to feel ‘superior’ to anyone, I no longer felt ‘not good enough’ either. I stopped comparing myself to someone I used to place higher up based on my internal measure of success.
Compassion creates a positive chain reaction.
When you feel compassionate towards others, you stop judging yourself and let go of feeling ‘not good enough’.
Sometimes new DrivenWoman members are concerned if people in their group will be ‘on the same level’ and some have even asked if they could be put into a more ‘advanced’ group. I reply that at DrivenWoman we only have ‘one level’ and the fact that you can help someone who may know less than you will help you to give up judgement. And when you learn to give up judgement you open yourself up to all possibilities and genuine connection with others and your true self.
My experience from watching the journey of hundreds of DrivenWoman members has thought me a couple of things about the role of compassion in success. The women who repeatedly place themselves ‘above others’ or feel ‘they already know it all’ will repeatedly miss out on opportunities and remain unaware of this.
Benefits of compassion:
Endless opportunities to learn
When you judge someone based on your ego’s narrow definition of success you miss out on all the other areas that person can teach you. Guy Kawasaki explains in his book ‘Enchantment‘ that compassion and believing you can learn something from everyone you meet is a key ingredient in becoming enchanting. The goal is not merely to get what you want but to bring about a voluntary, enduring, and delightful change in other people.
Think big, dream big
When you listen to a story of a girl who came to London with no money, learned the English language whilst cleaning houses, studied to become a florist and then went on to win at Chelsea Flower Show – which, by the way, is only a start to her amazing journey – you can look at yourself and think “Damn, I’m being slightly modest here with my dreams… perhaps anything is possible!” When you allow that compassion and appreciation of such inspiring stories enter your consciousness you open yourself up into endless possibilities!
Connect with anyone
When you no longer place yourself above someone, there are nobody above you either. You can call Sheryl Sandberg with confidence! The reason most women don’t connect with people who could actually really help them to grow and succeed is because they feel superior, or on the flip side ‘not good enough’. Letting go of judgement opens up a door to endless connections with confidence and soon you will see how many amazing women are willing to help you.
Have you experienced the benefits of compassion in your life? Do you think it is a key ingredient in a path to success?
If you want to see how shared experiences can help you enrich your life and accelerate your success, join a DrivenWoman Lifeworking group.