The Women Who Personally Inspired You

I took a moment today to reflect on the women in my personal history who have had a major impact on my career success. Many of us have known a special person who helped them achieve a goal, tackle a challenge or find the confidence needed to take a leap of faith. Whether that person was a relative, a teacher, first boss or important colleague, I encourage you to look back and remember what they did. And ask yourself how they impacted your life and whether they still inspire you today. U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor recently authored a book entitled “My Beloved World,” her 2010 autobiography about growing up in the Bronx, the daughter of poor immigrant Puerto Rican parents. Justice Sotomayor shares in her book that it was important to “find someone in your life who unconditionally loves you.”  Her grandmother was that person for her.

In my own life, my mother has been that person. She instilled in me the belief that I can do anything, an unwavering sense of confidence that if I work hard I will succeed. As a child, I completely underestimated the importance of this. But, as a parent and adult – and someone who coaches high performers – I realize how much difference this can make in a person’s ability to forge ahead into the unknown, take a risk, and pursue their passion.  I often see unbelievably talented individuals doubting themselves and holding back from taking steps towards the lives that they really want.  Trust me, I still have moments of doubt but I can also still hear my mother’s words of encouragement.  And those words ultimately overpower any hesitation or fear I might feel.

My mother’s gift is one for which I will forever be grateful. What special gift has someone given you? Take a few minutes today to think about it, and then acknowledge her with gratitude.

Photo Credit: Sonia Sotomayor