Success means different things successful women never do . For some, it can mean standing on a grand stage, lit up in a million shades, hearing the crowds echo the sound of a dream you had only dared to speak alone in the dark before.
For some, it can mean having a hand to hold on the long train ride home or a voice on the phone keeping you company on late-night grocery runs. For others, it can be a warm spot on the couch that has carried your weight for decades, where you fit just right no matter how much you grow up.
A successful woman is someone who lives her idea of success in all its simplicity and complexity. She understands that she grows in her own time and that it is okay for her to rest along the way, too.
She understands that her idea of happiness is completely valid and she allows herself to live in whichever way possible.
If we look at the billion experiences of successful women—be it under the spotlight or rocky terrains or lovingly-built apartments—there are certain traits we might find in common. Observing these intersecting lines in such a diverse lifestyle can aid in shaping your own.
Today, we are going to do just that by telling you about a few things successful women never do.
A successful woman is not an otherworld creature. Rather, she is the same as every other person on this planet. All she does is embrace herself entirely, living out her ordinariness in full spirit. It is the many day-to-day things successful women do differently that truly make them who they are.
It would be unfair to say that we all have the same 24 hours in the day. The way we live through our day is shaped by our identities. It is a privilege to be in control of your own time and arrange your activities as per your own comfort.
Thus, it is impossible to declare certain tasks that every successful woman must perform every single day because every successful woman has different access to time.
So, being a successful woman is not about the outward activity, but rather it is within the inner spirit. It is about the heart and soul which you put inside your efforts. The habits of successful women are habits of passion, discipline, and respect — for themselves and their work — that they have spent years building. The things powerful women do are powerful because the power is inside them and they have nurtured it with gentleness.
Whether it is selling vegetables at the market, tending to the sick, or attending a dozen meetings every day, all successful women have their way of being authentic in their work. No one is less than the other and each blooming is a wonderful one to behold.
When we talk about things successful women never do, it is important to acknowledge that they have probably done these things at least once or twice before they recognized them to be bad habits. After all, successful women are human and are also bound to make mistakes.
In this list, we are going to talk about habits successful women have recognized to be harmful or redundant in the long run.
Remember: You don’t need to emulate the following traits completely to be successful. You can live your individuality while also taking inspiration from others who have walked this road.
With that said, let’s get into the 10 things successful women never do:
Not taking responsibility for actions
Accountability is a huge part of success. The true successful female leaders are those who don’t hide their flawed humanness, but rather lay it out in the open. They don’t just strive to fulfil ambition, but also to grow kinder as people, to apologise to those that they have hurt, including themselves.
It can be incredibly scary to be the person-in-charge, because then if anything goes wrong, you have no one but yourself to blame. This is why it is also scary to finally take charge of your life.
Of course, you can’t always control external factors and not everything is directly caused by you. However, it is essential to reflect on your experiences, so that you can learn from them.
Bad decisions don’t make bad people. In fact, if you acknowledge those bad decisions and try to work on yourself with patience, you will come out of it much wiser and kinder.
But remember to do it with gentleness, because shaming yourself into learning will never go far. Hold your own hand and walk through this in your time.
Putting others down for their progress
Kindness and empathy are key qualities of successful women. They don’t make the climb upwards while using other people as their stepping stones. They don’t dismiss others’ feelings or dreams to make space for their own. They don’t insult others and push them down just to feel good about themselves.
Rather, successful female leaders always work on being more and more aware of how their actions affect others. Healthy competition never does anyone harm, but sometimes lines are crossed and people can get hurt.
In such cases, the best case of action is to always apologise for your part in the mess and then work together towards being more understanding of each other.
Successful women know that everyone’s journeys and dreams are different. They don’t consider anyone’s ambition ‘lesser’ than theirs. They don’t think of themselves as ‘more’ than others because they know that success blooms differently for everyone and people are successful in their own wonderful, magical ways.
The mountain peak can be very lonely if you get to it having lost every person you have or could have loved. After all, it is the journey that makes the woman, not the destination.
Always try to be kinder in your community spaces and encourage each other to keep going. True success can be celebrated together.
Comparing their growth with others
When we say that there are things successful women do differently, we mean that they understand that their journey is unique and their growth happens in their own time. They understand that not everyone will associate the things they want with the idea of ‘success’ but that doesn’t make them less valid.
Successful women don’t try to mold themselves into other people’s definition of success. Rather, they work on weeding out the burden of societal expectations from themselves and then work on uncovering their own wishes.
This can often take years, so it’s okay if you arrive at your conclusion much later in life. Or, if you don’t even know what you want to do for sure. Remember that ambition can also be leading a simple life surrounded by the people and things you love.
You are not late or failing at anything. Not every flower blooms in the same spring. Not every flower blooms the same way. Your spring will arrive when you are easy to let it nurture you into full bloom.
Not appreciating themselves
Successful women always, always appreciate the good in themselves. They pat themselves on the back at every milestone — be it finally sleeping on time or getting that first deal or mastering the family recipe — and remind themselves about their growth.
Successful women are also proud of themselves without any external ‘achievements’. They understand that rewards don’t always have to be ‘earned’. Being yourself is all the reason you need to reward and take care of yourself.
Yes, being humble is important but it shouldn’t compromise your ability to admit your progress. You can acknowledge that you are still learning and growing, while also acknowledging how much effort you have put in.
It can be hard to say good things about yourself, but it is so necessary to do it. You might not always like yourself but having your own back goes a long way in this life. So, remember to show yourself the patience you show others. Work on forgiving yourself and appreciating yourself for all that you are in this moment.
Avoiding room for conflicts
No one enjoys disagreements, but they are often necessary for growth. Successful women recognize when conflict is room for new perspectives to come in. They understand that not everything is black or white. Listening to other people can facilitate their own learning.
Of course, this doesn’t mean they always let go of their opinions. They also know the importance of standing up for themselves and explaining their side clearly. The other side might not always get it, but at least you know that you did your best.
But not all conflicts must be faced. Always ask yourself if you feel safe enough to be in this space of disagreement with this person(s).
If any parts of your identity are being insulted or harmed, it is always okay to step away and not engage. Disagreements should never be grounds for disrespect and discrimination.
If you feel safe enough to face a conflict, then remember to be polite and respectful, balancing between explaining your side and hearing the other person out. Always step out if you find that the situation could escalate.
Remember that it is okay if you find your own opinions shifting in the aftermath. This is a kind of growing, too.
Not unlearning old mindsets
Successful women know that unlearning is a huge part of learning. They know that not all opinions serve them well and so, it is important to discard them to grow. They constantly reflect on themselves and work on gently undoing the knots of harmful thought processes
Successful female leaders also understand that identity is fluid and what they wanted decades ago might not be what they want now. They reevaluate their priorities so that they don’t accidentally force themselves into the expectations of their younger self.
They respect their inner and outer change and take care of themselves accordingly.
It is so important to shed old skin so that we can grow. As humans, we often have many prejudices that we have accumulated over the years. It is essential to question them and unravel them. Always work on nurturing kindness within your body.
It is also important to let go of old dreams that are no longer yours. It doesn’t mean you failed your younger self. Rather, it only means that you have grown from them and are respecting the needs of the current you.
Not respecting their boundaries
Sometimes, it is necessary to say no. Successful women acknowledge their boundaries and make them known to people in their way. They acknowledge their discomforts and take a step back to give themselves the space they need.
Taking control of who they allow in their space and how much they allow in is one of the most important things powerful women do. They know the value of their own time and energy and don’t spend them on things that make them feel uncomfortable.
It can be scary to set boundaries, especially with the people you love. But if you don’t respect these boundaries, then you will drain your mind and body. You will not have anything left to put in the things you actually want to do.
Sure, not everyone might understand this, but the people who care for you and your growth will.
Not maintaining a balance between comfort and challenging themselves
Successful women challenge themselves to try new things and resolve difficult situations. They put their best foot forward and do their best to experiment and explore themselves. They face the world head-on and don’t give up.
However, they also respect their own comfort. They understand that sometimes taking care of yourself can mean letting some opportunities go. That you don’t always have to swim through your fears to grow stronger. Giving yourself the room to walk away is also strength.
So, it is okay if sometimes you don’t want to step into a particular situation. All you need to do is be aware of the reason behind your decisions.
It can be hard to figure out when it is healthier to stay within your comfort space and when it is healthier to step out. If you feel ready to do something, but are only scared of initiating it, then give yourself a little nudge. If you feel genuinely uncomfortable with trying something, then respect your needs and take a break. You being content with yourself is all that matters.
Not allowing vulnerability
As mentioned earlier, success requires an appreciation of your human-ness. Successful women look after their softer, tender parts just as much as they care for their rational parts. They know that they are not perfect, that at times emotions might get the best of them, and that they will make mistakes, too.
But they also know that it is these emotions that let them empathize and comment with others, forming safe community spaces where growth is nurtured.
They know it is this vulnerability that allows them to release a bit of that burden through tears. They allow themselves to curl up and just exist on the days when everything else seems difficult.
Vulnerability is not a weakness but courage. The vulnerability allows us to care for both ourselves and others. It is how we ascertain our feelings, how we tend to the little, scared parts of ourselves.
Vulnerability must be nurtured because it makes us kinder and more understanding.
It can be terrifying to be perceived in your vulnerability, so remember to be gentle with yourself. Remind yourself that you are human in the most terrible and lovely ways all at the same time. Know that this is how you keep growing.
Not celebrating their success
Finally, it is very essential to be proud of your success and celebrate it with zero guilt! Successful women know that they deserve their success and so, they celebrate it with all they have.
You should always own your success because you have grown into it with strength and tenderness. Isn’t that something worth cherishing, forever?
Living your definition of success
The key behind success is finding your definition of success and allowing yourself the time to inhabit it. It is okay to stumble and take a long way around. It is okay to change and a detour — or even a dozen.
Sure, now you know a bit more about the kind of things successful women never do. But that doesn’t mean that you have to follow them all down to the core. It only means that you have to ask your heart what resonates with you.
Once you have found it, all you need to do is hold onto it and let it be one more seed bloomed within the infinite spring of your heart.