Spring Reading - Lean In
Everyone is talking about this new book, “Lean In” by Sheryl Sandberg. It’s supposed to be a modern day manifesto for women. I’ve only started reading it and was hesitant at first because anything that sounds like ‘manifesto’ I try to steer clear of especially when I want some light reading, but as is the case with most of my reads, I never pick my books. They pick me. This was no different.
I have found that when the world really wants you to learn something it will find a way to teach it to you. Using a book as a medium is one of the easy ways to do this. Sometimes it’s a self-help book (for obvious reasons), sometimes it’s a motivational read and other times it’s just for fun, because even the powers that be want us all to have a little fun now and then.
This book is just as much for men as it is for women. I have already read stuff in there that I have felt and do feel time and time again. There are 11 chapters plus an introduction. I am on chapter 4. So if anyone wants to pick up the book and read with me, it would be great to discuss this book with any of you!
The book is chalk full of research to back up everything that is said so it isn’t just one person’s opinion but one person’s deduction of things (backed up by many more people) from solid research material. And it has tons of personal stories by numerous different people especially the author (obviously) which puts a lot of the general ideas into context.
Her first lesson, Sit at the Table is just that. Participate and get involved in spite of the self-doubt running through your veins. It’s common. It’s felt by some very successful women including the CEO of IBM and Sheryl Sandberg herself. Over time your confidence will build but until then you have to fake it to make it, effectively.
The second lesson, Success and Likeability. This chapter starts with the telling of the Heidi/Howard case study conducted by a couple of professors who basically proved that Success and Likeability are positively correlated for men but negatively correlated for women. It’s one of those studies where you’re not surprised by the result because you always had a hunch that was true but didn’t have any evidence to back it up. Well for better or for worse, now you do. The thing I like about this chapter however is not just that it tells us that but that it discusses how to deal with this type of perception. Thing globally, act locally. Stay insistent and smile. Simple suggestions actually.
The third lesson I’m still reading so will chat about tomorrow. I’d love to discuss lesson one and two however if anybody is up for it.