Five Tips for Women in Male-Dominated Fields

By Harvard Business Review
April 3, 2019

 Certainly, employers can take steps to encourage women to overcome anxiety and self-doubt. However, there are also ways for women to help themselves feel more confident.

When it comes to gender equality in the workplace, organizations are keeping a slow and steady pace. But progress does not mean parity. And working in a climate where you’ve been historically excluded can lead women to question their abilities.

Here are ways employers can help women overcome workplace anxiety and self-doubt, and ways for women to increase their own confidence:

1. Research shows that women exposed to powerful female role models are more likely to endorse the notion that women are well-suited for leadership roles. So regular meetings — say monthly check-ins or weekly lunches — between less-experienced and more-senior women are important.

COMMENTARY: We Must Balance Gender Inequity in Medicine

2. Are you in a new job or position? Worried about whether you can make the cut? Try journaling. The act of committing thoughts to paper decreases worries and rumination and boosts concentration and focus.

3. If you sometimes feel like an impostor — that you aren’t really that talented and have fooled anyone who thinks you are — focusing on your past successes can help prevent a spiral of self-doubt.

RELATED: Strategy for Aspiring Women’s Leaders: Identify and Maximize Strengths

4. When overwhelmed or at an impasse, take a step back from the problem. The brain often needs a chance to reboot. This lets you see more clearly, find new connections and devise better solutions.

5. If something difficult happens, like a bad performance review, reframe how your brain processes the setback. Rather than give up, acknowledge what went wrong, determine how to improve and carry this into the future.

Copyright 2019 Harvard Business School Publishing Corp. Distributed by The New York Times Syndicate.

Topics: Career Planning

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