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Week 25: The Need to be Liked – #AlphaFemaleFriday

“ WEEK 25 / 133 – 133 WEEKS TO SUCCESS ”

This past weekend, an old friend of mine who I met while I studied abroad came to visit. I was so happy to see him again in person, especially after not seeing him for over a year for a brief stint in Switzerland. Seeing him also brought a wave of nostalgia, which I find to be one of the most powerful drugs. I choose to let nostalgia serve as a reminder of who were once were in an effort to help mold who we will be become, one foot planted firmly on the ground in our present moment.

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My friend represented a pivotal moment in my life, when I came to his country to learn and was so naïve about the world I lived in. I left his country feeling much wiser because I knew I had so much more to learn. At the time I studied abroad, I lived on approximately 50 euro a week. I got by walking to class up a small mountain for 45 minutes and eating pasta with just olive oil and pepper flakes. I humble brag that I lost weight eating pasta in Italy, but it was more likely due to the 90 minute roundtrip walks 5 times a week.

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This was not the lifestyle I was used to, especially when I had no car to drive on my own to go around aimlessly. I took the bus or train to reach further destinations, and I was lucky enough that my friend volunteered to drive me around when I felt restless. He also served as my default therapist on rainy drives as Lana Del Rey played softly in the background. I felt like I had nothing to offer him at the time except my friendship. I hoped that he would like me and that my friendship would be worth enough.

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Even though I could not put a monetary value on the friendship I offered at the time, I was confident that I would be able to pay him back in at least some small way in the future. Present time, I was able to bring him around New York City. I showed him my old stomping grounds in the Meatpacking District, and we explored new areas that I had never been before, either. I lived in the Greater New York City area for the majority of my life, and yet I had never taken the tram to Roosevelt Island or seen the river along DUMBO.

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Whether it be in our personal lives or in the workplace, the need to be liked is critical. It drives us and keeps us going, to find others who accept us and say “yes, you can belong here, now, with me, with us.” What I learned from both my time abroad was that being liked, our likeability quotient, acts as a critical factor in our professional success. What I learned while beginning my career was that likeability is crucial, but it is not enough. We must give, take, and honor transactional relationships. One weekend in New York City as a de factor tour guide for my friend was only a small deposit in our friendship bank, and I can only hope going forward that we can both continue to invest.

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Cheers,

Kelly

@AlphaFemSociety tweets by @KellyRGonzales                                                                                

About:

Each week, I take a tip from Lois P. Frankel’s book, Nice Girls Still Don’t Get the Corner Office, and explore how each of these tips affect myself and other women in similar positions on the road to becoming the women we want to be. There are far and few between who are a few steps behind me, and many more who are far advanced. I found that Lois P. Frankel’s advice applied to novice, intermediates, and experts alike. It helped me see that I was already doing right, served as a reminder to keep on doing what I was doing and how to keep that momentum going. The book also showed me areas where I could improve, and gave realistic tips to jump on board. There are a total of 133 tips, and explore one tip per week in a program I call: 133 Weeks to Success.

Join the movement using the hashtag #133WeeksToSuccess with posts which are posted every #AlphaFemaleFriday.

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