Thursday, October 23, 2014

Jason Nik interview with Esther Spina

When it comes to achieving success -- anything a man can achieve, so can a woman. Sometimes, women simply don't realize that they can be ambitious too. Esther Spina aims to change that and is paving the way for women all across the globe to become empowered to achieve their dreams. 

I spoke with Esther about overcoming obstacles, being ambitious, and what it takes to be successful.
Jason Nik: When did you discover just how ambitious you truly were?

Esther Spina: I don’t believe people are born “ambitious."  It is a choice. I certainly was not born into an ambitious family. My dad worked at a shoe factory, my mom stayed at home, no one in my family went to college, no one had a business.  I just didn't grow up knowing anything about being an entrepreneur or choosing to live an “ambitious” life. I was destined for an ordinary life. I graduated from high school and got a job a week later as a kardex clerk for General Electric. I just wanted to earn money to get out on my own.  But something happened there.  I wanted a job on the order desk, no woman had.  And I worked at getting that job in a man's world, believing that I could do every bit as good a job as them. I learned I was a very ambitious young lady, and in the four years it took to prove that I could do the job, I learned the traits it takes to be ambitious.
JN: What do you think is the biggest obstacle for women in the business world?
ES: No matter what the industry, it is pretty much male dominated. The biggest obstacle, whether male or female for being successful in any position is to prove yourself to others that you are qualified and capable of the job at hand. However, as a woman, you have to be even more at the top of your game to overcome the male environment. Times are changing and in most cases, if you can prove yourself to be just as capable as your male counterpart, you will rise to the top. I think of Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook. She is a role model for the modern woman. She is not only the number two person at Facebook, she is also the author of a best-selling book, “Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead.” But women have to learn to “discipline their disappointments.” You cannot be a whiner or cry baby in the business world. How will they keep it together? DISCIPLINE! My mantra is “discipline my disappointments." It’s gotten me everywhere I've been. 

 JN: You recently released the book “The Ambitious Woman” where you show women how to lead an ambitious life and also profiled many successful ambitious women. Which women’s stories most fascinated you?
 ES: Most recently, one of the most ambitious women that has had an impact on me is Diana Nyad, the 64 year old woman who achieved her dream of swimming 110 miles between Havana and Key West in September 2013. In the water for more than two days without a shark tank, she fought fatigue, jelly fish, but was continually encouraged by her support team,  While that is not something I would ever want to do, I am inspired by her dream. It was her fifth attempt, spanned over 2 decades, before she achieved this extraordinary feat. When she emerged from the waters, she said she only had 3 messages, One is we should never, ever give up.  Two is you are never too old to chase your dream. Three is it looks like a solitary sport, but it takes a team. I love that! Never give up on your dreams!

 JN: At JNikLC, I tell my readers that anyone can “Dream. Conquer. Achieve. Repeat.” A lot of moms think that because they’re busy being a mom, their dreams are only ever going to be dreams. What can you tell moms about the possibility of achieving those dreams? 

ES: I believe a woman can “have it all”.  Maybe just not all at once. There are different seasons in a woman’s life, so you have to learn to be content in whatever season you are in. You do not have to give up on your dreams. If you wait long enough, while at the same time working towards that dream, it will happen. For some women, it starts being single, perhaps going to college, getting married, have children, and then perhaps start a career while kids start school, supporting the husband having dreams and desires of her own. Wherever you're at in that season, keep your dreams alive and never give up. For other women, being a single mom, you may have to do it all at once with the time and resources you have. I think of Mary Crowley, a single mom during the depression who started a business at home and then went on to build one of the largest home interior and decorating companies in the world. Either season, you find yourself in, your dreams CAN be a reality. Never ever give up!

 JN: You founded the Ambitious Women Success & Mentoring Club. What can women expect when they join the club?

ES: Everywhere I go, people come up to me and ask, “How did you do it?  What words of wisdom do you have for me.” I’m sure many of them think I have some magical formula that guarantees success. But I have to say, “Be accountable to someone. Have a mentor or get a coach, but be accountable.”  That is what the club is about; staying accountable with exclusive entrepreneurial training, weekly success coaching, hot topics with millionairesses, and adopting successful mindsets that are in alignment with your dreams. Whether this club is right for you or not, “Be accountable”. 

 JN: Thank you for your time, Esther. Is there anything else you would like to share with the JNikLC readers?

ES: Successful people do what unsuccessful people will not do.  Bottom line.  If you truly want to be successful, it will come with a price and that is doing any and all the things unsuccessful people will not do. That is why not everyone is successful. 
Remember that when you have to do something uncomfortable or even scary, to be successful.

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