8 Successful People On The Best Advice They've Ever Received From Female Mentors

Photo by Susana Ramírez

It's International Women's Day, a day the entire world has earmarked to celebrate the achievements of women across all disciplines: social, economic, cultural, political, and everything in between. Keeping with this year's theme of #PressForProgress, which aims to close the gender pay gap, we asked some of the most successful people we know about the life-changing advice they received from female mentors. According to a 2017 report generated by the World Economic Forum on the gender pay gap, we're more than 200 years away from true equality. Following the #TimesUp and #MeToo movements, modern women are not only empowering one another—they are empowering the world.

Here is a "behind the curtain" peek at the sage advice female mentors have shared to support and inspire the most well-respected voices in wellness to become their best selves:

1. The real connection between kindness and power.

"My mentor Nevine Michaan, founder of Katonah Yoga, has taught me many a lesson, but one that sits at the forefront of my mind and life is that while yoga is a practice that is used to cultivate a sense of power, it is always most powerful to be kind. In my teachings, my interactions with students and employees of SKY TING, and my decisions as a business owner, I do my best to consider what's motivating my choices. When my choices come from a place of love and kindness, they're much more powerful."

Chloe Kernaghan, co-founder of SKY TING Yoga

2. A sage quote on getting through life's transitions.

"Ride the horse in the direction that it’s going." Journalist Carole Radziwill said this to me at a very transitional part of my life. I believe the quote originates from someone else, but her words hit me like a bolt of lighting. If something isn’t working, don’t force it. That applies to love, work, life, everything."

Katie Sturino, model, body-positivity advocate, and founder of 12-ish Style

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3. Words of wisdom on the true source of strength.

Photo: @colleenwachob

"From my friend Tara Stiles, I’ve learned to try to find the ease and softness in pursuing my largest goals. Less pushing, more laughing."

Colleen Wachob, mindbodygreen co-founder and chief brand officer

4. Hard-won wisdom for people-pleasers.

"My old editor at the UK Sunday Times was always fearlessly herself and was totally focused on getting what she wanted from her team regardless of how well-liked she was. As somebody with people-pleasing tendencies, any time I find myself being too 'nice,' I ask myself how she would respond instead. Then soften it by about 30 percent!"

Ruby Warrington, founder of The Numinous and author of Material Girl, Mystical World

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5. An antidote to self-doubt.

"My mentor Janice Bond shared with me at the very beginning of launching Black Girl in Om: Cultivate an abundance mentality in all you do. This has radically affected how I navigate doing business and how I approach my personal journey. I am never lacking; I am always rich with resources, wisdom, and opportunities."

Lauren Ash, founder of Black Girl in Om

6. A fail-proof technique for staying focused on what really matters.

Julie Nguyen is the CEO and co-founder of Methodology. Her No. 1 lesson to me has been to be consistent with taking care of my health no matter what. There have been times in my life when I have put my business or my relationships above my health. Julie’s health journey always inspires me, especially since she’s one of the hardest-working founders I know. She’s taught me to be regimented about prioritizing my health over everything.

Priscilla Tsai, founder of Cocokind

7. Remember your value and your values.

My parents divorced when I was 3 years old, so I was raised by two women—my mother and my grandmother. They were "wellness people" before "wellness" was a commonly used word. Specifically spirituality, resilience, gratitude (and vegetables!) were things instilled in me from a very early age and have shaped who I am as a father, husband, entrepreneur, and CEO.

Jason Wachob, mindbodygreen founder and CEO

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8. A brilliant "in hindsight" take on feeling overwhelmed.

It was about a year into Ellis Brooklyn, and I was feeling overwhelmed. I thought our brand wasn't as big as it should be compared to other brands. With the nonstop news and media cycle, it's easy to get that feeling, which is like Instagram syndrome—their-brand/their-life-is-better-than-yours sort of thing. It was a freezing day in December, which was especially miserable, and I was griping to Bobbi Brown, whom I met through my work for the New York Times years ago, over text. She was like, "Call me now." She basically talked me off the ledge. I had been thinking of taking on big investors. I had been considering changing the whole trajectory of the brand. She said, "What's the rush? The part when your brand is completely in your control and cool and indie and all those wonderful things is the best part of building something special. Have confidence in the outcome—know that the bigger numbers and financial success and all of that is coming, and take that part for granted—but it's the journey that is what makes it all worth it."

Bee Shapiro, New York Times beauty columnist, founder of Ellis Brooklyn, and author of Skin Deep

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