Episode 51: What she did to Thrive and Excel in a Male Dominated Field

Guest: Shirley Brooks

Shirley identifies herself as an introvert who stepped into a male dominated workspace, and found her way to shine, despite facing barriers as a black woman, facing gender inequities, pay disparities, and finding her voice. She spoke about what it was like to work ten times harder than others for less opportunities, and for whatever did come her way, she needed to be gracious for it, and sacrificed a great deal to get an ounce of what another in the same position would receive. Shirley chose not to speak up at first, out of fear, she internalized majority of her painful experiences and learned to have all her feelings and reactions in private, safe from other’s view, so she wouldn’t appear “weak”. She expressed that she was afraid to look weak as vulnerability was not accepted or welcomed in the workspace. She spoke about the more she held her truth back, the more physical toll she withstood, and it got to the point where she had a physical response to the emotional and mental turmoil, psychosomatic pain – in her case, it was back pain that impacted her so greatly it was difficult to walk, sit, stand, or lie down. Shirley shared that one consequence of showing up with assertiveness would be interpreted by others as having an attitude; she carried the weight of many stereotypes; stayed small and didn’t take risks; and she worked hard to manage multiple perceptions. Her key message to the listeners is that: value your authenticity, it matters, learn about yourself and learn to show up that way; connect with your purpose and core values; know your worth, own it and communicate it; and be open to feedback so you can keep growing; don’t shrink yourself, speak up and use your voice to get what you need; separate fact from fiction and don’t let your inner critic guide you; do it scared, be courageous.


Guest Bio: Shirley is a mother, wife, mindset coach and business strategist for introverts and multi-passionate women who need help to come out of their shells and boost their confidence and monetize their unique genius. Shirley comes from 20+ years of experience in the logistics and supply chain industry and decided to stop blaming herself for her discontentment in her career and took the steps to become an active co-creator of the life she has stepped into. Her goal is to empower women and outfit them with tools they need to succeed and make the impact that they desire.


She believes the skills which are learned in the corporate environment combined with natural talent, lived experience, passions and abilities perfectly set the tone for women to take back their power so women no longer feel they need to adapt to places like male dominant industries. Shirley aims to create massive impact by increasing female human potential and family quality of life at home by creating a global community of 10,000 independently, wealthy, intentional, and holistically healthy woman owned and operated brands.


Passionate about:  

Slay You Inner Critic Group Coaching, a program she experienced firsthand as a learner and now she is part of a team that runs the program: https://www.manifestyourexcellence.com/pages/home