Disclaimer: I am not bashing men and I apologize if it comes off that way. I believe in equality, I don’t find one sex better than the other or one sex weaker than the other. I love my men and appreciate my men! Today though, is all about women…girl power! 🙂
In honor of International Women’s Day, I am finally writing a post about women. I have been wanting to write one for quite some time now, but haven’t been able to find the time.For the last couple weeks, who we are as women, has been a question that has been plaguing me everyday. In one of my classes at FIDM, we are required to come to class every week with a “leader in the news” and speak about their life, their leadership qualities, and their impact on the world. We have been doing this for the past 10 weeks, and I have noticed that majority of our leaders have been men. There were some women mentioned like Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama, and Oprah, but majority of the women mentioned were celebrities. I am not knocking celebrities as actual leaders, but I found it a little sad that collectively, we were struggling to find women leaders within our world who aren’t celebrities. One day I logged onto my Instagram and in true modern-day stalker fashion, I somehow found myself on pages of people I didn’t even know and I jumped from page to page of all these different girls, examining their lives through their Instagram. There was this common trend among them all…their pages looked something like this: Quotes about haters, bitches, “chasin paper”, “think like a man, act like a bitch” (yes I’ve actually seen this), extreme narcissism, and a lot of negativity often focused on bashing other women. I kept wondering, “Do these girls ever strive to stimulate themselves intellectually? Or do their lives revolve around social media and seeking the attention of followers they don’t even know?” I not only found myself exhausted by all of the negative energy on their pages, but also worried about our generation of women. Everyone is calling everyone a “basic”, but they are all exactly like each other…in reality they should all be besties . Another sad factor to me was that I found that the Real Housewives of [whatever], Basketball Wives, and all the other similar women on similar shows have become the role models of our generation and the generations after us. They often turn these TV shows into a lucrative career for themselves and capitalize on the 15 minutes they get. I am not knocking their hustle, I get it. I just feel the way women are going about it, is all wrong. The thing is, I feel that most of us women want the same thing, equality. For quite some time, we have been trying to prove that we are just as capable as men and can be just as successful as men, but even though it is the year 2014, women are still running into inequality in the workplace; its frustrating. But when we dumb ourselves down and turn to our sexuality as the only means to get ahead, we are actually holding ourselves back; we are not being respected by our fellow women and we damn sure aren’t being respected by men. They are not viewing us as equals in the workplace, they are viewing us as….well….do I really need to say it? We are playing right into the “machine” that has oppressed women all these years. Objectifying ourselves and using our sexuality, as a way to gain power and control doesn’t get us taken more seriously as women; it only gives us momentary power. And in addition, putting each other down and hurting each other doesn’t help us either, we need to unite.
As women we all can use our sexuality to get ahead, it doesn’t take any real talent, but how does that prove anything? It doesn’t. For some reason, there is this notion that as women we need to not show any emotion, tone down our feminine qualities, turn up our sexuality, and act more like a man to be successful. That seems backwards to me…and confusing. If we want to move forward as women and be treated equal, then we need to act like women. Changing ourselves to act like men won’t give us the equality we desire; it’s counterproductive. Why should men take us serious if we are not taking ourselves serious? Yes, we are women. We are emotional beings, we love easily, we can be sensitive, we over think things, we are complex by nature, but that doesn’t hinder our ability to be as successful as a man. Why are so many qualities of being a woman associated with weakness? It is someone else’s perception of weakness, but enough people need to have the insight to question the norm and ask why. Don’t just jump on the bandwagon. Being emotional isn’t weak. I find it beautiful. To be easily moved by the people, places, and things put in your life and to be able to connect with them on a deeper level is a beautiful thing. When you are emotional, there is a sense of empathy that is existent in every aspect of your life, and having empathy towards others is not only essential in successful relationships, but essential in being a successful leader. I feel as women, we have inherent qualities and traits that are made for leading. We silently lead everyday, whether it be in our households, families, schools, relationships, etc. We are masterful multi-taskers and God built us to withstand stressors and pressures both physically and mentally that men cannot even fathom. We don’t have anything to prove…we pop boys out of our vaginas for crying out loud and teach them how to be men! 😉 I am not sure at what age we begin getting the notion in our head that we have to be more like men in order to be successful, but that is a lie. If we want equality, we need to restore the femininity back into our girls. Screaming for women’s rights or claiming feminism while stripping ourselves of our authentic femininity will never give us the equality we desire.
“Being tender and open is beautiful. As a woman, I feel continually shhh’ed. Too sensitive. Too mushy. Too wishy-washy. Blah blah. Don’t let someone steal your tenderness. Don’t allow the coldness and fear of others to tarnish your perfectly vulnerable beating heart. Nothing is more powerful than allowing yourself to truly be affected by things. Whether it’s a song, a stranger, a mountain, a rain drop, a tea kettle, an article, a sentence, a footstep, feel it all – look around you. All of this is for you. Take it and have gratitude. Give it and feel love.” – Zooey Deschanel
Please check out my friend Nicole’s blog post, Why I Believe Women Will Be the Next Revolutionaries. It is totally brilliant. Her view on oppression of women all over the world gave her the eventual insight on how optimistic our future can be if we just learn to forgive and love.