Today is International Women’s Day and I have already seen so many amazing women stand up and celebrate. Today is a day about celebrating those women who have paved the way for us females to be who we want to be and do all the things we love – like writing this blog. Maybe I’ve been blind or not paid any attention but this is the first year that I’ve seen National Women’s Day blown up the way it is. I see women posting on Instagram and Facebook. I see the news talking about it and a ton of retailers and businesses are offering discounts or shouting out influential women! The very large company I work for is even doing an “International Women’s Day – Live Stream Event” with a Women’s leadership panel.
This year has been a huge year for women and even more lately with the #metoo movement and the Womens March. But for me, today is about celebrating myself and the women around me who inspire me in my daily life. It’s about educating myself and creating an environment and lifestyle for my daughter to flourish and become whoever the heck she wants to be. It’s about lifting up other women instead of putting each other down and judging. Today is about empowerment and being the best version of myself that I can be.
Being a Positive influence:
I put this on the list first because being a positive influence on others can make a huge impact. I have grown as an individual so much over the last 6 months because of women who I will never meet or have a chance to talk to as well the women currently in my life. I have watched other women on instagram, facebook, and other social media platforms share their journey, encourage others, and start a multi-million dollar businesses by sharing & creating positive in the universe and helping others do the same. Some of my favorite online media influencers are out there, changing lives, providing valuable knowledge to others, making a difference and using their platform to reach the lives of hundreds of thousands or millions. I’ve also read some amazing books, devotionals, and YouTube videos from very successful women that are changing the way women think, work, and create lives for themselves. I think that even as an unknown mommy, from a small town with very little to no social media presence (which I’m trying to grow :)) , it’s so important for me to make sure that I share positivity and share my path to becoming a better me. We have a duty to spread positivity and that’s by building relationships, being a mentor, and sharing what you have to offer out there because every single one of us is special.
Over the last year, some things have been brought to my attention that I have never realized or even thought about. Growing up, I’ve always been around strong women, I am a strong- independent woman. I have worked my A** off making the life that I want for myself and I take full responsibility for any mistakes that I make. I’ve always known that women were still behind in the amount of money made compared to men and the number of opportunities given. However, this year, a lot of issues have been rampaging the news headlines regarding sexual harassment at work and a huge variety examples where women are being discriminated on in all areas of life. I realized that there have been numerous times that men have violated my rights as a woman and I didn’t even realize it at the time because I thought “oh, it’s nothing”… or “oh, just keep walking”, “don’t pay him any attention”. I know that I have been passed on during job interviews because I had a child. I have been called “emotional” or “bitchy” or “too involved” when at work. It’s a mindset that we have, we have been brain-washed and this was has always been the norm. I still think we have a LONG way to go but I am more aware of these situations and I think educating yourself is a huge factor in playing a role as a woman. Let’s educate ourselves on what’s going on with other women. Let’s ask our leaders, politicians and company executives how we can raise our standards, where the gaps are, and how can we do this at greater speed and urgency. Let’s educate ourselves how we can help in this amazing cause & not just stand back and complain about the issues at hand.
A huge part of the women’s movement today is about the equality in women’s opportunities and their pay. We as women have to work twice as hard to move up in large corporations, we have to manage our “emotions”, and we have to go through things thats men don’t have too. I fight for us as women to not give up, to work hard, and beat the odds! We have every opportunity in the world to do the things we want in life – it may not be easy or comfortable but it’s our responsibility to step up and pave the way for future generations of women. Consistency is key in working hard and working hard shouldn’t only be in one area of your life. We have to work hard in being an employee, a friend, a wife, a mom, and in every other role we have. And we all have to work together and we have to be willing to have the voice to push change. We can’t sit back and keep talking about the change we want to make, we have to speak up, take action, be open and receptive to other people’s thoughts and feelings.
How are you celebrating International Women’s Day?
And Now, I wanted to share a few photos with you of one of the most important times in my life – where I felt most empowered and most fortunate to be woman – when I was pregnant with my very own daughter.
Photos are by the most wonderful: Jessica Bailey Photography