Women of the Future

Yesterday was International Women’s Day, today I thought I’d share a few thoughts on raising a women in 2019 and beyond, and what that might look like, and how we can support the future generation of women in being the best they can be.

Encourage them to explore their passions, but not be completely ignorant. So if your girls want to play with dolls, they should. If they want to build with Legos, they should. If they want to cook, they should. So while you should let them choose their passion, that doesn’t mean you should skip teaching them the skills of cleaning, planning, organizing, finances, healing, using tools, cooking and anything else that will help them with the things they need to be adults. I grew up at a time when Home EC wasn’t really a thing, that we were leaving some of those shop-type classes that taught people skills that everyone should really have some awareness of that helps us become more rounded individuals culturally. It’s about helping them be as educated and well-rounded as they can be.

Encourage them to have friends, teachers and role models of both genders. I think it’s important that we’re all able to have healthy relationships with all types of people, that we’re able to start up and have polite conversation with just about anyone we meet, for girls to see what healthy romantic relationships look like, how to be successful in all areas of life, and how to protect themselves whether we’re talking a violent guy/girl on the street or a cutthroat boardroom executive. Girls/women can’t learn that from just women alone, it has to be a team effort.

Finally, I would encourage you to teach them to love. Men are capable of love, but there’s something that’s inherently female about love. We’re able to add that softness and vulnerability that men often have trouble reaching and sharing. Women have been taught through experiences and from others that maybe love isn’t a great thing, but I’d argue that it’s one of the most important things in the world. So along with all the skills, experiences, abilities and opportunities, I would encourage you to expose your girl to love and the amazing impact and benefit that love can have on an individual and on the world we share.

Women can and should be celebrated every day, we play a big part in contributing to the future of the world, and with happier, healthier, more courageous, more educated women, the future will be a better place for all of us. What are you celebrating about women today?

Lessons from Women Leaders

This being Women’s History Month I thought we’d take a look at a few lessons that we can learn from some of the women leaders.

1-Women can do just about anything.  We’ve flown, we’ve ruled, we’ve created, we’ve invented.  There will be obstacles and you may be ahead of your time, but there’s very little you can’t do.

2-Be curious.  Just about every woman who is well known asks lots of questions, talks with lots of people, does lots of reading, attends seminars or tries new things.  You can’t become better if you don’t explore the world and discover what you don’t know.

3-It’s OK to be emotional.  Yes, this is something we get picked on for all the time.  It’s pretty much expected that we’re the more emotional person.  However, it does give us an edge over the men who just see things in black and white and can’t relate to the more human side of things.

4-Don’t be afraid to follow the (however old fashioned) rules.  You can be an amazing mother or caretaker and be a great leader.  Look at Mother Teresa, she was in charity work and took care of people yet she has always been highly regarded.

5-Age doesn’t matter. You can be a leader whether you’re 7, 17 or 70.  You just have to inspire those around you.

Women have been leaders for thousands of years, from the times of Ancient Egypt until now.  The one thing that hasn’t been conquered very well yet is the tendency to judge the failures of women very harshly.  For whatever reason our failures get us in big trouble and as a result the statement “that’s why women aren’t in leadership” still pops up.  It’s unfortunate and it will take time to get everyone to the point when failure isn’t the dirtiest word in the book for either men or women.

What lessons have women in leadership taught you?

Brave New World

On this anniversary of the 19th Amendment being ratified, I think it is appropriate to remember what the past 90 years have helped us all accomplish.

This greatly increased the ability of women to do more things and be more things.  This, among other pro-women movements have helped women to pass many men in salaries, to give them the opportunity to hold powerful positions, and to have a strong, loud voice about their lives.  There are countless women who have made great improvements and have helped the US, and the world, make great strides in becoming stronger and more balanced.  Women have become limited only by their creative dreams.

But this also benefited men. Now there are men and women in the military, women are helping men become smarter, greater, more powerful, and women working right along side men to transform the world from where we are into who we will become.

In this area, as well as in our whole lives, it is essential to be thankful to the women, and men, who have gone before and been courageous, brave, risk takers and have been willing to go against popular opinion for the good of all.  I dare say, that the best is yet to come as men and women continue to work together.

In their honor, I encourage you to do something brave today.  What brave words will you say, actions will you take, dreams will you put into action, and lives will you change? Share your bravery below!