Happy Women’s day…women deserve to be celebrated everyday and while there’s a day designated specifically to celebrate us, I choose to challenge the notion that we should only be celebrated today. That being said, let’s get in to the gist of this post. I know it’s been a long minute of MIA here but as they say, a woman always rises up regardless. Here’s to rising up & starting over whenever you are able to. Also, it’s absolutely okay to rest, reset and refuel.
Meanwhile over the last few days, I’ve been thinking about leadership and women. That thought process had me challenging myself to ponder on what my idea of leadership is. I greatly believe that for change concerning women to be implemented, women have to be in those decision making spaces too. I received an email this morning from #Africa4Her that beautifully articulated what was on my mind.
“By creating space for women at all levels of decision making, you are investing in the future of your communities.” that hit home. I know we always assume that leadership should only be at the top but I choose to challenge that idea. Leadership happens in all aspects and different capacities of life. So there’s need to have women occupying space at all the levels of decision making right from the bottom all the way to the top. Kinda like a chain of women with one ahead, beside and after. The woman ahead is making space for other women to follow suit. The woman beside, is cheering , supporting and rooting for the woman next to her. The woman behind is being held, taught, inspired to rise as well.
I believe that leadership is about taking up space regardless of the field. I choose to challenge the stereotype that some jobs can’t be done by women, on whose terms? As P-Square sung, what a man can do, a woman can do. And I like to add my own touch, a woman can even do it better wink* wink. Leadership is also about taking hold of opportunities like literally grabbing it as you would a bull by the horns. We all know not many opportunities will be availed for women. That’s why sometimes if not all, you have to literally hold on to it and even where there’s none, create your own. It’s also about making room at the table. Like the email earlier stated, when a woman succeeds, we all succeed and the way to make this possible is by bringing another woman in to the room, giving her a seat at the table and creating your own table if you must so that many more women can have access to these opportunities as well.
I choose to challenge the fact that women belong only in the kitchen, farm and wherever else society thinks they need to be. Women belong in the boardrooms too, in those male dominated spaces and wherever the heck they choose to be.
I choose to challenge women that tear down fellow women. In doing so, you are wounding one on your team and making it hard for women to rise in large numbers. There’s strength in numbers. But also, I wish you healing because hurt people, hurt others. I’m sorry on behalf of those who hurt you. I pray that your scars will inspire you to heal another woman’s pain as opposed to stabbing her in the same spot where you were wounded.
I choose to challenge the stereotype that women can’t work together and thrive at it. As they say, when women work together, magic happens. We are stronger together and we take the world by storm together. I challenge you to be a sister’s keeper and not a sister’s traitor.
I choose to challenge the notion that a woman should remain silent. Our voices matter too but even more than that, we have opinions too. Speak up woman, let your voice be heard. Roar if that’s what it will take for you to be heard. But don’t let your voice be silenced. Speak even when your voice is shaky. You matter and so does your voice. Sometimes confidence is built by doing it afraid. Rise up in confidence for I believe you can do it. If others can, so can you.
And lastly, I choose to challenge myself [yes] change starts with me. I choose to challenge myself to heal so that I don’t hurt those around me. I choose to put in the work to bloom in to a better version of myself daily. I choose not to see the woman next to me as a competitor but as a Queen I can collaborate with. I choose to run in my lane and cheer on others running in their lanes too. I choose to own up to my mistakes, learn from them and pass on those lessons so that the woman after me or next to me can have it easier than I did. I choose to show up. I choose to rise to the challenge whatever it might be. I choose to step in to every room knowing I belong regardless of imposter syndrome. I choose to be an evolving version of myself and showing up as that. I choose to exist in the fullness of the awesomeness and greatness I embody.
In other news, if you are new to the “Everything Written” family, I welcome you. Grab a seat and feel at home. And to those that have been part of the fam for a while, you know the drill [wink*wink]. March is our Extraordinaire woman series month [happy dance]. So for the next blog posts, I’ll be sharing amazing stories of women taking up space in different fields and spheres of life. I absolutely can’t wait! Here’s to the amazingness that is being a woman. Happy Women’s day, today and everyday. I celebrate you.