I get down and out about the state of our world. I watch a lot of documentaries. Quite often I feel overwhelmed by issues and obstacles in our world and our society. Almost daily I worry about this place where we are raising our children. There is so much corruption and hate and greed and complications that surround us daily. Personally, I feel like a failure constantly-at the end of the day I always feel like I could have been a better mother, a better wife, a better employee, a better family member, etc. In other words, in this life, it is easy to feel small and inadequate and overwhelmed.
Then you open Google to start your day and realize today is International Women’s Day. A day set aside to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women. Also a day of awareness that progress has slowed in many places across the world, so urgent action is needed to accelerate gender parity. To me this is very motivating, I feel like I can make an impact, even a seemingly small effort can result in a big impact in our world.
My blog, although tiny, has a 99% female following. That tells me that by leading by example I have an opportunity to make a small impact on women. As women, we need to support one another and lift one another up. We should take every opportunity, no matter how small it may seem, to be kind to one another and see each other through eyes filled with grace and kindness. We are all on different paths and have different obstacles and challenges, so when we see another women we should only look upon her with grace and kindness for the journey she is on and the chapter she is in. Be supportive and go out of your way to find something honest and kind to say to your fellow women. Whether it is in your job, at your children’s school, online in the blog-world, on social media, in the planner community, in the craft community, at the grocery store, in your family, to your own daughters… Look in the eyes of women of all ages, in all walks of life, and support them and encourage them to hold their head high and make an impact today.
Today I pledged to help women and girls achieve their ambitions. As an individual, I committed to advocating for myself, and when appropriate, becoming an effective role model and sponsor of women to help them achieve their goals.
I plan to do this in two ways:
- My oldest son goes to a Parent Participation Preschool, which means I work in his classroom, as an aide, at least twice a month. My son’s class is mostly girls (around 18 girls) aged 3-4. I have the opportunity to be a positive role model, lead by example and help forge positive interactions between very young and impressionable little girls several times a month. This is HUGE. My son’s school is phenomenal and his (female) teacher is even more incredible than the school. His teacher is well-educated, compassionate, extremely aware and very sensitive to each of the individual souls in her class. With all of that said, it is still a consistent topic and effort to keep the little girls from treating one another with rudeness. It is eye-opening. It blew my mind when I first started seeing how innate it seemed that these little girls were being cruel to one another. It was heartbreaking, as a women, to see how early this harshness starts. The dynamic and girls involved changes all the time but the action is the same: exclusion. Two girls will pair up, a third will want to join and the original two will hold hands and physically turn their backs on the third girl, they won’t let her play with them. The next day it changes and the third will become one of the two hand-holders and one of the prior two will now be left-out. This is to say, the rudeness is not limited to just a few girls, it changes all the time and they all get left out at one point or another. The teacher and the mom’s are all aware and we all work diligently to remind all of the girls that, “at school everyone is welcome, we all play together.” Our teacher says it happens every year and at every school. (In college, I worked at two very different preschools and the same thing was evident at both schools as well.) It seems to be a theme that we start out not being very nice to one-another. So, I pledge to take a more active role in ensuring that the little girls know how important it is to take care of and support one another. I will do this by bringing attention to their individual achievements and encouraging the other girls to recognize their fellow-girl achievements as well. I will tell the girls what I admire about their mom’s, to lead by example in being kind and recognizing my fellow-mom’s amazing traits. I will work more on incorporating collaborative play between all of the girls and become even more sensitive to those that may feel left out.
- Like I mentioned above, my blog (and social media following for that matter) has a predominantly women-based following. Using an online forum I will make an effort to lift up my fellow women and fellow creatives! I will make more of an effort to support other women bloggers, small-business owners and #girlbosses across the spectrum. I will lift up those social media influencers that promote women-supporting-women and those women who keep it real and show that no life is perfect and it is that imperfection that actually makes life worth living.
Will you join me? You can take a pledge to increase awareness. Or you could quite simply just smile at another women today, say a kind word to a co-worker, help a mom struggling to open a stroller in the parking lot, or post the photo above to your social media as a reminder that incredible things happen when women support each other.
Last note: Please comment below if anyone knows who first coined the quote, “When Women Support Each Other, Incredible Things Happen.” I did an extensive search and although I find the quote all over I can’t find who said it….