To me, feminism is about equality. It’s about a seat at the table, a voice, recognition. It’s about inclusion. It’s about transcending differences. To me, being a feminist means supporting each other – man or woman – not tearing them down. Being a feminist is about making room for everyone, not about being on top. Being a feminist shouldn’t be an embarrassment. It shouldn’t be an accusation. It shouldn’t only be for women. To me, the foundations of feminism are very real; women are treated as lesser to men in many ways all around the world, sometimes in places that feel so far removed from us, and sometimes right under our noses. To me, feminism is something we should all strive for – whether man or woman. How wouldn’t we all benefit from equality, opportunity and love? Let’s keep going until we don’t need to talk about it anymore. I know I will. #HappyInternationalWomensDay
Sometimes we think we have to do it all on our own in order to do well. But there’s no shame in having someone to catch you when you fall, to offer you words of wisdom, or to give you a hand. There is a difference between support and reliance. To rely on someone is to depend on them. And there may be times when we need that. But we can still be independent and self-made with support. We don’t have to do it all alone to be strong and successful. The more people we have rooting for us, the higher we’ll go.
We might sometimes find ourselves alone. But that doesn’t mean we have to be lonely. Sometimes we have to be our own biggest cheerleader:
- Celebrate your victories – we don’t always give ourselves enough credit when it comes to our achievements, sometimes because we don’t think they’re good enough and other times because we’re too busy thinking about the next big thing. But don’t get into the habit of letting success pass you by. Any victory is one to be celebrated. Praise yourself.
- Cut yourself some slack – we cannot always be our best, let alone always be perfect. Sometimes we’re going to trip up and make a mess. But it’s all a part of life. What matters the most is what we do afterwards. We shouldn’t waste our time beating ourselves up, demotivating ourselves or crushing our self-confidence. Instead, take responsibility, learn a lesson and move on.
- Stop comparing yourself to others and love who you are – we all find it hard to be comfortable with who we are, where we are, and what we have. We look at others and envision a better life if we were more like them. But the truth is, everyone has insecurities and problems. We all have different stories. Focus on your own and you’ll go much further – if you don’t, it will go on without you.
We cannot travel through life alone. We naturally pick up people along the way. Because life is tough, and we all need love, support, and comfort. But sometimes we’ve got to look at our passengers and think who will give us that support. If our ride was to run out of gas, who would just be catching a ride and who would help us push? It isn’t always clear cut. But don’t be afraid to deserve better when it comes to the people you surround ourselves with. Those who are there at your lowest moments are the ones who deserve to be there at your best moments. Don’t lose sight of your true friends. And don’t lose sight of yourself.
We all have so much to offer the world, beyond what we realise is valuable, worthy, or important: love, wisdom, appreciation, support, determination, passion, ideas, humour, peace. Our words and actions do not go unnoticed, whether a simple thank you, making someone laugh, lending an ear, sharing an idea, helping someone out, and so on. We don’t need to have stacks of cash or great popularity or extensive knowledge to be worthy and needed. You have worth. You have purpose. You have so much to share. The gift you offer another person is just your being. Do not hide it away.
Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world – Desmond Tutu
(Image: Created myself using picmonkey.com; Picture: imgkid.com)
Trekking up a mountain alone is exhausting. By building a support system, we can share out resources and heavy loads. With others, we can offer and receive guidance, encouragement, and solutions. We can learn from others and mentor others. And finding support to achieve our goals doesn’t take away from our hard work and success and actually reaching the top of the mountain. Seeking support doesn’t make us weak, inadequate or cowardly. Others can bring perspective and positive energy that helps us push through. Finding support, whether through family, friends, school, work or online, could mean the difference between giving up and ploughing on, between plummeting and stumbling, between sprouting and shooting. We will go high on our own, but we can surround ourselves with people who will lift us even higher.