"Empowered women empower women". It's an axiom that we've all come across, but maybe have never actually taken the time to think about in detail. If it's so important to empower other women, then how can we do more of it? On the near half birthday of International Women’s Day (which is on March 8th every year), I think it’s useful to take a little time to reflect on how to live in line with the values of the important annual holiday even though it’s only one day of the year. So in the spirit of being half way to International Women’s Day, here are a couple of ways we can uplift our fellow women!
1. Work it in the workplace
We all know that any working environment can easily become a petri dish for unhealthy competitiveness to fester. People are always trying to cover their own butts and ensure that they're seen in the best light possible, but what if we stopped being so obsessed with our own standing for once and thought to encourage those around us? You can do this, for example, by going out of your way to have the back of a new female colleague. Remember when you first started out at your current job? It's scary enough without all the additional pressures of being a woman. Or why don't you make an effort to compliment a female colleague on the work she's done. Whether you're her subordinate, equal, or supervisor, complimenting her work and intelligence is an extremely impactful way to empower a fellow ambitious woman.
2. Share your story
Whatever it may be, you have an important story to tell. We've all made mistakes, or had bad things happen to us, but the crucial point of these difficulties is that we not only grow from them, but help others learn from them as well. I get it, you may be ashamed or embarrassed to talk openly about some of the skeletons in your closet. We all put a lot of pressure on ourselves to be perfect and maintain a certain image. But in all reality, no one’s truly perfect, and when we have the bravery to acknowledge that and still do awesome things, it helps other women be more comfortable in their own skin. Even if you don't have some huge earth shattering story to share, being authentic about your shortcomings and insecurities will allow women struggling with similar issues to be more forgiving toward themselves.