Well, it says it all. The combination of a global celebration and a global spotlight on women, for women and all about women – it’s a day to be unashamedly feminine and to shine a light on all that we achieve – and all that we still have to fight for or against.
Having recently hosted a private screening of Miss Representation – the controversial and ‘in your face’ film made by Jennifer Siebel Newsom about the way media in the US mis-represnts women, and the effects, it has never been more heightened for me as it is now. The audience was incensed, wide-eyed and wanting to take action. That’s what I believe is the key.
Enlightening, informing and then engaging women into action.
So – International Women’s Day 2014. I believe there has never been a better, more politically ‘hot’ time to be a woman speaking up about what her rights are, about her opportunities, her achievements, her plight and that of her family and what affects them. And then to keep pressing the button on it. Not just one conversation about what’s not fair, not happening but continual, consistent and insistent speaking up.
The global focus is very strong and to me, the more women speak out and stop ‘putting up’ with things, it can only be good for everyone.
I’ve watched my 18 year old niece bend and twist herself into knots about how she looks, her ‘muffin top’ (non-existent) her weird ‘texting’ relationships where boys seem to launch themselves into super-macho talk and sexual reference after the first – or sometimes on the first – date. What’s interesting to me particularly is that as she grows from being a girl into a woman, even in our hyper-sexualised world, she has less actual physical experience of ‘boys’ than my era did at 14 or 15 years old.
The pressure seems immense to be fit, fabulous, smart, push-up boobed, sexually experienced and demure – all at the same time. Impossible.
None of her focus or her friends’ focus is on their exam results, their career moves. All about the body and the boys. How can this be good for her future, her children, her relationships?
By bringing the good, the bad and the ugly side of being a woman in 2014 to the fore, International Women’s Day can become a springboard to a bigger, far-reaching conversation and that can only be good.
I love men, working with men, being around men. I also love women and the way we work, sense, care. I don’t believe in ‘better than’ as an angle, I believe women are ‘equal to’ – after all, as Gloria Steinem said: “A feminist is anyone who recognizes the equality and full humanity of women and men.”
That’s me then and that’s OK with me.
About the Author:
Kay White – Savvy & Influential Communication Expert for Women in Business.
Kay White works with experienced professional women from all around the world showing them how to truly sparkle as themselves. Kay focuses with her clients on the language they use, the way they position and deliver their message and if and how they come out and actually ask for what they want. Her clients are able to attract more income and opportunity as they own, position and express their value.
During her 20-year corporate career, Kay worked in the City of London and in Paris to Director level as part of a successful, mainly male, fast-paced team of global insurance brokers. Starting her career as a secretary, Kay worked her way up to Director level in one of the world’s top 3 insurance brokers. Negotiating multi-million pound, industrial property insurance contracts around the world, she learned (often by her own mistakes along the way) how to – and crucially how not to – be heard, valued and noticed, for the right reasons. Kay still speaks French – now more enthusiastically than fluently!
Known as the Savvy & Influential Communication Expert, Kay is the Author of the international #1 bestseller ‘The A to Z of Being Understood’. She’s also a contributing Author in 4 other #1 best-selling books and author of 2 popular eBooks.
Annually hosting a 3-day Live Event in London each year – Show Up; Sparkle & Be Heard LIVE! – Kay attracts professional women from around the world who come together to understand how to be more tactical, practical and purposeful as they go about their business. It’s less about shouting and more about asserting yourself, with influence, at a crucial time for women who want to get ahead, be valued and fairly rewarded with income and opportunity in their career.
With her straightforward and easy manner, Kay regularly features in magazines and publications. She’s recently featured as an expert in GLAMOUR Magazine in “The Nice Girl’s Guide to Playing Hardball” and on BBC radio on International Women’s Day.
Kay and her husband live close to London with their 3 rescue Lurchers. A lot of Kay’s inspiration comes from walking ‘the hounds’ as she calls them – whatever the UK weather – early in the mornings in the local countryside.
Find out much more at www.wayforwardsolutions.com.