Until very recently, I felt pretty uncomfortable being a woman. It’s not that I felt I was a gender other than female, I just felt like I wasn’t doing the whole “being a girl” thing correctly. Looking around, most of my female friends seemed to all fit a certain mold that I just could not cram my body or personality into.
If you had asked me five years ago what having “girl power” meant my answer would have been much different from the one I give today. I was buying into the lie that I had to dress a certain way, talk a certain way, and care about certain things to be validated in my identity. And at that time, I didn’t think I did those things well. Subsequently, I felt like I was a lesser woman for it.
As I got older, I met woman who showed me through their words and actions what true girl power is. Finding these women meant finding freedom from the standard I was desperately trying to adhere to. It meant that I finally understood that there is no right or wrong way to be a woman.
Only in the last few years have I fully allowed myself to believe this truth. I think that’s mostly attributed to my age, but also has to do with increased visibility of women who are brave, successful, and strong. I still catch myself wondering if I should be “more this” or “less that”, but I am encouraged when I see woman I admire fighting for their right to exist in the world exactly as they are. I see their girl power, and I take a step closer to successfully embracing my own.
Having girl power means being someone who supports other girls, rather than seeing them as competition. It means recognizing that woman come in different, shapes, sizes, colors, and with different personalities. It means believing that you are equally entitled to that job you’re interviewing for as the man who did before you. It means finding the things that you do well and being proud of them. It means wearing whatever you feel like the best version of yourself in. It means empowering others because you, yourself, have been empowered.
Now, more than ever, I am so incredibly proud to be a woman. I let the things I say, the choices I make, and even the clothes I wear reflect that. Be a woman who embraces her inner girl power! Be a girl who supports girls! Be who you are, and be proud of it.
Written by Macy Atkinson, QFD Content Writer