We have the opportunity on the daily to make a positive impact on the world around us.
Whether one goes through their day searching for good deeds to be done,
or simply takes advantage of random opportunities to spread love,
every action (or inaction) has a resounding impact.
The question is: Is your impact today going to be positive, negative, or indifferent?
I have been told that one person can't make a difference.
I affectionately call these people "dummies"...
Those who actively try to hold the rest of us down,
those who would rather watch you drown than help you soar, those who can't grasp the power of positivity to create change.
Whether it's a great recipe found, or an uplifting story to share, you can be sure to find it here.
Let's start a Positivity Revolution, and drown out the dumb!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Powering Through

When I'm not napping on a plane, I like to ponder and write. This is the result of my in-flight thoughts this morning...

I am a feminist, which means I believe that the path to success for a man or woman should be basically the same. My definition of success personally is doing anything I want, within reason, without thinking as to the cost. I don't want fancy yachts or servants, I just want to live comfortably, travel often, eat at gorgeous restaurants and drink expensive wine. The thing is, the roadmap to becoming successful for a man and the roadmap to becoming successful as a woman are totally different. There are subtle, yet powerful obstacles in my way.

Even if I have the same views and goals as a man, the fact that I have breasts means that any after-hours business meeting teeters between a date and an actual meeting. If I have too much wine, I'm unprofessional (not so for a man). Conversations quickly meander from professional to relationship-based. I get questioned about past relationships, current relationships, and the reason why I may or may not be in love with someone. Totally inappropriate and uncomfortable, FYI.

Looks is important in business, as it is everywhere else in our backwards society...If I am good looking, men are more likely to do business with me, especially one-on-one, but it does not mean that they respect me. If I am not traditionally good looking, I won't get the attention that someone else may get, even though my skills may be far beyond their reach. If I eat too much, or eat too little, or am overly agreeable, or too argumentative, I am judged. Whereas a man would be commended for sticking to his guns no matter the circumstance, women are scrutinized at every opportunity.

Take the fact that I'm not married. When it dawns on me that my business meeting may be construed as something more, I play the boyfriend card. I do have a boyfriend, but I should never feel the need to divulge something personal about myself in order to keep a meeting professional. In these circumstances, it become immediately apparent that although it was clear in my mind that nothing about this was a date, that they were hoping for something more. More often than not, I leave my one-on-ones feeling dejected, devalued, and uninspired. I never know if someone is dealing with me for my business sense or for my looks.

How are women supposed to become truly successful in business when the men we do business with can't grasp or respect boundaries? Why should I have to monitor my every action in the hopes that I am continually perceived as professional? Anyone in the sales business knows that networking is huge, and I won't stop. But I've got to come to terms with the fact that no matter how I act, there will always be those who don't show respect. All we can do is push on.

1 comment:

  1. It's strange to me that business meetings could ever be construed as something more just because it's between member of the opposite sex. If someone is a sales person, for example, and someone wants to meet them for drinks, dinner, or whatever to discuss what they are selling, I don't understand where anyone would or should get a hint of something more than just that. Certainly inflection can play a part, but it's not as if you or any of the many other women (and the occasional guy) can't tell the difference between a flirtatious tone and that of a business demeanor. So what is it about being in an intimate setting with someone else that causes so many people to read more into it than what it is? I think back to the discussion you and I had a while ago about your male friends who want more than just friendship. I've seen and heard many times where because someone and said friend went to dinner and a movie together that one or the other thought of it as something more. Again, there's something about intimate settings, even though business lunches, etc aren't meant to be looked at that way, that causes people to read into things that aren't there. Sticking strictly to your topic of business meetings, part of the issue is many guys and girls aren't good at having friends of the opposite sex and not having it lead to feelings, desires, etc. So if a guy who doesn't have a lot of experience with friendships with the opposite sex, they may not know how to operate in an intimate setting with a woman and not have it lead to flirtation, etc. That's not an excuse for them by any means, but it might explain why it happens in many cases.

    I think the problem is in the perception of the opposite sex from childhood. We strive to teach our daughters in this day and age that they can do anything they want. Be anything they want to be. That they are equal in every way to their male counterparts. But we're not teaching the same thing to our sons. Whether it's intentional or not, we forget to teach them that the girl in their class is just as smart, just as strong, and can do anything they can. So while we teach our sons to be good, strong men, we forget to teach them not to fear or have disdain for the good, strong women they will encounter. And in the absence of teaching them that, they don't know how to react, so in most cases they default to the societal standard. And that's why it's the standard in the first place. Like all things when it comes to equality for women, minorities, and everything else, it starts at home. It starts in childhood. It's not enough to teach our daughters to be strong. We have to also teach our sons to embrace it.


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