Like many of my fellow ladies, I’ve always felt that I was capable enough to have a seat at the table of success. Like many of my fellow strong, intelligent, independent women out there, I really only had one goal in mind: to be able to do what I want to do with my life and be successful at it. Unfortunately, the road to success has taught me some harsh truths that I had to accept. The good news is: acknowledging the problem is the first step to overcoming it, and it’s a great time to be a woman, so let’s get to conquering the world.
1. The only thing separating you from the boys is their deeper sense of entitlement.
That’s right. How many times have you sat in a room of men and felt like they laughed at each others jokes but not yours? There is often a common (but bullshit) understanding that there are some things only appropriate for men to say, think, and do, but as a woman it’s just not polite. Good news, ladies. You can change that.
The sooner you start asking yourself the question “why not me?” and silencing any whispers of intimidation or insecurity, the sooner you will be sitting at the head of the table. Male entitlement is real, and arguably, more voracious than ever. It’s our responsibility to mitigate it, and the more active we are about it, the better.
2. You will have to do battle every single day of your life (but it will be worth it).
Aside from prejudice, societal preconceptions, and socio-economic limitations – there is a reason there are less female CEO’s in the world than men. It is harder to be a female in a position of power than it is to be a man in a position of power. Not just due to the white male oppressor- there is actually more physical and emotional work involved in being a female in a position of power.
Logistically speaking, you have more to worry about just by getting ready in the morning and picking out the right clothes to wear, but then there’s fighting your maternal instincts too. Being a woman often means worrying about the other people in your life, wanting to take care of them, and compartmentalizing your feelings all while fighting the status quo. But don’t worry ladies, at the end of the day it’s all worth it- because there’s no better feeling in the world than knowing that you’re handling it like the bad bitch that you are.
3. You will have to deal with a ticking biological clock that men don’t have to.
Ladies, there is a finite amount of time in which you can have children (unless you’re Nancy Grace and can defy the odds). This means you have to make choices which are conducive to that in addition to making savvy choices about your career, your lifestyle, your outfit, and what to eat for lunch.
4. (Most of) your boyfriends are going to hold you back.
This is not the most romantic thing to say, but it is true. A woman in power is sexy and attractive, and it definitely feeds the male ego when he feels worthy enough to be in the presence of a strong woman. That is until he starts to feel intimidated or emasculated and starts acting a fool by blaming you for why things in the relationship aren’t working.
Or until he starts sleeping around with other women because his ego starts taking over. Ladies, we must work hard not to let the cattle get in the way. Keep your eye on the prize and keep on keepin’ on. There are a few good men out there who will support you and lift you up rather than tear you down, and those we must cherish and respect, but in the end we must love and respect ourselves above all else.
5. Your period does not make you a lesser contender (but it is still annoying).
Your period. Just another thing you need to worry about that men don’t. Some things we must just accept as fact, but that doesn’t make me less sorry that it is, in fact, a thing.