Leadership Lessons: About Pants and Pedestals
This is a year for celebrating women’s achievements; and there are many. It was only fifty years ago that during the spring season college girls were panicking if graduation was only a month or so away and there was not a ring with a shiny bling on it. There was a sense of failure; no matter how great the school grade point average was, if there was not an announcement to the world that they were ready to get their “MRS” degree.
In researching my latest book “GUTSY: How Women Leaders Make Change” I have been reminded over and over that revolutions take time and that we need to tell the younger generations about that time long, long ago when women could not wear pants in public. These were the good old days when women spent time way up high on pedestals, and there was not much wiggle room up there. There was a constant sense of fear that they would fall from grace and tumble to the ground.
There was a lot of unspoken depression and disappointment as the boys were prodded to become the best men they could be while their sisters were taught to do the tending and care-taking no matter what their inner dreams and talents were.
Let’s get back to pants and pedestals.
When I wrote “Don’t Bring It to Work”, I wanted to address the power of how family and culture impact the choices we make. So often we learn to do “the right thing” merely to fit in with the common beliefs of the day.
Then when stress hits the hot button there is an explosion of anger at being forced to behave in ways that are out of alignment with who we really are. It has taken strong, gutsy women to stand up and say “it will change with me”.Continued on the next page