- How do you the world now versus when you were a child?
S. R., 37 – Tennessee
As a child I was so hopeful. It’s because as a child you don’t know what you don’t know. Everything you’re taught is just a theory. You haven’t actually had a chance to put it into practice. I was taught all these things and I was equipped and empowered to have pretty much what I needed to be a functional adult and then when you get out here and you realize what the world is really like, it can be quite discouraging. I personally think that it shouldn’t be that hard. You try to do the right thing, you operate with integrity, you try to get an education, follow the rules of the land and things of that nature, but yet things seemingly don’t go as planned or as they should. When I look at the things going on around me in the world, I don’t anticipate it getting any better any time soon. A lot of times I see a lot of people getting all caught up in these politicians and what they’re saying and doing and I’m like, “I don’t think it matters who’s in office, we’re still going to be fucked up for a while.”
Now, the only thing that gives me hope is my own capabilities. I’ve gotten to the point where I try not to focus too much on factors that I know I can’t control, I just stay the course based on the things I can control and I can do. I know that I can get up everyday and make sure the actions and commitment that I have, gets me closer to where I want to go. I just keep moving forward.
- What would you do differently if you could give your younger self some guidance?
B.R., 64 – Louisiana
The old adage: I wish I’d known then what I’d known now, or I wish I had been more assertive, or challenged, not at work or in my career so much as I mean more challenged in someone pushing me to be more. I wish I had pushed myself to be more or I had been more confident to push myself, and at a younger age. I wish I was more cognizant of the fact that I could have been an entrepreneur at 40 or 45 but I didn’t know what I didn’t know. I would hate to go back to my 20s but I would go back to my late 30s. If I could arm myself with the knowledge that I had now, it would be quite different, my mindset or even career path. I would have maximized what I did more. Now what I currently do now in my job, I have been very inspired by the women I’ve met.
What was missing when I grew up? I did not have the female mentors. When I was getting into the business world, women were few and far between, I didn’t really have anyone I could talk to about ‘How do I do this?” The women I was working with when I first started working were more in the secretarial field. In the company I worked in, I was the second female to be hired and we were the only two and (thankfully) formed a good bond and became friends. We had to rely on each other more so than we could with the men. It was the oil and gas industry before sexual harassment laws – and it was [a] very different [time].
F. M., 45 – New York
I think the problem with me at 20 years old was that I wanted to control everything. Instead of just letting things unfold, I had to fix it, I had to control it, I had to make it right, even when it couldn’t be. I would tell her to Let It Go. You can’t fix this; you can’t change this; it’s not going to happen. Let it go. Stop losing sleep over it. Stop worrying about it.
At that time, my grandmother used to tell me to pray or worry, but don’t do both. And I always did both. I would pray and ask God to fix it and then I would worry about it anyway.
Worry or pray, but don’t do both. Once you’ve prayed about it then let it go, because if you sit around worrying, you’re telling God you don’t believe he is going to fix it.
I see Them. I see You. I see Me. Woman Sees World.
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