What does it mean to be inspiring? How do you go from being unsure of yourself to having others ask you to lead them?
Where does the shift come from? It must be internal – some switch that is flipped, some instinct set free. Some beacon of chutzpah that is unfettered with towing the line but instead aims to break the illustrious glass ceiling.
I keep asking myself what my passions are, where have they gone… so long since buried by the requirements of a struggling adult life. Not one to cry poor me, just a fact – sometimes you shelve budding interests and long standing hobbies to get by.
I’ve been missing having a passion. Something to fill my mind, heart, and time when I am not at work or with my husband and friends – or perhaps something to fill all those areas all the time and further enrich my life.
I have had a dream, since I was a teenager – it started out with me wanting to make clothes for plus size women, because at the time our choices were so very limited. The landscape has changed in time and there are plenty of fashionable options out there. But still the hope remained. So I began to dig a little deeper into the why behind my goal, this business dream. Clothing can define us, can make us feel confident, sexy, or be something to hide behind.
I realized what I wanted to do was empower women.
So how do you empower others? Is it your own persona, how you exude your own confidence in your daily demeanor? Is it more intimate, do you share your struggles and tribulations to show the growth you have experienced? Is it selflessness, do you give equally to others to advise and challenge them to grow?
Empowering others takes leadership. It takes caring and selflessness and a determination to invest in someone else. To show someone that you think they are worth it. It also requires an acceptance of one’s own vulnerability, to be able to admit your faults as well as your strengths.
You need to hold your head high and have a back bone. You need to not take no as an answer, to find other paths to climb. A timorous voice and demeanor are unacceptable. You need to know and own who you are… and not apologize for it.
I’m not sure what the path towards empowering others is. I would never deign to say otherwise. But I imagine it starts at the source, with the self.
I made a resolution when this new year started to have a backbone and stay sassy. So far I’m keeping to it – I’d rather apologize for something said incorrectly than not speak up at all.
Now I must find the next step in the path. My own empowerment begins with me.
Where will yours begin?