When I was younger, I often took the privileges I have being a woman living in the 21st century for granted. I was often unaware of the struggles women faced not all that long ago. It wasn’t until I went to an all women’s college that I started to recognize the influence, and importance I have being a woman today. It was there that I started to realize just how valuable women’s voices were in society. Women have and continue to overcome many barriers every day, and they are often silent battles. If you stop and think about it, it was only just a little over 100 years ago that women didn’t even have the chance to vote in the United States. It may seem like a long time ago, but really it was not.
International Women’s Day is a day to feel pride and hope for women around the world, and their accomplishments. I believe the future for women is brighter than ever before. Here are some of the reasons why I am proud to be a woman on International Women’s Day:
1. Opportunities available like never before
There are so many women out there who haven’t and will never have the opportunities that I do (hello college). But more women today can make changes in their lives that allow them to live successful lives for themselves and their families.
2. Role models, past and present
There are so many women both past and present that have and continue to improve the lives of women across the world. Whether it be in science, politics, human rights, etc. women are out there every day challenging the status quo. These role models can be as popular and well known celebrities, but I think the most important female role models are those closest to you in your life. It is a great feeling to have leading ladies to look up to.
3. Women are taking charge and are unafraid to do so
Although there is still always work to be done, women are making many gains when it comes to the workforce. Today, women own close to 10 million businesses and are the sole breadwinner for 40% of households with children under 18 (U.S. Department of Labor Blog). However, there is till work to be done in government, where men greatly out number women.
4. Chance to encourage others
There are women from all walks of life looking to encourage each other on to do great things and inspire others. I know in my life I wouldn’t be where I am without the encouragement of women in my life. One great aspect about social media is that women from all walks of life and regions of the world can stay connected and share their stories.
5. Women can have it all
I think there has long been this belief that women cannot have it all, that we must pick between being a housewife, or being the breadwinner. But these expectations are changing. Women can have the family and the job, but also do things they enjoy for themselves. Women today are not defined by their roles, but by their actions and dreams.
How are you recognizing International Women’s Day? Let me know below!