Too Much…Too This…Too That

black and gray microphone with stand

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Too sensitive

Too bossy

Too loud

Too emotional…

If you’ve ever had the word “too” weaponized against you, you know how baffling and painful it is.  So many women have felt the pain of this three-letter word. I have and I am not allowing it to hurt me anymore.  Not now, not today, not ever again.  Someone’s hurtful use of the word “too” is now my marching orders to go further in that direction.

It’s brave to be who you are, as you are, in a world that says, “You’re too much” and yet never enough at the same time. Ladies, I am sorry that someone tried to dim your light.  I am sorry that someone tried to quiet you down.  I am sorry that someone tried to stunt your leadership growth.  I am proud of you that you kept shining, kept speaking and kept growing in spite of a world that says confusingly, often at the same time, that “you’re too much,” and will never be enough.  I’ve had enough of it, personally.

This International Women’s Month, this is my focus:  to reclaim the parts of me that were “too much” and to shush the nonsense monologue in my head that says I’ll never be enough for this romantic partner, or that job, or that level of income.  It’s time to kick “too much” and “never enough” out of our lives.  They’re two-word poison pills we keep swallowing that stunt our growth, joy and potential.

You are never too much.  You are beautiful and brilliant just as you are AND always enough.  Wishing you a healing International Women’s Month.

 

 

Measuring Up

Scales and tape measurers have never been my faves.  Anytime I’ve had to deal with either, it’s always with a small sense of dread.  Am I measuring up?

So often, I believe, that the impulse to measure up is rooted in an unacknowledged inadequacy.  Being “too big”, “too hippy”, “too busty”, not busty enough, et al masks a certain perpetual dissatisfaction. Instead of focusing on how we’re not the perfect measurements in the perfect ratios, it might be time to heal the much deeper issue of the ways we feel inadequate.

woman girl fat fitness

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I can’t tell you how many times, even at my thinnest, I heard, “You’d be perfect if you lost another 15 lbs,” or “You’re pretty, but you’d be gorgeous if you’d lose a size or two.”  What’s most disheartening is this criticism never came from men.  It came from women, women I considered friends, well-meaning perhaps, but nonetheless, hurtful.

Dealing with chronic feelings of inadequacy is a terrible thing.  It’s like there’s a hole in your heart.  Sometimes you don’t want to even try because you’re best is never good enough, even when you’re giving a 150% to a diet or a votaress of the latest exercise craze.  There’s a fixation on personal responsibility and I’m all for personal responsibility, but there comes a point when you have to also acknowledge what you’re NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR, including other people’s toxicity, other people’s baggage, other people’s harmful behavior.

Today, I am having the courage to admit that for most of my life, I’ve been over-responsible.  Make me in charge of something and it will get done, even if it nearly kills me.  I’ve taken on a lot of shitty situations mostly because I believed that I was the only person who would or could do them, not because they were what I really wanted. Copy of Copy of body positivityMy own growth challenge is that I’m learning to pursue what I really want instead of trying to measure up for someone else, real or imagined.

It’s time to tell yourself that you are enough, just as you are right now.  It’s time to stop trying to measure up.  You are not you’re measurements; you’re more than numbers on a scale or a few extra inches.  It’s amazing what opens up when you open your heart and your mind to who you are now, instead of who others want you to be.

 

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

April is Sexual Assault Awareness month.  Nearly 17.7 million women in the US have been the victims of rape or attempted rape since 1998.  Every 98 secs, someone in the U.S. is sexually assaulted.

feeding a monster

Please take a moment and listen to this excerpt from last week’s What Women Want Radio broadcast on LA Talk Radio with authors and playwrights Veronica Loving and Jazzmine Jackson.

Their memoir of surviving sexual assault by a family member, “Feeding a Monster“,  is now a stage play at the Hudson Theater.  Click here for more info.

Not Just a Hollywood Problem

I’ve been thinking a lot about the state of women in the world.   Hollywood was reeling over the avalanche of harassment and sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein.  The #MeToo hashtag is near-constant in my various feeds.  I am saddened.  I keep asking myself, “How do I take action?”  And more importantly, how to take action that reverbs beyond just Hollywood?

I see Saudi women claiming their right to drive and wanting more of the rights that we in the USA take for granted.  There’s been significant action to stop child-marriage in India.   Men are expressing remorse, sympathy and solidarity for the women brave enough to tell world their “Me Too”.   There IS progress.

I had a conversation with Nada Nasserdeen of Rise Up For You this morning.   It will be up soon.  We discussed so many things and one of the things that came up was the pay gap.  What Harvey Weinstein did was horrible, and once the headlines fade on this, we still have to keep pushing for economic equality.  Abuse of power is intimately tied to money. Having money does not give you the right to abuse other people.  One of the things that stands out about the Harvey Weinstein debacle was how  he was perceived as  a “golden goose” to quote Scott Rosenberg, a long-time associate.  If you haven’t read Rosenberg’s comments, read it.  Weinstein’s ability to make box office money left him unchecked. Considering how little progress has been made to include more women in the decision-making process of commercial film and television, it’s no wonder that he would-be-Harvey-s would feel invincible.

How do we move forward beyond this week?

  • Reach out to a woman in entertainment and let her know you support her.  Let her know that you care.
  • Go to a play or movie directed or produced by a woman.  Support women in the arts.  There’s an old maxim that “You’re only as good as your last picture.”  Let’s support women making art.
  • Do not tolerate bad behavior, “locker room talk” or any action that demeans a woman or girl at home, work or school.
  • Support women globally, especially to empower them economically.  A threat to women’s freedoms anywhere compromises women’s freedom everywhere.  One of my favorite ways to do this is by funding a micro-loan on Kiva.

This is about more than the transgressions of one man.  There are more Harvey-s in every industry, every country.  This is not just a Hollywood problem.  It’s a power imbalance that manifests everywhere from gilded Hollywood to the most humble villages on earth.  As long as the pay gap is tolerable to the majority, women will still be a minority, even if women outnumber men.

 

 

Break the Ice to Break Career Barriers

HELLO MY NAME IS….

replay judy marie

We’ve all had a hard time breaking the ice and the pressure at conferences and networking events to make something happen can make it even more difficult.  How many times have you walked into a room for a professional event and just felt awkward?  We all have.

Is there a better way, or even a strategy to making the most of a networking opportunity?  Powerhouse networkers Judy Goss and Marie Fratoni have years of experience attending and putting on events.  They divulge their best advice on making the most of your next networking event and Judy discusses her upcoming conference, Spirit of Women, in Atlanta, October 7 & 8.

Judy Goss, high fashion model turned lifestyle journalism mogul, wanted to create a lifestyles networking experience.  Her networking group, What Women Want, now has chapters spanning the entire country.

Marie Fratoni, a master networker and founder of Get Clients Everywhere, elucidates the correlations between networking and sales.  She also discusses how important setting intentions are to having success at networking events and conferences.

Listen in to the broadcast for real, actionable tips to making your next networking outing a success!

“A Dose of Jane”

Jane Bishop, our guest on What Women Want Talk Radio, has a blog. Need a “dose of Jane”? Follow her! 🙂

Jane's Jottings

In June, I had the opportunity to be interviewed live on the What Women Want LATalk Radio Show hosted by Judy Goss and co-host Kristin West. The theme was “Going After Your It!” (Listen to show here: http://latalkradio.com/content/what-women-want).  It was a fun and energetic conversation with Judy and Kristin.  Near the end of the interview, Kristin remarked, “you have such an infectious energy. If we need a dose of Jane, how do we find you?”  

“A dose of Jane” resonated with me as it describes my approach with life in a creative way. And those who know me know I am all about thinking outside the box!  If there is a skill, tool, lesson or resource in my portfolio of life experiences that can help someone achieve their objective, I want to share it.  I strive to listen, learn and connect with others, so if a “dose of…

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