Phenomenal Woman, that’s you!

It’s National Women’s day today in South Africa and I have a couple of things on my mind that I would like to share with you. I am exceptionally passionate about today as it was not very long ago where women were not allowed to study or work. Contemplating all of my privileges today, I cannot help but feel a deep sadness for the women of yesteryear whose dreams were not realised. Not only have I been able to study an undergrad and now a Masters’ degree but I am also able to work and earn my own keep.

I didn’t really think too much of all these things until my last lecture at university when the lecturer told us about her struggles in being rejected in jobs just because she was a women. This concept can be so unfathomable to me and yet this lecturer is in her forties – showing that it was not so long ago when this way of the world was normal. In fact, it is still normal in some places. While there has been progress in South Africa I do believe that there is still a lot more to be done here and around the world regarding gender equality.

So today I am grateful.

In today’s fast paced world we are so complacent. We are very quick to say we want more and we can be so ungrateful for all the ‘riches’ we have. By riches I do not mean physical wealth but rather the wealth that is intangible.

I also believe we can be so hard on ourselves. I have been in this rut, not so long ago, where I felt like I should be further on in my career or that I should be fitter or that I should be studying harder or that I should be contributing more to the environment or to my family and friends.

When do we stop and say “WELL DONE, YOU HAVE DONE BRILLIANTLY,” to ourselves?

So today I have a challenge that I am going to do myself and that I would like you to try too.

I challenge you to celebrate yourself! Yes, you are allowed to say that you are awesome! You don’t need anyone else’s praise or validation but your own.  You don’t need anyone else’s love but the love for yourself.  Today I am starting a “Christie” journal to always remember to love and be kind to myself as well as to enjoy the things that I have and appreciate them a little more.

Every day I am going to write at least one thing in this journal about myself.

Some examples are

  • Things that I can say I am proud of
  • Things that I love about myself
  • or something that I think I did/do really well

It’s all about reminding yourself daily that you are incredible, magical and wonderful.

Now go out there and celebrate YOU!!

In the words of Maya Angelou, I leave you with one of my favourite pieces of all time, Phenomenal Woman.

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
The palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
‘Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.
—Maya Angelou

Happiness

Christie

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