Last night I attended A Gathering of Women, an annual event in Little Rock that brings together women's organizations from across the state. It is a social gathering not only for networking, but even more importantly to educate each other on all of the various organizations and their missions. I don't know what I was more surprised by...that there were so many organizations or the fact that until a year ago (this is only the second one) most of these women didn't know about each other's organizations.
This got me to thinking....
Women are missing something...not just in Arkansas, though I am most concerned about that (at present). We don't network and bond together professionally like our male counterparts do, and it shows...in politics, in business, in religion...in every aspect of our lives. I love men. This is not to bash men; I applaud and admire how they support each other. I simply want to figure out how we can get women to do more of that. The best thing for men is strong women counterparts. The whole a "...rising tide lifts all boats.." theory. The men in my life, for the most part, support this theory. How do we get that to catch on?
Some of my family and friends are talking about starting a women's bible study class. Even at church, we are having discussions around how to support, educate, and empower our young women...who are we kidding, us old gals too. :) So what does this all say to me?
We are way beyond realizing that we need to network and bond...now we are to the point where we need to take more action. Women are harder on women than men can ever imagine being to us. We can be each other's greatest advocate or worst enemy; that is a personal decision we must all make for ourselves. Recognizing that....and looking at our day-to-day actions towards other women at work, at church, at school...is really the first step. Simply choosing to be supportive instead of catty (or gossipy) of other women in your immediate surroundings every day begins to turn the tide.
What do your words toward other women say about you? about them? Are you being supportive and building up other women? Are you being demeaning? Catty? Gossiping? Are you a friend or foe of other women?
Every day should be a gathering of women...we need each other. Our children need strong women. Our men need strong women. Our world needs strong women.
Recently I was having a wonderful discussion about women and religion. I find it crazy that we talk more about Eve "...taking down Adam and the entire human race..." (and I am not denying she took the bait...so to speak) than we do that Jesus chose a woman to be the first evangelist (and she was quite the sinner if you like to keep tallies), and when he rose from the grave...he appeared first...you guessed it, to women. Jesus loved women. Jesus loves women.
I digress...BUT I could tell stories of strong women and their importance all throughout history...in work, in politics, in families, in life...
I continue to look at my daily life dramatically different than I did even a year ago...I hope that I build up men, women, and children...but specifically I work to be constantly cognizant of how I am supporting (or not supporting) other women...especially young women. Last night was another educating "aha" moment as I realized there are so many more great organizations in Arkansas, than I was previously aware, that are trying to do that exact same thing.
I am so glad...
Sunshine Dreams to You ~ Today and Every Day! :)