A Powerful Breakfast: The Influence of Women

This morning, a group of influential women gathered in Washington D.C. as The Wrap held their Power Women Breakfast. This breakfast assembled a group of women working in media, entertainment, technology and brands all from various cities across the country to discuss issues affecting women. So much power was in one room and as I read through the live tweets, some tweets felt quite well…..powerful….and if you’ll indulge me,  I would like to  share as well as offer some thoughts of my own:

 

“It’s not about who you are, but what you are.” – @sharonwaxman (Founder/CEO of The Wrap News)

I remember being twenty-three and being told that the reason I could never make it as a writer was simply because I was too nice. It had nothing to do with talent or ability. The reason I would never make it in the career I wanted was because of a personality trait which was seen as some sort of defect.

I’ve noticed that we often label women with these particular “adjectives” that become automatic locks on our personality. They’re simply descriptions to make things easier because defining the true qualities of a person are impossible to pinpoint. Being called nice or  being called something else that’s not nice,  does not define a person’s ability to do the job.

Sure, women can be nice…..until we’re not.

“We want to help women rise. To do that we need to connect our voices.”-Adrienne K Elrod (Director of Strategic Communications and Surrogates, Hillary for America).

 There seems to be such a disconnect between wanting to encourage women to rise but at the same time making it harder and harder to do so.  How do we repair that connection? Most every female I know could write a book listing the different occasions where they’ve felt attacked, where they were told their voice wasn’t good enough and were ultimately ripped to shreds, emotionally speaking. Surprisingly, or maybe not, a lot of times these critics are other women. In addition, most of these attacks are done through social media so how do we repair that connection because it seems like often times, we’re fighting with each other. I feel like the verbal connection has been broken somehow, that if your voice doesn’t quite match up with all the others, it’s easily dismissed. How do we work to make sure everyone is heard and no one feels silenced? How do we see each other for who we are and accept it?

“Women have to work a little harder, prove yourself on job.” PMP-certified project manager, President

And if you’re a woman with a disability? Even a little harder. I am a woman with a moderate hearing impairment who falls into the gray area. I don’t fit into the hearing world but I don’t fit into the deaf and hard of hearing world. How does one go about working harder or working better? It often feels like we’re not only fighting to prove ourselves in a male-dominated world but also fighting to prove ourselves to other women?  What is the correct way to “work harder?” What if you’re just starting your journey or you’re switching careers? Other than physically beating down doors which could be seen as creepy and weird, how does a woman start that fight where she remains professional yet at the same time shows exactly what she can do? Maybe fighting isn’t the right word? What is the next step?

 

“The whole country is in the opinion business.”  (Op-Ed columnist, Pulitzer Prize winner,. Author, “Bushworld: Enter at Your Own Risk” and “Are Men Necessary?: When Sexes Collide.”)

Nowhere is that quote more true than on the internet and especially now during  a political season. So my question is have we crossed from the “opinion business” to the “bullying business?”  We don’t try to listen anymore, instead we try to explain why the person is wrong. People get offended so easily and go into attack mode so quickly that no one is paying attention. We have become so oversaturated with opinions and everyone feels they’re right and everyone else must be wrong. Instead of,”I disagree because of this…” it’s become a world of “not only are you wrong, you’re just the worst person ever.” No one listens so how do we take this country of opinions and find what matters? Or are we now all buried under the mountain of just stuff that it has become almost impossible?

 

“Trump reminds me of a Kardashian” –

This quote made my day, my week, my month, my year and I want permission to steal it and use it as my own.  It explains so much. I’ve been trying to figure out who Trump reminds me of and he’s a Kardashian. I so want him to be on the next season. A conversation between him, Scott Disick and Kanye West? Whoa…mind blown. Or not.

Those weren’t the only women with something to say at today’s breakfast. I’ve posted the Twitter handles of those in attendance. I encourage you to follow of them and hopefully become inspired yourself to become your own powerful woman:

  1. Amy Klobuchar @amyklobuchar
  2. Karen Appleton @karenappleton
  3. Julie Brill @JulieBrillFTC
  4. Jessica Rosenworcel @JRosenworcel
  5. Ruth Vitale @ruthvitale1
  6. Maureen Dowd @NYTimesDowd
  7. Elisabeth Bumiller @BumillerNYT
  8. Adrienne K. Elrod @adrienneelrod
  9. Sharon Waxman @sharonwaxman
  10. Heather Podesta @HMPodesta
  11. Lezlee Westine @PCPC_News

power.jpg

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s