I was so moved by Kamala Harris’ address to the country last night. I felt tears in my eyes when she said, “Every little girl that’s watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities.”
After breaking many barriers for women and immigrants in the United States, Kamala’s speech was an emotional one for many women like me who witnessed the historic moment when she spoke for the first time as the vice president-elect.
To see a woman as vice president of the United States of America in my lifetime is just extraordinary. And she’s not only a woman, she’s a woman of color and a woman of immigrant parents.
She is a symbol of how far we have come and yet how much work we still have to do.
I know I’m not alone in feeling tired of seeing women underrepresented in public office and in leadership roles in public and private companies over my lifetime so far. Not to mention the major disparity in pay. This has been a long time coming.
As NBC News so eloquently put it, “Joe Biden’s selection of Kamala Harris as his running mate was not just about a symbolic choice to win votes; it was a recognition that, in America, there are millions of competent women who are reasoned and reasonable, intellectual and emotive, engaging and analytical.”
Here are some things I learned along the way in my own career that have helped me succeed:
- Don’t ever listen to anyone tell you that you can’t do something. Because you CAN. You just need to believe in yourself.
- Silence the naysayers and weed them out of your life.
- Let rejection and failure push you harder to go after what you want. Believe it’s within your reach.
- Work harder than you think you should.
- Offer to help colleagues and your bosses – become indispensable.
- Find balance in your life – at s certain ping each day you must shut off work and focus on yourself and your family.
- Silence your inner critic and be kinder to yourself. Surround yourself with people who believe in you – men and women.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes or to take risks.
- Lean into who you are – never apologize for being yourself.
We hopefully are no longer held back by our gender, our ethnicities, our backgrounds or by any self-limiting beliefs.
Support other women on their journeys. Let’s help each other rise up so that our future generations have an easier time than we did. Let’s set an example so that it doesn’t seem out of the ordinary to see a woman – especially a woman of color – in one of the top jobs in our country ever again.
Kamala has risen to the top despite all that racism, sexism and the combination thereof have thrown at her. It is amazing to think that many Americans can look at the second-in-command of this country for the first time and say “she looks like me.”
I loved when she said, “And to the children of our country, regardless of your gender, our country has sent you a clear message: Dream with ambition, lead with conviction, and see yourself in a way that others might not see you, simply because they’ve never seen it before. And we will applaud you every step of the way.”
I can’t think of anyone better to guide our country and to serve as a role model to women of all ages. The future generation of women will grow up not thinking that having a woman in the White House is not unusual and for that, I am incredibly thankful.
Make sure to wear shoes ladies, because now there will be glass everywhere. Let’s shatter away. 👠👠