Today’s post is from s 40-something reflecting on “what she knows now” about career, being a woman and self-worth:
“In my twenties I really didn’t appreciate the glass ceiling thing. I have three brothers. I was a tomboy. I thought, “I’m going to show them that women are just as good. Watch me rock it to the top. So whatever I was going to do, it was important for me to be smart, successful, and live the mantra, “We can do it too.”
But now I think that part of that was doing it the men’s way. The difference between my twenties and my forties is that in my twenties I was afraid of my own pizzazz in the work world. I felt there was a certain structure and expectation for myself as a professional and as a woman. It worked. I looked the part and I got the jobs and I did them well even though I was very young. But now I realize that it is okay to show your true self. I was a fun, punky woman in my early twenties. But while I got the job done and I was very professional, my sense of humor didn’t come out so much.
Now I’m getting to the point where I speak my mind and have fun too. I think having the courage to speak your mind is part of self-worth. Self-worth is different than having self-confidence…or the “guts” to do things. It’s about doing it with knowledge of yourself. I think you have to learn to feel good about yourself. I really think we learn to feel good about ourselves from the inside because there comes a point where the outside achievements—they’re awesome — but they’re not important. I’ve learned self-worth has to do with respecting yourself with men and women alike.
– 40-something NYC, artist, writer, graphic designer, New York City