By Luana Mattos
A few months ago I wrote a piece about what television taught the girls born in the 90’s, and how some organizations are working hard to change how women are perceived in this industry. Like I said in that piece, it’s a long walk, but it looks like we are getting somewhere. Although the wage gap still is an unsolved problem, I’m happy to see that women are getting the role they deserve as true heroines!
If you asked me what the word “heroine” means, without looking in the dictionary I would answer that a heroine is a woman with super powers and not so easy to find, perhaps because that is what we’ve been told. But as I looked it up for its definition I found out that there’s a heroine in every corner. “Heroine” is described as a woman admired or idealized for her courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.
The reason why I am writing about television and the real meaning of being a heroine is because of a specific female character of a TV show that has caught my attention, Felicity Smoak.
In case you haven’t heard of her before, here goes a short introduction: Felicity Smoak is portrayed by Emily Bett Rickards (https://twitter.com/EmilyBett) in the CW TV series Arrow (https://twitter.com/CW_Arrow).
In the show she is the socially awkward but brilliant IT girl at Queen Industries whom Oliver comes to rely on for her technological expertise. Eventually, she is introduced to Oliver’s inner circle and becomes integrated into his vigilante efforts as an expert hacker and technology expert.
Given to Emily’s awesomeness and the genius writers (https://twitter.com/ARROWwriters), Felicity soon became our favorite character and an example of heroism and courage. Here is why Felicity Smoak is THAT GIRL.
She is smart and funny: Felicity is known by her Smoak-isms, she speaks her mind in the most comic way, which always breaks the tension and makes us laugh. She loves/feels you with all her heart: whether it is a good or a bad feeling, she doesn’t avoid it, she feels it. Because she knows it’s better to feel all kind of emotions than to feel nothing.
She is strong, but feminine: how she manages to run around the room in those skirts and high heels, I don’t know how, but she does! Just like many of us that have to balance our personal, social, and work life, without losing control.
She is comfortable in her our skin: although she had a moment of insecurity in one episode, soon she found a way to do the best with what she had, her brain and IT skills!
She is more than happy to tell you when you’re wrong: this may not seem like a quality but it is, especially when a friend is about to make a huge mistake (which is always the case here).
Felicity has all these qualities but she isn’t perfect, in fact what we love most about her is how she is aware of her flaws and works hard to always be the best version of herself.
This is the kind of role I want to see more on television, this is the kind of role that inspires girls to do what they love, to fight for what is right no matter what! Felicity may be just a fictional character but if you look around you right now, or even in the mirror you can find a sample of what the word “heroine” really means.
By: S. Elle Cameron
“Someone will always be prettier. Someone will always be smarter. Someone will always be younger. But they’ll never be you. They’ll never be YOU.” -Tanni Sattar
I think I’m going to stick with the “sticking together” as women theme. For the past two months, I touched on women putting each other down and drifting apart when we become competitive. This month I want to talk about the importance of not comparing ourselves to one another. Of course we hear this all the time but we don’t actually listen or demonstrate it in our personal lives.
So many of us hold ourselves back because we choose to compare ourselves to the next female (or person) who seems to be doing what we wish we could. Usually comparing ourselves results in feelings of inadequacy or self doubt. As a result of not feeling good enough, we never go after what we truly want. Or, we put in our minds that we’ve already failed so we might as well not try.
Sadly, this is true for myself as well. There are so many things I would have done or could have had, if I didn’t compare myself to everyone else. I become intimidated when I see a person (especially another woman who is considered my peer) succeeding at something I hope/wish to do. It makes me feel like “why should I even try?” “I can’t compete with that!”
That’s the thing! We shouldn’t think we have to compete at all!
How to Begin to Love Yourself in 7 Natural Steps
This first step is to make yourself aware of the benefits of learning to love yourself.
You will actually start to feel more relaxed physically.
Your overall health, both physical and mental will improve. You’ll become a happier person.
As you learn to love and appreciate yourself, you are learning how to love and appreciate others. This is the pathway to peace and joy.
2. Change your thinking
We must learn the truth about who we really are. Much of what we learn about ourselves as we grow up are actually lies about who we are. All the messages we ever hear such as “I am not perfect, I’m not okay, I’m not the way I should be”, we tend to accept and believe.
This is when we stop loving ourselves and begin pretending to be something we are not.
It’s time to stop listening to all the old negative or hurtful messages taught to us during our childhood and young adult life.
These messages are negative, crippling and label us as long as we accept them.
They are very powerful and can affect our behavior and thinking unless we erase them. Replace limiting thinking with empowering thoughts.
This is one of the most important steps for learning how to love ourselves.
Empower Yourself With Positive Thinking
3. Become as a little child. Children are completely authentic and live their true nature. They forgive quickly, hold no grudges and are not judgmental. Children have no problem with loving themselves.
4. Stop judging and rejecting yourself. Make a list of all of your good qualities. This is not bragging – this is necessary for recognizing your self worth. Do not allow your mind to bring up any negative points. Concentrate only on the good qualities.
You may presently have a distorted image of yourself. As you learn the art and truth of self love, your self image will change.
5. Forgive yourself. If and when you feel the need to forgive yourself for present or past mistakes, do it immediately. Then – forget it. Don’t live in the past, dwelling on
Let the past remain in the past. Direct your thoughts to the present and refrain from bringing them up again.
6. Believe in yourself. You have the power to believe whatever you choose.
When you believe love, happiness, peace and harmony you have consciously decided to love yourself.
You no longer choose drama. You no longer choose self abuse. You have a choice in what you think – it’s a habit.
If you don’t believe in yourself, nobody will. Your success begins with your own self confidence. Begin now to see yourself as the person you want to become. Don’t look back – look ahead.
7. ALWAYS BE TRUE TO YOURSELF
Pay attention to the still small voice within you. Don’t be too quick to dismiss it. Give yourself permission to rest when you’re weary. Take a break without feeling guilty. If you slip and make a mistake, avoid beating yourself up. Let it go. You’ll do better next time.
Be at least as kind to yourself as you are to others. Direct your inner dialogue in such a way that your messages are positive and up-lifting. Be thankful for what and who you are. You are no accident my friend. You have a purpose and a mission which just might be to discover the magnificent you.
Conclusion And Final Thought
It’s your time, regardless of where you are in life, to live every moment to the fullest and to begin by giving yourself the love and attention you deserve. Yes, it’s now time to:
- Change your thinking to change your life.
- Be more aware of your good points and release all negativity and self doubt.
- Empower yourself with positive thinking.
- Become a child again, happy, forgiving and free.
- Stop all judging and rejecting of yourself.
- Be forgiving of others and of yourself.
- Believe in yourself.
- Always be true to yourself…always.
- Accept who you are.
- Live in the moment. Not what happened years ago, last week or even 5 minutes ago. Live for now.
It has taken years to develop who you presently perceive yourself to be which now pools your entire belief system. You will be amazed to discover how loving and lovable you truly are.
Remember that you are a unique diamond with unlimited abilities.
Is your self-esteem too low? Are you insecure and uncertain about yourself? Don’t be! You have a lot to offer the world; you just need the self-esteem to match your amazing qualities! Here are five easy ways to help YOU B-Confident.
1) Own the room. Even if you’re nervous, walk with your head held high and your shoulders back. Smile at people, look them in the eye, and don’t be afraid to speak up when you have something to say. The best way to start feeling confident is to start acting confident.
2) Make a list of the things you love about yourself. Instead of focusing on what you don’t like, focus on the positive aspects of your life. Do you have an awesome sense of humor? Are you great at math? Write these things down! Don’t let one insecurity cancel out all of the incredible qualities you have.
3) Dress the part. If you’re feeling nervous or insecure, wear something that makes you feel confident. Put on a comfy jacket or your favorite pair of shoes and rock them out. Sometimes, all it takes is a special accessory or shirt to boost your confidence! Don’t have a special item like that? Check out the BYOU online store for something that makes you feel as amazing as you are! http://www.shopbyou.com/
4) Don’t listen to the negativity. People will often say mean things to compensate for their own insecurities. That doesn’t mean their harsh criticisms are justified, though. Brush petty comments off of your shoulders and listen only to the positive words of others.
5) Remember that EVERYBODY feels insecure about SOMETHING. Truly, you’re not alone. Remember that no one is completely happy with their bodies, and don’t let your insecurity define you. You’re much more than just a list of bodily imperfections; you’re an amazing person. So never forget to B-Confident!