We women face unnecessary scrutiny regarding our bodies. Those who weight-shame will often use the excuse that they are just concerned about our health; but rather, it stems from paternal, controlling judgement. We need to love the woman in the mirror, to embrace our individuality and celebrate our unique selves.
This March, the international community came together for the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action. Against this backdrop, it is important to examine, once again, the existing gender gap in Canada, and what is happening with respect to GBA -- an analytical tool to assess how the impact of policies and programs on women might differ from their impact on men.
Erika Lust's didn't want her daughters to grow up and be exposed to the commercialized and commoditized usage of women's bodies that is typical in mainstream porn; she demanded something different. Her bold emergence into the world of erotic filmmaking has been a breath of fresh air into the erotic genre industry.
This much we know: not long ago Dalton McGuinty backed away from proposed changes to Ontario's sexual education curriculum; today, Kathleen Wynne is intent on going ahead with them. What's changed? Both the data and the success stories we see at Change.org suggest women -- in particular young women -- are most adept at tapping into the digital age's potential and that changes everything.
By coincidence, just as the Academy Awards were being handed out, our executive recruitment firm, Rosenzweig & Company, was getting ready to release its 10th annual Report on Women at the Top Levels of Corporate Canada. The findings show that wage equality, while important, is just part of the issue. The reality is that even if women in Canada achieve complete wage equality at every level, there are far too few women in the highest paid corporate executive positions positioned to reap that reward.
Each of us has a story about who we are, the work we do, the people we love, or even why we arrive late to the office. We live each day according to these stories, seeing and believing the information that reinforces them and ignoring the rest. My participation in the reality TV show, "Who Lives Here?," precipitated this a-ha moment for me.
At 23 years of age, Nasreen Sheikh radically redefines what it means to be a Nepali woman. She is a Sunni Muslim living in a predominately Hindu community and is the founder of a fair-trade sewing collective called Local Women's Handicrafts. Nasreen is an outlier in her community. Typically, most Nepali girls marry between the ages of 15 and 18. The pressure to have a married daughter began to increase with each year Nasreen remained single however, and in 2014, Nasreen's parents decided that they had to take action. For Nasreen, this arranged marriage would have meant the end of Local Women's Handicrafts.
Treat your voice as a muscle and remember that like all muscles, it gets stronger with use. Many of us stopped using our voice honestly and boldly when we were girls and were taught, as part of our socialization, to say and do what would most please others. Start small by practicing with those who will love you no matter what comes out of your mouth.
has always been that messy and exciting hallmark of puberty signifying the possibility of fertility. Today it is but one occurrence in a lifetime of shaming women's bodies, diminishing the natural beauty and power of every female. (Not to mention they want them smelling and looking like daisies in a meadow. Vaginas are not flowers. They are vaginas.)
I have often been told that I don't seem like a "typical" sorority girl and I'm never sure how to take that. Am I being applauded for not being a daft, superficial party girl straight out of Animal House? Obviously we go to parties (like most university and college students do), but this has never been the primary function of a sorority.
There are a number of lessons here for women. First, we have the capability to independently take our own journeys (metaphorically and in reality). We don't need a man. Next, we need to adjust our thinking about the events in our lives. Too often we ruminate on what we could have done differently or measure ourselves by an unachievable external bar, set way too high.
Finance, money, debt planning, retirement saving etc., there is sufficient reading material out there on these subjects and experts in the industry for advice. Yet we continue to see record debt levels, low savings rates and lifestyles being extended through borrowed money. Why haven't we been more successful in increasing financial literacy and promoting better financial behaviours?
I am no stranger to the search for freedom. I've always been drawn to the open road and I feel inspired by leadership roles and risk in the unknown. And since I'm confessing, I have also been known to resist conformity -- a throwback to school uniforms in my early years, I'm sure. But recently I've been noticing a trend; the word freedom is appearing in unexpected and inspiring places. Is this the theme of a generation of women who will right the ship?
Africa's 600 million hectares of uncultivated land -- more than half the global total -- adds up to a recipe for a better food future. Agricultural innovation, education, and the resulting empowerment of women and girls promises to make the coming population boom a turning point toward truly sustainable development.