While girls are taught to develop the full spectrum of who they are, boys are still taught to be emotionally repressed.
Betty Ann Heggie
Blogger, Columnist, Activist
Betty-Ann Heggie, a member of Canada's Top 100 Most Powerful Women Hall of Fame, retired from her position as a Senior VP with PotashCorp 6 years ago. Since then she has devoted her time to getting more women at the decision-making table and has founded a program at her alma mater, the University of Saskatchewan to mentor working women. A popular speaker she also shares her thoughts and ideas through a weekly newspaper column, as a radio talk show guest, blogs and newsletters.
Most fathers I know encourage their daughters by telling them, "You can be anything you want in life." But is that the complete truth? As long as women are considered sexual objects they'll always be rated as 'less than' in common society. Unfortunately, the diminished position of women reinforces the gender pay gap and makes them more vulnerable to sexual harassment and in some cases, victims of sexual and physical violence.
06/07/2017 04:04 EDT
We live in a world of increasing tension and polarization. Everything in our lives is compared and labelled; good or bad, happy or sad, beautiful or ugly, rich or poor. Unfortunately, categorization encourages the belief that if one side is right then the other is wrong.
05/03/2017 12:29 EDT
We live each day according to our stories about who we are, what we do, the people we support and where we spend our money. It is natural that we see and believe information that supports our beliefs and ignore that which does not. Unfortunately, once our stories are established we hunker down and close ourselves off from any other possibilities.
04/03/2017 02:35 EDT
Current gender theory has shaped two distinct types of leaders. On one hand are women leaders who are expected to be collaborative, empathetic relationship builders, and on the other men who are expected to be assertive, action-oriented and focused on the bottom line.
03/01/2017 02:36 EST
Magnetism is not reserved for stars of the silver screen alone. It can be found amongst the people that we live and work with as well. So, what are some of the traits of those with presence? And what is that 'it' characteristic that makes people stand out in a crowded room?
02/08/2017 09:02 EST
People are realizing that, without the weight of gendered expectations, they can embrace skills, talents and passions irrespective of gender, which benefits individuals, corporations and the world. It is a long way from where we once were, labelled "pink" or "blue" at birth and put into our gender-specific boxes.
01/04/2017 02:11 EST
From the time we enter high school we are told that this type of talk is harmless, good-natured joking and if we react negatively, we must lack a sense of humour. What we fail to mention is that locker room talk leads to groping and unwanted sexual advances because when you dehumanize people in conversation, their needs no longer count. Once you have obscenely torn a woman apart with bro-talk, an insidious web of disrespect is woven. It becomes difficult to promote her and even more difficult to work for her. In short, it limits her opportunities.
12/05/2016 08:02 EST
We need to be selective about which situations to give our full power to, in order to prevent our strengths from becoming weaknesses. To calibrate where and how much to expend. This necessitates knowing our self, knowing our audience, evaluating each circumstance, and ultimately... exercising judgement.
11/03/2016 02:26 EDT
Subtly, through the years we have been indoctrinated to view the world through a patriarchal lens. In virtually every sector those who select the protagonist, choose the narrative, act as distributor and pen the review, have endorsed or subscribed to a traditional masculine value system.
10/06/2016 02:53 EDT
Without question, having a mentor will enhance the effectiveness of our leadership skills immensely. This is especially true when the methods and management style of the mentor differ and contrast from our own. It is only when we challenge our conditioning by accepting new and different approaches to work and life that we truly grow.
09/08/2016 04:25 EDT
Many successful executives will credit a mentor; an adviser, a teacher, someone who kept them engaged while they advanced their careers. Maybe even someone who opened doors as they learned the ropes. This is especially true for women.
08/04/2016 01:59 EDT
From birth men are fed messages that set them up to have unrealistic expectations of themselves. They are conditioned to believe that if they become the ultimate model of powerful masculinity, they will be rewarded with more sex, salary and status. This programming results in disappointment, confusion and frustration.
07/06/2016 03:27 EDT
Mostly, your subconscious is an obliging, industrious little helper that has your best interests at heart. It really wants to be of assistance, busily helping with all of those pesky, mundane things t...
06/06/2016 11:26 EDT
The voice in your head so badly wants to be the all-knowing wizard that it labels, judges, exaggerates and takes things personally, all in an effort to control. Labeling and judging people and circumstances makes us feel as though we have a handle on them and so the voice obliges, evaluating, slotting and categorizing.
05/06/2016 02:11 EDT
Most of us gravitate to those who agree with us rather than investigating alternate ways of thinking about things. It will be difficult to give up those conspiracy websites where one can share information with like-minded people, rather than conversing with those who might challenge our views.
04/07/2016 12:46 EDT
From earliest childhood girls are cautioned about taking risks while boys are encouraged to court danger and seek new experiences. It is a socialization pattern women need to overcome to reach their true potential. Only by ignoring fear and taking action, will women find leadership courage.
03/09/2016 11:30 EST
Whether you are a man or a woman, you have both masculine and feminine energy in you. Your job is to coax these energies out, embrace them and express yourself through them. Both men and women have been socialized to believe that it is all about proficiency, but as we've seen, the results of competent individuals, who are not considered likeable, can be viewed as subpar.
02/10/2016 01:51 EST
Why paint yourself with the either/or, black-or-white binary system of gender, when instead you could be a vibrant mosaic of masculine and feminine attributes? By letting go of stereotypes and celebrating individuals with a mix of traditional gender characteristics, you'll create more opportunities for yourself and others.
01/19/2016 02:19 EST
Women have a habit of apologizing regardless of the situation. We over-apologize, and society expects it from us. Constantly saying "sorry" lowers our status, reduces our credibility and makes us seem like doormats.
12/03/2015 11:24 EST
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