I am on multiple mastermind and support groups that help further my success. I am part of Facebook private groups, monthly mastermind calls, and local community Chamber of Commerce meetings for women. I do attend some that are for men and women, but really find my creativity, relationship building, and progress with my goals are accelerated with like minded women. We can brainstorm our ideas and empathize with challenges of women in leadership roles (balancing motherhood, business, and life purpose). The focus groups pull passions and unique resources together to make something better ideas than would have occurred on our own.
The relationships I have made over the years have only exponentially grown from forum, groups, and networking events. By creating You Tube videos and interviewing amazing midwifery practices all over the country has only opened my eyes to opportunities for creating joint projects and services. We look at each other’s challenges and find mutually beneficially solutions to the problems. By creating win-win scenarios, everyone including ourselves better from the opportunities.
The value placed on women and their ability to lead and participate fully in the world is a matter of justice. Social justice is really quite simple, but it is intentionally made complex in order to maintain the status quo. Social justice is actually in and of itself not a matter of left-right political spectrum, even though that is what we have come to believe. In the same way that is not the natural order of human beings to be hierarchically organized with some people appearing to be superior to others – these are socially constructed concept. There is a saying in design thinking that says everything is designed to get what it gets. Social justice is much more logical and nuanced than some would have us believe.
One step in making a society operate more justly is to make sure the people who are in positions of power and are making decisions that impact other people’s lives are representative of the very people they are deciding for/with. This very thing is based on how the system is designed. What are the rules, policies, etc? These things – rules, policies, etc are a manifestation of the value we place on people and the earth.
This is why very important to continue to analyze with women the cultural and social ways in which our lives are being shaped because if we don’t the only analysis will be about the personal psychology of women. Psychoanalyzing the social and cultural manifestation in women’s lives places the solution for change on the individual – this moves us away from seeing, naming and ultimately changing the very structures that gave rise to the injustices we see and ultimately keep us down. This is why we see so many women getting lost in a maze of self-improvement groups. We have to be very conscious of the tremendous pressure to view women’s oppression as a “sickness” or individual mental health problem rather than as a political, social, and cultural condition.
What does the lack of representation of women in leadership roles mean to women’s everyday lives? How does it impact women when they haven’t actually ever seen themselves reflected in the leadership of their community?