Guest Author - Paula Petrie
Arianna Huffington’s book, “On becoming Fearless... in love, work, and life” was a study of fear and becoming fearless to help her own teenage daughters through their life struggles with fear. With "Fearless," Arianna looked at the way fear impacts lives and potential, through her own personal experiences and through offerings by others whose lives have been impacted by fear, in average, and in monumental ways.
Arianna Huffington, “Did you know that over seven thousand years ago red pigments were already being used as lip color? The beauty products industry may, in fact, be the second oldest profession.”
Do you find confidence with processed hair or makeup? What starts as a study of worries regarding appearance, work, parenting, love and death, etc. ends up being a call to all women to stop accepting the status quo and initiate change within ourselves. To break free of the traditional standards that American (and Canadian) women live by. As Arianna reminds us, to see change in the world we must start by changing the way we contribute to it. Will we quake or conquer?
"We are, after all, the ones perpetuating the game of comparisons. The urge to compare, to see how we're doing relative to others, is a part of the human condition. But we can enlarge our perspective to dilute the power of our narrow, self-destructive comparisons." says Arianna.
This book brings a soothing comfort by showing that these, and all fears are a common thread for women.
"Instead of comparing ourselves to Angelina Jolie, how about comparing ourselves to a victim of Hurricane Katrina, a woman who lost her legs fighting in Iraq, or a woman diagnosed with breast cancer? They're out there, too. When we do this, we are sure to tap into our reserves of empathy and gratitude instead of our endless self-judgments, fears, and jealousies." - Arianna Huffington.
Fear is the number one stumbling block when it comes to changing our lives and pursuing our dreams. Fear of the opinions of others, fear of our own egos, fear of failure. Quoting Jody Williams in Fearless, “It is the choices we make in confronting it (fear) that shape who we are.”
“How do we earn what we are worth in a world that still pays us seventy-eight cents to a man’s earned dollar?” asks Arianna, “The answer: fearlessness."
This is an arousing book. Way to go Arianna. Fear less; do more. To act doesn’t bring regret, just knowledge. This book is filled with inspiration.
I think what is needed next (possibly by Arianna) is a study of the ways women communicate. Men tell; women examine. A woman’s subtle understanding and likewise her ability to direct men and women come from empathic negotiating. Women communicate by helping others to share in the process and find their own answers. (We have learned they don’t want ours.) This ability is the mark of a great facilitator, and the often unclaimed birthright of women. We hold back, we babble, fly off on emotional tangents, what we over-look is the importance of the connection. Looking to the eye, feeling, and comprehending.
Women need to direct or show. Not to display grandness, but to bring about light. Quite likely, we women can’t effect peace and tolerance without being willing to bring it down a notch. I think where we find our gentleness is also where we find our truth. Yes, gentleness can be artfully shown in the midst of heated debate, and reproach.
Girls need to be brought up with more emphasis placed on the ‘quick,’ thoughtful response. So much strength can be gained from having a voice. We must teach girls to say, and to know, what they wish to share. I have been hearing, “I should have said..,” from women, my whole life. Arianna's book, "Fearless," illuminates the importance of girls (women) gaining a stronger (fearless) sense of self. The next step is to bring that out.
I think women absorb an essence from which we develop an understanding of the message, and the messenger. We assess. But, sometimes we get lost in assimilating the information we’ve been given; and, sometimes react with emotion only; each can cause major conflict. Words are not all we hear, and not all we should respond to. As words we know are often corrupted (by emotion or logic, or ego, for example.) Consequently, women have been steamrollered for years and give in to fear; afraid to open their mouths, or they cope by choosing a road of less depth.
Arianna Huffington, “Whatever the personal price, we must speak out about what matters. The world needs the leadership of women now more than ever.”