I want power.
The relationship between women and power is complex but my desire for it is not. I am a woman and I want power.
I want to reclaim my power and to do so boldly by coming at power directly. I am not going to use coded words such as manifest and empowerment here. I am not going to soften my desires or attempt to appear more spiritual in my requests. What I want is Power. My Power.
And I want that for you too because owning our power is the only way will will effect change in our world.
Power Has Been Used Against You
Women and power. What word or image do you first associate with that phrase? It is not unlikely that reading (or hearing) my desire for power in some way feels bristly to you. Even if you’re not exactly sure why. Even if you’re also cheering me on in my quest for more power. Even if you too want to own more power. It’s still likely that the idea feels uncomfortable to you in some way.
As women, and most especially for any woman with intersecting marginalized identities, we have not just witnessed the gross misuse of power but we have personally experienced it. We all felt power choke us into silence. We all felt power push us into submission. We have all felt power kick us even after it had pushed us down. As much as this force has been used against us in ways we can consciously see, and feel, and name, its effects on our subconscious and they way we operate on autopilot within our culture are far greater.
Redefining Your Relationship with Women and Power
Power has been used to silence and oppress women for thousands of years in Western culture. So yes of course we as women at best, bristle at the idea of desiring power. What’s worse is that women cower away from the responsibility in owning what we know as power because it is dangerous, harmful, evil or corrupt. This shying away may happen consciously or not. If your response is similar to anything on this continuum of fear I urge you to redefine your relationship with power. Let’s start with how the word power is defined:
- The ability to do something or act in a particular way, especially as a faculty or quality
- The capacity or ability to direct or influence the behavior of others or the course of events.
Power is literally the ability to affect change and influence outcomes. Power is action, hope, improvement, a response, confidence, faith, and progress. If you have a desire to affect change in your children and in your family, you have a desire for power. If you want to create something for your community, you want power. If you believe you can make some difference in the world, you believe yourself to be powerful. Now it’s time to own that and do something with that.
“We have no template for what a powerful woman looks like, except that she looks rather like a man.” -Mary Beard in Women and Power
Own Your Power. Use It Wisely.
When you (re)claim your power you can influence outcomes for yourself that will serve you well and serve well the members of your family, community, and world. When you to make right use of that power you are able to influence outcomes that will increase your resources not at the expense of others but in concert with those who need them. You can bring to life your creative ideas. You can share your talents. You can create the positive impact you are more than capable of, and do the work you are here to do.
Women like you, reaching for big dreams, are battling invisible barriers through unconscious bias. What is crucial to your success as a Woman Rising is being surrounded by an alliance of women supporters. Studies have proven being connecting to a group of women focused on supporting one another results in women speaking more, sharing their ideas more freely, experiencing greater respect, and having greater confidence in themselves. Women within an alliance are 2.5 times more likely to achieve their desired job placement and more than 75% of high ranking women had ties to such an alliance.
You can own your power and use it wisely. We are in this together, we are rising up together, and we are stronger together. Let’s do this! You can join the Women Rising Alliance to follow along with our week-by-week, step-by-step plan to reclaiming power in order to make an impact and create positive change. That will look different for each of us, and those differences is what will fuel our creativity and innovation. Women and power can be creative, hopeful, spiritual, progressive, and inspiring. And you can make that happen.