Opinion: The sky’s the limit for the modern woman

Pia RichardsonGeraldton Guardian
Railway Health Hub co-owner and Crossroads Life managing director Pia Richardson
Camera IconRailway Health Hub co-owner and Crossroads Life managing director Pia Richardson

We are at a time in history when women have more impact, reach and opportunity than ever before.

There is a growing number of women holding positions of power, with female CEOs at General Motors, IBM and Hertz, to name just a few.

There are women leading spiritual revolutions like Oprah Winfrey and Joyce Meyer; women fighting for our earth's future like the young Greta Thunberg; women fighting for other women like Nobel peace prize winner Nadia Murad; and women paving the way in sports like Abbey Weimbach.

And, there are women like you and me, raising tomorrow’s leaders: teaching them to be kind and caring and humble and present; teaching them to share, to speak up, to have respect and to have courage — and that is important work too.

Just as important as every CEO or presenter or change-maker or activist.

As women in the modern world, we are better positioned than ever before to create the kind of life we want for ourselves and our families. It’s only been a little over 100 years that women have had the right to vote. A century ago our options were severely limited, but today the only limitations on our dreams are the ones we place on them.

We can do literally anything we choose if we are willing to take the steps necessary to achieve it.

One of my favourite sayings is: “If you always do what you’ve always done you'll always get what you’ve always got.” And as a 21st-century woman, if you don’t like the way things are looking for you, you have the power to change. If you want nothing more than to be a stay-at-home mum and do it to the best of your ability — do it. If you want to be a chief executive and rule the corporate world — do it.

As modern women, we have the power to slowly begin to break down those old paradigms — those old stories that say women who gossip should be muzzled, or women who show emotion are hysterical and worthy of being institutionalised, or that women who don’t fit the ideals of society should be hidden away or shunned.

As we start to recognise ways that we’ve been playing small to fit in or because it’s how things have been done for thousands of years, we are suddenly given a choice — rise up and take back our power, or leave things as they have been for too long.

We are creating a generation that simply will not accept the old ways.

We can speak up for ourselves, and speak up for those who may not yet have a voice, and we do that by raising our daughters to know their own worth, and by raising our sons to respect that.

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