"What are you going to do? Be hungry every single day to make other people happy? That's just dumb. "
In this recent interview with Yahoo's CEO Marissa Mayer, Jennifer Lawrence talks body image. In this mini clip she discusses why we need to stop calling people "fat" and stop placing too much emphasis on appearances. Check it out here.
In a US Senate of only 100 seats, 20 of those are women. These 20 women, Democrat and Republican, represent the female voices of our nation. They bring a new perspective on issues that the men in government don't seem to realize. However, even with this pressure, these women also get very much hate. They are criticized for the "abandonment" of their children, ostracized and patronized by the males they work with, and continually hit on by those same males. Yet, these women still seem to persevere and do so with such maturity and grace, I might add. As the article states, "Women now chair or sit as ranking members of 10 of the Senate’s 20 committees and are responsible for passing the vast majority of legislation this year, whether it be the budget, the transportation bill, the farm bill, the Water Resources Development Act or the Violence Against Women Act. They have driven the debate on everything from derivatives reform to sexual assault in the military. Perhaps most important, they are showing how to make things happen." Indeed, these women have striven to get to the point they are now and have proved their skills in leadership to the public eye. I look forward to the future of women in government, but I will say this; It will only progress if we (our generation of women) decide to get active.
Read the article here.
Hopefully you're all doing well on this fine Monday day! Since Mondays aren't necessarily the most fun for everyone, I thought it'd be nice to post some songs that always make me feel a little more empowered and happy!
I hope you can all start your week off on a nice note and a smile! Enjoy! :)
Check out Malala's interview with Jon Stewart...she's truly a woman to look up to!
For the past couple weeks we've been sharing excited half whispers in the hallways, texts exchanging outfit plans, and late nights planning questions and modes of transportation. Anyone whose been near or around us has realized just how excited Alexis and I were to go to the Kiva Headquarters in San Francisco to meet and interview the lovely Jessica Hansen, the Education Development Manager of the well known NGO, Kiva.
We'll spare you the details of our hectic commute to the famous Golden Gate city, (a train to San Mateo, lunch in the cute downtown, and a trip from there up to SF) but the journey made the trip all that more exciting. However, nothing could beat the excitement of the reason we were actually journeying in the first place-- The interview!
The Kiva headquarter is in a sleek glass building on a busy San Francisco street, and the office is, as we both agreed, the literal definition of San Francisco. Loads of green plants (Actually, mostly everything was green) and earthy tones/decorations catch your eye as you walk in. A screen projects Kiva's site and informs you of exactly when the last loan was made. The office is unique in that is is all open and set up with a few makeshift walls in between. There is a map of the world with pins marked for each place an employee had been, as well as currency from that country. Dogs and babies are known to be hanging around, everyone was in super casual clothing, a masseuse was in a private room, and they had a library AND a hammock room. We walked by the CEO, who looked like any other employee, while he was in a meeting. Fun fact: His desk has has no chair- He just stands and works in the middle of the office space, with everyone else. As well, one of the founders of Kiva, Premel, had a similar set up.
At Kiva, everyone was in a happy mood. As Jessica said, people are sad when they have to leave work. Even the unpaid intern we spoke to explained how she always gets excited to come into the office! The place was hustling and bustling with activity and discussion. You could tell that every single person in that office genuinly cared about the work they were doing, and thats one of the big reasons why Kiva is so successful today.
Jessica was one of the most inspiring (I know, we say that about everyone) women Alexis and I have ever had the honor to meet. This outstanding, kind hearted, positive, and well educated woman has done far more in her lifetime than majority of people can even dream of. She has lived and traveled around the world and worked at every social justice job you could think of (Everyone from the UN to Doctors Without Borders). The stories and experiences she shared left Alexis and I with our mouths open in shock, Jessica has interviewed people in detail and heard stories of rape, soldiers cutting open pregnant women, and heads being used as soccer balls...but despite it all, she stressed how optimistic she is for the future. She described how positive you have to be in her field and how she truly believes third world countries will one day catch up with more developed ones in terms of poverty and education. Every part of her radiated joy as she recalled the changes she's seen in small villages in Kenya. Jessica is the walking example of optimism and true fulfillment, refusing to let the disheartening things she's seen in her line of work bring her down and reminding everyone of the work they can do to make the world a place where all can smile.
If you're interested in the work Jessica is doing, watch our interview that will be posted later this week!
For now, we'd like to leave you with one word of advice Jessica told us that keeps coming to mind, even 5 days later: When asked about her job and how she's gotten to this position, she spoke of how instead of worrying about how much each job pays or the benefits of said job, she simply asks herself if she would do the job even if she wasn't being paid. With h=this perspective, she's allowed herself to be passionate about every job she's had. Maybe it's something to apply to all the aspects in our lives. It's a good reminder to ourselves to choose the things that make us fulfilled, the things that we can look forward to and never lose our passionate for.
You are your own worst critic. But it seems that in a society where we are told in every way that we must look and act a certain way, it is much easier to look in the mirror and find 50 things we don't like about ourselves.
It almost seems that on a certain level its more accepted for girls to be found criticizing their bodies than to be embracing it! If someone criticizes their body people call them "attention seekers", however, those who compliment their body are called "conceited". But its time to change society and look in the mirror and remind yourself of every amazing thing about yourself. There is only one you and its time you embrace every single thing about yourself! Remember, you ARE beautiful and its time to see yourself the way others see you (because I guarantee people don't see the flaws you berate yourself on).
The first time I watched this video, (and I'm not ashamed to say this, just watch it for yourself) I cried. It is so simple and yet so beautiful, with a message relatable to everyone. Don't be too hard on yourself because you're more beautiful than you allow yourself to believe.
NO ONE is perfect so every time you look in the mirror and automatically find a flaw about yourself, I dare you to find another 2 things you love about yourself, whether its your smile or the color your nails are painted.
Remember, feel grateful for all you have since not everyone has that and embrace yourself (flaws and ALL!).
Stay beautiful guys!
From the minute I met Stacey Ferreira I knew that I wanted to interview her. Her youthful and kind hearted spirit as well as intellectual and entrepreneurial ways attracted my attention and I knew she would be amazing to talk to. She was speaking at the youth panel at OPEN and after discussing her experiences creating MySocialCloud, I asked her if we could interview her.
Flash forward to a month later and we were sitting at the courtyard in front of Pizza My Heart in Palo Alto. We had been exchanging emails earlier and she was so flexible and easy going (She sent her emails with a smiley face! Alexis and I couldn't have been more at ease) that we couldn't wait to meet her!
The interview went amazingly as she shared her experiences and insight, giving great advice that felt truly empowering. It was super casual and fun as we bonded over loads of things (like how we've all gone to all girls high schools and how AWESOME of an experience that has been!). Alexis and I were truly inspired as we left the interview because not only had Stacey said some amazing things that got us thinking, but because she was only a few years older than us and was an amazing, strong, confident, and smart women who had done and is doing some amazing things! By 18 she had a business, and by 20 she has just sold that business, is starting a new start up, and is co-authoring a book (2 Billion Under 20), not to mention the fact that she's going to be in the October issue of Seventeen magazine! Theres a concept that if someone can see a person they can relate to in a certain position, its easier for them to imagine themselves in that same position. I saw a 20 year old women not much older than me who had similar experiences (she understood all our teen issues having just finished that stage of her life) and had worked hard to create a business and was extremely successful. Suddenly, I was imagining a 20 year old me, running my own business and writing a book. The whole car ride home was spent gushing with Alexis, getting more and more passionate about our project (which has become a business of sorts to us now) with each sentence. We started off with how well the interview went and then suddenly we had new ideas for our project and next thing you know we were imagining a day where we were interviewing Sheryl Sandberg (author of Lean In! and first female member of Facebook's board of directors) and Marissa Mayer (CEO of Yahoo! and former VP of location services at Google). Basically, Stacey inspired us. Here is this relatable, amazing, kind, and smart woman who has done so much, reminding Alexis and I (as well as everyone who listens to our interviews!) that we CAN do it, we just have to work hard and get out there.
Find Stacey Ferreira here (and send her some of your own love!):
The past year has taught me my passion for women's empowerment and gender inequality. Kicking it off with the persuasive speech and presentation we had to write for English and carrying on into the final I had to do in Spirituality of Leadership, I learned a lot through research on the topic and became more and more interested in it. With the pressure to decide an SSLP (Senior Service Learning Project) subject in junior year, I decided to concentrate on these two subjects. Then I learned Alexis was just as passionate about it as me and I went to join forces on our sslps. I've been so excited about our project and now I'm so excited for our first interview which will kick off the project...I can't believe this is actually happening! I came across a quote today: "The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do" -Apple. I know its a crazy idea that two teen girls can make a difference and raise awareness about these issues going on in the world but I think that we can make a pebble of change at least that could create a mountain of change. I hope that this project makes a difference in the lives of the girls we talk to and that we learn something from this process, even if we learn one thing and if one person says that what we talked about is interesting, I know it'll be successful and worth it.