Have you ever felt the pressure of society to be thin—beautiful—or smart?  It’s amazing to me how women face so many challenges by society.  If we are career oriented then we must be self-centered.  Or if we are beautiful then we can’t be smart.  If we’re a few pounds overweight then we must be depressed or if we are thin then we must be beautiful.  Why can’t we just appreciate our differences and realize that every shape, size, color, nationality, IQ or age is beautiful and unique in their own rite? 

When I was younger I was told, mediocre is no further from the bottom than it is from the top!  Reach high and only take advice from people with your best interest at heart.  With that in mind, ask yourself if society actually has our best interest at heart—or theirs.  Women struggle every day to be the ultimate in what society wants.  Whether it be career—parenting—or looks. 

Today was a great Fall day.  The sun was out—not a cloud in the sky and the temperature was perfect.  Taking advantage of the weather—I decided to go for a run.  Turning down the path, I noticed a woman that caused me to stop and take notice.  Her fashion statement was—unique—as she wore two tanks.  The kind of tank that some term as a “wife beater”.  They were bright, neon pink.  Now when I say she was wearing two tanks—they were not layered on top of each other.  Instead, she wore one as a top and the other as — a skirt. 

One can’t help but notice a woman wearing a tank as a skirt.  Please allow me to attempt to give you a visual—she had pulled the top of the tank up to her hips and afforded one butt cheek to protrude out from each side.  As she stood there completely confident in her stilettos—propped on one hip—in a large brimmed hat, I had to ask myself exactly what style statement she was aiming for.

Just as I pondered that fashion statement, I turned around to see a gentleman in a floral pink bathing suit —large brimmed hat—and pink flip flops.  He was riding a bicycle down the path and singing the theme song from Mister Rogers.  “It’s a wonderful day in the neighborhood…!”  I heard him sing as he rode by. 

The fashion statements were in abundance!  As I stood there in the alternate universe, the message was clear.  Have enough confidence to move past societal pressures and express yourself in a way that makes you happy.   Individuality is what matters.  To keep that is golden.

We as women have to remember that it is our individuality that makes us unique.  We should band together to keep that in front of all of us.  Appreciate our differences.  It is a change from succumbing to societal pressures. 

After all—It is not the strongest of the species that survive…nor the most intelligent…it is the one most responsive to change!   Do not let fear command where you go in life… it will only limit your potential!  Hold your head high—and strut!