10 Fierce Quotes About Being a Woman ~ Tara Rice

1. Beyoncé

“Who run the world? Girls.”

2. P!nk

“It’s about being alive and feisty and not sitting down and shutting up even though people would like you to.”

3. Whitney Houston

“I like being a woman in a man’s world. After all, men can’t wear dresses, but we can wear the pants.”

4. Roseanne Barr

“The thing women have yet to learn is nobody gives you power. You just take it.”

5. Adriana Lima

“I won’t cry for you, my mascara is too expensive.”

6. Joss Whedon

Why do you write strong female characters?

Because you’re still asking me that question.

7. Tyra Banks

“You have what it takes to be a victorious, independent, fearless woman.”

8. Elizabeth Taylor

“Pour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick, and pull yourself together.”

9. Estée Lauder

“I never dreamed about success. I worked for it.”

10. Sheng Wang

“Why do people say ‘grow some balls’? Balls are weak and sensitive. If you want to be tough, grow a vagina. Those things can take a pounding.”

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I Spent A Week Trying To Be A More Assertive Woman In The Workplace ~ Farrah Penn

Hi, I’m Farrah, and I’m consistently guilty of using “woman in a meeting” language in both the workplace and my personal life. I suffer from the chronic need to please people.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

At it’s core, “woman in a meeting” language is intentionally using overenthusiastic sentences and softer words in order to prevent coming off as abrasive. Many women (including myself) constantly apologize, use exclamation points, or preface points they’d like to make with “I think,” or “I just.”

After reading this and recognizing that many strong women throughout history were unapologetically themselves without fear of being called “abrasive” or a “bitch,” I decided I would spend a week trying to eliminate this type of language from the way I speak.

When I started looking for my overuse of soft language… sadly, it wasn’t too hard to find:

When I started looking for my overuse of soft language... sadly, it wasn't too hard to find:

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

For five days, I followed these rules, which eliminated common phrases from my “soft language” vocabulary.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

There were tons of challenges that came up during this entire process. My main concern was coming off as a jerk. In some instances, it took me A LOT longer to compose a very direct email than it would have if I was using my bubbly! excited! tone!. And I overanalyzed EVERYTHING.

Scenario 1: Replying to a co-worker in NYC about a project.

Scenario 1: Replying to a co-worker in NYC about a project.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

I haven’t been to BuzzFeed’s NYC office, so I don’t know any of the staff except those I’ve interacted with over email and Slack — the instant messaging system we use. I was nervous about coming off cold in my email, which is why it took me maybe ten minutes to write on top of reading over it dozens of times. I cringed when I sent it. I didn’t want him to think I wasn’t excited about the post anymore.

Despite my worrying, Lincoln really didn’t seem phased by my lack of enthusiastic exclamations. Also, I realized that although I wanted to add in an apology, it wasn’t needed. Why was I apologizing on behalf of my draft? That’s what drafts are FOR.
But the tone in his response showed the same enthusiasm for our project, which meant I was stressing over this one email for NOTHING.

Scenario 2: My boss let me know we were getting lunch today.

Scenario 2: My boss let me know we were getting lunch today.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

My response was a faster-than-normal reply for me, especially since the rules cut off the time I would spend looking for an emoji to send. I saved some time by not worrying about making myself seem happy and upbeat.

BUT her response made me overanalyze my lack of enthusiasm. I always want to come off as a positive team player, and forgoing my excessive use of exclamation marks made my tone seem sarcastic and ungrateful. Was she mad? Did she think I was being ungrateful? Did she think I was being rude or sarcastic? OR A JERK?

She didn’t seem to think so, because the rest of the day carried on as normal. Looking back, it’s a funny how anxious I became over — literally — one exclamation mark.

Scenario 3: Receiving feedback from my editors about a post I was working on.

Scenario 3: Receiving feedback from my editors about a post I was working on.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

The way I acknowledge feedback has always been super important to me. In the past, I’ve made sure to be EXTREMELY enthusiastic, using tons! of! exclamation! marks! to prove that I’m not aggressively put off by any changes. I never want my editor to think, is she mad because I’m giving her this feedback? Does she even care?

There were some instances throughout these 5 days where it took me about ten minutes to gather the courage to send people messages.

When I look back at what I wanted to say — and have said on numerous occasions as replies to edits — I’m kind of annoyed with myself. Why do I need to use that many exclamation marks? And smiley faces? Tone is really important when communicating through instant messaging, but what I wanted to say feels like overdoing it. Which means I HAVE overdone it before.

Scenario 4: Asking a co-worker to collab for the first time.

Scenario 4: Asking a co-worker to collab for the first time.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

I haven’t collabed with Crystal on a project before, and I DEFINITELY would have added “if you’re not too busy!” to the end of this message on a normal day. But that would have meant I was providing her with an excuse, and my goal was to be more assertive. 

It took her a while to reply, which made me think: omg she definitely thinks I’m not excited for this. I should have given her an excuse in case she wanted to let me down easy! But her reply was genuinely enthusiastic. Even if she had been too busy, I shouldn’t have felt the need to provide an excuse.

Scenario 5: Replying to a co-worker’s question.

Scenario 5: Replying to a co-worker's question.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

My conscious attempt to NOT use the exclamation marks made me realize (again) how much I use them on an everyday basis. But I felt like my use of exclamations would have expressed a tone that resembled: oh don’t worry about it, it’s no trouble to get this quick link for you.

Nina was only looking for a link, but I was the one worrying how my tone was coming across through our exchange. In the end, I realized that responding in a direct manner to a forthright question did not automatically make me a jerk.

Scenario 6: Collaborating on a project with my co-workers.

Scenario 6: Collaborating on a project with my co-workers.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed

At first I was very self-conscious of not being able to express my enthusiasm in this Slack brainstorm with my co-workers, but it actually ended up getting easier and easier. This interaction happened on the fourth day, and I discovered I was gaining more confidence being assertive. 

Forgoing phrases like “I feel like” and “maybe” during brainstorms like this one was a challenge. I wasn’t sure why I needed to soften my tone when I was interjecting an idea. It was a wake up call that made me realize I REALLY needed to cut back on that type of language.

Charlotte Gomez for BuzzFeed
  • There are times when being direct comes in handy, and it’s possible for me to be direct without sounding like a jerk.
  • Not EVERY reply needs to have an exclamation mark, because that’s annoying, but I like having my voice.
  • Look, I like using emojis. Sometimes when words fail, emojis speak. There are some instances were it’s better to forgo them, but I’m not going to completely stop using them. 
  • I don’t have to be afraid of being assertive about my opinions, especially during edits. Softening my feedback with “maybe” and “I feel like” and “I’m wondering” can come across as if I’m unsure of myself, and I’m not!
  • Looking back, all my unnecessary hahas and lols were pretty irritating. I’m going to try and stop that habit. Because, really, nothing is that funny all the time. 
  • This experiment actually showed me that, overall, I saved a lot of time typing direct responses — time that I probably would have normally spent of second-guessing my ~soft~ sentences and searching for emojis.
  • I WILL stop unnecessarily apologizing for things I don’t need to apologize for. 

I wish I could say I’m now an assertive badass after my 5-day experiment, but I’m not. I like having my own voice, and when I’m excited about something I want to be able to express that. But this experiment did teach me that I don’t have to be afraid of coming across as rude when, in reality, I’m being direct.

How to Be in a Romantic Relationship ~ Emily V. Gordon And Ana Hinojosa

http://www.rookiemag.com/2015/10/how-to-be-in-a-romantic-relationship/

Photos Of Matriarchal Societies Show What Gender Equality Looks Like Across The Globe ~ Maddie Crum

 

PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE

A girl poses confidently, hands on hips. She wears a delicate flower in her hair, and stands in the photo’s background, but there’s something commanding about her presence. For her age, she looks stern and self-assured — where she lives, being a girl doesn’t seem to be a strike against her confidence.

The photo was taken in Badjao, Malaysia, one of four Southeast Asian societies cataloged by photographer Pierre de Vallombreuse, in a project aimed at representing societies where gender equality is already on its way to fruition — or, at least, farther along than in the West.

In particular, he captures images of the Khasi society, a matrilineal and matrilocal culture in the northeastern part of India, in which children primarily bear the name of their mother and inheritance is bestowed upon the daughters in a family; the Palawan society, a non-hierarchical community in the Philippines where men and women have been historically equal; the Mosuo society in southwestern China, which involves a variety of matriarchies and avuncular hierarchies; and the egalitarian and libertarian groups in Badjao.

De Vallombreuse has been taking photos of these indigenous societies for nearly 30 years. His work has an anthropological bent, as he was once the General Secretary of the Association of Anthropology and Photography at Paris Diderot University. So, his beautiful photos are more than just seeming portrayals of gender equality; he’s spent time observing each culture’s respective traditions, too.

According to the photographer, what he’s learned throughout his work is promising for the future of Western society — and those societies influenced by globalization today. In a press release about his latest book and exhibit, Arthaud Publishing wrote, “Indeed, in some of these cultures, the trends seem to be reversed: women occupy a central place in the social and spiritual foundations, preserving or advocating equality between the sexes, with total mutual respect. There are models for society where the position of the women is not a battle.”

Vallombreuse’s photos will be on view in an exhibition titled “Souveraines” (Sovereign) at Galerie Argentic in France from Oct. 13 through Nov. 21, 2015. 

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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Palawan
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Badjao
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Badjao
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Badjao
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Badjao
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Badjao
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Palawan
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Palawan
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Badjao
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    PIERRE DE VALLOMBREUSE
    Badjao

 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/pierre-de-vallombreuse-matriarchal_560c2c90e4b0af3706df136b?cps=gravity_2888_-3525879867411367643

This Curvy Yogi Is The Most Inspiring Human You’ll See All Day ~ Alison Caporimo

Meet Valerie Sagun, a 28-year-old yogi from San Jose, California.

Meet Valerie Sagun, a 28-year-old yogi from San Jose, California.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

Sagun has been practicing hatha yoga for the past four years. Hatha is a set of physical exercises, known as asanas, that are designed to align your skin, muscles, and bones.

Sagun started her Instagram Big Gal Yoga a year and a half ago.

Sagun started her Instagram Big Gal Yoga a year and a half ago.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

“At first, I only did Tumblr,” Sagun tells BuzzFeed Life. “But when I got to 10,000 followers and people asked me to join Instagram, I decided to go for it.”

And her photos are fly AF.

And her photos are fly AF.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

Crow pose? More like queen pose.

To start, her yoga wardrobe is TO DIE FOR.

To start, her yoga wardrobe is TO DIE FOR.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

“It can be hard for bigger women to find good leggings,” she says. But, let’s face it, she looks flawless. Sagun swears by her favorite brands Rainbeau Curves and Fractal 9 for comfy, colorful athletic wear.

And her confidence is contagious.

And her confidence is contagious.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

“I’ve never really felt self-conscious about my body during yoga classes,” Sagun says. “For me, yoga is all about the mind and positive thinking. I get anxiety and depression, and practicing has helped me through that.”

She’s always down to try new things.

She's always down to try new things.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

Like using a yoga wheel. “It helps to open your back a lot more during stretches,” Sagun says.

And pushing herself is the only way she knows how.

And pushing herself is the only way she knows how.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

“Acro yoga was one thing, especially as a bigger-bodied person, that I was scared and doubtful to try,” Sagun writes on her Instagram. “But it was so fun to practice.”

Sagun loves yoga so much that she’s currently trying to become a teacher.

Sagun loves yoga so much that she's currently trying to become a teacher.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

She started a GoFundMe to help raise money for tuition at 7 Centers Yoga Arts in Sedona, Arizona.

“By being a curvy woman of color, I get to show a lot of underrepresented people that they are capable of anything,” she says.

"By being a curvy woman of color, I get to show a lot of underrepresented people that they are capable of anything," she says.

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

“We need more diversity so that, one day, diversity just becomes something normal that happens everywhere.”

"We need more diversity so that, one day, diversity just becomes something normal that happens everywhere."

Valerie Sagun / Via instagram.com

“Everyone who is interested in yoga should feel comfortable practicing it,” she says.

FEATURE: NOIRE 3000 STUDIOS’ PHOTO SERIES ‘AFRICAN KINGS’ ~ JAMES C. LEWIS

Atlanta-based photographer James C. Lewis changes the narrative about Black men, one king at a time. Tired of biased representations from mainstream media, Lewis decided to take things into his own hands. With his studios Noire 3000, he released ‘African Kings’, a photo series celebrating African historical figures including pharaohs, Kings of the Songhai Empire, of the Kingdom of Ashanti and many more.
Check out some of the stunning images below.


http://www.noire3000studios.com

http://www.afropunk.com/profiles/blog/show?id=2059274%3ABlogPost%3A1291204&commentId=2059274%3AComment%3A1292185&xg_source=activity

What Happened When One Poet Embraced Radical ‘Self-Love’ ~ Taryn Finley

If time travel were possible, poet Caira Lee would visit her 15-year-old self. 

Lee would commend her on her courage and honesty. She would tell her to how remarkable she was, maybe even throwing a cheesy pick-up line or two to assure her that she knows her worth.  

“Did you read Dr. Suess as a kid? Because green eggs and DAYUM,” she would tell her adolescent self in recognition. 

 Because Lee realized what so many of us fail to recognize as teens: the importance of radical self-love. 

“When you do not act on your self-esteem, you aren’t loving yourself and when you aren’t loving yourself, you are failing at life,” she said in a recent TEDx Talk in Shaker Heights, Ohio. 

The 21-year-old  Baltimore-native stresses the importance of embracing your true self despite what negative things others have to say about body image, race or sexual orientation.

“It’s looking in the mirror and saying, ‘I am the most important person in the world to me. I accept that person. I admire that person and I will do everything in my power to see that person’s dreams come true,’” she says.

Reciting the words to the hook of Kendrick Lamar song “i” with the audience, in which the rapper declares “I love myself” several times, Lee explains that the outside forces of the world working against them are no match for their self-love. 

But how exactly does one practice radical self-love and how do its practitioners gain from it?

Lee offers four points of practicing and reaping the benefits of radical self-love. 

 1. “Find that thing that you can do for hours and lose yourself in that.”

Lee urges her audience to find the skill that makes them feel “cool, productive, important, challenged.” Come alive, she says, because that’s what the world needs.

2. “If you’re black, know your history.”

There is no one way of living in this world despite society’s expectations of black people, according to Lee, and knowing your history will reveal that. She says that one’s “blackness is at the top of the list of things that the United States has that will continue to use and misconstrue in order to get you to dislike yourself.” Don’t let it.

3. “Police the people in your head.”

Many of the negative things we think about ourselves come from other people, she says, and most of it isn’t true. “We let it infest us,” she says. Lee polices the doubtful people in her head by writing positive affirmations like “you are good enough” and posts them on the walls of her dorm room. 

4. “Give self-love to others.”  

The fourth step is hard to do but IS the most important, Lee says. She urges audience members to stop other’s self-deprecation when they hear or witness it. “Dedication to radical self-love is not just about ourselves, it’s about not letting weakness in your circle at any time.” 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/this-poet-stresses-radical-self-love-with-4-crucial-points_55ccc104e4b0cacb8d332df4?utm_hp_ref=black-voices&kvcommref=mostpopular