The theme for International Women’s Day this year is ‘Choose to Challenge’; one that reinforces how important it is that women (and men) continue to challenge the gender barriers and inequalities that remain entrenched in society.
Despite numerous global initiatives that focus on achieving gender equality including the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal #5, it remains a significant issue within society, particularly in leadership positions.
With the current COVID-19 pandemic having a disproportionate impact on women and the World Economic Forum predicting that it may take another 250 years to achieve economic gender parity, both men and women are required to Choose To Challenge if any progress is to continue being made.
So here are two ways that we can all Choose To Challenge in 2021 and set the foundations for future generations:
1 Challenge feelings of inadequacy
Although the gender confidence gap may be controversial, unfortunately it is very real. Whilst many women do have enough confidence to achieve their goals and make positive changes, a significant number do not. Research has shown that women tend to judge themselves more harshly compared to men and are more reluctant to put themselves in the limelight. A number of factors contribute to the debilitating self-doubt many women experience, however substantial advancements towards achieving gender equality can be made if more women #ChooseToChallenge the negative voices holding them back from reaching their full potential.
2 Challenge more people to support women backing themselves
It is incredibly important that both men and women make a conscious effort to lift other women up, encouraging them to Choose To Challenge how they may view themselves and speak about themselves. By choosing to call out other women for making self-degrading comments and/or diminishing their achievements, all women can begin to defeat the stereotypes that act as barriers to their success and become empowered.
2021 provides an invaluable opportunity for all of us to Choose To Challenge, in every area of our daily lives. Together, we can forge positive change and work towards a better future for women.
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