A Leave No Girl Behind Discussion: Women who opened doors
TEN THINGS I DIDN’T LEARN IN SCHOOL OR FROM MY PARENTS.
A contribution to Leave No Girl Behind by Marybeth Bond
- For many girls, the world can be a hostile place. You see, they let others define “who they should be”. Fashion magazines, television programs, advertisements, movies, and other people will subtly try to tell you who to be.
As women, we try to please everyone. We are influenced by what others think. We lose track of who we are, trying to be “good students”, “beautiful women”, “good girls”.
Ignore the manipulating messages from the media and listen to your inner voice.
Love what you do and be who you love, because you always wake up with yourself.
- You will make mistakes and you will know failure. Failure is not flunking a test or losing a boyfriend. Disappointments are part of life. Learn from your mistakes and fight against self-pity and cynicism.
- Television and the movies are not real life. As soon as you realize that life is tough—-it gets easier. Life is not fair and as women, we have to work harder and longer to prove ourselves. Don’t live in a dream world, face reality, work hard and be tough, even when you don’t feel like it.
- Know when to be a “Nice Girl” and when to be firm. Avoid being naïve or gullible. Practice saying “No” with conviction. Girls who stand up for themselves will be able to look in the mirror and respect the woman who looks back.
- Education is the key to a better life. Don’t’ give up. Work hard and believe that you are not destined to live and die in the same economic and social class in which you were born.
- We’re all influenced by the friends we keep. Find positive, optimistic, motivated friends. To have a good friend, you must be a good friend. Avoid gossip and criticism.
- You can always change the path you are on.
- No one is confident, strong, or courageous all the time. So when you feel scared or timid, just pretend you’re gutsy. That’s right, bluff and act confident and you’ll be surprised—- for you will find strength inside. And then, indeed, you will be courageous and confident.
- Every day do something kind for someone else. Call your grandma, give a compliment to a friend or tell your parents you appreciate all the sacrifices they make for you. Give the best you have to the world and the best will come back to you.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. A fight with your best friend, a big test or a huge pimple will not last forever. Your life will not be filled with this drama and it isn’t the end of the world.
Whatever you do and wherever you are, know that you are unique and that you are special and loved. You have so much to give to the world and you will be a blessing to many.
My bio tells a lot about me. Perhaps for girls, it is important to say that I was terribly home sick the first time I went away from my family. They nick-named me “Misty” because I always had a mist of tears in my eyes, but I learned to overcome it and eventually to be fearless.
I traveled around the world, alone, for two years. I have started businesses, written eleven books, including three bestsellers and been on the Oprah Winfrey Show. Today I have two daughters but didn’t marry until I was 33 years old because I worked hard on my career and I wouldn’t settle for any man.
Marybeth Bond is her nation’s preeminent expert on women’s travel, an award-winning author-editor, and has appeared on major news and radio shows as a travel expert. She currently is the Adventure Editor for TravelGirl Magazine and a National Geographic Author. Marybeth continues to criss-cross the globe educating, enlightening and empowering others to explore it through travel.