You know that little voice in your head that pops up at the oddest times and decides to have a bit of a conversation with you. Well, mine dropped by today - while I was sitting on a panel at the Women's Worlds 2011 Conference listening to a fellow panelist. Out of the blue, this little voice said...
"Pssst, hey Debs....how the heck did we end up here?" Yes, the cheeky little chatterbox has the audacity to call me Debs. But we're kind of close so I allow it.
HOW DID I GET HERE????? Yikes!!!
I am part of a panel of three women.
Dr. Hei-Hui You from a university in Taiwan.
Gendered Learning in Departments of Physical Education
Dr. Maria Teresa M Rubio from Guam,
Five Women Leaders and Their Perceptions of Empowerment
The power of the narrative - I outlined my own journey in education as first an apprentice and then through university to finally land in a place where I am helping other women succeed in the non-traditional sector. I spoke about what I know - overcoming obstacles to get where we really want to be and I did it the only way I know how - with heart and Newfoundland humour. I have no desire to be all polished and proper as a speaker - I like to engage people to challenge their own assumptions and to get out of their own way to achieve what they want. In my experience, this type of work requires that you take off the gloves - the kid gloves I mean.
Work in the trades is very rewarding and in case you haven't heard, you can make a decent chunk of change there, but let's face it - we're not exactly always welcome. The gentle approach doesn't work all the time. Sometimes we have to spice it up. When I was at law school, I learned the term "The iron hand in the velvet glove" - I like this phrase a lot..that's what women are good at - delivering a powerful message with the gentleness of velvet - ok, so maybe you're not great at it yet, but you can be...right???? right??? Oh, ya...............
It was a great day - lots of knowledge, lots of fellowship and appreciation for one another's work. What a wonderful opportunity we have here - I'm honoured...yes, I am.
It's a moment in time that I'll cherish forever.