girls women groups

The Power of Women Who Stand Up, Together

117 years from now, we will achieve global gender parity in the workplace. That’s right, according to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report for 2015, equal opportunities will be accredited to the currently under-tapped and under-utilized female talent pool by the year 2133. Yeah… we’ll all be long gone before we can be witnesses to the closing of the gap.

The urgency of addressing the alarming stats and estimations from this study and many others is emphasized through this year’s International Women’s Day theme of taking the Pledge for Parity to break the boundaries that prevent women from reaching their highest potential. Sure, we can all make promises to join the fight to #changetheratio, but how can we start chipping away at this grand mountain of a problem and begin accelerating progress? What is one tangible step we can take to ensure gender parity is even possible in our lifetime?

For women to begin to make a difference, we have to join forces. Only when we stand up together will we recognize our full potential and utilize our combined powers.

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Image Credit: Jacquelynne Kosmicki

Life Lessons Learned From… Momentum

The theme of this year’s YWiB SFU International Women’s Day Conference was ‘Gaining Momentum’, which I found to be optimal since that is exactly what I will be focusing on in the next life phase I’m heading towards! There was a poster board in the lobby where all of the attendees could post paper butterflies containing their answers to where they will draw their momentum from. For me, I said I will gain momentum by seeing the beauty in life, singing my song, and dreaming big!

The speakers included international philanthropists, a digital entrepreneur, a government minister, an entertainment host, and more. They offered their insights on themes such as finding and utilizing your passion, leveraging your creativity, connecting with and sustaining a network of enablers and champions, building and supporting a sisterhood, finding opportunity in chaos, overcoming failure and being resilient, paying it forward, valuing your strengths and accomplishments, and being authentic to yourself.

Out of all of the amazing stories I heard that day, the biggest inspirational take-away I got out of the conference came from Tori Holmes (she who rowed across the Atlantic Ocean at the age of 21). She stressed the importance of getting yourself to the starting line of your aspirations, as you must show up for your dreams in order to achieve them. As a wise person once said, “You can never cross the ocean without losing sight of the shore.”

Thanks to this International Women’s Day conference, I’ve gained some more momentum to propel me to the starting line!

The hour of empowerment is upon us.” – Erin Krish

Olympic Rings

Connecting With Your Inner Olympian

My sense of motivation is always at an all-time high during the Olympics. There’s something about seeing athletes achieve their goals that inspires me to believe that any dream is possible with hard work, determination, and an optimistic outlook. As I watch the Summer games in London, I am reminded of a few important lessons that I learned from a celebrated Olympian this past Spring…

Back in March, YWiB SFU hosted the 2012 International Women’s Day Conference, a day dedicated to celebrating the achievements of women from around the globe and encouraging women to share their own stories in an effort to connect girls, overcome adversity, and inspire futures.

Among the roster of speakers was the ambitious Anna Rice, whose remarkable list of accomplishments include being a two-time Olympic athlete for the Canadian National Badminton Team, an ambassador for the international non-profit organization Right to Play, and a coordinator for the Choose Again foundation. During her keynote presentation on tapping into your strengths and unleashing the true and unique essence of who you are, she shared her five steps to ‘Connecting with your Inner Olympian‘:

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