Project 25, Post No. 12: “Should”  

When I was little, I was promised that if I worked hard enough, I too could be Jane Goodall and save all the animals, or my totally badass dentist, who went to college on a gymnastics scholarship and emerged a doctor who took a month off every year to tour the world with her partner. I too, was going to be a hard-working, down-to-earth working professional who would be independent, dependable and interesting.

Now that I’m a less little, that is 100 percent not the case. Being a girl who works hard and reads a little isn’t enough. You’re burdened with things you’re supposed to do.

This Refinery29 piece (h/t to my lovely friend Taya) says it all:

I should wear lipstick. I work for a style site, after all. But, I barely remember to put on Chapstick. I should also be using eye cream nightly. Isn’t that what I’m always reading? I’m in my early 30s. Shouldn’t I be scared of crow’s feet? (I am.) But, what kind of eye cream? And, why is it all so expensive?…I should do laundry. I should put away my clothes. I should think about my future. I should have a five-year plan. Maybe if I had a plan, I could get more of this shit done. Maybe? I should wrap up this story, because there are other stories to write and to edit and there are other things I should be doing. And, if I keep stressing over this endless list, I’ll only need more eye cream. And, we already established I don’t have any.

Is this what having it all is all about?

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In the span of the 20 seconds I waited for a conference call, a similar laundry list ran through my head as I scrolled through an Instagram feed of weddings, babies, couples running marathons and strong single women taking time off to climb mountains.

Should I diversify my 401K investments? I should delete all of our pictures together. I should stop thinking about him. I should look into personal training. I should text my friend back. Should we just suck it up and drive to Outside Lands on Saturday? I should organize my emails, I used to have time to do that. Oh, should I email my brother? I need to have just an 8 hour day today, I should sign online after dinner and send some emails.

This is terrible. This is not what being an empowered woman is about, right?

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What should we be really doing? We should focus on things bigger than our eye cream and social acceptance (though unfortunately, we probably don’t have time to).

Right now, we’re settling, discovering venture capitalism is “no place for a woman” and not getting recognized for our role in technology.
We’re even lied to more often.

We should give a damn about ourselves. And that starts with not giving a hoot about the stuff that doesn’t matter.

/end rant

Do you give a damn? Help clean water here: stayclassy.org/25reasons.

 
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