Wear the Shirt Can Spur a Movement

Last Monday night, thanks to my great friend Dede Bartlett’s orchestration, I had the pleasure of speaking about No Excuses at the New Canaan (CT) Public Library. What made the event really special was that two of the women I interviewed for the book were present.

So I invited Sophfronia Scott, writer and founder of Done for You (a service that helps authors write and package their books) and executive coach Bonnie Marcus, who also hosts the “Head Over Heels” radio show, to share their stories with the audience.

Both demonstrated power tool #6: wear the shirt, by revealing their authentic selves, their passions, their aspirations.

Marcus described how she went to a job interview at a cardiac center with no management experience– in fact, no business experience whatsoever, and yet by showing her passion she got the job. “I talked about my passion for cardiac fitness,” she said. “I had been teaching aerobics. I talked about how the mission of their company resonated with me because my dad had a heart attack at fifty-seven and my family completely changed our lifestyle at home, becoming more active and eating heart-healthy foods. I showed the cardiac center how their mission and message was my way of life. They hired me! Certainly not because of anything but my passion and energy for the company and their mission.”

Scott told us how she decided to tell the world (via a powerful blog post January 1) that 2010 would be her year of living fearlessly. “Once I declared my fears, and how tired I was of letting them stop me, I was able to pledge: ‘I’m stepping out onto the high wire. There may be a net down there or there may not be. I don’t know, I’m too high up to see…A lot of this, I know, will challenge me on what I really want to write, how I want to be with my family, how I want my business to be run.'”

Both of these women had the courage to “wear the shirt” of their convictions in their personal and work lives. When have you done that? Or wished that you had?

You can also wear the shirt for a cause or issue you support. Was there a time when you did that? What was the result? How did you feel when you shared your authentic convictions with others?

GLORIA FELDT is the New York Times bestselling author of several books including No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power, a sought-after speaker and frequent contributor to major news outlets, and the Co-Founder and President of Take The LeadPeople has called her “the voice of experience,” and among the many honors she has been given, Vanity Fair called her one of America’s “Top 200 Women Legends, Leaders, and Trailblazers,” and Glamour chose her as a “Woman of the Year.”

As co-founder and president of Take The Lead, a leading women’s leadership nonprofit, her mission is to achieve gender parity by 2025 through innovative training programs, workshops, a groundbreaking 50 Women Can Change The World immersive, online courses, a free weekly newsletter, and events including a monthly Virtual Happy Hour program and a Take The Lead Day symposium that reached over 400,000 women globally in 2017.

3 thoughts on “Wear the Shirt Can Spur a Movement

  1. I am a singer, songwriter, performance poet and feminist activist. Recently, I created my own media company, Persephone Media. I also work as an advocate for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence.

    I continue to reflect on your revolutionary insights in NO EXCUSES. The way you presented the two power paradigms (power-to vs. power-over) helped me to see my personal power from a completely different perspective. When I diminish my power and ambition, I am refusing to take responsibility for what I can contribute to the world.

    We are socialized to believe that it is selfish or immoral to pursue power. But you helped me to see that when I reject my power, I reject my full capacity to initiate social change. After reading your book, this in the conclusion I have come to: Compassion must embrace power to create justice.

    I also appreciate the way you address the reality that our individual career choices affect opportunities for other women. I’ve never fully considered how hiding my potential and rejecting my power impacts the next generation.

    Thank you for your bold, insightful book. Every woman should read NO EXCUSES!

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