Easier Said Than Done

by Lillian Roth

“Girls Support Girls”

“Real Queens Fix Each Other’s Crowns”

“Empowered Women Empower Women”

These quotes typed in eye-catching millennial pink are often my phone wallpaper and posted on the Truth + Dare Instagram. I see inspirational mantras like these on other blog accounts I follow, on trendy graphic tees, and I try my best to live by them. But the truth is it can be hard. It can be hard to support other women, to celebrate them and cheer them on. It can be hard to see women in your life succeed when you feel like their victory has to be your downfall.

As women, we are so competitive with each other and often get caught in toxic friendships and relationships. We seem to have this subconscious feeling that when someone else gets a job, award, or honor society, we become lesser. As I write these words, I realize how bizarre this sounds. I know it’s not true, and I know there is room for each and every woman to succeed. Yet every year, around this week, I feel my middle school competitive nature creep back up. I find myself scrutinizing other women that earn accolades, and looking for flaws in their personal life or character to justify my feelings.

*Insert me being mortified by my own immaturity.* We shouldn’t be caught up in who gets more than us or looks better than us. Everyone has strength in their uniqueness. Empowered women must empower women.

I am telling you this, just as wholeheartedly as I remind myself: Do not put down or belittle other successful women. Don’t think that because someone else gets called up to The Mound or wears black and white this week that you aren’t amazing and influential. Lifting up another woman will not push you down. There is room for so many spectacular leaders, game changers, and trail blazers on our campus.

As Honors Week kicks off today, I challenge each and every woman who reads this to celebrate other girls in your life this week. Right now take the time to shoot your lab partner a thoughtful text, Venmo your roomie to treat herself to her fave coffee, buy some champagne and pop some bubbly tonight with your besties because you all deserve it.

My good friend Madeline Anscombe wrote in an earlier T+D post, “As you will learn both from this blog and from your own life, women are worth embracing and celebrating. All it takes is an open mind and a willingness to forgo competition in the place of friendship. When we take our friends with us to the top, we begin to chip away at the notion that the world can only empower so many women. I can assure you, it is infinitely more fulfilling to be proud of your friends than spiteful of your enemies.”

Lillian RothComment