I’ve been in kind of a funk lately. There’s a million other ways to describe what I’ve been going through, but I find this to be the simplest and most straightforward language around it: I’m in a bit of a funk. I let a lot of things in my personal, professional, and academic life slide by the wayside, and I couldn’t really figure out what my deal was. While trying to survive this funk, it only felt natural to look to those around me for guidance. I managed to find this much needed solace and understanding in family and friends, but advice was nowhere to be found when it came to pop culture.
As an admirer of many public figures, especially female role models who I hold in high esteem, I became exceptionally aware of the lack of leadership around me. I couldn’t find one popular, famous woman in the mainstream who demonstrated a true sense of mentoring and acknowledgment of her authentic power. Who could I observe as a means of productive and effective pseudo-therapy? Teen Mom cast members? No thanks. The infamous chicks featured on Sister Wives? I don’t think so. Rihanna? Debatable.
It’s enough to make a girl go mad. I’m fortunate enough to be graced with the presence of many real-life women role models, but not every young female can be so lucky. Who are young women supposed to look up to in the public eye? Which celebs and famous figures are genuine, acceptable role models? What makes an acceptable role model?
This is where my new writing project comes into play. Walk a Mile in Her Shoes will be a series of blog posts, starting this Monday, April 11th and coming to a close 30 days later on May 11th. I have chosen random pieces of advice and quotations from women in the spotlight who inspire me, and I will then act on their words through my own interpretation. Writing and responding to each experience is important to the documentation of this project, therefore I will post a new analysis every single day. I will be incorporating famous words of wisdom from feminist icons like Gloria Steinem and Audre Lorde into my every day life. I’ll also be interpreting quotes from more mainstream ladies in popular culture such as Anne Hathaway and J.K. Rowling. As a super word-nerd and book junky, I am both anxious and excited to start living through the words of women I admire.
My personal experiment will examine the validity of specific bits of advice the public is exposed to, and it will also serve a selfish purpose. I’m hoping to genuinely challenge myself and step outside of my comfort zone, and not necessarily in large schemes or through grand gestures. Of course, if I end up on some crazy adventure all thanks to an Oprah Winfrey quotation then so be it, but grandiose experiences aren’t necessarily my focus within this project.
Sometimes the smallest of moments can turn into a true test of character, and it’s these experiences I desire to make the most out of. I want to observe how I operate on my day to day basis, and change the ways in which I view myself to be problematic and/or uninteresting. I ultimately hope to open up a dialogue about our role models in popular culture by complicating my own perspective.
Here’s the next 30 days!