What are the attributes of a Phenomenal Woman? Here are some examples for you to drawn your own conclusions.
In 1991 three very different women burst into my life in New Zealand and have been influencing me for the better ever since.
The first happened on my very first day at university. I was shyly sitting outside law school reading the bright red book we’d been sent for preparation when she sat down and started talking to me. We were inseparable for the next 4 years. Beth-Anne & I supported one another through our law degrees, we socialised and shared in one another’s hopes, dreams and challenges. We moved to different parts of the world – Beth-Anne to Panama, me to the UK. And yet we Skype regularly, we connect through social media and we see one another in person about every 12-18 months.
The second I chased down the corridor following a lecture in South African history because I’d recognised her as one of my sister’s friends from secondary school. She helped me move out of the place I was lodging into the halls of residence she was in – we never looked back. Throughout our many trips back and forth to Auckland Tamie & I encouraged one another through our different qualifications and kept one another real. When we had both moved to the UK we became one another’s ‘whanau’. Now that she has moved back to Australia with her husband and daughter we continue supporting one another virtually through our social media connections whilst we both grow our own businesses.
The third I had actually met the previous year at one of my sister’s parties. They were in school together too. She popped by to visit at uni one weekend. We got to talking and that was it – the world changed. Annegrid and I are rubbish at staying in touch virtually. However, we have a depth of friendship that means when we see one another we just pick up where we left off. When I return to visit NZ we always book quality time together and often I stay with her. We have adventures in different parts of the country, we explore the mind and soul of our selves and the world. We laugh – a lot. Usually at her husband or with her daughter.
Beth-Anne, Tamie & Annegrid have each played pivotal roles in my life. When I have needed someone to listen, challenge or bring an alternative perspective I have been able to connect with one or all of them. Because they are different women who have followed their own life paths, each brings something unique to my progression through chaos into decision making. Despite their separateness, on those occasions when my world has fallen apart they have formed a triangle net to catch me so that I avoid total rock bottom. Each time I achieve a key goal, make a significant change in my life or leap out into the unknown they have celebrated with me.
Although we all live in different countries now I have had the privilege to stand in awe as I have participated in and witnessed pivotal moments in each of their lives … relationships, career shifts, country moves, travel adventures, marriage, grief, health, birth. All have grown, developed and created change in their lives as well as others. Each is the delighted, surprised and sometimes lovingly frustrated mother of an incredible daughter.
None of them are world famous, yet. All of them are strong, independent, intelligent, compassionate women. All of them lead extraordinary day-to-day lives – caring for themselves & their loved ones, working, learning, socialising and adventuring. These are examples of Phenomenal Woman. Why do I know that? Because they are wholly themselves, they seek to constantly be learning and evolving, and through their friendship they influence others for the better. I am blessed to be one of those who is better because each of them is in my life.
And I am curious, who are the women in your life who influence you for the better?