If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know I’m an unabashed braggart when it comes to us boomer gals. Our generation, with the help of our older sisters, truly did mount a massive movement that overturned many of the gender inequities we knew as children. Our battles were hard fought and our triumphs richly deserved. A number of us bore rejection, derision, and even scathing verbal abuse. Yet, we soldiered on to create a parity of the sexes inside the home and outside in the world of work. Well, that is, almost.
Now, forty years later, you’d think we could rest on our laurels. Alas, NO! We do need to turn that same energy into the fight for the rights and respect of older women, but that isn’t the whole picture. Cheryl Saban, Ph.D., writer, social commentator, and activist has recently come out with a fascinating book, What is Your Self-Worth: A Woman’s Guide to Validation. According to her research, the world is still far from fair when it comes to divvying up the goodies: power, influence, money, and the rest of the earth’s bounty.
Cheryl reminds us that:
- Women in the United States still earn only 77 cents per dollar that a man makes for doing the same work.
- Women shoulder 66% of the world’s labor while earning 11% of the world’s income.
- Women own only 1% of the world’s land.
- 70% of the world’s poor are women, and are living on less than a dollar a day.
I interviewed Cheryl on Feisty Side of Fifty Radio and she shared her thoughts on the importance of self-worth and why so many women still struggle with the concept of recognizing our own value. She provided a number of tips and exercises that we can do to increase our sense of self-worth: honor our own voice, become responsible financially for our own lives, eliminate dysfunctional behaviors, love and validate ourselves, and share what we have with others. In these ways, Cheryl suggests, we can live more authentically, and, as she puts it, “strengthen our core.”
But, this work goes far beyond you and me. Globally, women and girls are woefully uneducated, the poorest of the poor, and make up the vast majority of refugees. We’re already aware of atrocities such as genital mutilation and stoning that many societies around the world condone. But Cheryl is on a mission to change these horrific realities. She’s started a foundation to accomplish just that and all the proceeds of her book will go towards meeting this vital and globally critical goal.
So take the time to listen to what Cheryl had to say and consider buying her book. What better gift can you give yourself, your mother, your daughter, your sisters, or your friends? The world of women will thank you for it, and I bet your sense of self-worth will surely rise as you come to the aid of your sisters around the world.