Blog | Personal Finance

Celebrating International Women’s Day

Allow March 8 to Inspire You to Make Financial Freedom a Priority

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You probably know that March is Women’s History Month — a whole month dedicated to highlighting the contributions of women to events in American history and contemporary society.

But did you know that we also have an entire day dedicated to us? No, I’m not talking about Mother’s Day or your birthday or even Boss’s Day. I’m talking about March 8th. It’s International Women’s Day — a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. And what a great day for all of us to look at how far we’ve come and review our plans for the future.

This year’s theme is “#ChooseToChallenge.” According to International Women’s Day: “A challenged world is an alert world. Individually, we're all responsible for our own thoughts and actions — all day, every day. We can all choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality. We can all choose to seek out and celebrate women’s achievements. Collectively, we can all help create an inclusive world. From challenge comes change, so let's all choose to challenge.”

It’s our duty as women to keep motivated, push forward and #ChoosetoChallenge in our continued struggle for gender parity. Clearly, it won’t happen overnight, but we are making positive gains each and every day. The growing global movement of advocacy, activism and support will help motivate women and unite them for this cause. Wouldn’t it be such an amazing world if our friends, colleagues and communities could think, act and be gender inclusive?

There’s more work to be done

An incredible amount of progress has been achieved for women over the last 100 years, and I don’t want to minimize that. However, overall women still earn only 81.6% of what men earn. Women continue to struggle with gender-driven issues, such as balancing work and family commitments, succeeding in male-dominated workplaces, and being true to their own voice and dreams.

In other countries around the world, the working and living conditions of women varies widely. Some enjoy the near-equality found in the U.S. while others are still fighting a steep up-hill battle against wide-spread discrimination and violence.

Personally, I am very grateful to all the women who have gone before me who fought to bring about the changes in law and society that I enjoy today. They made many sacrifices, but most importantly they refused to accept conditions that were unacceptable. They envisioned a world of equality that didn't yet exist, and bit by bit made that world more of a reality. So now it’s our turn to continue the fight.

Your journey toward financial freedom

To me, one of the most obvious ways you can contribute to this effort is by taking action on living the life you both want and deserve. I’m talking about your journey to financial freedom. If you’re dependent on a man for your financial security, I’ve got news for you: You’re going to end up in trouble sooner or later.

Maybe your partner handles all of the finances. Or perhaps you just don’t want to deal with money and numbers. Well, what if your partner decides to leave you? Or what if you decide you want to leave him? What if he takes ill and can no longer work? Or what if, God forbid, he dies? Meanwhile, you’ve had your head stuck in the sand for however many decades and have no idea what your current financial situation is or how to improve it. Remember, a man is not a financial plan. It’s high time to “put on your big girl pants,” as my good friend says, and take control! Let’s make 2021 the year that you no longer rely on others to take care of you financially.

Doing your part

International Women’s Day reminds us how women throughout history sacrificed and worked hard to give us the rights we have today, and it’s time to take advantage of these opportunities. The best part? You can absolutely change your life for the better without having money, a husband, or even a diploma. It’s all a matter of finding the right information, treating yourself to a financial education, and then taking action on what you learn. Need help getting started?

  • Get inspired!

    Check out the International Women’s Day site to hear about great women in history, watch inspiring videos, find events going on in your local area, and more.

  • Learn!

    Get the financial education you need to succeed and overcome your fears. Start by checking out our free workshops and online webinars. You’ll find valuable information, a community of like-minded people, a forum to share your thoughts and ask questions, and more. Grab a copy of my book, “Rich Woman,” and make it required reading in your next book club meeting.

March 8 is only one day

International Women’s Day reminds us that now is the perfect time to look at your life and re-focus on where you want to be in the future. But it doesn’t stop after March 8 — you must take the spirit of this one-day celebration and carry it forward by taking action on it every single day.

Start by committing to do one thing each day to increase your financial education and get one step closer to your life of financial freedom. You owe it to yourself and all of the women throughout history who have fought for you to have the freedoms you have today.

Check out my book, It’s Rising Time!, for more information on women, money and financial freedom. International Women’s Day belongs to all groups, collectively, everywhere. So together, let’s all continue to Choose to Challenge.

We’ve come a long way, but we've still got some hurdles to jump. One of the biggest is the lack of financial equality. I believe that starts with financial education, which is why I created Rich Woman. So, today, I challenge you to ask yourself these two questions:

  1. In what way(s) am I facing inequality in my life?

  2. What can I do to succeed despite these inequalities?

Whatever you do, don't let the fact that “life isn’t fair hold” you back from pursuing your dreams! Not only can you succeed, you can help pave the way for the women who will follow in your footsteps — your daughters and their daughters are depending on us!

Original publish date: April 14, 2016

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