Those two and a half months in the hospital were dreadful. I was at the verge of despair. One day, a doctor came came to me and he said, “Well, I heard that you wanted to be an artist, “but you ended up being a housewife. “I have bad news for you. “You won’t be able to paint again.” The next day, the doctor came to me and said, “Your spine injury is so bad “you won’t be able to walk again.” I took a deep breath, and I said, “It’s all right.” The next day, the doctor came to me and said, “Because of your spine injury “and the fixation that you have in your back, “you won’t be able to give birth to a child again.” That day, I was devastated. I started to question my existence. Why am I even alive? So what kept me going was, one day I asked my brothers,
“I know I have a deformed hand, “but I’m tired of looking at these white walls “in the hospital, and wearing these white scrubs. “Bring me some colors, bring me some small canvas. “I want to paint.” So the very first painting I made was on my deathbed, where I painted for the very first time. What an amazing therapy it was. Without uttering a single word, I could paint my heart out. I could share my story. People used to come and say, “What lovely painting. “So much color!” Nobody could see the grief in it. Only I could. And that day, I decided that I’m going to live life for myself. I am not going to be that perfect person for someone. I am just going to take this moment, and I will make it perfect for myself, and I’m going to fight my fears. So, I wrote down, one by one, all those fears, and I decided that I’m going to overcome those fears one at a time.
For me, it’s not so much about a collision of worlds as it is a combining of worlds. As I say, it really shouldn’t matter whether society defines it as normal or not, because as the late Dr. Maya Angelou would say, “If we are always trying so hard to be normal, how will we ever know how amazing you can be.” Bringing to bear your definition of yourself in society, – as I say, I know it can be hard – there are all sorts of things: beauty ideals, gender expectations for both men and women, racial profiling, class prejudice; these are all examples of how we can be thrown off base in terms of knowing, and understanding, and defining who we know we truly are. I am thinking now about the guy who wants to stand in his truth when it comes to his sexuality, even though his community or his religion might expect something different of him. Those who find they define themselves as beautiful, but society is telling them that they are not. I think to myself that at those points exactly when society is telling you you are not who you feel you are, that’s the time, as I say, you have to understand the power of what it means to define yourself.
I’m thinking now about the women who do make their way in the male-dominated world of film-making. What we realize about those women is that when they are able to break into that world, they make an impact. The British Film Institute released figures between 2010 and 2012 that show, that although women were still underrepresented when it came to independent film-making, they represented a significant figure or percentage when it came to successful films. People love their films.
That’s what I mean when I say when we have the courage to move forward into other worlds, we have the impact to change them. It takes me back to the story that I started with, stepping onto the set of my first film. A few weeks before I was about to shoot that movie, a film executive came up to me and said, “Well, you’re not going to step on set with your big high heels on, are you?”
As if to say me coming on set with high heels was really going to be the thing that established me as a woman a man’s world. For the record, I don’t direct in high heels, and I didn’t direct my first film in high heels, except from the last day. I always make that a tradition. But I did celebrate my love for heels in this way.
I often question what is the status of women in India today since this court seventy years ago when you think about it this is not a problem that only the government’s can solve here’s a question how many of our mothers are working you will all agree with me when I say women are born with managerial DNA along with the DNA of primary caretakers here’s how let’s take our working mothers
for example they are dedicated to making sure that our home is in order they are dedicated to making sure we are well nourished and well at kated and they managed to do all of this beautiful beautifully while being employed their time management and their multitasking skills are impeccable why not raise our generation with this seed of thought and help them recognize this trait in their DNA my mother was one out of two women studying medicine in her entire Medical College back at the 80s my co-founder and mentor in do now as successful entrepreneur in the u.s. was one out of nine women studying engineering here in Bangalore Hindu had to fight to have a woman’s wrist restroom constructed in her college because management did not find the need to have this basic amenity according to them they were not enough women to consider building a restroom today you and I are able to question these fundamentals
because of such inspiring women around us they have raised their voice and led the way for equal opportunities we all men and women have the power to make change and create impact in someone’s life in much smaller ways than we think this is nothing none Denis this is Bonnie she is nun Denise sister she’s 14 and she loves animals when she grows up she wants to be a veterinarian this time we aim to do everything in our power to make sure vani achieves her dreams and goes out into the world and crushes it everyone here today knows a nun denier monsters let’s go back home and start with talking to our housekeepers and asking them what they or their children are doing perhaps this answer will change your life like it changed mine
I wasn’t personally surprised to learn that only 9% of startup founders and cofounders are women it is at this moment we at space base acquire a platform consciously decided to create a talent pool of underrepresented students and provide them with opportunities without bias of background or gender our goal has been only to empower students regardless across cities or villages we want to provide them with equal opportunities because we believe students are the future of our country’s growth guys let me tell you this goal changed my life I remember staring at an email last December for a few minutes this was no ordinary email this email was from the Government of India and the United Nations stating that I was recognized as 2018 stop women transforming India with this acquired motivation we went back to nandhini’s school last year and met with some other students and asked them what they aspire to be some said they want to be teachers some said they want to be doctors some wanted to learn to speak fluent English while some had simpler dreams of going to college when we asked them what can we do to help them achieve this they looked at us puzzled and said how do we do this after school Gandhi said educate a man and you educate a person educate a woman and you educate a family while education is the fundamental towards upliftment
every day to get home from school so I looked at her and said alive I took an English class I got a family in English and my English teacher said it from the entire class Lisa you have to be the weakest rider I’ve ever met in my entire life don’t worry my story in ku and then the same year my species
does anybody ever really acknowledge the good you are know do you know the good you are do you know and I remember having a moment thinking I’m now for the rest of my life going to be called a bad girl I really don’t belong here and I don’t I don’t even know how this happened to me that I am in a place for bad girls cuz I didn’t feel like I was a bad girl and so the question is what do you do you believe that you are worthy of happiness I know that if you allow the past to define
We raise little girls slightly differently than we raised boys. What are the bad habits that women are engaging in and that are holding them back? It’s really important for women to support one another in the workplace. Sometimes our tendency is to say things like well I’m not like other women. So it’s a great way to separate yourself from the pack or perhaps to try to include yourself in the network of men. But when we do that, we set all women back. It’s important to support one another. To lift each other up and to really engage. One thing we know for sure too, is that women often don’t speak up as much in business meetings as men do. The statistics say it’s something like women speak 75% less. And it’s not necessarily that women are more efficient, so they need fewer words. It’s that their voices aren’t being heard. So it can be really important for business leaders to call on women,
How can we affect change in the world when only half of it is invited or feel welcome to participate in the conversation? Men—I would like to take this opportunity to extend your formal invitation. Gender equality is your issue too. Because to date, I’ve seen my father’s role as a parent being valued less by society despite my needing his presence as a child as much as my mother’s. I’ve seen young men suffering from mental illness unable to ask for help for fear it would make them look less “macho”—in fact in the UK suicide is the biggest killer of men between 20-49 years of age; eclipsing road accidents, cancer and coronary heart disease. I’ve seen men made fragile and insecure by a distorted sense of what constitutes male success. Men don’t have the benefits of equality either. We don’t often talk about men being imprisoned by gender stereotypes but I can see that that they are and that when they are free, things will change for women as a natural consequence. If men don’t have to be aggressive in order to be accepted women won’t feel compelled to be submissive. If men don’t have to control, women won’t have to be controlled.
My mentors didn’t assume I would go less far because I might give birth to a child one day. These influencers were the gender equality ambassadors that made me who I am today. They may not know it, but they are the inadvertent feminists who are changing the world today. And we need more of those. And if you still hate the word—it is not the word that is important but the idea and the ambition behind it. Because not all women have been afforded the same rights that I have. In fact, statistically, very few have been. In 1995, Hilary Clinton made a famous speech in Beijing about women’s rights. Sadly many of the things she wanted to change are still a reality today. But what stood out for me the most was that only 30 per cent of her audience were male.
only you have the power to take responsibility to move your I had bailed on an epic scale an exceptionally short-lived marriage had imploded and I was jobless the loan parent and as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain without being homeless the fears that my parents had had for me and that I had had for myself had both come to pass and by every usual standard I was the biggest failure I knew now I’m not going to stand here and tell you the failure is fun that period of my life was a dark one and for a long time any light at the end of it was a hope rather than a reality so why do I talk about the benefits of Vania simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other
what I believe is the path forward for this parliament, not the kind of double standards and political game-playing imposed by the Leader of the Opposition, (who is) now looking at his watch because, apparently, a woman’s spoken too long—I’ve had him yell at me to shut up in the past. But I will take the remaining seconds of my speaking time to say to the Leader of the Opposition I think the best course for him is to reflect on the standards he has exhibited in public life, on the responsibility he should take for his public statements, on his close personal connection with Peter Slipper, on the hypocrisy he has displayed in this House today. And on that basis, because of the Leader of the Opposition’s motivations, this parliament today should reject this motion, and the Leader of the Opposition should think seriously about the role of women in public life and in Australian society—because we are entitled to a better standard than this.
I knew I had a a in speech like home he obviously didn’t agree with me he gave me a d-minus and said quote unquote miss Nichols I recommend you never speak in public that you get a desk job so here’s the beauty of that story other people’s perception of you ain’t none of your business set through rose through cry food pray through everything is a setup for your next best season and the way you forgive that perceivably unforgivable the way you love the personally unlovable the way you accept would seem to be unacceptable the way you embrace active and betrayed the way you do that is the way you believe us your life belongs to everyone will be illuminated because you were bold enough and obedient enough to let your light shine
and every time you cross someone’s path and they can’t handle your light you know those people then I try to give you reasons why you should tone it down a bit they would tell sure not to sing so loud right right right they would tell me to shut up in class they tell you you kind of strange you know those people dream Snatchers peasant Buster’s don’t be mad at them they can only love you to the capacity in which they’re able to love themselves don’t be mad at us don’t be mad at rightful love them prevent dealing with themselves