How do you define a resilient woman? How does she talk, walk, and act? The Merriam-Webster Dictionary’s definition of resilience is, “an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change”. So the question is, how can you become a resilient woman yourself?
We recently sat down with Tonya Fitzpatrick and Shana Oshiro, two women who have shown resilience throughout their whole lives. They’re sharing their best advice on what it means to be a resilient woman.
Tonya Fitzpatrick is a lawyer, global citizen, author, speaker, and founder and creator of World Footprints Media. She is also a former White House appointee under President George W. Bush.
Shana Oshiro is an experienced soloist and ensemble performer and has performed with Baltimore Symphony, Opera Philadelphia, Riverside Dinner Theatre, and other various singing groups. She taught piano and vocal lessons to children and theater programs and then expanded her career to Music Therapy. Now, Shana is pursuing a master’s degree in Music Therapy and is the executive director of HALO, Incorporated.
Qualities of a Resilient Woman
What qualities does a resilient woman have? Tonya Fitzpatrick says sheer determination, tenacity, and a strong belief in oneself and your abilities. Practice these qualities in your own life!
Shana Oshiro uses an allegory that has stuck with her for years. It compares human beings to three types of things that react in boiling water. “An egg, which hardens when subjected to the heat; a carrot, which becomes mushy; and a coffee bean, which itself remains unchanged, but changes the water in which it was placed. A resilient person is like the coffee bean. She responds to a challenging circumstance in a way that maintains their own integrity. She brings the flavor of her character, abundant with Love, to change the situation.”
Practice these qualities everyday and they will soon become a part of your overall self. Channel your inner coffee bean!
How can you show yourself as a resilient woman
Tonya emphasizes the importance of following your passion. Don’t allow yourself to be put in a box. Don’t limit yourself, and don’t let others limit you.
The biggest way Tonya shows her resilience is by sticking to her guns and not selling herself out. “A resilient woman has a strong belief in herself, and stays on the path she is on even in the face of discouragement,” she says.
Shana believes in channeling the energy she sees in women she admires. “When faced with challenges that have been placed before me, [I am to] emulate those who find beauty and shine Love in their lives— not merely in spite of, but even because of the situation.”
Tips for women who want to be resilient
Tonya wants all women to know that “at our core we are all resilient, fear gets in the way and fear causes us to question ourselves, and some people in our lives can cause us to cultivate doubt within ourselves. “I don’t know if resilience can be taught. But, we can make choices to be resilient and believe in ourselves and it takes a great amount of faith. If you don’t believe in yourself, you can’t expect anyone else to believe in you.
We all have that resilience in our DNA. It’s our choice to bring it out. Women are often socialized to become nurturers and be polite. Those are good things, but I hope to see women to join the table, that we will bring our own chair, and as my husband Ian says “carve your own space” because, resilient women carve their own space.”
Shana believes that “whatever happens beyond our control, we usually have a choice as to how we are going to respond to it. Finding beauty and showing Love in some very ugly realities I’ve yet to see first hand isn’t an easy thing by any stretch. But it’s been done, and it seems that when humankind makes this choice, it’s transformative. So I advise others and myself to lean into adversity with all the strength Love gives us so that we can collectively make something beautiful out of it.”
Embrace Your Resiliency
Create and find love and beauty even if the reality is ugly and messy. Carve your own space and bring your own seat to the table. You already have resilience in you — it’s in your DNA!