Friday, April 17, 2015

Women in STEM as Inspiration

I'd like you to watch this video, and think about what Stella Young says.

I want you to think about the concepts of "inspiration porn" and "attitude" a little further. This post isn't about disability, exactly. What I say might be related to mental health, but it's not going to be about physical abilities.

I want to live in a world where just becoming a woman engineer, a woman scientist, a woman in tech, is not exceptional. But no amount of smiling at the obstacles society puts in our way, is going to disintegrate those obstacles.

If you think the obstacles don't exist, I encourage you to think again. The dynamics for women in STEM can be difficult. Toxic environments at work or at home could lead to Situational Depression. I still intend to write a review of Ladies Who Launch. It seems to have many of the same flaws as Lean In. But one of the things I got out of it, was an early step recommending cleaning house, clearing clutter, and disengaging with people who pull you down. Some of this is to make way for the new, but the process can also help remove environmental causes of depression.

In "Compass," I linked to my martial art's Student Creed.
1. I will develop myself in a positive manner and avoid anything that would reduce my mental growth or physical health.
Kuk Sool Won of Muncie recently stated clearly, that "self-defense can include deleting toxic people from our lives."

I hope that as we women in STEM tell our stories, we are able to remove barriers to women's success in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. I hope that young women reading my story will persevere in following their dreams.

I hope that I can go on to do exceptional things, and be inspirational.

But just being a survivor, getting up in the morning and remembering my name... I don't want that to be the inspiration.

Many more thoughts on this, sparked by additional articles and discussion online. But because this is a complete thought, I will stop here for today.