Written by: Kiki
Last weekend the movie, “Hidden Figures” opened in theaters to great anticipation and eagerness( if you haven’t seen it yet, crawl from under that rock and get to your nearest theater NOW!). It’s the story of 3 black female mathematicians and engineers at NASA during the segregated 1960s. They served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history; the launch of John Glenn into orbit. The movie stars Taraji P. Henson as Katherine Johnson, Octavia Spencer as Dorothy Vaughan , and Janelle Monae as Mary Jackson. It is the epitome of #blackgirlmagic! and gives total “Yes we can!” vibes for all those who have ever been overlooked and denied!
Leaving the theater from watching this amazing, inspiring movie, lead me to think on my own life and apply the message of how to fight against being undervalued and sometimes overlooked. Yes, it has been over fifty years but trends in the movie such as gender inequality, racial prejudice, and wage gap are still relevant today. So how do you combat being undervalued in today’s society?? Here are the 5 combat lessons I learned from “Hidden Figures”…………
1. Don’t be afraid to be the First
There is something frightening and romantically appealing in being the first. Whether it’s the first to go to college in your family or starting your own business, it is an undeniable feeling. One that fear will sometimes try to talk you out of. And because you are the first, there is no one to coach you or tell you how things will go or what to expect. It’s really just you and the open space of possibility….so put on your knee pads darling and hit it!
2. Think ahead and look beyond
In this economy, we don’t know if our jobs are coming or going, lets be honest. The hottest thing now will be old news next week. That’s why you have to look ahead and beyond! Do the research and educate yourself on the new new and make yourself a valuable player. Nobody else is bringing what you bring to the table if you follow this essential key. Like Mike Jones said: “Back then they didn’t want me, now I’m hot”….you know the rest!
3. Say it loud and clear….use your voice
Situations, people, your mind, will intimidate the hell out of you! Seriously, who wants to walk into a room with unfriendly faces and so much stacked up against you before you even walked in the door??? But if you plan to excel in this world, that’s exactly what you should expect. Everyone won’t always look like you, think like you, or even welcome your presence but you can’t allow these circumstances to take your voice. You must make an effort for it to be heard because you have something valuable to say and contribute…… and who knows, it could change the world…
4. You ain’t winning unless your tribe is
Now a true test of a leader is when a person thinks of others, and not just their self. If you are on the come up, then look to your left and right and see where your tribe is. If it’s behind you, then that’s not winning at all boo! We are only as strong as our weakest player so make sure all your players have the tools they need to excel and win…TOGETHER! Share tips, strategies and grow together and it will lead to an unbreakable foundation! Lean on each other’s shoulders, cry, love, encourage each other. ”I mean what’s the point of “success” if the crew can’t get none!?
5. Accept. Demonstrate. Slay
Accept the unique power inside of you. The talent no one can deny or steal regardless of your gender, race, or class. Once you accept the power in you, now it’s time to demonstrate it. Answer the unanswerable. Solve the unsolvable. Do the things they said you could never do…. and when you do them… darling, like anything, you must SLAY it!!!!
“Hidden Figures” is a must see film which screams women’s empowerment and defying the odds. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big. Once seeing this film and applying the lessons learned, it would be impossible to overlook your shine! Now, go ahead Q.U.E.E.N , live in your truth and make them STARE!!
Until the next time, live F.A.B with no regrets!