Babes, I’d love to talk to you about ambition… (WARNING- images in this email will most likely give you the ick)
I wrote a post on instagram about how I used to think of myself as VERY ambitious.
I talked about how I strongly identified with it as a concept (this is something I explore often with clients- what traits are we so strongly identified with that we feel activated when it seems to be called into question? What does maintaining an appearance of being this way- any way- cost us?)
I confessed that I loved how I believed that I could do things that others did not consider possible. I can recall lots of examples of how I made my bold (in their contexts) ambitions real, and how I reveled in the individual, hierarchal experience of being a successful person (in those contexts).
The more I learnt about systems of oppression, my privileges within them, and their demands of me, the more distance I wanted to put between myself and this word.
Being an ambitious woman came to feel like a Girl Boss Feminist, Capitalist cliche.
And is it any wonder, because look at these images that come up when you google ‘ambition’…
I mean babes, there is NOTHING and no one here that I want to be. How about you?
It’s the business clothes, it’s wearing the business clothes to climb ladders and mountains, it’s the gestures and facial expressions, it’s the rocket, the cape, the oversimplification, the idea that you can just turn your can’ts into cans with a pair of scissors, or that there’s anything any of us really do all by ourselves.
Successful people who have realised their ambitions are not self made, as they would love for us to believe. No one is. Each of us is some combination of community made and money made.
But now I realise. Being an intersectional feminist- being someone who values equity and justice in a deeply unfair, frankly, fucked up society, being someone who has the gall to believe things could vastly improve- is perhaps the most ambitious way we could possibly be.
Our collective ambition is bold. I won’t go back to thinking of myself as one ambitious person, but I will know that I share an ambitious vision for this world with a community of people I mostly do not know.
How is your relationship with ambition?
Do you identify strongly with it?
Has that changed over the years?
What does it mean to you?
I had a chat with my pal Sas Petherick about ambition on her fantastic podcast, Courage & Spice. It’s in the queue to be released soon, but I strongly urge you to add her show to your faves now. It’s a treasure trove.
AND I am thrilled to invite you to take a look at my most recent Workshop, if you have a business, or might have an ambition (*insert wink emoji*) to start one. All the deets here. It’s £39, or Pay What You Can Afford.
I’d also love to invite you to be on the list for first looks at my “Business: But Make It Feminist” Programme if that’s relevant to you.