Take charge now!

HAVE you ever felt like you were losing sight of what's important in life, and were not connecting with yourself on that level that you need to, to be a leader or to be your truest self?

Successful women, even those who have risen from nothing, will tell you that at some point they learnt to take charge, to speak their minds, and when they did, they were all the better for it. This week, as we barrel towards the end of September, we round up some of the most notable, thought-provoking, and inspiring quotes from women we've featured. They're quotes, and challenges, that will help you get through the week, and restore sight of all that's truly important.

Cortia Bingham McKenzie.

On having that epiphany

Cortia Bingham McKenzie, conceptualizer, We Inspire Women:

I was sitting one day looking back at where I was coming from, where I had to overcome abuse while in high school, and what I had to do to overcome similar types of abuse when I became an adult, and struggling with my self-worth... I found a way to overcome that, and it was really by changing my inner conversation and edifying myself with uplifting material. So I started to read books and listen to Les Brown, Oprah, Lisa Nichols, and I realised that I had the power to change my trajectory and my direction, so my life got better...

Natalie Taylor.

On giving wholeheartedly

Natalie Taylor, life coach:

I believe in giving and giving wholeheartedly, because that's how you receive. It makes no sense for me to come and give a good motivational speech and when the women leave they don't have the tools that will make them win. Whatever you give, expect it in return. I was taught to fish and I have every intention of going back into society to teach others to fish.

Marcia Skervin.

On paving the road to success

Marcia Skervin, motivational speaker, JP:

We are born into a society where you have to do what you have to do in order to survive. You have to dig deep. But if there are people out there with the same talents I have, why do they need to have a rocky time when the road was paved before? There is a formula for success and we must share it with people. You have to have a plan, a goal, and not just that, but you have to take action. In taking action you will know the steps to get there. My main goal is to motivate and inspire people and change the thought process from the "cannot do" to the "I can and I will" culture.

Sara-Lou Morgan-Walker

On healing

Sara-Lou Morgan-Walker, philanthropist and founder of The Angelic Ladies Society:

I would like to be a voice for women who are experiencing any of my lived experiences. Whether you have been left by your parents, are in high school and on the lowest end of the social and economic strata, or whether you have been abused, I would like to be the encouragement to say that there is healing in the process.

Julian Davis-Buckle

On thriving in a man's world

Julian Davis-Buckle, firefighter:

I always tell my female firefighters that when you go to a fire, nobody is to know that it's a girl under that uniform. I don't think [my coworkers] see me as a female, they see me as a firefighter who loves my job, who knows my job, and who will go the extra mile to ensure my job is done to the best of my ability.

Heleda Thompson.

On not being marginalised

Major Heleda Thompson, longest serving woman in the JDF:

I believe that women are pushing for equality but I think the men need to step up now; it's not just us anymore. We used to be marginalised but I think it has reversed. It is now about how we are going to help the men to rise up to be equal with us now. They have this saying that women have to work twice as hard. I don't believe that. I believe if you work smart and do your absolute best, then everything should fall into place.

Rosalea Hamilton

On life lessons

Professor Rosalea Hamilton, academic and advocate:

Hamilton says she has worked a lot with the South African concept of Ubuntu — "I am because you are" — and it has become a part of who she strives to be.

"I would love to leave a lesson of life, and a life that we all should live to care for others. We should recognise the importance of others and impact them along the way. The more I help you and the more we help others is the more we help ourselves."

Denyque Mullings

On letting go, and letting God

Denyque Mullings, creative:

I've taken the downs as graciously as I take the ups, because that's how you learn. That's how you grow and build character. Sometimes we want [to control] something so bad that we are not willing to give it up, and what I have learnt to do is relinquish this hold that I have on wanting to control the outcome. I used to pray for stuff and still want to attach myself to them. Now I've really learnt to pray about it, and then let it go and let God take control.

Shauna Lee Swaby

On motivating yourself

Shauna Lee Swaby, educator:

I believe that knowledge can never be enough, and in order for one to be impactful he or she must have knowledge and experience. I have a growth mindset, I am always eager to learn more. I firmly believe that it is not what you have been through that defines you, but what you have done. I am proud of myself and I am proud of my achievements. I did not just sit down and allow where I am coming from or what I have been through to determine my future. I used it as a method of motivation to push myself forward, and I hope my story can inspire others.

Tonette Shaw

On embracing that metamorphosis

Tonette Shaw, counsellor at the Women's Centre of Jamaica Foundation Spanish Town Centre:

I wish I loved myself more, I wish I accepted my mistakes and embraced them. I wish I had forgiven myself of my past. Now when I see the girls come in to me in distress, and their parents in distress, I assure them that I know what they're feeling, I know what they're going through. I tell them that I sat in that chair and my mother sat there when I was 15 years old. I know the uncertainty. I know what they're feeling. But guess what? It's going to be challenging, it's not an easy road. There will be a lot of times when you're going to want to give up, but you have to have the determination. Prayer helps a lot. Start to pray, start to forgive, start to love yourself. Once you start that positivity, that self love, that acceptance, the universe starts to come in and starts to work in your favour.

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