EVERY DAY IS INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY — A TRIBUTE TO OUR VIBRANT GODDESSES

EVERY DAY IS INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY — A TRIBUTE TO OUR VIBRANT GODDESSES

International Women’s Day was first celebrated over 100 years ago. Flash forward to 2021 — we’re celebrating women EVERY DAMN DAY. 

Women are powerful, strong and full of grace and inner wisdom. We need to feel empowered to use these gifts to their fullest potential in every aspect of our lives — in our friendships, relationships, at work, etc.

We interviewed nine badass women in the UNIFY community about what inspires them to embrace their goddess selves as a way to highlight them, provide a platform to express themselves and also hope to inspire other women to ask themselves the same questions — check it out:

CAN YOU SHARE ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE WORDS OF WISDOM/MANTRAS?

Sarah Lane— 
My personal words of wisdom: Each time a woman awakens her feminine heart and spiritual gifts, we are one step closer to restoring harmony and Love on Earth.

Favorite quote: “Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” - Howard Thurman

Kara Redman—
Do the next right thing. I tend to get overwhelmed by the pressures of the world, especially since so many people I care about rely on me to come through every single day. There’s not usually a clear to-do list and my work is rarely cut out for me. My inclination in these moments is to simulate the feeling of being busy by reacting to what’s on my screen that day, but I don’t end up actually accomplishing anything. This habit is a form of avoidance. When I stop, take a breath, and remind myself I don’t have to know the full path (or even the destination), but only need to do one thing to move myself forward, it’s both liberating and empowering and has always led me through the discomfort and away from avoidance. 

Jill Atcheson—
“Life is a series of choices.” The events in our lives don’t happen by chance. Nothing is unintentional but rather we control our destiny. This is the power of having a mindset that focuses your energy, your thoughts, your entire presence on the many blessings that you do have in your life. Sure, anyone can dwell on what’s not going right and can find all sorts of supporting evidence. But there is always another side — the side you’re not seeing, the side you’re running away from. So decide today, in this moment, to choose different. What’s going right? What are you thankful for? And manifest more of that. It will happen!

Summer Wilson—
Curiosity didn’t kill the cat, curiosity made the dream come alive (by me hehe)

I want to be the best version of myself, for myself and for others everyday (my mantra!)

Maddie Lainey—
There are way too many to narrow down, but I do like “live like the lotus, at ease in muddy water” I think it’s so cool that lotus flowers grow in such difficult conditions....but so do we! I wear a lotus flower ring most days to remind me of this 💛

Alice Liu—
Brene Brown, Ram Dass, and many other people talk about the concept of certain types of growth being only possible through moments of hardship and challenge.  If every person on this planet could find the strength and courage to face those moments and to look for the opportunities to learn, listen, deepen our resilience, and be humble in our humanity, this world could be a beautiful place.

Kay Woodson—
“Don’t sweat the small stuff, all stuff is small stuff.” I used to have a bad habit of looking at everything in my life as a big deal. Walking day to day taking things too seriously. I was a walking ball of anxiety. Now I breathe, taking things as they come. One thing at a time; one day at a time and life has been so much smoother.

Valentina Massa—
“The best way to attract abundance in your life is to be in a perpetual state of giving and gratitude.” I’m honestly not even sure who said this or where I heard it but it’s followed me for a while. I wrote it down in a book and whenever I feel like I haven’t been successful, or like I’m behind my peers, I remind myself that there exists this hidden cycle in the world we live in. The more we genuinely give, the more we receive. And that “wealth” isn’t always about money. In fact, it’s mostly never about money. 

WHAT SETS YOUR SOUL ON FIRE?

Sarah Lane—
Dancing barefoot on the beach during sunset! Anytime I feel connected to my body and nature, I feel unstoppable. That soul-fire blazes even brighter when I have the privilege of witnessing another woman reconnecting with herself in a deep way. There’s something truly magical and powerful about women coming together to support one another and help each other awaken their unique divine gifts.

Kara Redman—
People, 100%. In the darkest days of entrepreneurship, knowing that I am generating income and a better way of working for my team has given me the hope and strength I need to keep going. I’ve constantly asked (as we all do), “what’s it all for?”. The answer has always been love, people, connection. We do it all not for the money or the recognition. We do it because we are all, in fact, struggling, and our work and servitude makes life easier and brings us joy. When I reflect on things that have inspired me, it’s always about people—a thought provoking article, an act of vulnerability, kindness between strangers, a piece of artwork or new music. People are what it’s all about. 

Jill Atcheson—
My personal journey through life has ignited a passion for helping others. I’ve always been a caring, compassionate person, but my empathy and true sense of belonging has never been more prominent as it is now. Whether it’s sharing a health tip on my blog, or just texting a friend to say hi, being able to share my own unconditional love with the universe and those that occupy it, brings me pure joy. It motivates me every single day!

Summer Wilson—
Making a difference in others or being a positive influence. Making people laugh and feel really good about not being perfect and just being themselves. Helping people see that there is so much untapped potential inside of them just FREAKING GO FOR IT AND DON’T WORRY ABOUT WHAT HAPPENS or WHAT PEOPLE THINK!

Maddie Lainey—
Honestly, being reliable for others. When I can be there for a friend, gift something I made to someone when they aren’t expecting it, follow through on a promise to a student, let someone know I “see” them, check in on family... all of my passions through work as a teacher, building a non-profit for girls empowerment, or helping people switch and ditch toxic products in their home, they all stem from that initial fire to help others. I truly feel that by doing that, it helps me to be the best me I can be too.

Alice Liu—
For ten years, I explored solutions in systemic challenges like climate change, homelessness, ethical fashion, and social impact investing. In the last two years, I've been shifting my thoughts to the hypothesis that until humans become kinder to ourselves and other people, we will always be creating more challenges for ourselves and putting bandaids on those challenges.  These days, I work on paradigm-shifting projects to help humanity thrive through inner growth and mental wellbeing and pursuing lives of purpose.

Kay Woodson—
Making other people feel beautiful and appreciated sets my soul on fire. Everyone deserves to know that they contribute something special to this world. I’m a full time cosmetologist, specializing in hair care. Every time a client sits in my chair I feel so honored that they entrusted something so significant to me... their beauty. And everyone is beautiful before we cross paths but I get the special task of enhancing that beauty. It makes me feel so purposeful.

WHAT’S SOMETHING YOU LOVE ABOUT YOURSELF OR THAT YOU’RE PROUD OF YOURSELF FOR?

Sarah Lane—
I love the way I nourish and take care of my feminine vessel. I take bubble baths with salts, essential oils, and rose petals regularly. I set boundaries to protect my energy and space while keeping my heart open to love and intimacy. I’m proud of myself for investing time, energy, and money into self-growth and healing, as it’s allowed me to live the life of my dreams and help other women live their best lives as well! Simply put, I love the way I love myself.

Kara Redman—
My ability to self-reflect, adapt, and change is what makes me most proud, and has also been what’s served me the best. My values and beliefs have evolved as I’ve gained new information. I’m vastly curious about other people’s experiences and behaviors, which widens my own lens. I try to listen without judgement when my family and friends give me criticism and feedback (not easy!) and consider it. Going back to my previous response about people, I find purpose in being in and of the world, as part of a larger whole, and so appreciate opportunities to learn from and contribute to society in meaningful ways. Being successful in this area would be impossible without a constant mirror, a set of tools to draw on when my world gets rattled, and a malleability that keeps me growing. And what’s beautiful is, by surrounding myself exclusively with strong, reflective people with big hearts, is that my evolution has softened my edges and allowed me to love and accept more openly. It’s very dependent on who you allow to hold up the mirror. 

Jill Atcheson—
I’m really proud of myself for persevering against all odds. At times, when it felt like the world had given up on me, I realized it was only because I had once given up on myself. But no more! I’ve overcome so much in the last few years, including my sense of self worth and acceptance of who I am and what I am. I’m proud of myself for seeing the good in any situation, for knowing how to extend a hand of support to those who need it most,  and to also fully accept the unconditional love that continues to come my way. I am manifesting the life I’ve always dreamed of, and that did not just come by chance. It was effort, practice, and staying relentless at times, but its paying off in big ways. I’m so thankful that I have the resources, people and tools that I need to be successful in life, and I am so honored to be able to help just one person, one soul, discover their own as well.

Summer Wilson—
I think I am a pretty resilient person and I am proud of myself for the internal glow up I’ve had over the past year. Being perfect doesn’t exist but how you respond when you get real with yourself is what matters.

Maddie Lainey—
My teaching career in Baltimore. Every year I learn more & apply/change more to reach my students, let them know they can trust me, and build an environment where ALL students can thrive. This is always, always a work in progress but when we think about how far we have to go, it’s important to also remember just how far we’ve come. One of my favorite quotes as a teacher is “intelligence + character, that is the goal of true education” - MLK, Jr. I strive to build a classroom where kids are learning so much more than just content.

I have come such a long way since the start of my career 7 years ago. I’ve taught 3 different grades at two different schools. I’m pursuing my Master’s Degree, started RISE Club, and I’m a Site Support director for a summer arts non-profit in Baltimore City in the summers. It’s been a lot of work but it’s “heart” work and it’s probably what I’m most proud of!

Kay Woodson—
Something I really love about myself is my perseverance. My ability to “keep going”, no matter what.

Valentina Massa—
Loving one’s self is actually a really difficult thing for most, and I fall into that group. For the longest time I felt like self love and self care was selfish. That there were too many people and things that required our attention and if we gave that time to things we needed, we weren’t able to fully help others. I am an incredibly hard worker, and probably always will be as it’s something I learned from watching my parents. I’ve recently come to terms that it’s okay to acknowledge that. That it’s okay to put effort into bettering myself because that allows me to be better at everything else, including helping others.

WHO IS SOMEONE ELSE THAT YOU ADMIRE AND WHAT DO YOU ADMIRE ABOUT THEM?

Sarah Lane— 
I really admire Christine Hassler; she is a Speaker, Spiritual Life Coach, Podcast Host, and Author of several books including “Expectation Hangover.” I attended her Women’s Retreat in 2019 and will forever cherish her guidance and healing. She has a divine mother essence, which really complements the Inner Child Healing work she does. My work is also inspired after her and some of the things she’s taught me, and I look up to her as a leader in the coaching/healing industry.

Kara Redman—
Leigh George. She’s a brand agency owner in D.C. Sad to say but most folks in agency leadership aren’t what you and I would describe as “leaders” so much as they have a nice job title. Leigh is the epitome of leadership and a rare find, especially in our industry. I was fortunate to report to her for a time and learned from her how to manage people in healthy, compassionate ways that still establish clear boundaries and expectations. She’s a master at this. She challenges status quo and misogyny in ways that doesn’t make anyone feel bad. Leigh has always done things her own way without making anyone else feel “less than.” She’s also got incredible style, her wardrobe is to die for. 

Jill Atcheson—
I admire the women who know when to raise their hand when they need help. I admire the women who step away from a toxic situation or job without look back. I admire the women who are brave, have a voice they don’t suppress and who stand up for who they are and what they believe in. The women who follow their dreams, listen to their Hearst and open themselves to the unknown. These are the women that motivate me to keep going every single day!

Summer Wilson—
@mj_day at Sports Illustrated Swimsuit. She is just an absolute powerhouse and wants to change the swim and modeling industry to a more positive, inclusive and WOMEN EMPOWERED place. She listens, understands and executes such beautiful, relatable content for women and resonates with so many around the world. MJ and the team just MAKE PEOPLE FEEL GOOD AND FEEL BEAUTIFUL. I respect her so much. I respect her equal parts of hustler and humility, Badass and compassion. I love what she stands for and helping aspiring models dreams come alive.

Maddie Lainey—
This might be cliché but I have to say my parents. My parents have always been a calming center for me and are my role models. I’ve always respected them, always trusted their judgement, and they’ve always guided me to be who I am today. Looking back as an adult now (with kids possibly in my near future) I really appreciate how they raised me and my brother and sister. They are BOTH now cancer survivors, as my dad is almost finished his battle with colon cancer and my mom beat breast cancer when I was in college. The way they’ve supported each other through their personal battles is nothing short of incredible and their 30+ year marriage is the best example for me and my siblings as well. I’m very proud of them, and proud to be their daughter.

Kay Woodson—
Someone I really admire is my mother. It took me a long time to realize everything that she’s endured for her family and others on her journey to peace and happiness. And the fact that she made it through it all with so much strength and still has a smile brings me so much joy.

Valentina Massa—
One person I admire the most in this world is my mom. She is a hardworking, loving and selfless individual. She would give the clothes off her back to help another person and I think growing up with nothing shaped her in ways I’ll never truly understand. When someone grows up and has absolutely nothing, they truly appreciate things as they come but also know they can do without. My mom has taught me lessons in the 30 years I’ve been alive, sometimes without me even realizing I’m learning something and for that I am eternally grateful.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE?

Sarah Lane—
When I’m at my best, I’m an Embodied Creatrix, Water Priestess, Mermaid Goddess, or California Boho Chic. When I’m lounging or running errands, I go for the Comfortable Hippie look. When I’m in my Womb Cave during my bleed, I rock the Groutfit (grey outfit) which is what I’m wearing right now. My style is ever-changing and evolving like this human existence. 

Kara Redman—
Comfortable glam. I love bold prints, statement pieces, and luxurious fabrics, but refuse to wear anything that feels restrictive. Our life lanes today have blurred lines. In the same 2-hour time block I might have a client meeting, take a  walk, and buy groceries. I want to look and feel great for all of these activities without changing, so versatility is key. I’ve been known to show up at work wearing a structured top with leggings and trainers, or a silk pajama top tucked into jeans. If you choose every piece intentionally—not just workwear, you really do get to be self expressive and comfortable without risk of ever looking like you just rolled out of bed. Who is your personal style for if not yourself? Do what makes you feel good. 

Jill Atcheson—
I’m relaxed, carefree and comfortable in my own skin. I prefer comfort and purpose, over vanity. I like colorful, statement pieces that share also its meaning and love with anyone that encounters it. For this is the goal — to connect with others internally as well as externally. Remember, every choice you make matters.

Summer Wilson—
I’d say I’m a cocktail of things haha! Quarantine has made that confusing for sure but I love anything all black, funky, fun, athleisure (duh) and comfortable.

Maddie Lainey—
Ooo I like this question! I’m very artistic/creative and I think expression can be a form of therapy. My style is definitely detailed, down to what jewelry I’m wearing. Not always tied to “match” but to match how I’m feeling and how I want to show up in the world that day. I definitely make an emotional connection with clothing and jewelry and have things I wear that I feel “support” me or make me feel a certain way. I think our style can be like a coat of armour for us each day, like “I feel like a boss today & I’m ready to take on the world” or “I’m chillin today but I’m rocking it” lol. I guess I’m like a little edgy, artistic, expressive, but still bright? A mix of everything!

Alice Liu—
I like clothing that helps us express our inner worlds, or the selves we aspire to be.  A few years ago, that was about feeling empowered, with sleek athletic cuts, diagonals, lots of black, kind of an Amazonian vibe.  These days, I'm much more about flow and abundance, so I love the amazing color splashes and the feel of the fabrics that Unify the Ties has, and I wear a lot of clothes that make me feel beautiful, vibrant, elegant, centered, and able to move and dance and stretch.

Kay Woodson—
I would describe my personal style as “The feels”... haha. Basically, I just go with the flow of whatever I’m feeling at any given moment, on any given day. I’m able to throw almost anything together and still be comfortable. Because style, to me, is really about being comfortable in your own skin.