How to Be a Woman

Being female comes easily.  On day 14 of conception (don’t get me started on that math) egg meets sperm.  If the sperm carries an “X” chromosome, a female human being develops.  As life goes on, hormones and socialization intervene, and this female human transitions from baby to child to teenager to adult.  To truly be a woman, with all the magic, mystery and power that title includes, takes more.  And it isn’t easy.

Figure Out What You Believe In

A woman knows what is important to her.  She has figured out her priorities, and she acts from those priorities.  Her true core beliefs are very fundamental.  They have nothing to do with trends, media influence, peer pressure or convenience.  She knows in her heart what she believes to be true about religion, morality, family structure, loyalty, love and friendship.   She is not influenced by what is popular with her friends, the ideals of her family or the man in her life.

The process of determining core beliefs is not simple.  She has taken the time and energy to consider some fundamental questions, and to become peaceful with her answers.  She has made the investment into her own life.  A woman has contemplated some very basic questions:  What do I really, truly want?  What makes me happy?  What do I believe is the right thing to do?  What is my purpose in this life?  How can I make the greatest contribution to the world, and to the people in my life?  Without asking these questions, she can’t discover the answers.  A woman has taken the time to consider the difficult questions, and to make an effort at answering them so that she can be on the right path.

Stand Up For What You Believe In

A woman not only knows what she believes in, but she backs it up.  This doesn’t require fanfare.  It doesn’t require being loud or political.  It can be done in quiet, everyday ways, or in ostentatious ways, but a woman will not quietly give up something she believes is a fundamental truth to her.  A woman lives what she believes.  This can be challenging and scary.  A woman does it even if it makes her feel alienated and alone.  But a she always follows what she knows is right, no matter how lonely that path may seem.  It can mean making choices and taking actions that are unpopular.  But she sticks her her core beliefs and stands up for what she thinks is right.  She doesn’t back down from confrontation, and she doesn’t act from fear or from guilt.  When standing up for what she knows is right, she does it boldly, simply and confidently, without guilt or fear.

Own Who You Are

Females struggle against social pressure to conform to an ideal.  These pressures can apply to sexuality, values, family, behavior, opinions, work and relationships and myriad other aspects of life.  A woman is brave enough to step outside of these idealized preconceptions of who she should be.  A woman doesn’t doubt her boundaries or her values.  She is unconcerned about judgement or criticism from others, and she would never judge or criticize herself as a result of what others think.  A woman won’t be fooled into believing that being accepted, being perfect, being loved are more important than being true to herself.  More importantly, she knows that giving up who she is would never lead her down a good path.  A woman is who she is.  She doesn’t need to be validated or justified.  She accepts herself for who she is, and she won’t change or hide herself.

Once a woman has figured out what is important to her, she tries to have that.  She doesn’t necessarily try to have it all, unless that really is what she wants.  She keeps her goals and dreams in mind, and works towards them, without getting trapped into outside ideas about what she should want to do or be.  To each her own — some women do want it all, and they pursue that.  But a woman knows there is strength and power in accepting and pursuing what she does want, and in letting go of what she doesn’t.

Women have opinions.  Her opinion may be formed by a combination of introspection, thought and discussion with others, and she doesn’t give it up on a whim.  That’s not to say that she can’t be reasoned with.  She accepts criticism of her ideas an opinions without internalizing them as critiques of herself.  But a woman doesn’t back down from who she is or what she believes just because it is unpopular or misunderstood.  She may be kind in her expression of her position, but she doesn’t relinquish it to please others or to make them more comfortable.

Be Beautiful

A woman is beautiful.  She believes that she is beautiful and appreciates the amazing power her body holds.  Females are so likely to judge themselves against others, and to find themselves flawed in every way.  A woman puts this aside and loves, accepts and cares for her amazing, life giving body.  A woman knows the unbounded potential of her body and of her soul within it, and she has no time to waste on the details of its implementation.  She loves what she is, how she looks and how she feels.  She won’t demean the awesome power of her body with superficial judgements.  She may improve her body for her health or her enjoyment, but it is always for her own benefit, not for the acceptance or approval of others.

A woman is sexy.  Her body is made to be creative and enjoyable and a woman neither hides from that nor exploits herself for approval from others.  A woman is sexy not because she fits into a certain size of jeans, has breasts of a particular size or wears provocative clothing.  Her sexiness comes from simply accepting, loving and enjoying the powerful, creative, functional and pleasurable nature of her body.

Be Confident

A woman has no concern for how others judge her.  She is confident.  She does the best that she can every day, and doesn’t worry about whether or not she holds up to anyone else’s standards.  She has determined what is important to her, and she acts from that position at every possibility without fear of the consequences.

A woman is intelligent without being afraid.  All women own their intelligence and share it without fear of criticism.  Intelligence comes in many forms, and a woman is not cowed by intimidation or arrogance from others.  Whether her intelligence is logical or intuitive, artistic or analytical, emotional or scientific (or all of the above) she doesn’t fear her intelligence or the reaction of others.

A woman also deosn’t take herself too seriously.  Everyone makes mistakes.  Without mistakes, there is no possibility for learning or growth.  A woman doesn’t fear her mistakes, nor does she fear judgement or criticism from others.  Fear of judgement would make it difficult for her to act in harmony with her true self.  It doesn’t serve her, and a woman doesn’t have time for it.  She will apologize if that’s what’s needed, or laugh at herself.  Perfection is not a woman’s goal.

Be A Source Of Inspiration For Those Around You

So often, females spend their energy tearing each other down.  A woman won’t lower herself with this activity.  A woman spends her time acting as a beacon of inspiration for the others around her.  Even more importantly, she actively helps to bring up those around her.  A woman offers her support and encouragement to her peers and to those struggling against things she has transcended.  She helps those trying to become real women themselves.  There is nothing to be gained by holding another down, but by helping another up, she makes a positive difference in the world.  A woman acts towards empowering others and helping them along their own path.

Women have a great deal of power.  They physically create life.  They influence and change their families, communities and the world.  They support, care for and nurture those around them.  A woman would never use this power for anything but the benefit of all in her world.  This power can manifest in nurturing her family, or it can manifest in her community.  A woman shares her love, her experience, her strength and her power with those around her.  She may raise children, and empower them to own their passion, conviction and strength.  She may teach.  She may simply lead by example.  But she doesn’t limit others as a way to further herself.  Rather, her strength helps to lift others to higher potentials.

Be A Partner

A woman is a willing, equal partner.  She doesn’t always have to have things her way, she doesn’t always have to be catered to, or pampered.  A woman can carry a heavy load, and she is an enthusiastic partner through life’s challenges.  She doesn’t let herself get pushed around or downtrodden, either.  A woman embraces her partnership with another as an opportunity to expand upon all that makes her who she is, and she seeks out a partner who will marvel at her.  She loves and supports her partner and she accepts the love and support of her partner.  Within the partnership, she maintains her own identity, strength and conviction, and she desires a partner who does the same.


A woman loves.  She loves her spouse, her children, her family, her friends.  A woman can feel love and compassion for strangers she has never known, whether they are in her community or on the other side of the world.  Her capacity for love knows no bounds, and her ability to love unconditionally gives those in her life the strength to grow, to succeed and to carry on.  A woman loves not in anticipation of a return, but because it is in her nature to do so.  She shares the love within her to bring joy to those around her, as well as to herself.

To be a woman takes the willingness and the energy to determine who she is.  It takes the courage to stand by her convictions.  A woman embraces her humanity — the power, the weakness, the imperfection, and the strength.  A woman helps those around her.  She loves and nurtures her family, and those around her.  She offers support and helps others to grow.  To be a woman takes the responsibility to be a full partner in all that life brings.  A woman loves.

7 Responses to “How to Be a Woman”

  1. [...] How to Be a Woman by Emily Calle [...]

  2. [...] How to Be a Woman by Emily Calle [...]

  3. “Be beautiful.” Simple and succinct!

  4. Barb D. says:

    Absolutely terrific! And mine was #19 on Steve’s list. I think our articles have a lot in common. Great job!
    Barb D.

  5. Leo says:

    Great text, really straight to the point! Phenomenal, loved it, best short piece of personal development text I’ve ever read. Will keep re-reading this one that’s for sure. Profoundly appreciated!

  6. [...] How to Be a Woman by Emily Calle [...]

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