Inspiration

Every day can be International Women’s Day

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A half-marathon is mind over matter I am told. To mark International Women’s Day on 8th March, I ran the Semi-Marathon de Paris – therefore with 21km of thinking time ahead of me.

Just before the race, I had the opportunity to meet Joseline Duquerrois, President of the French charitable association Les Blouses Roses for which I decided to fundraise with my participation. She is responsible for an organisation of trained volunteers that humanises the hospitalisation process for children and adults alike, by bringing joy, laughter and distraction into their lives. “What an incredible woman on an incredible mission”: the first thought of my long afternoon jog.

My second thought followed quickly: that I am extremely grateful for the incredible women in my life, busy creating their own missions and staring down their own challenges. And the third thought: that I wanted to interview some of them with the aim of sharing their experiences with you on The Business Women Media platform.

Elizabeth Gilbert, best-selling author of Eat Pray Love, recently talked to Huffpost about a phenomenon we perhaps know too well : the woman stressed by the fear she is simply not doing enough with her life to be satisfied at her own success. Gilbert said “When I look at my life and the lives of my female friends these days — with our dizzying number of opportunities and talents — I sometimes feel as though we are all mice in a giant experimental maze, scurrying around frantically, trying to find our way through. But maybe there’s a good historical reason for all this overwhelming confusion. We don’t have centuries of educated, autonomous female role models to imitate here (there were no women quite like us until very recently), so nobody has given us a map.”

With this in mind, I decided to ask five women about their very international journeys without a map in hand. I found a common thread of optimism, determination and self-awareness. This was an extremely rewarding process, and I want to thank them for agreeing to publish their stories on such an open platform. What strong and inspirational women indeed; meet them below!

Christelle 23 / Paris via Beirut, Lebanon / Engineer – Energy solutions

Emma 34 / Paris via Edinburgh, Scotland / Business Development – Digital Marketing

Inka 29 / London via Stuttgart, Germany / Brand Management – Power Tools

Marie 33 / Paris via Stockholm, Sweden / Engineer, CEO and philanthropist

Nicole 28 / Karlsruhe via Toronto, Canada / Area Management – Homeotherapeutic Healthcare

 

About Claudia Schulz

Claudia Schulz is an Engineer who left Australia’s shores in 2008 to pursue post-graduate studies in International Management in Germany. Currently, Claudia is in Paris working in Key Account Management for a global engineering solutions provider.She is passionate about raising awareness of gender-roles in the international workplace, connecting people, language, literature, and croissants.Has been described as sassy on more than one occasion (thank you, high-school debating).Life goals (in no particular order): attend a TED Conference, travel through Turkey, obtain a PhD, buy an oven (not an easy feat for a Parisian-sized apartment).

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