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Inspiring Women

So were a couple of weeks into January, women and men up and down the country are back into the routine of work and we’re all struggling to remember Christmas already. If we search the internet, there are various articles and statistics claiming that the vast majority of people who make New Year’s Resolutions fail and that most would have given up even attempting to keep them by 10th January. Coupled with our post-Christmas blues, the feeling that we have failed in our resolutions can be quite deflating. This is why it is so important to remember that a year is a long time and that we need to set ourselves realistic targets and accept that quite often we fail before we succeed – and that is okay!

In 2009 I was the first ever England Women’s captain to lead England to defeat against Wales. In our 20-year history of playing each other Wales had never beaten England – until I was captain. It was an awful feeling at the time but the lessons we learnt and the greater understanding I gained as a leader spurred us on to one of our greatest ever rugby seasons and a momentous victory against New Zealand Women at Twickenham just a few months later.

Kelly Holmes, one of our greatest Olympians, suffered many defeats before she won her incredible Gold medal double at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Many of you will be familiar with the Michael Jordan quote: “I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life… And that is why I succeed.”

One of the many things that our Inspiring Women have in common is an incredible sense of determination. If Bonita Norris gave up in her pursuit to find financial support and sponsorship (a massive challenge at the time) she would never have made it to the foot of Everest, let alone the peak. Bonita had to push through hundreds of negative responses before she found the support that she needed.

It is okay to make a mistake or fail at something as long as we recognise that this does not mean the end of an ambition, goal or resolution; in fact it can help to make us stronger. One of my resolutions is to drop a couple of dress sizes – a target that I am sure is made by many people. My focus to help this (along with increasing my training) has been to think about my food, cook more and rely on packets and the microwave less. I have done this a lot of the time since January 1st but not all of the time. But this is okay! I am starting to enjoy cooking from scratch, I have started to ensure I make time to do so and by doing this I find that I am helping to achieve my 8thresolution; to ‘Be Happy with my Everyday Life’. Because cooking is actually fun and has become a new interest in which I take pride and care – who knew?

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