Per­fect Im­per­fec­tions

Malaysia Tatler - - EDITOR’S NOTE -

It’s one more month till the year-end, but our cover star Datin Dian Lee’s in­ter­view has put me in a re­flec­tive mode. Do you re­mem­ber what it’s like to be in your 20s? Her story will make you rem­i­nisce about your own ex­pe­ri­ence—look­ing back, you think you knew what you’re do­ing, but in ac­tu­al­ity, you’re deal­ing with a lot of in­se­cu­ri­ties as you try to find out who you re­ally are. I once came across th­ese poignant words: ‘Maybe the jour­ney isn’t so much about be­com­ing any­thing. Maybe it’s about un-be­com­ing ev­ery­thing that isn’t re­ally you, so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.” I learned this late, and only started be­ing more com­fort­able in my own skin, and at peace with who I re­ally am, to­wards the tail-end of my 30s. It’s a fact that girls and boys are raised dif­fer­ently. From young, boys are taught to be brave and to rough it out in the play­ground while girls are raised to be per­fect and act like a lady. This has hard­wired women to play it safe, and to al­ways get it right or go bust. There­fore as adults, they tend to grav­i­tate to­wards ca­reers and pro­fes­sions they know they’re go­ing to be great in, whereas men don’t over­think things when con­sid­er­ing to take on a new role or ne­go­ti­at­ing a raise. In her line of work, Re­sha Sau­jani, the founder of Girls Who Code, no­ticed a big dif­fer­ence be­tween boys and girls. When strug­gling with an as­sign­ment, the boys will say, “Pro­fes­sor, there is some­thing wrong with my code.” In con­trast, the girls will say, “Pro­fes­sor, there is some­thing wrong with me.” So dur­ing her speech at Tedtalks, Re­sha couldn’t be more right when she said, “I need each of you to tell ev­ery young woman you know to be com­fort­able with im­per­fec­tion.” Imag­ine the free­dom of be­ing un­shack­led from this self-lim­it­ing thought! Imag­ine un­leash­ing the power that has al­ways been within you. I may not have a daugh­ter, but I can still en­cour­age other young women un­der my care and those I meet, to em­brace their im­per­fec­tions and own their power, and then watch them bloom. — El­iz­a­beth Soong Man­ag­ing Edi­tor

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