Any woman can be a heroine - a woman of courage and ability. Others admire her for her brave actions and deeds indulged in her honorable qualities. A heroine is not limited to saving a child from a burning house, or a woman who fights on the front line in battle, although these deeds are most certainly heroic. Being a heroine is simple, empowering, and life changing no matter how small the deed.
There are several distinctive qualities with a heroine, but they aren't limited to these!
Courage. A woman who faces her fears or stands up for what she believes in even if those decisions are challenging. The fantastic thing about courage is that it is challenging. You have to be willing to be uncomfortable with the task but push through it (maybe take some deep breaths to relax yourself) to achieve your target goal.
Mother Teresa is an excellent woman of courage without the physical 'flight or fight' sense of courage. She believed in helping the poor, sick, dying, and orphaned. She began traveling Eastern Europe and later to India to pursue her goal in aiding the underprivileged. She later won the Nobel Peace Prize and Bharat Ratna (the highest honorary title in India) for her service to mankind.
Skilled: A woman of an important skill to better the rate of success is highly heroic. Whether it involves knowledge or physical skills, having something that makes you stand out is admirable - hello 'wow' factor! There is always room to broaden your horizon in every perspective, and there is nothing stopping you from achieving the knowledge that you want.
Marie Curie of Poland was the first person ever to receive two Nobel Peace Prizes for Physics and Chemistry. Although born in a time of inequality of the sexes, she persevered to discover Polonium and Radium. You know what radioactivity is? You can thank her for her advancements in that field.
Wounded: Sadly, every heroine has a wound. It's important to remember that it is not the wound that defines you, but what you make of it. Some wounds are deep, but wounds heal. They show where you've been and how you overcame it. Channel those pains into creating something better, whether it is discovering your own journey to recovery, or helping other women with similar issues improve themselves.
Oprah Winfrey had a tough childhood moving state to state with her separated parents. While living with her mother, she was sexually abused from age 9 to mid teens. At 14, she became pregnant and suffered a miscarriage. She later moved in with her father and pursued success indefinitely. She helps people enduring traumatic issues, had her own talk show discussing controversial topics, and continues to donate money to better people's lives.
"Turns your wounds into wisdom." - Oprah Winfrey.
Dedication: Heroines deliberately dedicate every ounce of their being to their actions to achieve their goal. Completion of the task is a top priority, whether it is keeping a child in school or being a woman in the Supreme Court. When something is really important to you, you will do what it takes to get the job done.
Margret Thatcher first began her career as a lawyer, but became the first lady Prime Minister of Great Britain. She dedicated her life to the prosperity of the people through negotiations of lowering taxes, balancing budgets, and political Patriotism. She was so dedicated to her job, she was dubbed 'The Iron Lady."
Valor: A woman who uses strength through the mind and spirit to pursue danger with firmness. She must not be rewarded for her actions, but the selflessness in the deed proves enough. The pursuit of the end result means more than acknowledgement of participating in the deed.
Harriet Tubman was slave until the age 29, when she became an active leader in the Underground Railroad missions. She was determined to save as many slaves as possible, and led up to 13 missions freeing slaves. Because of her valor behavior, she was employed by the Union Army and helped liberate 700 slaves from South Carolina.
These traits are common in all heroines, but heroines are not limited to these. Traditionally, heroines are flawed in a sense that they have something to fight for, but that is why women are so strong. We women empower ourselves! We use each other empower ourselves! We use reality to empower ourselves!
Never will I doubt that every woman is a heroine. In one way or another, a woman stands up for what she believes in and contributes to a better cause. A heroine does not try to please everybody, but rather does what she believes is for the greater good.
Every woman is a heroine - from a little girl living in poverty who strives to learn, to a teenager sticking to her morals, to a woman's intelligence furthering her career, to a mother caring for her child, to an elderly woman standing up for what she believes in.
You are a heroine. Believe in yourself!
"Above all, be the heroine of your life. Not the victim." - Nora Ephron.
(pictures from here (Oprah), here (Harriet Tubman), and here (Mother Teresa, Marie Curie, Margret Thatcher)