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How My Mother's Selflessness and Determination Taught Me that Women Can Be Whatever They Want to Be and Work Their Way Up

Posted by May 12, 2014 10:05:14 AM Ali Powell


My mother deserves more than this blog post. I rarely talk about how my mom has influenced me as a person but with Mothers Day yesterday I think she deserves a spot light. My Mom has taught me that any girl, any lady, any woman can be what she wants to be in life. To be successful (whatever that means to you) you need to get out there and do stuff. Get stuff done. Luck happens because you work hard and then your hard work pays off. Be good to people and to yourself and good things will come to you. Hard work is something we are all capable of. The world holds whatever you want to make of it. So get up and start working towards something. If you want to get somewhere in life you need to work towards it. Have your eye on some goal and work towards everyday. 

my_family-2-965357-editedMy Mom grew up pretty poor. If you know me you probably wouldn't think that is true but it is. The reason I am where I am today is because of my parents hard work and selflessness as I grew up. Everything they did was for my sister and I. It was to help set us up for a life they did not have growing up. Especially my mother. My Mom has been on her own since she was young. Both of her parents died at an early age and I think that helped instill in here a mentality of "no one is going to help me, I must help myself." My Mom and Dad worked their way up in the world and so WomenPreneurs you can too. I have seen it first hand what hard work can do for a family. I can't help but work hard, I can't help but always think there is something more.  That is the #girlBoss part of me that I got from my Mom. 

My Mom doesn't talk tons about her childhood and that is because it was tough. This blog post is not to hone in on how bad my Mother had it and how good she has it now but rather the type of impact that your mother can have on your life personally and professionally. The impact of a mother on a daughter is something that I want to acknowledge. Ladies out there, you should think about how your mother impacted your life and how she helped you become the businesswoman that you are today. How did her personality, her values, etc help you become the woman that you are now? Those conversations with yourself will help you realize what type of lady you are and help you to understand your strengths and weaknesses so you can work your way up to becoming a woman executive (if that is what you want). my_mother_shaped_me_as_a_sales_preson

My Mom worked her way up and so have I (so far). AND I will continue to work hard to move up in the world. 

My mom came from nothing. She was given clothes from her older sisters. She didn't have much money, much anything. My Mom and Dad met when my parents were living in California in the 80s. And I am really glad that they did. These two humans together have made me who I am and I am forever thankful for their backgrounds and how their backgrounds have shaped who I am and what I believe in.

Since my Mom had it so hard when she was younger and in her 20s when she had my sister and I she had to work her way up. My father comes from a hard working military background and he worked his way up as well. I respect both of my parents for that and that idea of working your way up in life is something that is instilled in me. It always has been and I think it always will be. 

My mother has 2 daughters and we are both doing very well now. So is she. I think there is something other women can learn from this. This is not by accident. It was all planned out very well. 

My Mom is a CFO of a company. I am very proud of her. I am proud that my mother is a hard working person in society. I am proud of what my Mother has become and who she is yet to be. I am proud of how smart my mother is and the intelligence she gave me. I respect my mother for so many reasons and feel like she has shaped who I am because I saw how she worked her way up through the ranks so she could to where she wanted to be. Her idea of success was to be able to support my sister and I and let us do what we wanted to do with our lives. I appreciate her selfesslessness early on in my life more than I can explain. Her selflessness allowed me to work my way to where I am now and I will forever be thankful for that because it has helped shape what my life is like now and what it will be like in the future. 

My Mom has always been great with numbers. She is a math person. I didn't get that gene but what I did get was her intelligence, her knack for learning, her caring personality, her passion and her love. I can remember when I lived in Governor's Island in NYC my mother going to work for the whole day in the city as an accountant and then at night going to school to get her college degree. I didn't know it at the time but looking back this has inspired me over the years to work harder than others.  

My Mother's dedication to her education and to helping her family have what our family needed meant working the whole day then going to school at night. This is what she felt she had to do to support us and this was what she was going to do. No if's and's or but's about it. She would do this for her family and it would pay off in the long run. 

my_mom_shaped_meI am so thankful for my parents hard work and what they have been able to provide for me. They have set me up for the life that I have today and for the life I will have as I grow. 

If I had to list out everything my parents have ever given me it would take a whole day I think. I mean emotionally and physically.  My parents have given me more than I could and will ever ask for. They have given me love. Support. Education. A home. A sense of being. A sense of hope. They have taught me that I can do whatever I want to do. I can be whoever I want to be. 

They have shaped me to be the WomenPreneur that I am today. Without my Mother and my Father's constant hard work I don't think my mentality towards my work life would be what it is. 

I know that people can work their way up because i have seen it happen and I have seen how hard work can change your life. 

  • I am not scared of a challenge. That is because of the challenges that I saw my Mother endure first hard. That is because of the challenges she has told me about. I can do anything I want because I have seen my own Mother do it. Remember no one is holding you back except yourself. So go catch your dreams and make those dreams a reality. 
  • I am not afraid of working hard and working a lot. My Mom did that too and that is how she was able to provide for our family. I am not obsessed with making lots of money but I do know what money has directly impacted me to do. Making more money over the years allowed my family to live a little nicer but that's not the point at all. Money won't make your life better, money will make things a bit easier. The only reason I care about saving my money and making more money is because it helps me know that I don't have to worry about paying my bills and that I can support the way I want to live. That means that the money I make and save can go towards supporting my own family one day. That is what I strive for. Being able to teach my own daughter one day the value of a dollar and hard work. 
  • My mother always supported me at all times in my life. She thought and thinks that I am smart and that I am the best. She believes in me and so I believe in myself. I think I am smart because she thinks I am smart. Confidence is something that can be learned. Confidence it the key to success. If you feel weird or bad in your own skin then there is no way others will see you as confidence. We as WomenPreneurs need to be confident to work our way up. 
  • My mom is super intelligent. She is strong. I think I got those genes too and I don't plan to waste them. I will use those smart genes to the best of my ability and work my way up in the world so I can one day provide for my own family. 
  • My mother and father supported me in elementary school, middle school, high school and college. They always supported what I wanted to do and how I wanted to learn. They paid for me to go to dance classes every single day and they told me that I was good at what I was doing. They showed that they cared and that made me try harder. I wanted to be the best and I thought I could because of their love for me and their support. Support the women around you because that support pays off more than you might think. thank_you_mom_for_helping_me_work_my_way_up-193760-edited
  • My mom and dad paid for my college education. You have no idea how much I appreciate this. I went to a very, very, very nice school - that some would call a country club or a school for rich kids. I am not a rich kid. I am a kid from a family who worked their way up and therefore was able to have the life I have now. They were able to send my sister and I to college and that is because this was and is important to them. To know that we went to the schools that we wanted to go to. College is expensive and I will forever appreciate how much they gave me. Education is something we shouldn't take for granted. Not every women and girl has access to education and I realize this. I am lucky for having the education that I do. I wouldn't have gained experiences and gained knowledge that I did if I didn't go to college. I am thankful for my college education. 

My mother's (and father's) hard work helped me to be able to have the life I have today and I plan to make the best of it.  I plan to everyday wake up and work my hardest to support myself and make a difference in this world we live in. 

My parents helped me when I graduated college too. They supported me when I graduated and helped me meet with people to get my first job. They supported me when I didn't make enough money as an entry level person in the world and helped me with my rent. They helped me with my bills. Not every person had this type of help. I know it is a monetary help and I am not saying that every kid deserves help paying for things in life but I appreciate them being able to help me out. It meant that I could have the jobs that I wanted without worrying about how much money I wasn't making. I was working on working my way up but it takes time to work your way up and they knew that. my_mother_helped_me_become_who_I_am_today

I didn't always know the value of a dollar, but I do now.

I am well aware of how much their support in my initial years after college shaped me into who I am now. 

I wouldn't have the job I have now, the life I have now and the life I hope to give my own family and my own children if was not for my Mother and Father being selfless and striving to help my sister and I live well. 

One of my goals in my life is to be able to give back. I want to work hard and make it in the world so that I can give back. One of the first people I plan to give back to will be my mother. I want her to live a care free, stress free life in the future and not have to work the life of a stressful business woman. She deserves some time off and that is a motivation in itself for me to work my way up. 

My mother gave me so much. She set me up for success and I hope to do the same for my children one day when I have them. Her support ,her love, her kindness, her hard work and willingness to change my family's life is something I will never, ever forget. It is something that is part of me. Part of who I am. 

So when people ask me why I am good at what I do....why I am who I am and how I got here...
I say one thing, it is because of my family. And part of my family is my Mother. 

I love you Mom. Thank you for being you and thank you for helping me be me. 

 

Topics: Women, women startups, womenprenurs, WomenPreneurs, Women in Tech, women in technology, womenintech, more women in tech, mompreneurs, how my mother shaped me

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