Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Attributes of a Gracious Woman

Respect: A gracious woman respects other women. She doesn’t claim to only associate with men because women are whiny; she doesn’t speak badly of women behind their backs. She doesn’t call women the names that men have used to degrade and to objectify us for thousands of years. She doesn’t demean other women in order to fit in with the prevailing culture - to pretend that she is more secure than she is. She respects the integrity of other women’s personhoods, and she treats those women as she would will that she herself be treated.

Honor: A gracious woman holds herself to a higher standard than she holds the world around her, and she endeavors to live up to that measure. She is agile and resourceful, but never deceitful or manipulative. She develops her own definition of right and wrong and strives to adhere to it. She constantly reevaluates that distinction as she goes about her days, learning as much about herself as she does about the world and her place in it.

Integrity: A gracious woman’s integrity combines confidence with humility. The strength not only to admit to mistakes, but also to embrace the discomfort or punishment that must sometimes accompany such errors. She is honest about her shortcomings and faces them with an open mind and a brave heart.  Always, she says what she means and means what she says.


Compassion: A gracious woman feels deeply - for pain, strife, struggle, loss, desperation, and fear. She makes a conscious decision to take the emotion into herself. She doesn’t just sympathize - she empathizes. She strives to understand the emotion, and she allows herself the loss of control that accompanies such compassion. To truly be someone else in suffering – even if just for a moment - and to make that pain her own. She understands that pain, and when judging others, she uses only her heart.


Self-Reflection: A gracious woman knows that at the end of the day, her thoughts, her actions, and her life are all her own. She looks back on the choices she has made – from the big to the small – and she weighs the merits of those choices within her own context. Day by day, she asks herself, what does this choice mean for me? How will this choice make me feel? Will I be closer or further away from the “me” that I want to be? To judge herself, she uses her head, and she grows from that self-reflection.


Value: A gracious woman is worthy. Worthy of trust, faith, praise, admiration, respect, and love. She knows that both her life and her company have value, and she expects others to know it, too. She recognizes when she is being treated worse than she deserves, and she does not allow people to come into her life with negative purpose. She knows exactly how much she is worth, and she demands that others respect her accordingly.


Courage: A gracious woman is strong of heart. Her courage is not for display; it is for neither the praise nor the admiration of others. It is for times of fear or of uncertainty, for times when action is called for instead of words. Her courage is not easy – it is a decision to combat a negative environment with positive energy. To affect change with that power. Her courage risks the security of her entity for the freedom of an idea.


Passion: A gracious woman has a fire in her soul. Whether shy or engaging, quiet or outgoing, she has a personal stake in the life that she leads, and she strives to make the most of it. She puts everything she has into everything she does, and she feels the desire for accomplishment deep within her. She sets her own goals and weighs her successes and failures by her own measures. She gets back up because she must. Because she feels the drive to achieve. Her passion is her fuel, and her dreams know no bounds.

2 comments:

  1. This is excellent.

    I commented on an earlier post of yours, which I never do, btw. I am really enjoying your blog! This is particularly interesting to me because I was a contestant in the Miss USA pageant 2 years ago and am still trying to sort out everything about it that is contributing to negative stereotypes of women while at the same time trying to justify the pageant and the opportunities that come out of it. Damn pageants! :)

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  2. Thank you so much for reading! Pageants are a tricky one because I feel like they do encourage women to take pride in themselves and to be gracious as people. But as you say, they contribute to these negative stereotypes about what being a 'lady', or a woman of worth is. Tough call!

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