The Independence Level of a Modern Vintage Woman

I have been going through some personal issues that has lead me to think about the importance of independence for a modern vintage woman.

I don’t claim myself to be a feminist who burns bras or urinates standing to prove a point. Though I have in fact been in male-dominant situations (ie. the martial arts I’ve been practicing for the past 19 years is predominantly practiced by men) and you do want to prove yourself somehow that you’re just as capable. So there’s that.

However, a lot of feminists would probably frown upon my choice of so-called feminine clothing that I tend to prefer dressing myself in. Most of us (including men) have both feminine and masculine sides to us, and while the ratio may vary from person to person, you can choose to accept each person (and yourself) for however they come.

So after giving some thought to my own rule of independence level as a modern vintage woman, here’s a short list I came up with:

1.) I always offer to pay but graciously choose to accept when the other person insists on paying (whether it’s a man or a woman) as long as I feel that it’s fair.

2.) There is nothing wrong with being a gentleman or a gentlewoman when it comes to doing nice things for other people such as opening doors for people. Though I still see some men get self-conscious about it whenever I do open the door for them,

3.) As long as they’re not posing a danger to me (or a serious inconvenience or disrespect), I always accept it as a compliment whenever a man expresses to me that he thinks I’m beautiful. A quick thank you and a walk away will suffice.

I do think it’s important to establish who you are (rather than be who everyone else wants you to be). Sometimes it takes a while to figure it out. Even those who seem like they’ve got it all figured it out change their minds and that’s why we evolve and mature over time. If there’s anything I’ve learned, it’s good to make plans but you have to be ready to change them.

I gifted my sister with three books during her college years and graduation, and since there are some new graduates out there trying to figure out real life at the moment, here’s a few recommendations that I’ve personally read:

Maria Shriver Books

(Click on either of the books to buy them)

These books were written by a grown woman who has children of her own and the “Just who will you be?” is a question she is still asking herself as she is writing the book. She also tries to find her own identity that often gets hidden behind her family name (or her mother’s maiden name) as well as her husband’s (she was first lady of California at the time when she wrote the book). They were both easy reads and gifting them together would probably not be a bad idea either (something I could have done when I gave them to my sister).

Michael J Fox

(Click on the book to purchase)

In this book, Michael J Fox recalls his life experiences of pursuing his career as an actor moving to Hollywood from Canada. Mistakes he made such as not taking into account that he needed to set aside money to pay taxes reminds you that no matter how successful you become, you got there as a result of setbacks like everyone else. I confess that I read this book before I ever saw the movie “Back to the Future” so some of the references to the movie didn’t click until later.

And here’s a few other books that I’ve been on the receiving end:

(Click on the book to purchase)

A lot of people like to hang out with people of the same age and stature, but I will tell you from personal experience that having friends that are older and wiser is an asset. And this book illustrates that point exactly. Morrie is trying to pass down as much life lessons as possible as he is on the verge of dying. I was told to read this book by my friend Jess as I was going through a heart-wrenching breakup and it ended up being the very first book I cried reading (which would also partially be because of the breakup part).

(Click on the book to purchase)

A lot of people admire artists, and this one happens to be an autobiography of a dancer (who is known for her movement of Modern Dance). Her unwavering love for dance throughout her life is quite fascinating. But as she put it, she would not choose between love and dance because neither one can exist without the other. I borrowed this book from my sister’s library and had trouble putting it down because some of the happenings in her life seemed like it would be scenes from a movie. Think Coco Chanel of dancing.

(Click on the book to purchase)

This one was given to me as a gift from my friend Jackie (a lot of my friends give me things that have references to high heels since I am often seen wearing them). It was written quite recently so all the business tactics for modern female entrepreneurs is very current, including the usage of social media. I liked how the book was written by multiple female entrepreneurs (Christine Marmoy writes her own experience in a chapter towards the very end of the book too but mainly compiled chapters that were each written about/by other female entrepreneurs). I think any woman who owns a business or is thinking about owning a business should read this book.

So there you have it – happy summer reading!

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