In conjunction with International Women’s Day #Choosetochallenge, D Jungle People’s assistant manager Information and Insights Teh Sue Fei shares her views about making a huge difference by your actions even when you don’t have the loudest voice.
Quiet. Introverted. Conflict avoidant. Those are some of the adjectives that I associated myself with. Adjectives that seemingly stand in conflict with IWD’s #choosetochallenge theme, encouraging people to challenge inequality, call out bias and question stereotypes.
I will be the first to admit that I am uncomfortable with any acts of calling out anything. In fact, when ‘triggered’, I am usually at loss for words and lose the ability to articulate my thoughts fluently. Besides, the world is so noisy with people calling out so many different things these days, is there really enough attention for one more voice?
But that is exactly where my mistake was – Sometimes, the loudest voice isn’t one of volume, but one of action. Think about it. Rosa Parks did not initiate an entire civil rights movement by shouting at the bus driver. She was decisive in her response to stay seated. Closer to home (and memory), Nicol David didn’t win ‘Greatest Athlete of All Time’ over other impressive male athletes by campaigning for it – she trained on the court every day of her life to win that honour.
There are many more examples I can think of, and if history is any indication, then the actions that we take, the way we behave and how we treat each other, can make a stronger statement than any words we string together. If we want a better world, one of equal opportunities, parity and balance, then we can definitely find little ways in which we all can contribute, right?
So, this is what I #choosetochallenge – I #choosetochallenge myself to create more opportunities for inclusion. I will listen more, and I will withhold judgment. I will spend time uplifting people who never got the same opportunities that I did. I might not be the strongest, loudest or most confident voice in the room, but I will contribute by showing you the change I want to see.