Jen Utley: Our New Girl Crush

August 29 - On The Dot
 
It’s a great day to be a woman! Melinda Garvey here as your voice, with the mission to give women everywhere a place to be heard and tell their stories. We’d love to hear from you!

FIRST THOUGHT: Choosing Kindness Over Judgment

Ladies, if you’ve seen the movie Mean Girls, chances are you can relate somewhat to the subject matter. There were always those high-school girls who loved to make snide remarks and judge us through and through.

Now that you’re a grown woman, there might not be a girl squad in all pink walking down the halls anymore, but the mean girls are still around. You may even find yourself acting like one of them, making snide comments about what your co-worker is wearing or laughing at a woman doing the “walk of shame.” Today, choose to be kind, and offer a few nice words to empower your fellow women.

WOMEN IN NUMBERS: Significantly More

Are you as sick as I am about the stereotype that women jabber on about things that don’t matter? It turns out that many times when women are chatting with each other, we’re actually getting things done. A recent study published in Scientific Reports found that women are “significantly more talkative than men” when they’re in a collaborative atmosphere.

The finding confirms prior research that this kind of heightened interaction is true of women. What this means is that diversifying your organization or company to include more collaborative (and yes, talkative) women might just help build a stronger, more united team. Now that’s some straight talk!

WOMAN TO WATCH: Jen Utley, Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Project Girl Crush

Jen Utley has always loved writing but wasn’t able to fully pursue her passion until she founded a cool women’s-empowerment enterprise called Project Girl Crush, in 2013.

Jen met her co-founder, Genevieve Pierson, when they were both in their early 20s and working at an Irish pub. We can all relate to meeting another woman and thinking she’s just perfect. We think, “Ugh, what I wouldn’t give to have her hair and her cool demeanor.” But preoccupied with feelings of intimidation and envy, we often turn to judging other women and saying catty things.

Jen and Genevieve’s desire to bring awareness to this all-too-common female behavior is how Project Girl Crush was born.

Project Girl Crush features interviews with women of all ages and races, and from tons of different backgrounds and professions, from food photographers to artists and students. Their stories highlight what it’s like to make hard choices, how vulnerability isn’t necessarily a bad thing and what it’s like to find success.

One of the reasons Jen believes telling women’s stories is important stems from her desire to keep it real. We are bombarded by picture-perfect images of women on billboards, in the news and on Instagram. We naturally compare ourselves to those curated images and—surprise!—our self-esteem plummets. By learning that no woman is perfect, no matter how cute her designer outfit is, we can more easily accept ourselves and others for what we simply are.

It’s an idea embraced by Jen’s many readers, and is so popular, in fact, that it’s led her to launch a related publication. Project Girl Crush recently released its inaugural issue of Crushed Magazine, which features a collection of women’s stories and to-die-for images of inspiring women in their daily lives.

A piece of advice Jen loves is from her grandmother, Honey: “Get that lipstick on!” It’s a reminder to Jen to get up, get the lipstick on, go do life and accomplish her dreams.

So, take Jen’s story to heart and instead of hating on that lovely girl who works in the cubicle next to you, save your judgment and learn who she really is. You might just make a new friend or develop a girl crush!

QUITE THE QUOTE

When you set your girl hate aside, you can do great things. Take Helen Keller’s advice:

“Alone, we can do so little. Together, we can do so much.”

That’s all for now. Be sure to share this so more women can have a voice! Thanks for getting ready with us.

To learn more about our conversation, check us out at OnTheDotWoman.com and talk to us @OnTheDotWoman on Twitter and Instagram. We’d love to hear your voice.

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