Stevie Dillon

Stevie is the Queen of Social Media and our hearts; yes, we are majorly crushing on this chick! Stevie is a former lawyer turned Social Media Marketer uhm guru, thank you very much, with the mission to educate and inspire business owners so that they can build a profitable business. To hear what Stevie has to say about empowerment read below:

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

Leading an empowered life means having the courage to go after what you (really) want. To make big bold decisions - almost daily. To back yourself, even when no-one else does (yet). It's about being comfortable with a level of discomfort, accepting you're going to suck when you start the thing (whatever you 'thing' is), but to dive in head first and do in anyway. It's about being okay with negative attention and chatter from those on the sidelines.. if what you were doing was average, normal and not worth talking about, what would be the point of doing it anyway? Taking a huge (calculated) leap into the unknown and going after what you want isn't easy. Doing what it takes to get there is what I think it means to life an empowered, thoughtful, 'on purpose' life.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

Putting one foot in front of the other and being okay with figuring things out along the way puts you ten steps in front of everyone else. Most people are too scared to start anything either for fear of being 'found out' for not knowing what they are doing, or because they want things to be perfect from the start and they feel they aren't 'good' enough. Doing things that scare you forces you to up level, and you build the skills you need along the way.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

JUST DO IT ;)

Something comes to mind for everyone when they read those three liittle words, and whatever that thing is for you? Is the thing you need to go after.

 

 

Gillian Mulholland

If you thought we would meet this #badass and not feature her... you were wrong. Gillian is on a journey to release her inner badass and is inspiring you to do the same. She's a singer, speaker, mentor and a #selflove advocate. Here's what she had to say on empowerment:

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

To me it means making your own decisions without fear of judgment from other people. To well and truly have your own back and stand grounded on your own two feet. Reaching for goals and knowing deep down you will find a way by empowering yourself from within.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

It starts with a solid foundation of self love and self worth. Once you truly and deeply love yourself your confidence comes and that leads to empowering yourself in ways you might not have even thought of. Everything flows on from self love and with this foundation you can start to empower other people.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Self love! I talk about it all the time because it is so important. I don’t mean buying yourself something nice every now and then (although that can be part of it) but doing the deep soul work to fully love you, inside and out. This is an ongoing practice that needs to be maintained, similar to exercise. You need to flex your self love muscle regularly to keep it in tip top shape!

 

 

Winitha Bonney

Women that are creating impact are our kinda women. Meet Winitha. She's an expert and thought leader in the future of work, the gig economy and Australia's FIRST thought leader in advancing women of colour in leadership and entrepreneurship. She is also the founder of Amina of Zaria, a digital media company, platform & online tribe to elevate, empower, educate and inspire extraordinary women of colour to succeed in career, business and life. This woman knows empowerment, and here is what she had to say:

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

A deep connection to something higher than yourself. For me it's God. With this relationship, when there is a deep connection it is about surrendering challenges problems to something higher than yourself etc. Sounds counter-intuitive but when you know you and God are one then you know your value and your power but also what you can and can't control and there is a serenity when you surrender. When you know God only has the power to deal with things and you hand over that situation to them then you are empowered through faith. For me it's also about surrounding myself with grounded positive individuals that can be my cheer leader when it is hard to be my one. We need that network and support group. To lead an empowered life means that through your own personal power you are able to empower others. And to also skill up in tools that will take you to the next level.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

Spirituality, emotional resilience and building my personal power. Life will always throw curve balls but part of personal power is managing self or self-leadership as we call it.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Dare to be yourself.

 

 

Emilia Phillips

This girl can squat 235kg, bench 105kg and deadlift 230kg! No, this is no typo. Emilia is a champion in every sense. Apart from earning incredible accolades in the world of natural powerlifting, she is a true champion of positive body image. When we met Emilia and heard her story, we had to feature her; this chick lives and breathes empowerment and she can crush watermelons and pumpkins with her thighs!!!

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

Leading an empowered life means to live without any regrets. If there’s something you want to try, then try it! If there’s something you want to achieve, then start working towards your goal! Living without regret means you’ve at least attempted everything you’ve thought about and what can be more empowering than that? You will have an overwhelming fear of failure, but even failure in itself can be empowering.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

For me personally, finding the confidence to push through self-doubt was the first and biggest skill I needed. I spent a lot of my life always second guessing my value and although I was always perceived to be a happy and confident person, I always struggled on the inside feeling lost and like I didn’t fit in. Starting a strength sport unexpectedly gave me the confidence to smash all barriers I had set myself in life, giving me a new drive, purpose and approach. So keep trying different things and exploring life because if you haven’t found that thing that triggers your confidence, then it’s waiting to be found.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

This is probably more of a challenge than advice. I’ve always had confidence in other people and I’m always the first to tell someone to stop doubting or thinking negatively about themselves and yet, I could never take my own advice. So a little while ago I made a decision that I would wake up every morning, look in the mirror and say something positive about myself. So I challenge you to start leaving the negativity of your previous day behind you and start each morning on a positive note by doing the same.

 

 

Marija Duka

Marija is a career coach for millennial women who refuse to settle and play small, she's here to empower women for a big life. She hosts a kickass podcast called 'The Raw Pod' and by day job, is a lawyer. We love highlighting women who are giving it their all and serving others in a big way, so it was necessary to have Marija answer our 'She's Empowered' questions.

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

To lead an empowered life to me means to be in the driver’s seat of your life rather than just letting life happen to you. I’ve been taught from a very young age by my parents that if you want something in your life you’ve got to work your ass off for it and not expect anything to be handed to you on a silver platter. Having this mindset from a young age has given me a sense of freedom knowing that I can design my life how I want it to look rather than waiting for someone to save me. Knowing that you are in control of your life knocks out any self-limiting beliefs you may have and instils certainty in who you are as a person. Nothing is more empowering than being comfortable with who you are and knowing that you are in control of your destiny, this is the ultimate sense of what it feels like to lead an empowered life.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

So many skills build you up to be empowered, however a few of my favourites are as follows:

 

Resilience

You’ve got to be willing and expect to be knocked down so many times in life, but also you have to have the strength to get back up and keep going. There’s always something to learn from every situation and we cannot allow what society calls failures to knock us down permanently. Resilience is everything and I would say this would be the most important skills to have in building you up to be empowered.

 

Self-awareness

Get cosy with who you are as a person, imperfections and all. Know your strengths and double down on them. Everyone has things that they are good at but not everyone spends time on honing in on their strengths because they’re too busy working on their weaknesses as this is what society tells us to do. Know your limitations and don’t waste time working on your weaknesses, just keep improving your strengths and use them as your selling points in life, career or business.

 

Self-belief

If you don’t believe in yourself, then no one else will. It is up to you to have certainty in yourself and your dreams. Self-belief gets tested in so many areas of our life and for me my self-belief has been tested on so many levels when I decided to start my business as a career coach. However, I’ve allowed my passion for serving others and making an impact in people’s lives come first every time I doubt myself. Having a why and being strongly connected to it will ensure that you continue to believe in yourself, even during those trying times.

 

No one owes you anything.

This goes back to being in control of your life. If we constantly have expectations of others and think that everyone owes us something then we will forever be in the hands of other people. However, telling yourself that others don’t owe you anything makes you feel so liberated and regain control of your life. This is something I’ve picked up from Gary Vee and it has served me so well in life, in my career as a lawyer and in starting my business.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

You’re in complete control of your life. Never give others the opportunity to take your power away from you. Make yourself a priority, believe in who you are, know that you’re worthy and that you deserve to live a full life on your own terms.

 

 

Djurdja Milutinovic

Hands up if you have stepped foot in a Karl Legerfeld store? Well, you can thank Djurdja Milutinovic for that experience because she is the Senior Manager of Store Design and Development at Karl Lagerfeld! She’s an architect with an MBA specializing in luxury/fashion design and management, and has opened 30+ stores for the group. Based in Amsterdam, Djurdja has lived an exceptional life. Here’s what she had to say on empowerment;

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

To me, leading an empowered life means to CREATE. There is no creation in this universe without first visualizing it. Everything you perceive in the outside world has its origin in the inner world of thoughts. Creating means allowing yourself to play, expressing yourself. What I do is closing my eyes and designing that imaginary space where I can walk thru. Space that I can see and feel. And what brings even greater fulfillment is building that imaginary space in this physical reality. Being empowered is materializing your thoughts, creating something out of nothing.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

I started traveling alone at a very young age. And I don’t think it takes special kind of skills to do that, but it certainly does build those important new ones. Traveling alone, being under my own surveillance, meandering upon the unknown, brought me up two important things: COURAGE and FREEDOM. While navigating through life’s decisions, we exercise our personal freedom of choice that is continually being backed up with courage. Courage, not as an absence of fear, but rather as an engine for action. These are the skills that give us the opportunity to build an authentic, empowered life.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

I never strived for an empowered life. It was never my goal or motivation. My goal was finding what I love to do and then find a way how to do it often. And how did I know I found it – every time I create and design, it gives me a sense of realization.

Therefore, my best piece of advice to other women is to invest some time and energy into finding what brings you fulfillment and realization, what makes you feel You and what makes you shine. It is an essence of life and food for soul. It’s like trial and error, might not be fast and easy, but no one can do it for you. After all, there is nothing more beautiful and more powerful than self-confident and fulfilled women.

 

 

Mariam Issa

She's on a mission to inspire one million girls to be their own change agents within themselves and for their communities. She's a Somali-Australian artist and storyteller who has anything but an easy past. She's Mariam Issa, and is a true and pure embodiment of leading an empowered life. Head to our website to hear what she has to say on empowerment.

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

To me, knowing and owning my story is what true power is. Leading an empowered life means discarding the deceptions around me which calls for brutal honesty, bold decision making and integrity with one’s SELF. It also means living one day at a time, engaging and focusing on my world in the present moment. True empowerment, for me, comes from the heart.

 

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

The skill of self L.O.V.E. built me up to an empowered life. I use love as an acronym here because for me it means to Listen deeply, Observe with no judgment, Validate the Ego, Emotion and Experience.

 

When I learned to practice L.O.V.E, I realized that I had a war inside of me and I’ve been running away from the shadow of this war all my life. This war was coming from my Ego and it demanded attention and validation from me which I was not fully present for. It made so much sense to me later on when I became a deep listener and observer with no judgment and a validator of the Ego, which meant that I wasn’t scared anymore and wasn’t running away from my feelings. I created a platform to know why my ego was acting up (the ego to me is that inner child who has never been given attention) and It was not my enemy anymore and I realized when I applied the second E emotion - which is said to be “energy in motion”- I could feel it and not pass judgment on myself for feeling that way and then something magical happened in the third E, the experience, I realized my experiences changed depending on how I dealt with the emotion and I was no longer creating from a place of default, I was actually aware that I was the creator of my experiences. So by just using this tool I learnt the language of the ego, the most powerful storyteller in my life, and what came after having conversations with the ego was transformational, instead of the default blame I would hold towards my ego, I became compassionate towards it and realized that by the simple act of Listening deeply, Observing with no judgment and Validating my Ego, both my emotions and experiences shifted. This now ties to the question in leading an empowered life – I know my truth through this process, I owned it (good or bad), then I stopped lying to myself and blaming outside circumstances. I took full responsibility for my life and that’s why I feel so empowered.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Own your story because that’s where your power is. Design your Destiny and don’t live by default. Celebrate Life because you’re so worth it. You’re already empowered; all you need to do is own it because you’re the woman you’ve been waiting for!

 

 

Mariam Issa

She's on a mission to inspire one million girls to be their own change agents within themselves and for their communities. She's a Somali-Australian artist and storyteller who has anything but an easy past. She's Mariam Issa, and is a true and pure embodiment of leading an empowered life. Head to our website to hear what she has to say on empowerment.

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

To me, knowing and owning my story is what true power is. Leading an empowered life means discarding the deceptions around me which calls for brutal honesty, bold decision making and integrity with one’s SELF. It also means living one day at a time, engaging and focusing on my world in the present moment. True empowerment, for me, comes from the heart.

 

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

The skill of self L.O.V.E. built me up to an empowered life. I use love as an acronym here because for me it means to Listen deeply, Observe with no judgment, Validate the Ego, Emotion and Experience.

 

When I learned to practice L.O.V.E, I realized that I had a war inside of me and I’ve been running away from the shadow of this war all my life. This war was coming from my Ego and it demanded attention and validation from me which I was not fully present for. It made so much sense to me later on when I became a deep listener and observer with no judgment and a validator of the Ego, which meant that I wasn’t scared anymore and wasn’t running away from my feelings. I created a platform to know why my ego was acting up (the ego to me is that inner child who has never been given attention) and It was not my enemy anymore and I realized when I applied the second E emotion - which is said to be “energy in motion”- I could feel it and not pass judgment on myself for feeling that way and then something magical happened in the third E, the experience, I realized my experiences changed depending on how I dealt with the emotion and I was no longer creating from a place of default, I was actually aware that I was the creator of my experiences. So by just using this tool I learnt the language of the ego, the most powerful storyteller in my life, and what came after having conversations with the ego was transformational, instead of the default blame I would hold towards my ego, I became compassionate towards it and realized that by the simple act of Listening deeply, Observing with no judgment and Validating my Ego, both my emotions and experiences shifted. This now ties to the question in leading an empowered life – I know my truth through this process, I owned it (good or bad), then I stopped lying to myself and blaming outside circumstances. I took full responsibility for my life and that’s why I feel so empowered.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Own your story because that’s where your power is. Design your Destiny and don’t live by default. Celebrate Life because you’re so worth it. You’re already empowered; all you need to do is own it because you’re the woman you’ve been waiting for!

 

 

Jade Collins and Alanna Bastin-Byrne

To a community and leaders of that have been so generous to us, it would have been criminal not to feature Jade and Alanna, founders of Femeconomy. These ladies are the movers and shakers of equality, as their directory only supports brands with women on the board or as owners. The additional bonus is that we got two features in one! Head to our website to read what they had to say on empowerment.

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

Jade:

Consciously understanding that you have the freedom to choose what you do every day, and that you have the ability at any moment to change your current choices, and the world around you.

 

Alanna:

Being able to make choices about the work I want to do, the places I want to live or travel and helping my friends and family be empowered to make their own choices without judgement from others. Globally, others are not able to lead an empowered life because of society's systems and structures that surround them, taking away their ability to freely make choices. To me, leading an empowered life also means changing systems and structures so that more people have the ability to be and feel empowered.

 

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

Jade: Self awareness, empathy, gratitude, curosity. Having a skillset or profession that you are consistently developing. Being attuned to the innate human capability and resourcefulness that each of us has, and comprehending and appreciating the unique strengths of others.

 

Alanna:

I think there are skills you need to be empowered such as resilience and an appetite for risk, but there are different skills needed to empower others like active listening, empathy and being a connector.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Jade:Time is wealth. Spend your time on the people, activities and causes that make your heart sing.

 

Alanna:

Provide a warm introduction for someone in your network. Women are busy - at work, at home and at play. Time is such a precious commodity and it is the one I hold most dear because we never know how much of it we have. What might be a two minute email for you, saves them several hours of networking, researching and follow-ups. I guarantee it won’t just make you feel good, but it usually will help your own career or business journey down the track.

 

 

Emma Lewis

Director, founder, boss, AND a badass solopreneur.. who is this woman? It's Emma Lewis, from Canvast. Canvast is the brainchild of Emma, and like us, she is dedicated to enriching the lives of women one planner at a time.
Here's what she had to say on empowerment;

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

For me, living an empowered life means chasing after what sets your soul on fire, all the while accepting that you're flawed, that some days don't go as planned or you use dry shampoo for two weeks straight - BUT, you keep on going regardless! Feeling empowered to me also means not NEEDING anyones validation or acceptance and knowing that you're doing something magic that only you might understand sometimes.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

Getting uncomfortable and doing things that I thought I might not be able to do. Imagine that, knowing that whatever obstacle or fear inducing moment came up, theres always a voice in the back of your head assuring you, "you're going to be fine, you've been through worse than this"

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Don't listen to the bullshit. You know your truth and what you need to do. Only you know when to rest, and only you know when to smash a coffee, put your hair in a bun, put on some gangsta rap and get it done...don't let anyone dictate your own life to you. And if there's something you want, go out and get it.

 

 

Bryanna McDermott

This girl KNOWS how to hustle hard to get the monies. Best of all, she's created a platform that empowers you to do the exact same with your finances. Above all, she's one of the most authentic and genuine people with a passion for what she does that we have been fortunate enough to meet.
Here's what Bryanna from Fearless Female Traders had to say on empowerment;

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

We live in an age where we are constantly switched 'on', constantly connected, constantly engaging, the pressure to be in 'boss-mode' can sometimes feel forced or overwhelming. For me, leading an empowered life actually means knowing when to push that extra 1%, and when to be kind to yourself and your mind. It's amazing how productive and yet clam you can be when you're kind to yourself!

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

Nothing excites me more than when women support me. Truly. To this day, I have had more men support me than women in the corporate world. So when a woman invests in me; when she spends time on my growth as a woman and a professional, I can't help but feel so empowered and privileged! It may be an hour out of their week, but it's always a moment that I feel uplifted and supported.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Listen and start with empathy. Sometimes the best advice is in the words of the least expected. Listen to what's going on around you and you may just find that the piece of motivation you're missing, or the guidance you're searching for is staring right at you. It doesn't always need to be filed with complexity and over used mantras, but rather in the simplicity of life itself. Oh and start with empathy, with kindness! I believe in the corporate world, they call this EQ or emotional intelligence. I just call it being a human being who respects other women, and will do my damndest to squeeze me feet into their shoes to fully understand where they're coming from and how they're feeling.

 

 

Michelle Redfern

We needed to feature Michelle Redfern as a thank you for the work she is doing to create an equitable future for, well, everyone! She is the founder of Advancing Women, professional women’s network, Women Who Get It and co-founder of CDW. Michelle is a proud recipient of the AFR & Qantas 100 Women of Influence Award (2018) for her work on diversity and inclusion in the Australian business and Sporting sectors. Talk about leading an empowered and purpose-fueled life!
Here's what she had to say:

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

For me, empowered means having choices. I have worked hard, and continue to do so, in order to have choices about the way I live my life, the type of work I do and of course, my financial well being. I also work very hard, advocate and activate for all women to have choices, socially, politically, economically and of course, choice about their bodies, families, careers and leadership.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

I’m very fortunate that I have natural energy, drive and determination. These traits have certainly stood me in good stead to pursue an empowered life being able to make choices. I have also always had a strong commitment to self development. That meant ensuring that I was seeking, and gaining, skills to take me to where I wanted to go next. This included always putting my hand up for professional development during my corporate career, reading (a lot!), joining industry or networking associations to learn from others and enrolling in and completing my Executive MBA in my late 40’s. I try to be open to learning new things that will add to my toolbox! I’ve traveled globally to gain new skills, particularly about diversity, gender and creating workplaces that work for all women.

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

There is a lot of advice given to women. My best advice? Ignore all advice! I’m tired of women being told what they “should” do/be. I say to women, be very very clear about what your values and beliefs are, align your hopes, dreams, aspirations and priorities to those values and beliefs, then seek the advice you need, from the right people, at the right time. That takes work. But you’re worth it.

 

 

Estelle Polevoy

She's obsessed with Beyonce, loves red wine and chocolate, and is the Founder of Fierce Female Co, which support women in unleashing their inner fierce self to live their best life. Helping other women get past their fears and insecurities to achieve transformation is truly empowering. Here's what the badass coach Estelle had to say on empowerment:

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

Leading an empowered life is about acting in alignment with what lights you up. Even if that very thing scares you or makes you feel uneasy. Leading an empowered life is about knowing you are making a difference to others and recognizing that you are growing every day. It means doing things on your terms, regardless of what others think or society claims you should or shouldn't do. It's about tuning into yourself and being curious about your purpose, what your mission is here on earth and being unapologetic about it. It's about believing in yourself and the universe, knowing you're on the right path.

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

The key skills that build you up to be empowered is self awareness. Knowing yourself, understanding the reasons behind your emotions, your triggers and your inner desires. The more we understand ourselves and where we are at in our journey, the more we can pave the way for creating a more empowered life

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

Being visionary allows you to see things that are not formed yet, see opportunities that are not yet your reality. Being visionary allows you to step into an empowered state of mind even if your current circumstances don't feel empowering.

And being relentless. Having a strong inner knowing that no matter what you will achieve your desires and you will reach your goals. Being relentless is about moving forward, not giving up and believing in yourself enough to keep going even if you feel defeated. This builds character and the sheer act of being relentless feels empowering because you know you're following through with what is truly meaningful to you. And there ain't nothing more empowering than that.

 

 

Brooke Vulinovich

She's a Social Media Speaker, Trainer, and Donut Lover, the Founder of Villa Management and Creator of the Social Club Membership. If you live in Perth you would have seen her on 9 News Perth too! Her list of accolades is endless, but above all, she's one badass babe in business. Her enthusiasm and energy has radiated all the way on the east coast, so it was a unanimous decision that Brooke had to be part of our She's Empowered feature series. Here's what she had to say:

 

What does it mean to lead an empowered life?

Having the confidence to say NO to situations, people and opportunities that don’t serve you.. this took me YEARS to work out! When you’re first starting off in business you don’t want to turn down any opportunity but in the long term, you can only do so much and you have to become strategic with what you say yes to or you’ll burn out!

 

What skills build you up to be empowered?

Putting yourself first in every aspect of your life and realising how good it makes you feel so you can pass on that goodness to others. As the saying goes “you can’t pour from an empty cup” – you’ve got to find what inspires and motivates you and prioritise that consistently!

 

Best piece of advice to other women?

You can do ANYTHING you set your mind to. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but ANY goal can be broken down into a series of actionable tasks that get you closer every day to where you want to be. Ignore the nay-sayers, they are just projecting their own insecurities onto you. Inspire every room you walk into. Be nice to people. Seriously. But don’t let them walk all over you. Surround yourself with people you admire for constant motivation to push higher and strive further..