“Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren’t.” Margaret Thatcher
Profile: First and only female British Prime Minister.
Trump Card: Her pearls, uncompromising wits, and heavy-handed approach with terrorists.
There’s something about a women who knows her trump card. In Margaret Thatcher’s case, it was simply being a woman. She became the first female opposition leader in the British House of Commons after graduating Oxford and finishing law school. The unstoppable force in a skirt-suit had a mind to shake things up a bit and did as Britain’s first female Prime Minister.
Anyone who says with perfect authority: “I usually make up my mind about a man in ten seconds, and I very rarely change it.” has the floor in my book, especially with the scarcity of female role models in my generation.
Reality TV starlets with inflated egos air their opinions on Oprah and Jimmy Kimmel Live, lacking character and a vocabulary. It’s as if the world of intelligent women collapsed and left a few lone rangers. It’s as if there are no Margaret Thatchers left at all. Ok, it’s not that bad, but reason enough to go ahead and cancel your cable service right now.
Being a student of history (or a documentary movie watcher at the least) there are valuable things to learn from Thatcher where the modern female lacks:
1. Speak loudly, when it’s for the right reasons.
2. Make your life about doing something, and being someone will naturally follow.
3. With politics and men, do your best not to wear your heart on your sleeve.
I can pack a verbal gut-punch, but my British accent could still use work. One skirt suit is sandwiched between the folds of my closet, but no bird-nest hats. I have yet to read a man’s character with the snap judgment of picking good produce, but I’m working on it. We can’t all be Thatcher, but in small ways, she teaches us how to pull our trump card when it’s right. Being a lady is about knowing it, not just showing it.