In a recent New York Times article on Michelle Bachelet, president of Chile, we can observe the growth of a leader. On her election in 2006, she faced student demonstrations across her country, a new chaotic public transportation system and the “impression that she was not in control”. She will be ending her term as one of Chile’s most popular leaders. “Polls this month show her public approval to be above 70 percent, and in recent weeks she has recorded the highest levels since Chile went from dictatorship to democracy in 1990.”
”At the start, she said, the political establishment tried to portray her as weak and disrespectful of the office of the president. She did things that were not presidential in the eyes of the Chilean establishment,” said Ms. Lagos, the pollster. “It is very difficult to go back. She lowered the presidency closer to the people.”
“It was an important challenge in the first few years,” Ms. Bachelet, 58, said in a recent interview, noting the way other powerful women had urged her to toughen up and “scream and insult” to be respected. “I took a gamble,” she added, “to exercise leadership without losing my feminine nature.”
Becoming leaders takes courage and determination and most of all a willingness to step forward. It cannot and will not be done for us. Though, each of us must take that step for ourselves, we need not do it alone. Hopefully we too can and will do it by manifesting our feminine natures. We need to rely on them for they are our strengths.
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