This article appeared first on Chicago Woman: http://chicago-woman.com/life_love/balance/leading-by-example-four-women-that-live-their-truths-and-ins
Despite our country shifting to a more self-focused and ego-driven culture, there remain altruistic persons who care about and invest in the lives of others. Many of these are women I admire and consider remarkable role models. These women live in an exemplary manner and exude confidence while wearing multiple hats. They are not perfect, and would never claim to be. They are just imperfect people who have chosen to share their talents and good fortune with others.
- Melinda Gates: Cofounder of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Melinda Gates has dedicated her life to being a champion for women. She is a leader in gender equality and invests in the future of girls around the world. As a wife and mother of three, she has redefined philanthropy by donating more than thirty billion dollars in grants since 2000. I applaud her commitment to her passion of advancing the lives of women and her perseverance in the field of global development.
- Oprah Winfrey: Oprah Winfrey started out as an anchor on a local television station, but with hard work and tenacity, she became a billionaire who has helped millions of people around the world. She has shared her struggles with abuse and self-esteem in order to inspire others to conquer their hardships and know that they are good enough. While maintaining an aura of class, Oprah has single-handedly challenged America’s views of beauty, elegance, and strength.
- Salma Hayek: Known to some only as a beauty and actress, Salma Hayek has become a supporter and advocate for battered women’s awareness. Mrs. Hayek earned my respect the day she breastfed a starving child in Sierra Leone in an effort to diminish the stigma of breastfeeding and bring awareness to the issue of world hunger. She continues to aid underprivileged children in Mexico and live by her own rules.
- Sara Blakely: A wife and mother of four, Sara Blakely is now a billionaire in her own right. She took her $5,000 in savings and founded the Spanx shapewear brand changing the lives of women around the world, including mine! She later created The Sara Blakely Foundation and is dedicated to the education of women in entrepreneurial training. She is included because of her passion and tenacity in empowering other women to succeed.
But being a role model is not about what you do for a living, nor is it about making millions of dollars. Being a role model is about living your life in a way that can be emulated by others. It is about deciding you want your life to have meaning, a purpose that is bigger than you.
Do you use your talents and good fortune to improve the lives of others? If not, maybe it is time that you take a cue from these ladies and start today.