When I was young there were virtually no strong female role models. Yeah, there were lots of scantily-clad blondes in horror movies who opened the window to let in vampires, and there was that woman off Blue Peter who made Tortoise Beds out of shoe boxes, and ermm, Margaret Thatcher. The only woman I wanted to be like when I grew up was Emma Peel from The Avengers. Not only did she wear leather catsuits, but she regularly got to karate chop criminal masterminds.
Fast forward a couple (ok a few) decades and we are falling over ourselves with strong women.
Here are some of my favourite Midlife Role Models…and what we can learn from them.
It’s not so much her politics that impress me (the German political set up is not one of my strong points) – it’s the fact Angela runs Germany while not giving a toss about fashion. She simply slaps on some moisturiser (I expect it’s the cheap stuff from Superdrug), brushes here sensible hair, gets herself into a square-ish trouser suit and gets on with on running Europe’s largest economy. AND she got to marry Prince Harry (HOLD ON… am I getting my Merkles and Markles mixed up?)
Channeling Your Inner Angela
Bugger bouncy blow dries and eyelash lifts – give your hair a quick spray with Batiste Dry Shampoo, slap on some lip balm, pull on something comfy and haul your ass off to work
At the other end of the spectrum we have …
Not only is this 70 something a fabulous actress that I’d go out my way to watch, but she is so effortlessly, confidently, stylish that you could be forgiven for thinking she’s French.
Channeling Your Inner Helen
Forget Beach Body Perfection – look cellulite in the eye and say Hello Gorgeous then hit the beach like Helen …in a red bikini.
Anyone who can don an eye patch with an X on it, a pair of fishnets and get lots of nimble young men to hold them aloft, while you do scissor kicks, has got my vote.
Channeling Your Inner Madonna
Get your baggy leggings on and get your lazy ass off to spin or do some yoga or at least take a dog for a walk (that’s a Note to Self)
Professor Mary Beard
The Professor of Classics at the University of Cambridge, turned TV presenter, turned National Treasure, knows more about the ancient history than I know about…well, everything.
And she’s fearless – she has repeatedly stood up to Twitter Trolls who posted vile abuse and, of course, out-smarted them at every turn.
Channeling Your Inner Mary
Find the things in life that you love doing…and do them. Your enthusiasm will shine through – and if anyone bullies you along the way, stand up to them Mary-style – and threaten to tell their mum (she promptly got an apology)…or the boss…or the cops.
After a horrific acid attack this young woman picked herself up and created what looks like a cracking life, and inspired lots of folk along the way.
Channeling Your Inner Katie
If life takes you on a difficult (in Katie’s case an unspeakably difficult) path slowly and gently pick yourself up, brush down and keep moving forward.
Not only has this 93 year old seen out 13 prime ministers and now has to deal with Le Boris, she quietly gets on with her job while completely ignoring whatever mess her family are currently creating (I’m looking at you Prince Andrew and your choice of friends).
Channeling Your Inner Queen
No matter what’s is going on around you, hold your head high and adopt Her Maj’s Motto – Never Complain and Never Explain. Simply get on your metaphorical horse and inspect your metaphorical soldiers.
At the age of 81 Joyce McWilliams enrolled in a blogging class (where we met) and went on to launch her blog www.grandmawilliams.com
Three years down the line she’s started the #AgeProud campaign, is invited to speak on positive ageing to audiences throughout the UK, has been featured in numerous articles, given Phil what’s for on ITV’s This Morning and has 4000+ Twitter followers checking out her latest thoughts. And she’s great fun.
Channeling Your Inner Grandma Williams
If Joyce can embrace technology in her 80s then you can damn well learn how to use hashtags on Instagram (that’s another Note to Self).
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