It always feels like a bit of a delicate balancing act when it comes to embracing your strengths as a female in the working world. You want to be unapologetic about the fact that you have unique talents, and have every right to celebrate your success in the way that many of your male counterparts do. But it’s a sad fact that women are not only often hit with imposter syndrome, but made to feel like they have to suppress their femininity in certain environments to fit in with the status quo.
One former TV host is looking to change this. Chidem Anna Alie is a model, influencer, and writer/producer of media, film and television, who has worked on top shows like Prison Break. Vancouver based Alie also worked as a news anchor, TV host and producer for KRTK, a local news station in her family home of Northern Cyprus.
When she relocated to the US, she worked as a production coordinator in film and television projects for Fox, Warner, Hallmark, Freeform, Lifetime/A&E as well as producing advertising and content for brands such as Samsung and BMW. Currently she is a contestant in the Maxim Cover Girl competition and is expanding her online platforms to inspire women to feel empowered in their femininity. Having worked in an industry largely dominated by masculine traits, she’s no stranger to the struggle of trying to retain her own feminine identity.
“I think one problem we see is that the current trends around ‘empowering women’, while having a lot of positives, are not really encouraging women to embrace their femininity,” she explains. “There seems to be this prevailing idea that being empowered as a female, means emphasizing your masculine traits more. This can lead to judgement and misjudgement especially on women who do embrace their femininity.”
A large part of her mission in helping women rekindle and reconnect with their femininity, is helping people to understand what this actually looks like to them.
“[Femininity] is unique to each individual and there isn’t one look or image. In essence it is about being authentic, and feeling free to express yourself, and to be free to do so, without fear of being judged.” She adds that this means being able to express traditionally feminine traits without feeling like this will be viewed as a sign of weakness.
In order to see change, Alie argues that this has to start happening at every level from the top down, including in the media, arts and entertainment industries. “[They should be] honouring and respecting feminine traits more when creating plots and characters especially, because they often become role models to people, especially if the show is popular. Why are female leads still usually depicted as someone whose masculine traits outweigh the feminine?” she explains.
“I laugh out loud whenever I see a female character do some stereotypical male things…and of course now that this bad behaviour is being portrayed by a female it’s depicted as not just acceptable but even really cool, just because it’s subversive.”
Now, after years of seeing warped ideals of feminism and femininity, Alie has made it her mission to support and advocate for other women still trying to get in touch with their true identity.
“ [I want] to empower and give space for women and people who enjoy celebrating their femininity in all its forms to feel free to do so, and to encourage women and people to connect with beauty of all forms within themselves and in the world around them,” she explains. “The world needs more feminine energy to bring much needed balance…Just be you.”