Women don’t feel well. You may read that statement and think to yourself, “But I feel fine.” If you do, you are one of the lucky few.
I think we judge how well we feel based on our own personal average – I feel fine compared to when I’m achy with the flu, or I feel as well as I ever do, so that must be fine.
I say that isn’t good enough! It’s not good enough for you, or for your family or even for the health of our country. Here’s why.
I believe women are an important part of the cure for what is wrong with our national economy. When I look at how much women are spending, I can’t help but wonder how much more we would be spending – how much more women would be helping the economy – if we actually felt good.
The numbers are already staggering. Right now, women worldwide are responsible for spending $20 trillion annually. That number is expected to rise to $28 trillion in the next few years. In 2004, women were credited with spending $7 trillion just in the United States. That was over half the gross domestic product of our country that year.
But how much of that money is going toward purchases that benefit the economy and how much is being spent on health care? And how many women are going broke because they got sick, got fired, lost their insurance … and the list goes on and on.
Of course you can argue that women are not paid equally and that we are underrepresented in board rooms across the country. I know what it feels like to be the only woman on a board, because I was. And boy did I wish there was one more female at that table! But as bad as that is, it’s not our biggest problem.
Here’s where I think we’ve gone wrong, for women and, really, for the entire U.S. population. Women don’t feel good. I speak all over this country and around the world and I run into it everywhere I go and in every age bracket. Young, middle-aged or older, it’s all the same.
Very few women I meet tell me they feel fabulous, or great or even good. Most women tell me they don’t feel well. And worse, they don’t know what to do to feel better.
Women around the globe are frustrated by the health care system. They are tired being peddled antidepressants and given a pat on the head like a child with a skinned knee. And they are really tired of being told they are just stressed and then being dismissed.
If I've heard it once, I've heard it a thousand times. I can't stand what I hear anymore.
There's a reason why women go to the doctor three times as often as men, and it isn't what you think. Women are confused about what to do. One doctor tells us to do something while another says don’t!
The media hypes conflicting studies about women’s health based on bad research and inaccurate data, and no one calls it into question. No one in authority seems to pay attention to the accuracy of the studies or the agendas of the people pushing them. Worst of all, no one calls them out for misleading women.
This cannot go on. Women have been the targets of misinformation and lack of options for too long. Women are playing new, key roles in the economy and business development. But our health care is still light-years behind where it should be in the 21st Century.
This is why I will continue to go to the FDA hearings and fight for us. I will continue to use the collective voice we've created on EmpowHER until we are heard. I will continue to fight the fight every day and not back down.
We need our voices heard and that means getting ready for our biggest war yet – fighting to have equality in our health care.
I know some of you are thinking it can’t be done or we have too far to go to get what we deserve from the health care system.
I don’t care what stands in the way. This is too important to give up, and I’m not doing it alone. I have the entire history of intelligent, powerful women standing at my back to remind me that we are worth it and we can do it.
My dear friend and mentor Sharon Lechter’s new book ”Think and Grow Rich for Women” is full of great examples of women who have succeeded against the odds. Sharon also shares meaningful tools we can use to achieve new heights faster and better than ever before – financially and in every aspect of our lives, including our health.
So I encourage you to read the book, and to join your voice with mine. Your family and your country deserve you to feel better!
Forbes. The Power Of ‘Just one Woman’. Jennifer Gilhool. Web. July 15, 2014.
She Economy. Marketing to Women Quick Facts. Web. July 15, 2014.