Just in case your reaction is “oh, good grief,” consider some thoughts, feelings — and your actual experiences…then, if you want, argue away! I’ve come to the questions and conclusions I’m sharing after an “earlier” life time of suiting up like everyone else, and suffering the long term consequences…am I still “brain washed” to believe my legs and my outfit look better in heels? Yes! AND I still believe it’s important to examine who is in CHARGE of what we wear….and the impact of those choices!
-How stable do you really, truly feel in those things? Especially when rushing, crossing a street, up and down stairs?
-How frequently do you lean on a man (or someone) when you feel a little off balance?
-How much damage have you done to your feet? Toes? Knees? Well, if you’re still in your 20’s you perhaps have not started to FEEL it yet. Trust me, or any orthopedic doc or body worker, you will..
-How often do you lust after a pair of flats, a great pair of sneakers/running shoes?
-What is the sacrifice getting you? That momentary feel of looking great? And who really defines great?
-Who/what influences you to buy them and put them on?
-How balanced, secure, sure on your feet do you truly feel?
-How often does your body complain “all day” so that you are distracted from the important work you do — at home or in the office–keeping your focus just a little off?
And even more seriously —
-How does being just a little “off balance” impact your attitude in day to day life? Toward work, a sense of self assurance, confidence, power, equal “footing.”
Even though I can’t come up with an accurate historical review of the relationship of foot wear and female/male power issues, I truly believe heels get higher as women once again move to more positions of power….as we assert our right to be leaders, politicians, advocates for the rights of women, I have to wonder how HIGH heels can get! Our feet are not BOUND to immobilize us, but most women will confess to being uncomfortable, perhaps in pain, and experiencing an impact on mobility….
I know many will protest: “This is nuts, I love my heels”….one woman said to me in a workshop where I was challenging the footwear….”I rock these heels I have on.” And who does not remember the “love affair” between women and high heels on Sex and The City? So do I know most people will read this and say it’s crazy? Yes.
Still, I think examining the way “power is diffused” when women are made to feel even a little off balance is important….and if you simply can’t read without shaking your head, perhaps at least consider it as a “metaphor” for the inequality between women and men…the guys have shoes that allow them total freedom of movement….and dominance! And they assert that dominance — almost everywhere!