Finding yourself with soul food: The power of the team instead of a cat fight


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Text comes from: Als Eva noch mit Äpfeln warf: Soulfood für Frauen (2012) of Liz Howard, published by Verlagsgruppe Random House, Reprints by friendly permission of the publisher.
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Cohesion in a community is incredibly important. Unfortunately, women often have a hard time with it, because it is not uncommon for the goat war to rule. It depends on the power of the team!

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Liz Howard 90Liz Howard is a university lecturer, singer and vocal coach on the TV program X Factor.

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Teamwork or outsider?

I also remember that as young girls we could still compliment each other on all sorts of things, selflessly and without worrying whether these compliments would cost us something or we might lose something.

Unfortunately, it is often different today among women. But as a young girl, one thing was certain: I would one day stand in front of a really large audience and use my voice in some way.

Be part of a community

Unfortunately, I was not always part of a community, rather an outsider who was only allowed to play catch, jump rope and hide from time to time. The girls in our neighborhood, man, oh man, it was really a committed community.

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On the other hand, perhaps because I had a very strict mother, who had allowed me only once to allow a friend to stay with me. On the other hand, however, I was actually an outsider by nature; someone who is allowed to play in the game, if someone from the team was missing someone.

The power of the team

Yes, I admired the other girls for their strength, their courage and above all for their strong cohesion. When a young man was stupid enough to mess with them, they instinctively held hands, became one, and threatened to beat up the poor guy: "Don't mess with us!" Whereupon everyone else came along loudly: “We are not afraid of you”, and the whole clique then shouted in a chorus: “Yeah! Don't mess with us! ”,“ Come on! ”, And“ We're not afraid of you! ”.

The sound of these voices was almost like a song with a particularly strong and penetrating text, specially composed for the purpose of letting the enemy feel that he was not better off with such a group.

Previous: A life without worries

Looking back, we lived almost without worries. Ok, my only really great concern was probably coping with all my daily household tasks like washing dishes, ironing, cleaning, vacuuming, and so on.

Maybe also in how I could keep my fingers off McDonald's delicious strawberry milkshake. Oh, how did I love strawberries or a double ice cream from “Dairy Queen” or - oh god, give me strength! Ok, so with a few exceptions, I was relatively unconcerned.

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What are Cellulits?

For example, I never thought about the consequences of my chocolate and ice cream. I thought neither of calories nor of cellulitis. Hell, I did not even know how to spell these words!

Did I even have the slightest idea that strawberries and soft ice cream with a chocolate mantle can make my butt up to the size of a double-headed tourist bus? No, and it did not matter to me at all.

Only one thought was important

On my almost five-kilometer walk to the next branch of “Dairy Queen”, I usually wore my summer dress, which was flowered in all the colors of the rainbow, and had braided my hair into two braids.

Every few meters I checked, while the water in my mouth was already running, whether my 25 cents were still in the little sewn-on bag of my dress. I let the coins glide through my fingers or held them tight, so that they could not disappear through any small holes in their pockets.

But I had only one important thought in mind: Hopefully there was once again set up a brand new ice cream seller, where you could be pretty sure that he could not estimate the quantities due to lack of experience and I would therefore get more ice cream than common.

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Today: What happened?

Excuse me, but whenever I think of chocolate, my thoughts wander a little. Let's go back to my admiration for the community of women from back then. Here is my question to you now, the one question that I keep asking myself, which I call the “famous women's question”:

Women out there in the world, what happened to us? When did we lose that spirit that kept us together? When did we begin to compare and evaluate our cellulite?

My inner revolution

When did we stop enjoying an ice cream? And when - for good measure - did we start feeling guilty about eating chocolate while eating?

Over time, this question became my mantra, transformed into an inner revolution, my inner revolution. I work with women, I try to pay attention to these women, but of course I always fall asleep with this whole female competition.

Zickenkrieg or cohesion?

So I decided to go out, search, ask, feel, and finally understand: What do we do today but thirty or forty years ago?

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Ok, think I'm crazy, but something seems to be whispering to my subconscious: "It's not all the way it is going at the moment!" That's why I'm standing here now and starting my journey to ask as many women as possible what we should change.

What needs to change?

Is there any way to change this process at all? Is it really a bitchy war or is it just a fad to buy from the media? Do we all have to have the same shoes, take the same lipstick and wear size 34? We can also learn to celebrate and give each other strength, whether at work, among mothers, friends and sisters, whether as a young or mature woman, single or newly in love.

Or is this behavior far deeper in women than we suspect, and must we illuminate this phenomenon from different angles? I would prefer to sit down with each one of you and talk about a woman's cohesion and competition with a delicious cup of tea or coffee.


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