On ¿Quién Tú Eres? podcast, we explore the conflict we often face between "professionalism" & being our authentic selves. We would love to feature everyone in our community on their own episode. That said, we publish one episode a week...so we created a story submission option for people to self-publish & share their experiences with the world.
Tell me about a time when you repressed parts of your authentic self?
Theresa Ludovici - I have worked the majority of my career within the Hospitality sector. As an educated female presenting hyper femme; I have often been made to feel ashamed for expressions such as wearing lipstick or wearing business casual skirts. I have had co-workers point out how curvy my body is even. One of my bosses even took it upon themselves to make a comment (in front of other employees) about how I should not come to work dressed as if it were a "pageant" and laughed about it in my face. This was several years ago; however, it has stuck with me till this day. These comments about appearance, many of which we cannot control, undermine the knowledge of skill and humanity we bring to the work place. It makes individuals feel attacked when they should feel safe.
When do you feel the most comfortable being your authentic self?
Theresa Ludovici - I feel the most comfortable being myself around people who accept and express the full spectrum of who they are. Whether that's having dyed hair, embracing body art, wearing cultural styles of clothing and natural hair styles, or simply existing as a force that encourages diversity and inclusion within the work place. Your appearance should not hold value above the experience you can bring to a company.
What would give you the confidence to be your authentic self, regardless the environment?
Theresa Ludovici - Inclusive leadership. More opportunities for those who feel undermined in the work place. An open panel to speak on work-place discrimination without retaliation from upper management or HR.
Have a story to share? Let us know here for an opportunity to be featured in the podcast!