Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Bossy People


That's me.  Probably around five.

I am one of those bossy people. 

You can see that it started early.  We are having some kind of a tea party here, and you can see that I am clearly in charge.  I am already bossing my possible future husbands around.  I am probably saying something like, "If you don't put the tea in first, you need to go home."  (TIF and MIF - Tea in first or milk in first?  It's a touchy subject with some British folks.  I was already an Anglophile at five).

In general people don't like being called bossy and most don't think they are.  But there is bossy and then there is bossy.  You might be bossy and not even know it.

There are different kinds of bossy people.

The Passive Aggressive Bossy Person
"Well, if you aren't going to do the dishes, I guess I will have to go do them."

The Non-Confrontational Bossy Person
"I left you a list of things I need you to get done.  It's on your desk. Now I'm leaving."

The Sweet Bossy Person
"Honeeee....when you are finished with raking the leaves, the car needs to get washed and then the laundry folded. Thanks, Honeeee...."

The Sexy Bossy Person
"After you rake the leaves, wash the car, fold the laundry and walk the dog, guess what you get to do after that?" - wink, wink

The Military Bossy Person
"May I have your attention, please!  Your assignment for today is to rake the leaves, wash the dogs and do the grocery shopping, right?"

The Bored Bossy Person
"[Sigh...sigh]. I guess I will go wash the dishes...[sigh]...unless I can find someone who would get off his butt and do them so I can go do something fun.

The Shaming Bossy Person
"SOME people have things that need to get done - like washing the dishes and the dogs and the cars - instead of watching TV!

The Victim Bossy Person
(sniff) The garbage needs to go out, the cars and dogs and dishes all need washing and it's just too much.  I just can't deal with it and IT HAS TO BE DONE! (sniff)

The Know-It-All Bossy Person
You didn't know that?  Well, grab your dunce cap because I am going to give you a 20-minute tutorial!

See yourself there at all?


Being called bossy is usually not a compliment, and I notice it's usually assigned to women, not men.  A woman is called bossy when she makes a request that is interpreted as an order, but when a man does the same thing, he is considered authoritative.

Well, I am here to say that being bossy can be a good thing. 

First, if you are called bossy, you are probably the boss.  You worked hard and earned that title, even if it's in your own house.  Don't you want your boss to do her job?  Well, her job is to boss.

  • Bossy people have ideas and are not afraid to express them.
  • Bossy people create strategies to get things done.
  • Bossy people speak up and are more likely to get what they want.
  • Bossy people are strong and take the lead.

Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer and "Lean In" author Sheryl Sandberg, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Beyoncé and Jennifer Garner, agree that when women and girls take the lead they are often called bossy, something they feel discourages women and girls from doing just that - leading.  So they have gotten together to start an initiative called "Ban Bossy," to help end the negative connotation of the word "bossy," which is so often what girls are called when they take charge and which discourages girls from pursuing leadership roles.

Sandberg shared in an op-ed piece for "The Wall Street Journal" that when she was young, one of her teachers told her best friend that "nobody likes a bossy girl" and that she should find a new friend who was a better influence on her.  That teacher was talking about Sandberg.  Sandberg went on to say in the piece that men are called leaders and women are called bossy.

Though I wholeheartedly agree that we need to teach our daughters to fearlessly speak up, to take charge and to lead, I don't know if I would go so far as to ban the word bossy. I just think we need to educate women and men, change how we think about it and not use it as a shaming word. 

Yes, the really negative connotation of bossy is telling people what to do without input, not caring about people's feelings and dictating.  But that's not bossy.  That's just mean and lacking in self awareness.  And if you ask me (and even if you don't ask me, I am going to say it anyway because I am bossy), men are more likely to be that kind of bossy than women.  So why do women get called bossy for taking charge just like men do?

When confronted with that mean kind of bossy person, I will put on my own "good" "bossypants" and deal with the situation instead of other strategies that non-bossy people use, such as passive aggression, eye-rolling and behind the back activities which gets them nowhere.

Because I have been a take-charge sort of woman, an idea person, a leader and a boss (and not the mean version), I have been called bossy.  But I don't mind.  No need to ban the word.

I think I will go along with Tina Fey, who said in her autobiography "Bossypants," -

"You're nobody until someone calls you bossy."

So when someone calls me bossy, I will take it as a compliment.


 

Thanks for Reading!
 
And I Better See you on Friday

(just kidding...a little bossy joke,
but I hope you will be there) 
 
for my review of the new movie 
 
"Meadowland" 
 
and

 
The Week in Reviews

(What to See or Read and What to Avoid)
 
and the latest on
 
"My 1001 Movies I Must See Before
 I Die Project."

 
  
If you enjoyed this post, feel free to click on the share buttons to share it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn, email it to your friends and LIKE me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/rosythereviewer






4 comments :

  1. I don't know where I have been but I have not heard of the movement to ban the word "bossy" tho I do agree it's mostly used to define women in a negative way.

    I know I am bossy...I just can't figure out what type of bossy I am. There is a little of me in every category you listed.

    Between the "shoulds" on Susan's blog and "bossy" here I think maybe I need HELP!

    Seriously tho...I can't see banning the word "bossy". It would be saying it's a bad thing and I don't think it always is...(says a bossy person).

    sazzy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree with you, sazzy. I hadn't heard about that "ban bossy" movement until recently either. And I, too, don't think we need to ban the word. We just need to empower it in our favor. As Tina Fey said, "You're nobody until somebody calls you bossy." I wear it proudly! :) BTW, just saw Gloria Steinem so I am fired up for my blog post this coming Tuesday!

      Delete
    2. Well great minds think alike! I just commented on your other post that i am looking forward to your Tuesday post as well!!!

      And I forgot to mention how tickled I was by your photo...you were clearly in charge of the tea party!! Look how the little boy is watching you...love it!

      sazzy

      Delete
    3. I know. He looks like he needs to be nice to me OR ELSE! :)

      Delete