Opinion: Women should not be afraid to take pride in their work and display a little arrogance

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Ladies, it’s ok to have some ego and take pride in your work

I don’t want to work for free and I charge a lot for my work, and when someone can’t match my price, I politely decline. Unless the person is a good friend and I’d be happy to work something out.

Staying true to myself is seen as “egotistic”, or “หยิ่ง” – but why is that such a bad thing though?

I don’t think having a bit of ego for my work is a bad thing. In fact, I want to see more women do it. Staying true to my capability has given me the confidence to negotiate my salary, it has provided me the opportunity to work on cool projects that I enjoy instead of wasting my energy on bad projects just because.

Why did I say women? Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think men have any problems with negotiating and having confidence in their work.

Women go through our professional life not being valued enough, especially in Thailand. Thai society grooms women to conform, say yes and nod along. When a woman is strong and capable, she risks facing criticisms.

Criticisms like, “เก่งขนาดนี้จะหาผัวได้หรอ” – “You’re so capable, are you ever going to be able to find a husband?”, “เก่งขนาดนี้จะเข้ากับคนอื่นได้หรอ” – “You’re so capable, would you be able to get along with other people?”

These criticisms try to paint a bad image over women who are capable as a bad thing, as something that we shouldn’t be. But men don’t get the same criticisms.

Why do we keep teaching our girls that to be capable, is going to scare men off? (And so what if men get scared by strong women, anyways?) Why do we make it seem like it’s only acceptable for men to be good at their job?

I think, because of this kind of undertone, it makes a lot of Thai women not very confident in a workplace. Most of my female friends would not know the first thing when it comes to asking the company to revise their salaries, or negotiate their salaries during the interview.

Because of this, a lot of us women don’t know our worth, or are scared to show our worth by asking for more. And some companies, or men can take advantage of us. There’s nothing wrong with asking for more. If you don’t ask, you’ll never know what you could get.

Because of this, most of us women are afraid of coming across too strong, too much, too capable, too egoistic etc. But I think it’s time we spin the meaning of “being egotistical” as a good thing.

Yes, we have ego, because we know how much we’re worth, we know how much we are capable of – so we’ll make sure that no one can take advantage of us.

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