We’re continuing with the next insider look from our retreat with Aerie centered around “loving your becoming.”

In a workshop led by Darling’s Managing Editor, Teresa Archer, we looked the words employed in the way we speak. Does it matter what we call ourselves and what we call out in others? Do we have to reject aesthetic words like “beautiful” or “stunning” in order to validate the intelligence of another?

Below are the key takeaways from Teresa’s talk:

What are the words that hold you back?

For this workshop we discussed the role and value of words both in how we identify ourselves as individuals and women around us. We have all been “defined” and spoken of by other people, and have all had moments when a description or title really stuck in our hearts, whether that was positive or negative.

This language can either empower us or restrict our growth and self-expression.

Do you know what celebrity means?

Originally the word celebrity came from “celebration.” That was the language around those who had achieved something we, as the public, could get around. With the new language of “influencers,” we shift even how we define those we want to highlight instead by a role they have, but not with a sense of jubilation.

We talked about how every woman is, in fact, an influencer and how our choosing language that removes competition and gives life to those around us is “celebrating” them.

How can words diversify the roles of women?

Finally, we must learn how to use our words with ourselves, with others and in our social spaces to diversify the role of women.

How to do so:

1. Look for the most common descriptors found on social platforms for other women and ourselves. Write them down.

2. Find a list of common adjectives used for women and circle all the ones you have heard. Go back through and cross out those that are negative and you no longer want to identify with. Put a star by any word you want to embrace and live out.

3. Change your intentionality; when you compliment another, or discuss yourself, listen to your words and consider how, by speaking, your words are enacting creation.

Ultimately, we can each look together for language to use more often as we celebrate the lives of those around us.

Stay tuned; we’ll be sharing two more workshops later this month!

Images via Morgan Ashley Johnson



  1. I’ve long dreamed of going to one of the Darling workshops, but this is the next best thing! This is such an important topic for many of us, myself included, who habitually fall into negative self-talk without even realizing it. Bringing awareness to the way we interact with ourselves is so vital to positive change, I’m very grateful for this post!

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