Civil Rights hero and U.S. Congressman John Lewis coined this phrase, and for him it has meant being arrested more than 40 times.
During the 1960s, Lewis was one of 13 original Freedom Riders who set out to integrate America’s buses. He was beaten, detained and arrested. His skull was fractured. The peaceful protests he planned and participated in came at a high price – but they were worth it for for a more just society.
“Sometimes you have to do something out of the ordinary. Sometimes you have to make a way out of no way,” he has said. “There comes a time when you have to say something, when you have to make a little noise, when you have to move your feet.”
Make a way. Make some noise. Move your feet. All things that we celebrate for the next generation of girls at Girls to the Moon.
Girls and good trouble don’t always mix
“Good trouble” is exactly why we have a core value of fearlessness at Girls to the Moon.
Girls are too often encouraged to behave, be quiet, act nice, and do as they’re told. Have you ever found yourself avoiding challenges and playing it safe, sticking to goals you knew would be easy to reach? Can you think of times you’ve wanted to speak up but didn’t because you were worried about how you would sound or be perceived by others?
“We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller. We say to girls, you can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful. Otherwise, you would threaten the man.” – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Good trouble often isn’t what we expect of girls and women.
But there’s power in being “disruptive” – in fact, the word goes from a negative in the classroom to a positive in the business world. There’s power in asking questions, challenging the status quo and taking risks.
The world needs girls who stand up for their convictions – and for themselves – and work to make the world a better place the best way they can.
What good trouble can look like
Will you know good trouble when you see it – or cause it?
Good trouble can look like many things for different people, but here are a few ways of causing good trouble that you might have experienced it in your life:
Loving your body instead of comparing it to others’
Writing down how you feel and not caring what it looks like
Calling your elected officials about policies you disagree with
Standing up to a bully
Screwing up and trying again
Being honest when someone asks what you want or how you feel
Going after a big dream dream even when others tell you no
Attending a peaceful protest for a cause you believe in
Saying ‘no’ when you need to
Taking healthy risks
Being a leader
Standing up for yourself
Sharing something honest and vulnerable on social media
Can you think of some specific examples of good trouble in your own life? We’d love to hear them!
Join us April 7 for good trouble
On April 7, we explore the idea of good trouble even further with a panel of incredible women who’ve pushed the envelope and succeeded by shaking things up – in business, art, culture, and life.
Renata Soto, co-founder and Executive Director of Conexion Americas, which supports more than 6,000 Latino immigrant families annually in becoming homeowners, starting businesses and more.
Nina Donovan, whose powerful poem, “Nasty Woman”, was performed by Ashley Judd at the Women’s March on Washington earlier this year. (Watch Donovan read her poem here.)
Kerry Schrader and Ashlee Ammons, a a dynamic mother/daughter duo who are among a new wave of entrepreneurs. Without formal tech backgrounds, they’ve been blazing trails in the male-dominated tech startup space with their company, Mixtroz.
Freya West, an award-winning performer, teacher and writer whose works on body image have been featured in numerous publications including the Huffington Post.
We’ll have a community art project and some open mic time to hear and share our own “good trouble” stories, too.
Tickets are $12, or free for members of Girls To The Moon.
Courtney lives in Nashville, Tenn., and is CMO of Girls To The Moon.
She creates good trouble while taking boxing and burlesque lessons, she asks the hard questions at dinner parties, and she’s not afraid to talk about taboo topics of all variety.
Support Girls To The Moon
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Your membership pays for programs and content that inspire girls ages 10-14. In addition, you’ll receive a box of locally-crafted goodies from our hometown of Nashville, Tenn., as well as access to exclusive digital content. We have membership levels to fit every budget.