By Malayna Dawn
As women in business, we aren’t always lucky enough to have role models to follow. But if we look back to the ancient world, we can find that many mythologies included ideal feminine concepts that were not restricted to the care of home and family.
The psychologist Carl Jung (1875-1961) used familiar symbols as models for patterns of behavior or personality traits called “archetypes”. We have many archetypes at work within us, helping us to fulfill our various roles in life. There are numerous images to choose from, but for representations of ideally powerful women, goddesses are probably the best.
(Photo of Athena at the Vatican Museum taken by Malayna Dawn)
Listed below is a sampling of goddess archetypes we can apply to the business world. Whether we recognize these qualities in ourselves already, or long to possess them, perhaps with these archetypes as guidance, their traits can become part of our working personas.
Athena was the Greek goddess of wisdom, war, the arts, industry, justice and skill. Her mother was Metis, goddess of wisdom, but she emerged fully grown out of her father Zeus' head. Her Roman counterpart was Minerva, goddess of wisdom, medicine, the arts, dyeing, science, trade, and war. She was also credited with the invention of numbers and musical instruments.
The Athena/Minerva archetype speaks to women’s ability to multi-task. The Athena-type’s well-rounded education allows them to communicate well with men and earn their respect, which can be very useful in business.