Historically, women have been underrecognized, underappreciated, and silenced. Over the last several decades, women have shown they can work, provide for themselves, make history, and, of course, break records. Women’s appreciation and equality of rights have come a long way, but improvement remains to be necessary; unfortunately with the popularity of Tik Tok stars like Andrew Tate, misogyny has not been canceled and is somehow still a contagious worldview.
If you’re an ultimate 20something girlboss, and feel discouraged when scrolling through your Tik Tok feed, here are four powerful women who have broken records over the last ten years. They dreamed, believed, held their heads high, worked hard, and succeeded through a culture full of systematic obstacles — and you can too.
There is a reason Beyonce is called Queen Bey. On Feb. 5, Beyonce broke the record for the most Grammy records in history. Her two awards from her most recent album, Renaissance, allowed her to break the all-time record (31), previously held by George Solti. Before this, she was tied for most grammy nominations of all time with her husband Jay Z. The Queen has yet to be dethroned. I am excited to see what catchy, award-winning music she will come up with in the future!
- Zara Rutherford
In January 2022, the lesser-known, British-Belgian, teenage pilot broke two Guinness World Records. Taking a gap year after high school, the 19-year-old flier became the youngest female to fly solo around the world. The previous record holder, Shaesta Waiz was thirty years old when she completed this journey. “I think it’s very important to have diversity and representation” in aviation, Rutherford said in an interview with the Washington Post. Rutherford is an amazing model to Gen Zers across the globe illuminating all the good that can happen when you take a leap and fly solo.
- Erin Jackson
During the 2022 Winter Olympics, Erin Jackson became the first black woman to win a Winter Gold Olympic in speed skating. Winning competitions from a young age, Jackson is a force to be reckoned with. She’s a Team USA member for all 3 sports: inline speed skating, roller derby, and long track speedskating. Taking home the gold for her masterful skill displayed in the 500m speed skating competition, Jackson is an impressive athlete portraying all women are capable of.
The music industry is cutthroat, and Adele has remained the British Female Artist to win the most grammy awards ever. Even with a five-year hiatus, Adele has won the most BRIT awards by a female artist. Her album, 30, won the album of the year at the BRIT awards last February. She also won the Best British Solo Song of the Year for her rich, top-hit song “Easy on Me.” Adele is adored for her authenticity, relatability, and thick, resonant voice. With a divorce, Adele has had a difficult couple of years, but she elicits that you don’t have to hide your hangups, hurts, or pains to succeed in life. She is an exemplary model to females everywhere on and off the stage.
- Michelle Yeoh
In January, Michelle Yeoh won the award for Best Musical/Comedy Actress at the Golden Globe Awards for her star appearance in Everything Everywhere All at Once. It was a record-breaking year for not only Yeoh, but also the Asian community. At the 95th Annual Academy Awards, Yeoh won the Oscar for Best Actress, becoming the first Asian woman and the second woman of color, after Halle Berry, to win the award. Winning at age 60, Yeoh is an example of how you’re never too old to chase, and achieve, your dreams.
Struggle is inherent to being an ambitious woman as it is. Women of color have historically faced even more hindrances and backlash and continue to. When women of color were unfairly not given opportunities or recognition, they took it for themselves, and looked fabulous while doing so. Popular culture will discriminate against you for your age, race, or family history, however, these women are proof that you don’t have to limit yourself through them. When society tries to box you in, dear Gen Zer, think outside of it.