EP 008 / 02.12.2020
FREEDOM FOR HUMANITY
Author, Activist and Entrepreneur, Paola Diana, is this week’s guest on Mission Makers. During the episode we discover what led Paola into activism, and the challenges she faced navigating a misogynistic education system. Paola also goes on to discuss how motherhood changed her life and altered her perspective on the future.
Paola starts off the episode by describing herself as a fighter. For those who have followed Paola’s career closely they will be all too aware that she isn’t referring to her love of Jiu Jitsu, a martial art she has incidentally become incredibly adept at in the last few years. No, what Paola is referring to is the spirit she had to develop as a child in order to overcome the obstacles placed in her way by the patriarchy. Paola it seems has been fighting long before ever donning a Gi.
Born at a time in Italy’s history that Paola describes as one of its most misogynistic, the Venetian was not expected nor encouraged to strive for greatness, growing up in an abusive household. Despite this she persevered and graduated with a BA in Political Science and an MA in Institutional Relations from the University of Bologna, all whilst having to deal with patronizing and chauvinistic educators. Paola followed this up with a brief stint in politics, the creation of two successful businesses and a best-selling book. One suspects that even her old professors couldn’t help but be impressed.
Paola has since moved away from any direct involvement in mainstream politics but is still incredibly outspoken on human rights issues, namely gender equality. Her aim is to change attitudes globally, which is a rather tall order. Not that Paola sees it as such, “even if I only help one girl, one woman, I will be happy,” she says, before adding, “I truly believe each of us is responsible and each of us can make a difference.”
On the subject of difference, the episode ends on a topic that Paola credits as being the most life altering, motherhood. As a single mother to two children Paola didn’t have it easy, not that she would have it any other way of course. She ends by joking, “I think motherhood is a master’s degree.”
The full conversation with Paola can be found on the video below and on the Mission Makers podcast on Spotify and Apple.
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Lessons To Fuel Your Mission
By empowering others, you empower yourself
We all have a responsibility to end oppression
Don't be afraid to stand up for what you believe in
The regret of inaction will outlive the fear of action