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“You are not going to get out of this world what you are not willing to take.”
This was the message Teocah Dove delivered as she told young women to be confident, bold and stride fearlessly as they set their mark, noting this will be the only legacy they will leave behind.
Dove gave the advice at the Girls in Leadership Conference hosted by the Arthur Lok Jack Global School of Business, Mt Hope, on Saturday.
As the first in a series of motivational speakers, the soon-to-be 30-year-old Dove described herself as someone who defied the norms and projected beliefs of those who said she would never amount to anything.
Rubbishing long-held perceptions that only people attending “prestige” schools would become leaders, Dove said she did not attend any such institution and also happened to live in the hotspot of Enterprise, Chaguanas.
Referred to as a social entrepreneur, Dove wears many hats, including Youth and Social Development Specialist, Chevening Scholar, Queen’s Young Leader Awardee, Associate Fellow Royal Commonwealth Society, One Young World Ambassador and Global Shaper.
Urging those present not to accept the labels that society was quick to ascribe to people, Dove challenged them to take immediate action to knock them down.
“Ask yourself what is your power?” she urged those gathered.
She later quantified this, saying “It is a feeling of respect for yourself and confidence in your ability.”
Advising persons that they alone owned every single decision they made each day, the motivational speaker said the only two things people could not control was the time they are born and the day they die. However, she said everything else in between could be controlled and as such a person could determine what legacy they would leave behind, as they held the power to map out the journey they would take.
Dove told the audience although it would not always be easy or perfect, one could not experience growth if they weren’t uncomfortable where they were at in life.
Urging the girls to do some soul-searching, Dove encouraged them to examine how they felt about themselves and to write down the negative words they sometimes ascribed as she told them, “It becomes a weight on you, it affects how you act around others and how others see you.”
She said words often became “baggage,” weighing persons down, preventing them from growing.
Dove advised those present to spend time honing their skills and talents as she said, “Nobody owes you anything.”
In recognition of her work and contributions in the sphere of gender, youth and child development, Dove earned several prestigious international awards - most notable among them the Queen’s Young Leaders Award which she received from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace in June 2015. She was also identified as one of the Atlantic’s 40 emerging leaders and one of the ten most influential women in
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