In Action

Discussing Women’s Health at GW4W

On June 12, 2017 Hollister Institute’s Executive Director, Karla Driskill, gave a speech at the Global Women 4 Wellbeing (GW4W) networking event in Cambridge. There was a wide range of topics discussed regarding women’s mental health, research, leadership, mindfulness, and work/life balance.

GW4W is an organization committed to “Giving Women Their Voice”. The founding members are dedicated to funding quality research on women’s health issues, sharing women’s stories from around the world, providing mentorship, and inspiring the next generation of women leaders.

Doctor Fikry Issac, former Chief Medical Officer of Johnson &  Johnson and board member of HERO Health also spoke at the event bringing awareness to the inherently “unique and different global medical issues that affect women.” He went onto unveil that the medical community often diagnoses and proscribes women medication based on research done on male animals and medical tests done with male participants. Doctor Issac believes that although the medical community makes more informed medical decisions on female treatment than the 1990’s he wants “the one size fits all medical diagnosis eradicated.” He closed his speech by recognizing the importance of more research for female cancer, heart disease, and mental illness.

The Hollister Institute partners with leadership and wellness organizations in the New England area in order to share our inside out philosophy on personal and professional development. Hollister Institute’s motto is: “Our business is people” and we focus on strengthening individuals in three areas – mindfulness, communication, and leadership.

Karla Driskill informed the attendees of the GW4W event about the whole-self principle the Institute teaches. The whole-self is made up four key areas: the professional, physical, spiritual, and relational. “Women often neglect the spiritual quadrant of their whole-self” said Driskill. “The Institute uses spirituality to refer to whatever makes you lit up about life.” Research shows that women often feel stressed trying to find the perfect harmony between work and home. In fact, according to Harvard Business Review, 60% of working men have partners who don’t work full time outside of the home compared to 10% of women. Another telling survey reveals that 79% of working women are primarily responsible for the household laundry and 57% are still in charge of cooking. No wonder women often have a hard time taking care of themselves emotionally.

Driskill urged the women at the event “to determine and focus on the areas of their life that fuel them” because “if women do not bring their whole selves to their work, family, and community it will be detriment to society.” She closed by giving the challenge, “The role you play in the world is critical. You owe it to yourself, your colleagues, your family and the world to put yourself on your to do list.”

The GW4W event brought a variety of supporters of the women wellbeing movement and it was an honor to be a part of such a special night.