Lenea Sims in Venice, CA. Photographed by Sarah Bosworth
You work for Advancing Women Executives- what does AWE do?
Advancing Women Executives' mission is to accelerate the careers of women in business to improve the global economy. This means holding numerous networking events in all five of our member cities, going onsite for training sessions, and offering executive coaching to our Leaders in order to better prepare them for their next big role. It's incredible thing to be a part of the advancement of such determined and deserving women.
How can women most easily advance in their careers?
We always say that it's not about who you know, but instead about who knows you. That means that you have to not only be confident in your talents, but also be willing to put them out there and ask for what you want.
You started the wellness site, Gooey Girl. Why did you start it and what do you hope to achieve?
I dreamt up Gooey Girl after graduating college, dealing with a TON of anxiety, and feeling frustrated that I didn't know what people meant when they said I should "just take care of myself." Having attended competitive schools my whole life and identifying as an overachiever, I was stressed beyond belief by my lack of direction and just didn't know how to find solace in anything other than validation from my busy schedule and achievements.
It seemed like all I had left was my curiosity and, so, I found myself having a lot of conversations with people about what they did to heal in hard times and what self-care meant to them. I discovered that self-care is, above all, an exploration of what feels good and this is obviously so personal for each of us. Fascinated by this, I built Gooey as a home for all of these explorations of self-care and healing. As it grows, I hope that it becomes an inspiration for other women looking to take better care of themselves and that we can start to see wellness as self-care, plain and simple.What is empowerment to you?
Empowerment, for me, has come to mean self-knowledge. Whether it's through intensive healing work or through online personality quizzes or reading numerology books (guilty of all of the above), I think it's vital to commit to a process of understanding and accepting yourself in this life. Without a clue as to what motivates you, after all, how can you ever exercise your true power?
What do you like most about being a woman?
Oh wowwww this is a toughie. I LOVE being a woman. For all of the tough stuff we deal with, I think women are the most resilient, most powerful, most thoughtful beings and I wouldn't trade this experience for anything. My favorite part though? Probably having such unfiltered access to my emotions. I'm a firm believer that this is a power women should embrace, not hide even when – especially when – it feels a little bit scary and vulnerable.
What is an ideal woman?
To me, the ideal woman is the woman who walks through life proud of every aspect of her being.
Who are you crushing on and why?
Never thought I'd say these odd words, but I'm totally crushing on my mom! At 56, she's recently earned her Masters' degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and is currently working on her PsyD to become a doctor of psychology. She's shown me, throughout my entire life, that it's never too late to improve upon yourself and I'm grateful to have her as such a trusted confidant and inspiration.