Halle Berry On Women in Hollywood & Closing The Wage Gap

You may know that actress Halle Berry has won numerous awards, from an Academy Award for Best Actress for Monster’s Ball (to date she is the only black woman to have won this award) to a Golden Globe Award for “Their Eyes Were Watching God” to a Golden Globe and an Emmy for “Introducing Dorothy Dandridge.”  If you listen to this spotlight interview, you’ll also see that she is a true leader who is passionate about women’s equality and wants to activate change.
Below are some nuggets of advice from the candid talk. You can listen to the podcast or read more here for more inspiration.
On how to know when it’s okay to ask and fight for equal pay
“I think when you believe you’re worth it, that’s when you’ll fight for it…When you know that the work you’re providing is worth more than they’re willing to pay you, then you’ll ask for it. That’s when you’ll be willing to walk away from it if they say no. But you have to be willing to walk away…We have to own our worth and know our worth.”
On authenticity and taking risks
“When [Monster’s Ball] came to me, I thought, okay, I’m getting no money to do this movie and it could either catapult my career or it could end it instantly. The sexual component to that movie was so risky and…I was so worried about being exploited and having people feel like I was being exploited, but at the end of the day, at my soul, I’m an artist.
I connected to that character and to that woman’s struggle and that interracial relationship, which is so much a part of who I am, being of a white mother and a black father, that it kept calling me to tell that story, to put some light on that dark subject…I risked that this is the end of my career but this is how I’d want to go out, doing something that I believed in wholeheartedly.
Then the opposite actually happened. That just confirmed to me that life is about being authentic and doing what we believe in and not worrying about the outcome. If you’re doing something for the right reasons, then that’s exactly what you’re supposed to do and you have to have a knowingness about this. It’s largely why I’m sitting here…and why I’m able to influence people at all is because of those risks.”
On being a change agent
“It’s about daring to do the right thing and daring to live awake. I think many people are not living in an awake way…We have to use our power for good and start being change agents. We have to start walking the walk and not just talking the talk…What little thing have you done to start moving the energy in that direction?”
Check out these other inspirational interviews with badass women:
Shelley Zalis In Conversation With Actress/Director Aisha Tyler
Singer & Songwriter Morgan Kibby On Creating Change For Ourselves
Tina Sharkey On Storytelling As A Superpower