“I can bring home the bacon….Fry it up in a pan…And never let him forget he’s a man, ‘cause I’m a woman....W-O-M-A-N!”
Does anyone out there remember those lyrics? Lifted from an old Peggy Lee song, it was the anthem for Enjoli perfume during the 70s. I never bought any Enjoli perfume but to a very “grownup” 13-year-old mind, the lyrics were empowering, sending the message that not only could I cook and clean and manage my household, but in my future I’d also be able to go out and earn the money to put that “bacon” on the table to feed my family. It was a time when women were transitioning from being a Leave it to Beaver mother to wearing their pearls to Daddy’s boardroom (and sitting at the head of board). Women entering the corporate workforce and competing head-to-head with men in their “world” was still a relatively new concept and the idea was a heady influence on the what-do-I-want-to-be-when-I-grow-up dreams of many young girls.
The world has changed and today, it’s not uncommon to see women not only competing, but thriving in the corporate world. Women run (often very successfully) businesses of all shapes, forms and sizes and now sit at the head of the board of directors of companies that they built. The world of Leave it to Beaver is long gone. There’s certainly no doubt that women have arrived (and are here to stay) in the corporate world.
Unfortunately, success has come at a cost. Diseases, such as coronary artery or heart disease, which were once considered a man’s disease, now affects men and women alike. For women, high stress jobs as well as job insecurity are increasing our risk of heart disease.
According to a new research study headed by Dr. Michelle Albert, senior author and physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA, women with high stress jobs have as much as a 40 percent greater risk of developing heart-related disease than do women working in low-stress jobs. Researchers also found that worry about job security and fear of losing their job (and in today’s tough economic climate, worry about job security is certainly commonplace) had a negative impact on a woman’s heart health as well.