“Why We Celebrate” looks at holidays, occasions, and traditions from all over the world, and explains their origins, the meaning behind them, and the reasons we observe them. Here are nine ways to celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8 that will support and acknowledge the amazing women in your life.
International Women’s Day was first celebrated by the United Nations in 1975, but it has been observed on March 8 since the early 1900s. And, like the influence of women themselves, the festivities only continue to grow each year.
If you’re looking for ways to join the movement and celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women this International Women’s Day, here are a few suggestions.
1. Say ‘thank you’ to a wonderful woman in your life
One of the major focuses of International Women’s Day is togetherness. Reach out to a strong woman in your life — your mom, a former boss, a professor you haven’t spoken to in years — and let her know how grateful you are for her and how much she means to you.
2. Get inspired
Words of wisdom from strong women around the globe are in abundance. Whether you need a bit of encouragement or want to share these ideas with someone you love, check out a few of our favorite quotes by women, for women.
3. Attend one of the many walks
In an effort to bring women of all backgrounds together, International Women’s Day is often marked by walks, networking events, and concerts. While the pandemic means fewer in-person gatherings, you can still find an event near you, regardless of whether you live in the U.S. or elsewhere in the world.
4. Get active on social media
Can’t attend an event in person? The beauty of social media is that it connects you to people and movements all over the world. This year, make your message heard and connect with others using these popular hashtags:
5. Read famous works by women
Sometimes the smallest gestures have the biggest influence. If you’re looking for a more personal way to get involved, start by reading any one of these critically acclaimed books by female authors.
- The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
- The Color Purple by Alice Walker
- To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
- The Help by Kathryn Stockett
- Becoming by Michelle Obama
- The Moment of Lift by Melinda Gates
6. Do something kind for a woman in your life
It’s true what they say: When women support women, there’s nothing we can’t do. 1-800-Flowers.com has an entire line dedicated to International Women’s Day, which includes flowers and gifts that can be sent to the special women you know. If you’re still not sure where to start, here are some gift ideas for the different women in your life.
7. Update your playlist
Grab your best girl friends and prepare to rock out all day to these girl power anthems.
- “Respect” by Aretha Franklin
- “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor
- “Run the World (Girls)” by Beyoncé
- “Just a Girl” by No Doubt
- “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten
- “I Am Woman” by Helen Reddy
- “Roar” by Katy Perry
- “Girl on Fire” by Alicia Keys
- “The Man” by Taylor Swift
- “Just Because I’m a Woman” by Dolly Parton
8. Wear violet in solidarity
Break out your favorite purple shirt and wear it proudly. The color purple has been widely adopted by the women’s rights movement, as it is a strong, powerful color that’s been known to inspire hope and vision.
9. Spread kindness
One of the easiest things everyone can do on March 8 (and every other day) is be kind to everyone they meet. It’s simple, free, and has the power to change the world.