All hail Maisie Williams, and her brilliant speech on what it REALLY means to be a girl

It’s hard not to be truly, madly, deeply in love with actress Maisie Williams. She kicks ass and takes names as Game of Thrones‘ girl hero Arya Stark, and she doesn’t hang up her hero cape when the camera stops rolling. No, Williams is all about fighting mightily for what she believes in IRL, and one of the causes she champions hard is gender equality.

Williams recently gave a killer speech at the Always #LikeAGirl Confidence Summit in which she brought the ladies listening the best kind of pep talk.

“It’s time for society to stop telling girls what they should and shouldn’t do,” BuzzFeed reports Williams saying. “Fight for yours, grab it with both hands, and hold it like the course of your future depends on it. Because it does… The world is desperate for leaders, male and female. It’s not about gender, it’s about purpose … Fan your fire, move from your core, and be quick on your feet. Sharp in your mind, gentle in your heart. Be authentic. If you can do all that? Well then get ready for greatness. Chin up, chest out. You are unstoppable. Like a girl.”

It’s hard not to want to run out the door and go do great things after hearing a speech like that. And, indeed, both Williams and the #LikeAGirl movement are working hard to inspire women everywhere. In case you missed it (the Internet moves SO fast, it’s easy to miss a hashtag here, a funny cat video there) #LikeAGirl is being used by women all over social media to call out gender myths for what they are: myths. We’re all familiar with that needs-to-be-retired-yesterday saying “You throw like a girl!” With the #LikeAGirl hashtag, women everywhere are proving that gender stereotypes are ignorant, and the people that use them need to quit it ASAP.

After Williams gave her #LikeAGirl speech, a triumphant call to arms that would have made Arya Stark proud, she took to Instagram to share Always’ latest empowering #LikeAGirl video. (Watch it here and be moved.) Then Williams continued her tour de awesome, by speaking to Today about what she believes “like a girl” means.

“To be like a girl means you can make decisions in your life without having to worry about what anyone says,” she said.

Hear, hear.


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(Image via HBO)