There’s much to admire about our newest female Congressional representatives — especially the way they are changing what leadership in the House of Representatives looks like. The women who were sworn into the most diverse class of Congress yesterday are owning their power as female leaders, and commanding their right to be in the room and get to work.

Here are eight valuable leadership lessons we can all take from them. 

Be brutally honest with yourself and those around you

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York on Instagram

Stay true to the power in who you are

“Show everyone who you are, your heritage, and what your stand for. We should embrace who we are and not be shamed for it.”

— Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan in Elle

Embrace your history — and those who share it

— Rep. Sharice Davids of Kansas on Twitter

Own your story — and let it be heard

“I don’t see my story as a unique one; probably what’s unique is just that I tell it, that I’m transparent about it.”

— Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts in HuffPost

Leave the ladder down behind you

— Rep. Deb Haaland of New Mexico on Instagram

Earn trust by exceeding expectations

“I’m a 31-year-old black woman. I am doubted in eight out of 10 conversations that I have. But here is what I have learned: You can see it on people’s faces when you exceed their expectations. Something switches, and they start to respect you.”

— Rep. Lauren Underwood of Illinois in Elle

Let the naysayers propel you onward

“I heard early on, and even through election day, that my opponent would be impossible to beat or that it was ‘nice’ of me to try such a difficult task. But for me, those comments only made me want to prove it could be done.”

— Rep. Katie Porter of California in Elle

Dance when you want to

Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota on Twitter

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  • Mallory Stratton

    Director of Content Operations at Thrive

    Mallory is Director of Content Operations at Thrive. Prior to Thrive, she was Associate Editor on “It’s All In Your Head” by Keith Blanchard (Wicked Cow Studios, 2017), an illustrated brain science book, and worked closely on its accompanying cross-platform partnerships with Time Inc. and WebMD. She spends her off-hours curating playlists, practicing restorative yoga, and steeping new teas.