7 Ways The Spice Girls' 'Wannabe' Taught Young Girls To Be Independent Women

by Ashley Fern

There really isn't anything Gen-Y women like to complain about more than the fact that we are so old. 

Well, today I am going to provide you with one cold, hard fact that will make you feel ancient: 18 years ago, on July 8, 1996, the Spice Girls' "Wannabe" was released.

I'm going to let that one sink in for a moment before continuing...

These girls were our idols, as most every female knows exactly which Spice Girl she was growing up. (Shout out to you, Sporty Spice!) Each character spoke volumes about what kind of person a girl was and we owned that role until we actually could fill our training bras out on our own.

If you search Spice Girls on Spotify, "Wannabe," is their most popular track, and with good reason. It taught us truly valuable lessons at a young age we weren't even aware of.

The Spice Girls led the movement of girl power, including a positively sexy message that really took feminism to a new level for that decade.

Here are 7 ways that "Wannabe" taught girls how to be independent women:

1. Friends above everything

The entire song centers around the fact that this group of girls are independent and definitely aren't relying on any men they meet.

They powerfully and passionately assert themselves throughout the entire song and lay down the most important rule of all: "If you wannabe my lover, you gotta get with my friends."

2. It empowered female sexuality

The song ends with the famous conclusion: "Slam your body down and wind it all around... zigazig-ha"... But "Wannabe" isn't the only Spice Girl song that encourages females to embrace their sexuality. In fact, you can hear it in a majority of their tracks, which is something we hadn't fully realized until we grew up.

But instead of raunchy, sex-filled, dirty lyrics, they were positive and still revolved around girl power. The songs did not bring down the girls or any other females for that matter, instead their sexual lyrics were positive and promoted safe sex.

3. It showed how precious your time is

"If you wanna get with me better make it fast/ Now don't go wasting my precious time/ Get your act together we could be just fine..."

This song is all about the requirements any man who wants to date any of the Spice Girls must meet. They are willing to give you time to prove your value, but if you don't impress them then they won't be wasting an ounce more of their time on you.

4. It taught us that what we want is most important

Guys come second to anything in life, and this is exactly what the Spice Girls realized and capitalized on. This entire idea is what drove their popularity and brought them massive success.

During a time when there were very few other strong female role models, this band of five girls really stuck out and gave females standards to live by.

5.  It taught us it's not about who you were, but who you are now

The song basically starts out by Sporty Spice telling the world, "If you want my future forget my past..." These girls didn't let their past mistakes define them, instead they embraced it and created legendary music from it.

If you can't accept a person for who they are, flaws and all, well then you really just don't even deserve them.

6. The way you see yourself matters more than how men see you

The entire platform that made the Spice Girls who they were is they lived their lives for themselves and for each other. No man was going to come between them or force them to change.

They came as they were and if that was too much too handle, well that sounds like a "you" problem. The fun and carefree nature of "Wannabe" really made that message shine.

7. They made it perfectly acceptable to get rid of a Stage-5 Clinger

Thanks to Ginger Spice, we have the most important and solid piece of advice that still resonates with Gen-Y females to this day.

She really sung the truth when she belted out: "If you really bug me then I'll say goodbye." Ain't nobody got time for a creep, that's for sure.

Photo Courtesy: Tumblr