Lady Gaga might seem like a random one to choose for an Inspiring Woman post but, hear me out.
She is one of the biggest pop stars in the world, selling millions of records and performing to thousands. Yet, Gaga has suffered abuse, mental illness and stigma throughout her life.
Born Stefani Joanne Angelica Germanotta in March 1986, Gaga quickly developed a talent for music and spent hours practicing the piano and writing songs. She began writin songs for Britney Spears and Pussycat Dolls, among others, before singer Akon noticed her voice and made a deal to sign her to his record label in 2007.
Lady Gaga shot to fame in 2008 with the releases of Poker Face and Just Dance and has won several Grammys, Brits, a Golden Globe, Guinness world records and has been entered into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
Gaga has entered my Inspiring Women blog series because of all the humanitarian and charity work she continues to do, while being incredibly honest about some of the hardships she has faced throughout her life. She set up the Born This Way Foundation, which focussed on youth empowerment. This included a Born Brave Bus, which followed her on tour as a youth drop-in centre.
She is a very prominent LGBT supporter and activist and also supports charities for HIV, AIDS, online harassment and bullying.
Lady Gaga has also recently announced that she has fibromyalgia, which can cause symptoms from anything from headaches to constant pain and depression.
Facing all she has in her life and coming out on top is pretty impressive, but using her fame and influence to help others and ensure programmes are in place for the future is awesome!