November 16, 2022

004: Understanding The Power of One and How It Creates Ripples of Change with Rabia Siddique

Rabia Siddique, a lawyer, author, and survivor, discusses the profound influence of individual actions and decisions on this podcast episode.

Understanding the Power of One

You might never know the impact you bring on another person. Most won’t even realise the importance and influence of every action and decision they make. In this episode of the Raise 1000 Voices podcast, we chat about understanding the power of one and how it creates ripples of change with Rabia Siddique.  

Rabia is an international speaker, a humanitarian rights lawyer, a best-selling author, and a hostage survivor. The accolades and hats she wears are a testament that she’s living her life in alignment with her values and shows her commitment to serving others.

Pivotal moments in life have made Rabia aware that she is capable of creating ripples of change that can benefit herself, her family, and the community she’s in. However, most people, especially women, don’t share the same perspective.

Inspiring women to acknowledge and epitomise the power of one is no easy task but Rabia manages to do so by becoming an effective and engaging vessel and sharing her stories. 

If you want to learn more about Rabia’s journey in understanding the power of one and how she uses this to create better influence and decisions in life, don’t miss this episode.


  • How Rabia describes herself and the importance of what she does (00:33)
  • Pivotal moments that made an impact on career and personal journey (01:30)
  • The Power Of One and how it generates significant impact (04:23)
  • Adverse effects of women not speaking up (09:02)
  • What equality means (11:00)
  • How do women become more empowered in making choices (12:00)
  • Powerful feminine voices that inspire Rabia (13:15)
  • What’s true and common for strong and powerful women (17:25)
  • The inspirations for her humanitarian work (18:18)
  • Why our inner critic can be our number one weakness (21:48)
  • The best way to deal with our inner critic (25:08)
  • Rabia’s superpower and how she uses this to inspire others (27:53)
  • What convinced her to share her story (30:28)
  • How can we tell better stories? (41:07)
  • The worst and best piece of advice Rabia’s been given (45:40)


“The greatest lesson that my career and my journey have taught me is this concept of the Power of One. The power that each and every one of us has to create ripples of change.” -Rabia Siddique

“We don’t know people’s journeys and stories that come into the room. And the way that I always look at it is, every time I go up on stage, I’m being called upon to hold people in the palm of my hand.” -Rabia Siddique

In the last couple of years, strength and power have taken on different meanings for me. It rests on the quiet resolve of being able to choose my battles, working for the community, and trying to make an impact at home is just as vital as women that have spoken up and had an impact on a grand scale.” -Rabia Siddique

“Telling my story is about me in the sense that I have to be the most effective and engaging vessel. But I’m setting the content and story I’m sharing. It’s understanding and having the acceptance that you’re setting it free to serve others and you will not have control.” -Rabia Siddique

“When you have seen great suffering, witnessed great injustice, and seen people living with so little, and still being able to find the beauty, joy, and hope despite all chaos around them, it just can’t do anything other than give you a lifelong different perspective on the world.” -Rabia Siddique

“When you have a big traumatic story, until you can speak about it with strength, power, and grace, you cannot take to a stage with it.” -Jacqueline Nagle

“You can’t take an audience somewhere you haven’t been. If you have not created psychological safety for yourself, then there is no way that you can create psychological safety for your audience.” -Jacqueline Nagle

Equal Justice My Journey as a Woman a Soldier and a Muslim
How Many More Women? Exposing How the Law Silences Women
To Kill a Mockingbird
Atlas of the Heart: Mapping Meaningful Connection and the Language of Human Experience
Rabia Siddique – Ultimate test of stepping up – could you?
Rabia Siddique on being held hostage, and fighting for justice
Re: Thinking with Adam Grant




Rabia is an international humanitarian lawyer, retired British Army senior officer, former war crimes and terrorism prosecutor, and hostage survivor.

She has undertaken humanitarian aid work in Asia, South America, Europe, and the Middle East, for which she was decorated by Queen Elizabeth II.

Having survived a hostage crisis in Iraq in 2005 Rabia sued the British Government for discrimination when both the military and government tried to cover up her involvement in the incident, which saw her leading hostage negotiations for the release of two British Special Forces illegally kidnapped and detained by Iraqi based terrorists.  Rabia was held hostage for over eight hours and subjected to cruel and unusual treatment in front of her male colleagues. After their eventual rescue, Rabia’s colleagues were recognised, psychologically supported, and decorated for their efforts and bravery, however, Rabia was gagged, ignored, and ordered to never speak of the role she played on that fateful day where she almost lost her life.

As a result of her betrayal at the hands of her military superiors and the then Prime Minister of Great Britain Rabia was diagnosed with PTSD and after her recovery she held both the British Army and Government to account for their systematic discrimination of women and ethnic minorities.  Her landmark case made international news and saw the floodgates open for many similar cases.  It heralded profound changes in defence and public policy, attitudes, and the support offered to female soldiers serving on the frontline, ethnic minorities, and military personnel suffering with PTSD.

Rabia’s best-selling memoir “Equal Justice: My Journey as a Woman, a Soldier and a Muslim” was published by Pan MacMillan in 2013 and work is currently underway to adapt this to a movie.  She is currently writing her second book “A Beautiful Revolution”, a book about the power we all have to be the change in our lives and in the world around us.

Rabia is now a multi award-winning storyteller, inspirational speaker, leadership consultant, media commentator, and human rights advocate. Peace and the sustainability of our planet is what drives her.

But her biggest challenge and joy is being a mother to her young triplet boys!


Thanks for tuning in to this episode of the Raise 1000 Voices podcast. If the information in any of our conversations and interviews has helped you in your business journey, please head over to Apple Podcasts, click the 3 dots in the top right corner of your smartphone screen, follow the show, and leave us an honest review. Your reviews and feedback will not only help us continue to deliver valuable content but will also help us reach even more amazing entrepreneurs just like you!  


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