I’m a mother, sister, daughter friend, leader at work and church, author, budding business woman, counselor…these are the hats I wear. The truth is: these are the hats I struggle to keep in balance on top of my head. This is not a situation unique to me.
Many women are in a constant internal struggle with the expectations that each of these roles brings. Many women also compare their achievements (or failures) to other seemingly successful women. The working mother envies the stay-at-home mother, the stay-at-home mother thinks the working mother looks down her nose at the stay-at-homers. The single, career driven woman fights the social pressure to settle down and start a family before it’s “too late.” Older women struggle to understand “these young girls.” They can’t seem to keep their mates happy, their kids are spoiled and ill-mannered, and won’t stay home and they don’t know the first thing about running a household. And the younger women try to get the older generation to understand how much a woman’s role has changed. We lose sight that of the fact that we are all after the same thing: being the best woman we can possibly be.
Being “the best woman” is achievable as long as one keeps in mind that she is not required to be EVERY woman and she is not required to live up to the lofty expectations of the next woman. Attempting to be “Every Woman,” leaves very little time and room to be of any real good to yourself or anyone else for that matter. While there is nothing wrong with giving to and taking care of others, a woman has to be careful not to get so lost in the giving that she forgets to reserve a little something for herself. Conversely, a woman cannot allow herself to get so wrapped in self that she misses opportunities to reach out to others or even receive what someone else may have to offer her. The whole adventure of womanhood is in achieving balance, not making struggle look easy.
It is important that you take care of your complete self so you can be the best woman in your life.
Start by taking care of your body.
It doesn’t have to be anything complicated. Take a walk at some point during your day. Work out at home, or if you have time, go to the gym. Eat a well-balanced diet. Keep track of what you eat and substitute healthy favorites (fruits and fresh veggies) for sugary and salty snacks. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water and get at least 8 to 10 hours of sleep each day.
Take care of your spirit.
Take time out of your schedule to reconnect with God. Pray; meditate; get to that inner quiet place and locate your center. This will help you keep sight of the big picture and not sweat the small stuff.
Take care of your mind.
I have a really good friend that says, “Don’t let anyone drive you crazy when you know it’s in walking distance.” Don’t allow the negativity of others consume and take residence in your mental space. Evict them! You never have to take ownership for anybody else’s drama. Preserve your mental space for valuable thoughts. Now that your mind is free, fill it with good stuff! Learn new things! Take a class! Take up a hobby.
Schedule regular Play Dates.
For you, not the kids. Get your girlfriends together and go to dinner, or a day spa. Invite your girlfriends over and order some movies from Netflix. Play on the Wii or just talk. Stay connected to the women in your circle.
Don’t worry if you can’t carry out these steps at once. Take your time and allow yourself to adjust the new way of living. Most importantly, have fun! Remember: you don’t have to be “Every Woman,” just be the very best You that you can be!
Help your fellow sister! Share you thoughts!
What things to you do to be the Best Woman for you?
What challenges did you encounter in creating balance in your life? How did you overcome those challenges?