As women, we wear many hats. Here’s how to ease the burden.
Many of us are wives, mothers, daughters, career women, sisters, and caregivers. Society expects us to be caring, soft nurturers who make massive sacrifices to ensure the happiness of others. Which doesn’t always leave time for self-love.
These are roles that many women gladly embrace, but it takes a toll on them. As they consistently put the needs of the important people in their lives ahead of their own, they exhaust themselves in the process. And they do so at the expense of their happiness and self-love.
To love others, you need to learn self-love. Here are my top tips:
Remember, your appearance does not define who you are as a woman
Too many of us become so wrapped up in the societal construct of what is deemed attractive in a woman. We spend hours at the hairdresser, nail salon, and beauty parlour. We go on punishing diets and follow gruelling exercise regimes to bring ourselves closer to the definition of beauty.
Now, there’s nothing wrong with doing these things if they make you happy, but if you’re doing them to gain the approval of others, think about it again. Too many of us allow people to judge us on our appearance when they should judge us on the type of women we are.
By all means, look after yourself, but don’t harm yourself trying to fit into a social pigeonhole. You are an individual who deserves to be who you are.
Don’t be afraid to focus on self-development
Your journey of life should include opportunities to make yourself the best version of you that you could possibly be. Don’t be afraid to seize the chances you get for self-development, which is a big part of self-love.
Perhaps you’ve wanted to change your career to follow a lifelong ambition. You might have long dreamed of getting a college degree, but always put it off because of your other commitments. There are times when you need to put yourself and what you want first.
It won’t be easy, but there are many ways to make the learning process easier. You could enroll for an online course with self-paced study module and also take help from experienced academic writers working for a website to buy research papers and other writing assignments. Another good idea is to opt for a course that is not very exerting on you. With time, when you feel more settled in your current role, you can go for the advanced course or upgrade the degree from a good institute. E-learning module and these other methods cuts down on time spent in the library and in commuting for the regular classes.
Realise some people don’t belong in your life
Letting go of toxic people is something many women struggle with, especially when the person is someone they love. The truth is that there are going to be people in your life that don’t deserve you because they bring you down, take without giving, and suck the joy out of you.
When you’ve learned how to love yourself, you won’t want to surround yourself with people who make you feel bad about yourself. People who compare you to themselves and others to make you feel bad about yourself should be put in their place – outside your circle.
It might be impossible to get rid of a toxic person, such as a relative. But you can arm yourself against their negativity by not letting it get to you whenever you have to see them.
Stop doubting yourself
Women have a terrible tendency to second-guess themselves when they make decisions. You’ll stand at a shop looking at an outfit you like, but before you buy it, you’ll question whether it’s worth the price, whether it will suit you, or whether there is something else you need to spend the money on.
Sometimes, you have to throw caution to the wind and ignore that inner voice that makes you hesitate. There’s another inner voice in you that tells you that you deserve it, but you’ve dialled the volume down so low to fulfill your other obligations that you can’t hear it anymore. And if you make a mistake, forgive yourself and forge a way to move past it.
Live in the moment
It’s easy to find self-love quotes about mindfulness, but how many people know what it truly is, and how many practice it? When you are mindful, your awareness is focused on the present, absorbing and acknowledging your feelings, and putting other worries aside temporarily.
Take the time to spend in the moment, instead of worrying about the past and the future. Both are beyond your control, and no amount of concern will change that. Enjoy what you have now because you might not experience this circumstance ever again. So, eat the slice of cake you’re craving, buy the dress, and take a walk. You deserve to be happy and to feel fulfilled by your life.
Spend time by yourself
To know yourself is to love yourself, and you need to be alone so that you can learn to fall in love with yourself all over again. Getting away from the demands of your busy life gives you time for introspection and to listen to your voice within.
The one that tells you that you’re beautiful, valuable, and worthy. For understand a self love woman, you need to acknowledge her individuality, instead of defining herself through the roles she plays in her life.
There’s no need to go away by yourself for a weekend (unless you want to) because most of us couldn’t manage the logistics. But a quiet bubble bath, half an hour reading a good book, or a quiet cup of coffee in the morning before everyone wakes up gives you a chance to enjoy some ‘me time.’
During a 1956 anti-apartheid protest by women in South Africa, they sang a song that translates to mean, “When you strike a woman, you strike a rock.” Yes, we are strong, and yes, we are indefatigable. But to maintain our influential presence in society, we need to take care of ourselves.
Don’t feel guilty for taking the time to love yourself because it is time well-spent. It empowers you to continue to play your critical role in your family and society at large.