Five reasons why superwomen don’t create the work-life balance they deserve
We all know the air hostess tells us that we need to put our own oxygen mask first on before we put it on children - for good reason. If you can’t breathe, you can’t help others. The same principle is true for the high flying, hard working professional, who thrives on action, love doing things for others and is always on the go. But… there comes a moment that even the superwoman’s energy is depleted and need recharging.
That's the one thing that most superwomen find a real challenge: looking after their own health and well-being.
What gets in the way?
When we grow up, we are exposed to the culture and beliefs of the people around us, we take their beliefs on board and don’t often realise they are not ours. Those beliefs can get in the way of our self-care.
Some examples of inherited beliefs: ‘a good mother puts her child first, always’ or ‘I am okay, as long as all the others are okay.’
Our decisions are guided by emotions, which are closely linked to beliefs and one that is very active in women is guilt. Guilt is healthy when it is a warning sign that we are doing something wrong, but feeling guilty is damaging when it prevents you from putting yourself first. How can you keep going all those amazing things for others, and not do anything to keep your own health and well-being going?
Superwomen are jugglers with super management and organizational skills, and usually have a range of character traits that secure high standards. Such as perfectionism. Perfectionism is unfortunately very unhelpful in creating a balanced life; the perfectionist finds always room for improvement. If only you could embrace: ‘good enough is good enough.’
Because of how and who you are, people know you will deal with any request up to a high standard and get it done. You are such a diamond for them. But… it doesn’t serve you.
You are so in the habit of taking on things, that you have forgotten to say no. Check the boundaries of who benefits from your actions, could somebody else step in and what is the price that you pay?
There is never enough time, but if you understand your limiting beliefs and change them, don’t buy into guilt anymore, ditch the perfectionism, get clear on boundaries and saying no, you will have more time and you can choose to spend that on yourself.
Remember, if you are not in a good shape, you can’t help others the way you do now. With a busy schedule, a preventative and pro-active action is key to stay in shape. Value how brilliant you are and look after yourself.
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About Mariette Jansen
Dr Mariette Jansen (Dr de-stress) is a psychological coach, using therapy models, coaching techniques and mindfulness meditation to help you become balanced, stress-free and in control of your life. Focus areas are work-life balance, confidence, food/diet stress and general stress.
Author of two books: on meditation and exam stress.