Listen up, sister: The world needs you to be FULLY yourself. Not some watered down version of yourself or a knock off of someone else.
In today’s show, we are talking about why the world needs you to be yourself + how living up to others expectations is holding you back.
From early ages as women, we are conditioned by subtle and overt messages from our families, the media, and the world around us telling us who we should be, what we should look like, and how we should live our lives. These messages are holding you back.
We weren’t created to live like anyone else or try to live up to others’ expectations. We were each beautifully and wonderfully made. With unique gifts, talents, dreams, and ambitions. There is a special purpose you were meant to fulfill. But we will never reach our potential if we let feelings of unworthiness, guilt, and shame dictate how we show up in the world around us.
We will never be the wives, moms, women we were created to be as long as we are chasing some one else’s idea of what that looks like. Believe it or not, the quirky, weird, and embarrassing things about you are exactly what you should be leaning into and sharing with the world around you. Sister, you are already loved, cherished, and more valuable than you could ever know. You don’t have to earn that by how you look or what you achieve.
If you are exhausted from working your butt off to earn others’ approval or praise, this episode is for you.
Welcome to The Strong[HER] Way, a place where you can be who you were created to be, so that you can do what only you were created to do. I’m so glad you’re here!
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Inspiration for The Strong[HER] Way:
In the early days of marriage, I remember being terrified to speak my mind. I was afraid if speak up for what I wanted or needed he would get mad, and would end up leaving. I know how silly that must sound… so insecure, and perhaps even a bit naive to how real love actually works. I’m not entirely sure where that insecurity or fear came from, but it was there, and it was real.
It took us going through a pretty rocky season–one I’m not sure we would have survived had it not been for our faith. We found ourselves in a situation I was sure I would have walked out on before I was actually there.
At the same time, the strangest thing happened. I was no longer afraid to speak up, to petition for my needs in our relationship. There was an ease between us that wasn’t there before. Maybe it was because I knew then that we were two flawed people committed to making it work. For good or bad, in sickness, and in health until one of us kicks the bucket.
Here’s the deal…if you’re in a healthy, loving relationship, you have to know your partner is on your side.
He’s for you.
He wants to see you soar and succeed.
You mean we’re on the same side?
I used to think it was me vs him. That if one of us got what we wanted, that automatically meant the other didn’t.
I would tip-toe around what I needed, what I wanted.
And then got so mad when he didn’t read my mind accurately. This of course caused so many other problems then if I had just been up front, open, and honest with him about what I needed.
Many of my clients come to me ready and excited to make a change in their lives..yet, as we get into the work, they have all sorts of excuses why they can’t follow through–and more times than not it has something to do with their partner.
Recognizing you’re on the same team is the first step in opening the lines of communication. When you understand it’s not a fight to see who is going to get what they want, but that you both can have what you need and want, you’re able to ask for what you want without feeling ashamed or guilty.
Even though it shouldn’t be, woman guilt is a real thing. So is feeling guilty for taking time for yourself when you should be doing the laundry, cleaning a toilet, or any other item on your never ending to-do list instead of trying a new workout class or going out with your girl friends.
The problem is when we don’t ask for what we want, we often end up resenting our husbands or partners because we feel like we don’t have any time for ourselves.
…but he can’t read your mind 😉
The reality is my husband didn’t know what I needed unless I spoke up. Neither does yours.. And if they don’t know what we need, how in the world can they give it to us or help us get it for ourselves?
I had to trust him. I had to let go of control of the insecurity and fear he might leave me. I had to learn how to delegate.
Carve out the time on your calendar to chat with your partner.
Be willing to negotiate your schedules so each of you get time to recharge.
Protect the time you carved out for yourself as best as you can. I know how hard this can be when you feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders.
Let them know how they can support you. This is key! They don’t know what you need from them unless you tell them.
Look out for the speed bumps
Not all partners will be supportive, I get that. This is an unfortunate reality too for some of you reading this. While you can’t change them, you can still control yourself and your time. Figure out ways you can still get the time you need for yourself without them feeling like you’re being selfish.
Could you do something for yourself early in the morning? Perhaps during the day, you can take a break and do something kind for yourself.
Brainstorm ways you still take the time for yourself despite them being on board.
Maybe your partner is on board, but you let your guilt win, and you don’t give yourself the time you needed and wanted. If this is where you find yourself, you’re just going to have to get over the guilt.
The best way to do that is by exploring why you’re feeling guilty about investing in yourself. What do you feel like you’re dropping the ball on if you take a time out to treat yo’self? Then ensure you take the steps needed to not drop the ball or get rid of that ball all together 😉
When you and your partner can band arms and get on the same page, it ends up being a win-win for everyone. You get what you need (time to take care of you), and they end up getting a more energized and confident version of you–which allows you to take better care of him and the rest of your responsibilities.
The best part might be, you feel like a team working for one another instead of fighting with each other. Get ready to welcome a whole lot more peace, calm, and time for yourself.
“Nothing can dim the light that shines from within”
Nothing that is unless you let it. Don’t be so quick to give your power away. The light may be merely a flicker at the moment, but continue to feed that fire until it becomes an all consuming flame.
One song comes to mind when I hear this quote…this little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine. What ever happened to that confidence? Hide it under a bushel, NO! I’m going to let it shine. You were made to shine too. Don’t let anybody or anything talk you into hiding it.
That yearning for something more is put there for a reason. Don’t ignore the call on your heart. Feed the flame and one day it will be the burning fire you desire it to be.
It is hard to do this on your own though, isn’t it? That is why having community is SO important. If you are looking for that community, for that tribe, then look no more. We’ve got you covered. Search Find your T.H.R.I.V.E on FB and join the other women on this journey with you.
Too late for a #throwback?
I was 26 and probably about 15 pounds lighter in the picture on the left.
I was also exhausted from being a mom of two young kids and felt drained all the time.
I was trying so hard to be the perfect mom and wife and was honestly miserable in so many ways.
I was putting everyone first and chasing the wrong things.
I would make the excuse that I didn’t have time to take care of what mattered, because I had let busy take over, and tried to keep up certain appearances.
This is the side of motherhood that is rarely, if ever talked about because motherhood is supposed to be one of the best times of our lives as women.. my heart is racing even as I type my feelings so openly. There were days I thought about running away and leaving them all behind.
Looking back, maybe I was suffering from a little #postpartumdepression, bit more than that I think I was suffering from putting so much pressure on doing it ‘right’.
Fast forward 7 years.
I see life and vibrancy and passion in her eyes.
I see a woman who has completely embraced motherhood in all of its messiness and a wife that has endured a great deal of heartache over the last 11 years. But she is filled with joy. She is content. And she is confidently laughing at whatever the future may hold.
If you’re still reading this, I hope you know you’re not alone. Motherhood is messy. Being a wife takes a lot of work and a lot of sacrifice.
I’ve heard you can’t have it all…I’m starting to think that’s a lie. If you ever feel alone, know that you are not. My inbox is always open
Gratitude changes everything…
Have you noticed that the practice of giving thanks is every where right now? And for good reason. Taking inventory of what is good in our lives can give us hope and can encourage us to carry on even when we are weary and feel like we are stuck in a hopeless situation.
The Bible talks so much about giving thanks and counting your blessings. There is a reason for that. It points out that even in the most desperate situations there are specks of hope, light, and good. And that God, in His faithfulness will work all things for the good of those that love him and are called according to his purpose -Romans 8:28
That means that even when you can’t see how He is working, you can trust that He still is. And giving thanks is one way to keep your mind steadfast and free from the distraction of what may not be working so well in the moment.
How can you cultivate an attitude of gratitude or a state of being grateful regardless of your circumstances?
Start a gratitude journal. Head to Target or TJ Maxx or any other cute shop that sells journals and pick one that elicits a feeling of gratitude. Then start by journaling at least 3 things you are thankful for each and every day. It could be something simple like having a hot cup of coffee by yourself in the morning, or perhaps something bigger has happened that is worth noting. By journaling, you will be able to look back and see how God has always provided, and you can use it in times of trial to spur you on in your race.