Superwoman: A Compliment Or Curse?
As Indian women, we are born multi-taskers; brilliantly juggling the responsibilities of being the perfect homemaker, mother, wife, daughter-in-law, daughter, friend, and--in many cases--a perfect employee. Thankfully, we are finally in a society that may acknowledge (albeit grudgingly sometimes) that you, after all, are nothing short of a Superwoman! Each of us who has been paid this gracious and generous compliment has felt the inner glow of meeting expectations and the satisfaction of receiving appreciation!
While we have definitely come a long way from being restricted in terms of opportunities and appreciation for our efforts, is this superpower really sustainable? Do we also have higher incidences of being extremely stressed, tired and probably crumbling under the weight of our own superpowers?
(Also read about the New Domestic Equation)
And guess what; to this, we add the gloss of the perfect ten figure and flawless skin. The hourglass takes an extremely symbolic representation in our busy lives, ranging from the ideal body shape to also signify that we are truly running against time each and every day… all in the pressure of being perfect!
Can we consider choosing relaxation over caffeine, sleep instead of facepacks, and happiness over perfection? Instead of thinking about actually forfeiting our superpowers and hanging up our boots pre-maturely, let’s talk about spreading the magic and empowering others ?
How do we feel about simply asking for contribution from other family members? Never tried it…? Thought as much! Next time, simply enlist help: There is no harm requesting your husband or elders at home to pick your child up from school or drop her to music class. They may actually enjoy being a part of your power-team!
How do you feel about giving up on something, or handing the baton to someone else? I am sure nobody does it as well as you do, but guess what; they may not be too bad and you do have so much on your plate! So, if you need to hire a cook to whip up dinner while you spend quality time with your hubby after work and catch up on the day; it may just be some money really well spent.
How do you take out time for a yoga or zumba session amidst a 25-hour day, literally? Well, simply replace something else with your me-time. Either couple it with some quality mother-daughter time shaking a leg or simply decide to drop being a parent volunteer. Nobody will really judge you!
How do you convey the evasive ‘no’ without letting someone down? Well, this is a tough one, but it’s all about priorities. Be kind, be calm, explain--but still say no. I am sure your mother-in-law will understand that you cannot really make it for her prayer group meetings, given your tight schedule. Make it up with some gossip sessions over a cup of tea when convenient!
We often take on more than we can chew, given the expectation of living up to each role perfectly. None of it is really worth it if we are not happy and content. Those who love us will understand if we choose to say no, or simply request their help. There will be detractors, but then they don’t really matter, do they?
The pressure is real: we need to choose to help ourselves. After all, even Mother Theresa is quoted as saying “I know God will not give me anything I can’t handle. I just wish that He didn’t trust me so much!”