Have you ever been so angry at a situation that you felt at a complete loss to take action? I have. For years, I was stuck behind walls that I had created for myself. I eventually realized that what was holding me down were the experiences that I had yet to let go of. So if you find yourself in a similar situation, here is what I’ve learned about how to let go.
I was twenty-nine when a boyfriend told me it was strange that I didn’t share my food when we went out. At the time, I thought, “Why would I want to share my food? I ordered it so I could enjoy it.” My philosophy? What was mine was mine, and yours was yours. Thinking about it, though, I realized that I kept more than just my peas and carrots to myself.
There is a social conundrum for women in which speaking one’s opinion openly and flatly can be considered “un-ladylike.” Since every person and situation is different, only you will be able to decide what works in your life. But if you’re ever in a position where you feel uncomfortable or unwelcomed speaking up, here are a few suggestions that I hope can help.
I was one of those kids that was always so worried about getting through college that I never gave much thought to what would happen after college. Before I knew it, graduation was around the corner and then, all of a sudden I was on my own thinking “Now what?” But you don’t have to punish yourself for being unemployed. Get out there and relish the break.
Effective communication is hard. Especially when we’re dealing with a topic as sensitive as our feelings, which we’re often taught simply don’t matter enough to be worthy of attention. It’s not something that we’re taught how to do effectively, and so that can leave us really at a loss for how to go about it. So here are a few things to keep in mind.
As important as self-care can be, for many of us, communal care is equally as vital. Healing community is about holding space: holding space for love, care, reflection, laughter, crying, feeling what we’re feeling, dancing, screaming, sorting through, moving past, sitting with, or for whatever else we may need. Because even when my personal life feels burdened, community exists all around me.
Whether it’s an everyday problem or a big life decision, turning to someone else for support and advice can feel uncomfortable and awkward. But listening and giving advice is equally tricky. Helping a loved one through a difficult time can be tough. It’s important to be conscious of your words and actions. Let’s discuss the everyday phrases that might give the wrong impression to a friend in need.
Put very simply, self-care is an intentional practice of taking care of ourselves. Now if you’re a type A productivity monster such as myself, you may have already stopped reading because you’ve got things to do. Am I right? I’ve said that all too many times before to myself. But if our obsession with productivity is keeping us from taking care of ourselves, we’ve got a problem.
Burn-out happens when you give more energy and compassion than you receive, and as a result, you lose sight of the light of hope at the end of the tunnel. For activists and people working in human service professions in particular, where we never get a respite from dealing with people face-to-face, burn-out feels inevitable. But it really doesn’t have to be.
(Trigger Warning: Body Image) According to Glamour, “Fitspo refers to images and words that women post with the purpose of inspiring themselves and others to live a fit, active life.” The problem that we see with fitspo, though, is that it looks too much like a not-so-cleverly-disguised thinspo. And these ideas that our bodies just aren’t good enough the way that they are is still dangerous.