It can be tempting to want to be superwoman and to do it all. I know I have moments in my Type-A brain where I think I can do it all and I can do it all better than anyone. I’ll create all the content for my business and post it, as well as meeting with clients and double checking my P&L report. Oh and I’ll have time to plan my best friend’s birthday dinner, pick up my roommate’s package at the post office and meal plan for the week. I can do it all because I am a smart, determined, empowered business owner, friend and woman, right?
Right. I can do it all but I shouldn’t.
Just because I can do it all doesn’t mean that I should be doing it all. Learning boundaries, understanding my limits and being able to say no and to ask for help have been some of the most important learning lessons that have grown my business and improved my quality of life. Most women are natural caretakers and women who have big things to do in this world often combine their natural caretaker self with their type A drive and slight control freak tendencies to form an unstoppable spirit that can take on the world. These are excellent qualities to have but we need to learn to manage them and temper them because if we don’t, we are going to burn ourselves out and no one wins when we are burnt out. If we can’t take care of ourselves and understand our limits, we will never be able to fully take care of others. You cannot take care of anyone if you are not taking care of yourself and you can’t take care of yourself if you are too busy making sure the entire world runs on its axis.
Superwoman is a tempting gig. You are the one everyone needs. You are the beloved one, the problem solver, the hero. But when we attach ourselves to being the superwoman, we place our worth on what we can do for others. We connect the love we want to receive with how we fulfill other people’s needs. Internally we start to believe that if we’re not problem solving and doing all of the things, then we may not be helping or being productive or playing our role and if we’re not, then are we worthy of being loved?
There is something rewarding about being needed by others and knowing that you are the go-to person for people. I personally love being the problem solver for my friends and family. It makes me feel good to know I can help people. But what is important to understand is that we are still lovable even when we are not taking care of everyone all of the time and solving everyone’s problems every minute of the day. It’s not necessary to be needed to be loved and it’s important to separate those two things in your mind. Once you do, you will be able to see that sometimes it’s ok to let other people solve their own problems, pick up their own mail and plan their own parties.
When you shift out of the Superwoman role and into the role of being a normal human who has lots to give but also would like some love, attention, help and support of her own, you may realize how much more freeing it feels to not be the one in charge.
When you take off your superwoman cape, you may feel like a burden gets lifted off your shoulders. You may realize it’s actually more enjoyable to take a hot bath and catch up on Netflix then to keep the world spinning on its axis (and believe it or not, the world will keep spinning). Heck you may even realize, you look a lot better in leather jackets than that tacky cape.
The most important thing to realize is that you do not need to do all of the things to be loved or worthy. You can outsource your finances and your marketing. You can hire a cleaning lady, ask your partner to pick up the slack. You can let the world keep turning and get a massage or a decent night’s sleep. Even after all that, though, even when you are not going 1,000 miles an hour and keeping the world spinning, you will still be superwoman. That’s the secret. We are all superwomen. We’re just superwomen who know they deserve a night off.