As a woman, life can be a war zone. To breathe can sometimes feel like a burden. Broken dreams float around like debris after a battle. It’s not easy, you’ve heard that enough times. It’s complicated, scary and it’s like a dagger in your heart to feel like, even after all your hard work, you’re still not enough.
Here are 7 things to remind you that you are;
1. IT’S OKAY TO FEEL PAIN.
People who say feeling pain makes you weak are liars. Propel them out of your life, right now. This pain you feel, whether it’s because you lost your job, your father died, your baby is keeping you up at night, your husband left you, you’re alone in a big city or because you just woke up one morning and felt like your life has ended, this pain that you feel is not a weakness. It can never be a weakness. Feeling pain does not make you less human and certainly not less of a woman. To be alive is to be in pain. That is how you grow to be stronger, wiser, bolder. That is how you learn to be better than the person you were before. That is how you break boundaries.
2. YOUR HEART IS NOT STEEL. IT WILL BREAK, AND THAT’S OKAY.
To be a woman is something extraordinary and surreal but it does not mean your insides are made of concrete and your heart is impenetrable. It will break at some point, it will crumble and shudder in your chest. It will heave in agony and shake in hopelessness. You will want to be buried with your bed, you will give up on living completely. Days will drag by and you will feel the years slip from your control, wasted and withered. You will feel like the shit of the earth. You will feel sorry for being alive. You will feel like your heart has become cold and cannot be revived. That’s okay. There’s nothing wrong to feel that way. It’s okay and it’s not pathetic, lazy or stupid. The feeling is not permanent. It is okay and you will be okay.
3. ASKING FOR HELP DOES NOT MAKE YOU WEAK.
We sometimes read online and in magazines about independent women taking the world by storm, making headlines and succeeding in so many areas of their lives. We look at ourselves and are led to wonder “Why can’t I be like that? Why can’t I be brave and clever and strong like that? Why do I always need help to do even the simplest things like finding my keys?” The truth is, we don’t have to be like anybody other than ourselves. While it is truly amazing to be a successful and strong woman, there is nothing wrong with needing help occasionally, with asking someone to be there for us, to guide us or even to just get us to feel like we are worth it again. Asking for help does not make you lame or a reject in society. All of us need help now and then. It’s part of the process of everyday life. So don’t be silent if you are struggling. It is okay to reach out.
4. YOU ARE GORGEOUS.
You are. You really are. Your marks and cuts and bruises and every tiny little dent on you is a divine treasure. You could set the world on fire with your smile. You are full of amazing metaphors waiting to be discovered. Your eyes are worlds on their own, and when you blink, they are delved into brief darkness before the dawn. Your heart is home to the people who love you, and do you realize the immensity of the people who love you? You don’t need a contoured face or a size two waist to make you magnificent. You are gorgeous as you are. Just like the moon and the clouds and the stars.
5. SUCCESS IS NOT JUST FAME AND FORTUNE.
The media has made the definition of success into a very specific image. If you don’t own a fast car and if you don’t make millions, then you haven’t made it. That’s not true, not even close. Those things are not the definition of success. A rainbow is seen in the aftermath of rain, but the real victory of rain is not the rainbow. The real success of rain lies in serving nature, providing coolness and comfort to the world, to drought-stricken territories, to parched stretches of soil and soul. Riches and comfort are not the symbol of success. Enriched hearts, happy souls, making a difference in the lives of people and being able to sleep at night knowing you changed someone’s day for the better is what winning means. If you are doing that, then you have succeeded. It doesn’t matter if your neighbor wears gold while you still wear those simple studs. Your heart is priceless, and that’s what matters the most. Like a magnet, your kindness will attract greatness into your life.
6. IF YOUR LIST OF MISTAKES IS LONG, YOU’RE DOING SOMETHING RIGHT.
Look at the world and society. People are so scared to make mistakes, to make one wrong move, that they don’t live anymore. They go on anti-depressants from the mere thought of screwing up. What’s the point of all that? A perfect life is not one that exists. No matter how hard you try, sometimes you cannot avoid making mistakes, and that is fine. It’s not a train smash. Twelve years from now, you’ll be laughing over it over a bottle of wine and cheesecake with your better half. If your list of mistakes is long, embarrassing and messy, then that only means you are living your life. That is what we are here to do. So live and don’t feel less of a person for doing so.
7. LOVE TAKES TIME, ESPECIALLY SELF-LOVE.
Love is probably the hardest thing of all, and very likely the most terrifying experience of our lives. Letting your guard down, letting another living person into your life and allowing them to lift up the carpet beneath your feet in one swift, tumbling motion is not always the most rewarding of events. Sometimes relationships end, marriages fail, love is lost and we are left alone and cracked and crying alone in a sofa with a bucket of ice-cream, trying to make it through the rest of the week without drowning in our own self-pity. Love takes time, sometimes it takes trial and error too. Sometimes, before you can meet the person you are meant to be with, you need to meet people who will shape you into the person you are supposed to be for that special person. Sometimes you need to shape someone else for their future. We encounter people to be empowered, whether it’s through good or bad experiences, we always learn. The most important lesson is the lesson of self-love. Even if you are still alone and unhappy and afraid of the future, you are enough as you are and that is important to always remember. You are not born into this earth to be completed and defined by someone else. You are here to live your own life and leave your own legacy. By finding someone to share that experience with should complement the woman you are, not condemn you to a life in the shadow of someone else’s light. Do not be afraid to shine in your own right.
You are enough.