I am truly blessed to work with women who courageously take up change for being happier in their life and relationships. They are tired of compensating for their unhappiness with food, or shopping, or by (always) complaining to their friends and family. These women have spent years being the good girls they were taught to be as children. But being a good girl hasn’t brought them happiness and tired of being unhappy, they reach out for help for being happy again.
Being a good girl can serve to make important adults happy when you’re a child. But being a good girl as an adult not only keeps your happiness at bay, it keeps the happiness of those you love at bay as well. The saying “If Mama ain’t happy, nobody be happy” is not a judgment about unhappy women, but a truth about the impact a happy (or unhappy) woman has in her relationships and life.
How happy/unhappy you truly are is felt by all you care for in life. Putting on a smile and pretending to be happy does not fool anyone but yourself. When I invite a woman to be silent less and share herself more with those important to her, fear of being rejected is often the reason she has not done so. Yet the price of not being authentic in your relationships erodes your self-respect and trust of yourself and others. The woman begins to realize how pledging allegiance to relationships or institutions which don’t honor her, are relationships and institutions she can ill afford for being happy in her life.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
- If you no longer believed you needed to be a good girl for being happy in life, what would you change in your life or relationships?
- What would you stand up to-that you now only complain about or feel helpless to make better-if you had support?
- Would you be more willing to make different choices if more happiness and self-respect would be your result?
- If you could be happier if you reached out for help, what stops you?
The questions above are not meant for you to answer by yourself. Only recently have we embraced a belief of strength as being solitary. I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty clear how that’s (not) working for us. Talk about these questions with those you trust and I’d love to hear from you!