We’re all searching. Searching for the magic thing that will help us be totally kick-arse. Is there a pill we can take? A tonic we can drink? We want to be all the things, but that’s fucking hard when we’re juggling so much on our plates. Work, family, parenting, friendships, self-care- how do we do it and still feel like we’ve got enough left in the tank? How do we keep on our path no matter how hard we might be swayed?
All too often we feel we’re not doing enough, and not ‘being’ enough. We’re often struggling to manage multiple roles in life, and look to other ‘more successful’ women to see what their ‘tricks’ are. There’s no quick fix. Sorry, the magic wand is in the repair shop at the moment. But there are some kick-arse women out there who follow a few key factors to keep them chugging. What’s their secret? A lot of hard work, and some of these:
1. They put their oxygen mask on
I can’t stress this enough- you can’t be there for anyone else, unless you’re there for yourself. Too often the ridiculous myth is perpetuated that women have to put everyone else first. No. Just no. How the fuck can you look after anyone else if you can’t even look after yourself? You need reserves in the tank to be fully present and give it your all for those around you, so oxygen mask on first, then tend to others.
2. They do give a fuck
Contrary to the popular ‘zero fucks given’, some fucks are needed. But they’re used sparingly and for what really matters. Shit is prioritised, and they know what to expend energy on, and what to walk away from.
3. They raise up, not tear down
No one is in competition with anyone. Truly. Kick arse women focus on their own backyard, and also help others to keep their grass green (yeah, that sounds like a double entendre, doesn’t it?). When someone does well, they celebrate that. There’s no snide remarks, or catty comments. Just wanting others to do well for themselves, and hoping they also do well.
4. They say no
Have you tried it? It feels goooooood. Saying no to taking on too much. Saying no to things that move them further away from where they want to be. Saying no to being used. It’s not a bad thing to say no!
5. They flip things around
It’s true. Flipping it works. Sometimes that may also require flipping the bird, I’m cool with that. Being able to grabble with a shitty situation, reflecting and being able to turn it around is core in being kick ass. It can enable us to deal with almost anything on our plate. Research has shown for example, that women who are higher in positive affect, demonstrate greater resilience and even show less pain when dealing with chronic illnesses (Zautra, Johnson, & Davis, 2005). It’s important to note though that flipping it around doesn’t mean being trippy hippy happy about every single thing. It just means being able to see both sides of the story and balance things out. It’s not all sunshine and lollipops, just as it’s not all storm clouds and douchebags.
6. They ask for help
Woman is not an island. Again, kick-arse women debunk the whole myth of doing it all themselves, without ever asking for help. Seriously, is that even possible? We all need help. It’s not a sign of weakness to ask for help, and it’s not an affront on pride to be offered help. It’s not about expecting help or relying on others for everything, but knowing when help is going to be needed, and being open about asking for help is totally kick-arse. It takes a strong person to know when they need support and to ask for it. Fact.
7. They throw guilt out the window.. as much as they can
Look, as nice as it would be to say ‘kick -arse women throw guilt fair out the window’, let’s be honest. It’s near impossible to be rid of that damn guilt. We all feel it from time to time, even the most kick-arse of kick-arse. But we can really reduce that guilt to a bare minimum. There is just shit we do not need to be feeling guilty about. Look at the big picture, is it really going to fuck life up by missing the odd thing here or there? Or feeding your kids baked beans or toast for dinner? Guilt does no good in large doses. It doesn’t change the situation, it doesn’t make us feel better. In a way it can make us reflect on things and reassess what’s going on, but really, throw the rest out the window.
These things can take time, and a lot of practice, and we can often forget them, but part of being kick-arse, is being human, and knowing your limitations and knowing your strengths, while understanding that balance is a work in progress.