All of us have lives that are overloaded with family, work, volunteering … the list goes on and on. Girlfriend Guru Donina Ifurung reminds us what is important to focus on in this great guest blogs.
You’ve probably heard of the best-selling book on healthy eating, Eat This Not That! where the author gives practical suggestions on what real foods to eat, and which ones to avoid. We can be obsessed with our bodies and go to great lengths to take care of ourselves on the outside. But sometimes, as women, we forget about our hearts and minds. Having a great body without having true confidence and self-esteem will make us still not accept the bodies we see if don’t nourish the soul that we don’t see.
In celebration of being a women, here is the Do This Not That of Womanhood:
1) Pamper yourself — dress well, even down to your under garments. (Are you participating in #WildUnderwearWednesday?) This is not to say that you must only buy all things Armani or Vera Wang. Dressing well means carefully selected pieces that suit your body frame, your style, and your personality. Don’t be afraid to spend a bit more money on panties and bras that look, feel and fit you in the right places. Treat yourself to a new hairstyle or an afternoon at the spa. Luxuriate in you own sexiness.
2) Take care of yourself — eat well and exercise. This mantra has been drummed into us for the past couple of decades, but with so many commitments with career, business, and family, most women’s healthy eating habits are thrown to the way-side. This is a must-do! Deliberately set aside time to exercise three times a week, and brown-bag it a few times a week as well. Make it a priority, and if you have a family, discuss it with them. Exercise is your “you” time.
3) Do something that makes you happy — take an art class, read a book, buy those shoes you’ve had an eye on. Women often sacrifice their personal wants for the needs of their family. That is a beautiful (and responsible) thing, however, moms should never feel guilty for still being women who have hobbies and want to enjoy the pleasures of life.
4) Speak kindly to yourself! I think women put too much responsibility on themselves to do everything and be everything to everyone. Unfortunately, when we fall short, we tend to blame ourselves and speak (or think) negative things about ourselves. Let’s start to think of ourselves in terms of valued daughters of God, or as valued friends. Your family and friends love you and think you are wonderful. That in itself should be evidence that you are worth being spoken about kindly and with respect. Tell yourself today and everyday that you are a gift, and that you have so many good things to give to others.
5) Speak kindly to others and about others. Kindness goes a long way and can lift someone’s spirit! There is a huge reciprocal law to kindness – it always comes back to you. Kindness to someone who has been mean or rude, or someone who has pushed our buttons will bring the other person’s defenses down. The other person could have been having a bad day, and a kind word spoken is a golden apple to their heart and mind.
Don’t do this:
1) Don’t let yourself go. How many women go on extreme diets before their wedding day, and only end up ballooning a year or two after their wedding? This is not a statement of being shallow. It simply goes back to taking care of yourself because there is only one fabulous you! Again, looking good makes you feel good, and positive energy will only flow out.
2) Don’t be ruled by obligation and duty. Gone are the days when women had to be “dutiful” wives and daughters, performing their roles out of economic necessity and society requirements. Take time for yourself. Nurture your heart, body and soul. Take time away to decompress with your best gal pals and experience some “freedom” as a woman. I’m not saying that you just take off one day and leave the house in squalor with the kids to fend for themselves. Don’t worry – the laundry, the dishes, the house will get cleaned and put in order. My friend used to say, “A happy mama means a happy husband and happy kids.”
3) Don’t compare yourself to the Desperate Housewives, Halle Berry and/or the Sports Illustrated models. Remember that those celebrities and models make a living out of looking good AT ALL TIMES. And don’t forget that they are airbrushed, put on strict diets, and have stylists and make-up artists working on them everyday. Cut yourself some slack when you don’t feel like you are not up to par. Your confidence comes from the core of your fabulous you.
4) Don’t spend time without your best gal pals! There is nothing like the friendships of women. Sisterhood and deep friendships rejuvenates, encourages and brings joy and laughter to sometimes rough times. Women have the ability to connect and bond. Mentors and coaches can become friends and friends can become sisters. Cherish your friends and make sure you spend time with those you love.
DONINA IFURUNG is the founder and owner of On High Heels, a boutique P.R. and Media Relations company catering to women entrepreneurs in beauty, fashion, and luxury lifestyles. A self-described bookworm and scribe, she is like Cupid – creating a love connection between people and the media by writing snazzy pitches that turns heads. Though into fitness, Donina loves chocolate, wine, and (gasp!) shoes. She’s nuts for her adorable nephews and wants two boxer dogs.