by Dr. C. Nicole Swiner
If you’re a working woman, Mom and/or wife, someone is getting your nerves right at this very moment—your kids, hubby, Mother-in-law, employer, employees, Deaconess—someone. But, if you’re like most of us, you’ve allowed him or her or them to bother you with their issues. The kids need you to pick out their outfits and pick up after them. Your husband or your partner needs you to fix dinner and iron his or her shirt for work. Your staff needs all of their vacation hours approved right now! When is it your time?
Our job doesn’t end with our 9-to-5, does it? The days are never-ending, seemingly, and there’s never enough time in the day.
Welcome to the acknowledgement that you’re a Superwoman. This is your Superwoman Complex world, and I’m your host, DocSwiner—another Superwoman in rehab, herself.
Let’s dive into how we’re going to fix this.
Chapter 1-Tip 1: Get Out of Your Own Way!
We’re killing it. We’re rocking it. All day. Everyday. I see you superwoman—handling your business as the Mistress of your household if you’re a stay-at-home Mom. I also see you if you’re working outside of the home, juggling family obligations, extracurricular activities and trying to stay fit and sane.
Well, enough is enough. Stop doubting yourself. If you sit down, get quiet and write out a business plan or chapter outline, or go outside to start walk/jogging, you can get it done. Don’t jeopardize your own goals because you’re taking care of everyone else’s. Get out of your own way by literally scheduling in your quiet or work out time. It should go on a calendar weekly or monthly, just like everyone else’s doctors’ appointments and games do. I’m here to tell you to stop self-sabotaging and just get started.
Chapter 2-Tip 2: There’s No Time Like the Present
So, now that you’ve made the decision to make time for you to accomplish that goal, the next question is “When am I supposed to do it?” The truth is that it rarely feels like the “right time.” So, why not start now? Don’t wait. Start that business you’ve always dreamed of, leave that job, change that habit, write that book, or finish that degree.
Time and money will always be obstacles. As time passes and we get older, we tend to have more and more familial and financial obligations. I’m not sure there’s ever a perfect time to take that leap. For me, when I decided to write my first book, I didn’t have the whole amount needed saved at the time. I chose to do a campaign online and asked for donations from my followers and family. It worked like a charm and kept me motivated to continue writing as the donations poured in. In 3 months, I was ready to launch the book. 3-6months prior to that, I wasn’t sure it was the right time. However, I believed, had the faith, and took the first step.
Chapter 3-Tip 3: “No” is a Complete Sentence
We-especially those of us that are caretakers, wives or mothers-often have a difficult time saying no to those we love and care about. But, it’s necessary. Nay, it’s lifesaving. We work our fingers to the bone at work and at home, and of what’s left of us someone is always willing to take. Don’t let them do it.
As an act of self-preservation, I am encouraged to say no more and set boundaries. I no longer allow patients to have access to me via social media after work hours. I am much less likely to teach a skill or give my professional advice without the other person putting their “skin in the game,” too. My time and opinions are valuable, as well. I’m worth something and so are you. Let’s stop giving ourselves away all the time, for free. I’ll keep working on it, if you promise to keep working on it, too.
Chapter 4-Tip 4: Frenemies are Not Your Friends
I love and hate this topic. I thought that jealousy and envy improved after high school and college. But alas, they continue to rear their ugly heads well into adulthood, and jealousy and envy disguise themselves in different ways. The sayings “let the haters hate” and even worse, “haters gon’ hate” are a few of my pet peeves that are used commonly. This is mostly because many of these haters that we speak of, are part of inner circle or on our friend lists. Why do we allow it to happen?
I heard a couple of friends talk about this on social media recently. They said they’d encountered some soul suckers and energy vultures in their midst. Geez! Stay away, toxic folks. Get those kind of people out of your environment. Shooo, fly, shoo!
Chapter 5-Tip 5: Admit it. You Hate Your Job
When I wrote my first book, “How to Avoid the Superwoman Complex: 12 Ways to Balance Mind, Body & Spirit,” I was rounding out my eighth year of working full time as a family doctor. I was having fun seeing patients all day long, but not so much fun managing hours of insurance-related paperwork and phone calls, which is not taught in medical school or residency – doctors learn the ins-and-outs of business once we start working in the real world. So, I had to get creative to prevent “burn-out.” That’s when I started writing and doing things like this.
With that, I’ll add this: If you hate your job, change it. Shorten or change your work schedule. Ask for a promotion or demotion to a different department. Ask for a change of duties or responsibilities. Or get another job or change careers. Are these changes always easy? Nope. But, is it true that it may be worth your sanity? Absolutely. If you can’t leave your job right now, how about creating a “side hustle;” a “side-gig, ” if you will? If you’re really successful, maybe it becomes your real gig. It could save your sanity as well, because it’ll allow you to do more things you love and are passionate about—like how I am, now, about this.