Health & Wellness

The Female Perspective


Women are not one homogeneous group. We can have radically different life experiences. But one theme that joins many women is our lived experience of being caregivers—whether for our children, parents, siblings, or friends. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, two out of every three caregivers in the U.S. are female, and women who are caregivers have a greater risk of neglecting their mental and physical health. 

While there has been substantial progress for women in workplaces and leadership roles across society, there remains a unique pressure on women to be everything to everyone at work, in their communities, and at home. 

Life’s commitments often get in the way of self-care. Finding the time has to be an intentional act. There will always be another task you could be accomplishing or another person you could be caring for rather than engaging in self-care. It’s hard to remember, but it’s true that you must put on your own oxygen mask first before helping others. 

Here are a few ways I try to practice self-care on a daily basis:

Utilize the positives of technology

Meditation can give you a sense of calm, peace, and balance that can benefit your emotional well-being and overall health. There are several free meditation apps. My personal favorite is Insight Timer. You can search for meditations by topic and get help with sleep, stress, or anxiety, or simply listen to relaxing ambient music. 

Reconnect with friends

One of the best ways to recharge is to spend time with those who make you laugh—people you can be yourself around. Find those folks who you find it easy to be around and spend more time with them. 

Get back to basics

Self-care does not have to be an expensive massage or pricey activity. Listening to your favorite music, taking a walk outside, or watching a favorite movie can also be effective ways to decompress. Self-care can be whatever works for you—it doesn’t have to cost a fortune.

Learn to say “no”

Sometimes we feel overstretched because we don’t say no often enough. Saying “no” can be empowering. Try to look at saying no as a way to prioritize your own well-being, as opposed to something that triggers unnecessary guilt. Balance and downtime are just as essential as helping others or participating in social activities. Saying “no” can be a way to set healthy boundaries with people in life.

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