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Monday, March 4, 2013

Mom Jeans

This is not about how to find the literal right fit of jeans. This is a much more serious topic--how to accept yourself, and stop the ridiculous comparison game between you and other women.

Imagine your favorite pair of jeans. Maybe these are from high school or when you first fell in love. Remember how they were the perfect fit, color and style? They hid your flaws and you felt unstoppable! If you haven’t had this experience with jeans--pick some other piece of clothing that was your one "go to" piece. Imagine you’re wearing that now.

I'd like to relate your favorite jeans to being a woman. Just like your favorite jeans are the right color, style and fit, you fit being you just the way YOU are. You have curves, you have talents and abilities. You are enough the way you are, and IT DOESN'T MATTER if someone else doesn't like your "jeans." As women we often compare our worst selves to others best selves--or our perception of what others best selves are. This is an epidemic and will only destroy you and your family. I think as women have earned their empowerment and had the option to work in and out of the home, wear pants, burn their bras and let their voices be heard, somehow some of us began thinking that we had to do and have everything all at once, and all the time. Don't waste the opportunities we have been given.  Make sure you are “wearing” the right “jeans” for today.

1. You can have everything, just not all at once. Prioritize for what you need now and let that be your focus. Realize that your jean size, style and colors need to be updated--just like your priorities. Sometimes things that were really important at one point in life are replaced by new things. It's OK to say goodbye to the Girbaud jean and replace it with a cute True Religion jean.

2. QUIT CARING ABOUT WHAT OTHERS THINK ABOUT YOU. If you like the way your jeans fit, wear them. If you know your decisions are right for you then own it. Other people's opinions are worthless. Quit caring about what your neighbor does that you don't do. If they have a skill or talent you would like to acquire, then ASK for advice. Chances are there are others who want to learn from you. Opinions are different than advice--and really you should only be asking advice from those you truly trust--not from “friends” on Facebook.

3. Take time for you--cuz we all know if "Mamma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy!" (And yes I cringed writing ain't, but you get the point).

4.  You are the only one who can stop this “comparison game” for yourself. Accept you are the way you are, and if there are legitimate reasons for improvements then have the courage to change and move on.

5. Get support. It’s OK to ask for help. It’s probably healthy.  Put down the ridiculous farce that “you can do it all, all by yourself” and realize that it takes a village to survive. Talk to other women—but don’t compare yourself to them. Don't be unrealistic and expect perfection from yourself or anyone else every day. Some days it will happen, other days it won't. And either way it's OK!

6. Involve your families in your struggles. You have to ask for help. You have to initiate your happiness; don't expect anyone else to do it for you. Ask you boyfriend/husband to take out the trash; ask your kids to do the dishes. Remember the story about teaching a man to fish? If you give him a fish he eats for a day; if you teach him to fish he eats for a lifetime. So teach your families how to fish--you don't have to do everything for everyone, and your children will become better, stronger people for learning skills from you.

I guess I have some pretty strong opinions about this subject --shocker! I just get so tired of people whining and complaining and doing nothing to better their situation.  You have the POWER to be the woman you want to be.  How are those “jeans” feeling? If it’s time to reinvest in yourself and buy a new pair of jeans—literally or figuratively—go do it! It’s the first step in realizing you can be YOU and are enough being so.

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