When Being a Good Girl Works Against You
Perhaps your momma taught you to be a good girl. Mind your manners, don’t make a scene in public, be lady-like, and at all costs, keep the peace. Well, your mamma might have messed you up big time! Because being a good girl is not always a good thing. It is self-destructive when it means giving up on your needs to make someone else more important. It is especially corrosive when you’re the ‘good girl’ to accommodate the guy in your life.
So, while many women were taught to be good and not make waves, they weren’t taught to advocate for their needs and have clear boundaries. If you’re giving and accommodating endlessly in a relationship where your needs are ignored, it can lead you to become a victim or a martyr. When you’re smiling to the outside world, but inside you’re seething with resentment, that’s the furthest thing from good.
Giving to others is a lovely thing to do, but not at the risk of losing yourself. I’ve seen too many women try to be the good girl in their relationships with men, and ended up staying way too long in destructive relationships where their needs were not met.
So, if being ‘good’ means stuffing emotions, not expressing yourself clearly, or giving in, it’s not really good at all.
From Being a Good Girl To Becoming a Self-Respecting Woman
1. Honor and respect yourself before giving to another. Know your values. Make a list of the top five things that are most important to you, and then describe each value. For example, if ‘kindness’ is important to you, how is that displayed in your life? Do you volunteer at a soup kitchen? Do you bring casseroles to friends who are recovering from surgery? What is it to you? Then make sure you’re fulfilling those values in your daily life.
2. Have clear boundaries. Once you know your values, get clear about what you’re willing to do if someone conflicts with your boundaries. For instance, one of your values is ‘healthy living’, which translates into a Sunday morning yoga class. Your boyfriend says, “The yoga class is not important. It’s a waste of your time. You should give it up to come to my NASCAR racing party.” Let him know that your class is important to you, and you’d be happy to join his party after class. If he is not okay with that, figure out what your next step is. And be sure to follow through.
The best relationships are built on two independent people with a strong sense of self, uniting in love to support each other’s dreams and goals.
Be sure to learn what your needs are, honor them, and find someone who has the same level of self-knowledge and self-worth. Your chances for relationship success will be exponentially better!
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