The Lie of Superwoman Syndrome
Part II: Grace and Gratitude Series. Adapted from an article that first appeared in CBE’s blog, Mutuality, on 10/15/2020 (www.cbeinternational.org).
Grace. That supernatural favor, help, or enablement. We can receive it and we can extend it. I’d like to begin this Women’s History Month with an eye towards grace. Because ladies, let’s be honest, we don’t give ourselves enough grace. We have embraced the societal, generational, and cultural LIE that demands that we swoop in and “save the day”. This doesn’t mean that we can’t – we know we can because we’ve done it time and time again.
But, just because we can, doesn’t mean we should.
“Super Woman Syndrome” would have us believe that anytime there is an issue, we can swoop in and “save the day.” It says that we who sit in seats of power and happen to be women have been equipped to deal with any and all situations that come our way. We have to show up (immaculately dressed and perfectly poised). We have to encourage (with gentleness of demeanor). We have to be nurturing (because, of course, we’re women and that’s what’s expected). We have to bring home the bacon (after we’ve navigated virus-ridden grocery stores), fry it up in a pan, serve it (every time someone in the house is hungry), and clean up afterward. We have to ensure that our crowns don’t slip, our programs and departments don’t suffer, and our families appear well-rounded (ha!).
“Super Woman Syndrome” would have us believe that our worlds would crumble without our “superpower.” It would have us believe that our bodies are indestructible and that we are the only one people can turn to in crisis.
So, we should sacrifice our own mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being for the sake of the many. This, my sisters, is simply not true. These are ALL LIES. Whispered to us from the father of lies who seeks to kill, steal, and destroy us.
That is the first step. Recognizing the lie. Once you recognize it – then you can fight it. Grace is the ultimate weapon. GIVE YOURSELF GRACE!!
Grace says: I am not perfect – I am human – and I will not be shamed because of my humanity. I am one human being. I cannot be responsible for everyone and everything around me.
I dare you to repeat that to yourself the next time you feel compelled to swoop in and save the day.
Grace covers. Allow grace to cover that messy house, messy desk, messy relationship, and messy life. It will do a much better job than you.