We are all busy. We keep on running after our goals, the better job, the best contract, the best promotion. We run after looking perfect, having the beautiful body, the nicest houses, the fastest cars. We keep on working and try to please everyone at the same time.
Especially us women are always there when we are needed. When the kids need us, the husband wants to be taken care of, the household being just a minor demand besides the full-time job – we act and never complain. A lot of women like pursuing a career and raising a family at the same time. There is nothing wrong with it until you feel fine with it.
Yet, some women do not simply know when to say “No”. They take on whatever duty is asked of them. Of course, we take on charity work, sing in a choir, and join the golf club, though we might not even be a golf enthusiast.. On top of it, we would always be willing to take care of an elderly person, maybe the parents of the husband, without even thinking about it – we are so brave, aren`t we?
What we do not realize is that nobody asks how we really feel about this, whether it might be simply “too much” for us to handle or not. Instead, we keep on going, ignoring the little voice inside us warning us that this might be drastic “overload”. For years, we keep on playing the good role to please others, while our own demands are completely neglected. Until, one day, we wake up and wonder why in the world we suddenly develop rheumatic diseases, depression, auto-immune sicknesses, or particularly chronic hypertension.
It is for a reason, I believe, that women today are more prone to develop heart disease than men. Interestingly enough, most of the women with high blood pressure I have met do not fall into the stereotype. They are neither overweight, nor do they eat junk food, nor are they couch potatoes. Rather the opposite, they are mostly perfectionists, career women, multitasker, the women of the new millennium.
How come then, that more and more women suffer from hypertension?
One reason is that we have never learned listening to our own wishes and needs. In terms of material wealth and independence from male domination we have come a long way. The price, however, has been high. We pay with chronic diseases, psychological problems, burn-out, and heart disease derived from constant internal pressure. Even exercise courses and Yoga courses, which I have recently visited, radiate such a competitive atmosphere which is further aggravating the problem. In reality we only think we are independent. The fact is, that we are still living in our centuries old patterns, only in a modern way.
When have you last said “egotistically”, that you are not able to do the extra presentation for the weekend, because you enrolled in a painting course? When have you last thought about your priorities? Are you able to tell a “friend” who repetitively calls you and asks you for favours over and over again without anything in return, that you have no time at the moment? When was the last time you ever really thought about what you needed, what makes you feel good besides the happiness of others, what your spirit, your body, your heart requires, not other people or your wallet?
High blood pressure is the peak of an accumulation of many behavioural factors unnoticed or ignored over years.
Unfortunately, we are still conditioned by our upbringing. Our entire society raises us to be “helpful”, being a ” good girl”, we are the natural care takers and nurturers, conditioned to smile and say “Yes, of course!”. These are great traits in themselves but only to the point where they do not harm us. Yet, we would not dare to do otherwise, refusing to play the “good girl”, refusing to do the extra portion of work, which no other male colleague would do anyhow. We are scared to be rejected, not loved anymore, not appreciated. What kind of independence is this? Do you really think you are worth less, because you have other plans and goals? Believe me, it is rather the opposite!
Stop ignoring yourself and start treating yourself the way you would treat your kids, your beloved ones , your dog – with love! It is prime time to prioritize yourself because chances are nobody else will.
Think about what you need, make a list and prioritize your weekly activities, identify what drains your energy, where you start feeling exhausted! Once, you have done this, start practicing the word “No”. Believe me, the world won`t crumble and fall. It might only be slightly surprised.
How to say “No”?
As with any exercise, constant practice is required. Saying “No” does not mean to let someone down, neither does it mean to be impolite or sorry. Simply state in an energetic way, without making excuses or changing your mind, that a certain demand can not met by you right now, may be later, PERIOD! As a side effect, people might first look at you in a strange way, but in the end, what you gain is respect, and a healthier life.
Take more time for things which are important to you:
– enjoy the sunshine
– have a relaxing bath
– start painting
– join your true girl friends
I guess you get the idea. Taking breaks in between the demands of the whole world around you recharges your batteries, takes off the pressure, allows you to heal from within.
Learning to saying “No” might prevent you from heart failures by reducing your slowly rising blood pressure.
Obviously, there are also men which fall into the “Yes” trap. I apologize to my male readers for not having addressed them as this seems to be a typical ladies´issue. Of course, you are encouraged to reflect on this topic as well!
I love to read your comments. My Online Training Seminar which teaches how to beat essential high blood pressure holistically, will come up soon. It provides specific training units pertaining to this and related issues among others. Register now!
Where have you started to say “No” and what was your experience?
Love thy heart!