“What I discovered when I connected myself back to this forgotten alter ego, my inner child, my Forgotten Woman…was ME.”
~Randi Levin Coaching
We are all guilty. As women, we are over scheduled, perhaps perfectionists, trying to do it all to “balance” the various aspects of what is most important to us. Except for one thing. In an effort to “balance” and juggle and fit everything and everyone into our lives, we often sacrifice ourselves. Instead of being first on our to-do lists, we are often last. Tomorrow is going to be our day. We don’t have the time today, or the energy, or the resources to support knowing our Forgotten Woman. We tell ourselves that we will do better tomorrow, we will say no to something so that we can say yes to ourselves. We will do this just as soon as we sort out everything else in our lives. For today, we will just have to keep our Forgotten Woman hidden.
Just who is this Forgotten Woman within each of us? Can we locate her, and if so, how do we get her to play a more active, meaningful and memorable role in our lives?
The key to finding her is to acknowledge that she exists. By being a guest in our own lives, we rob ourselves of the opportunity to live each day to the fullest and with the personal space we need to think and grow. We rationalize that we are busy; we make excuses for not doing things for ourselves because we need to do them for our families, our friends, or our careers. After all, we don’t want to be selfish, right?
The startling perspective that no one shares with us is that as we are creating perfection and simplicity for everyone else in our lives, we are often creating the exact opposite for ourselves. As we put everyone else’s needs ahead of our own, slowly, our own needs fade into the background. We get lost in our own lives. As women, we thrive on our ability to multi-task and to be the glue that holds everyone and everything in our Universe together. By nature, we are farmers and nurturers. Yet, there is a part of this Forgotten Woman in each of us that is coming unglued each time we are forced to pass on a secret passion, forgo an opportunity to try something new, deny ourselves a new outfit, an exotic trip, an adventure to call our own.
Simply put, we deny our Forgotten Woman’s existence. Once we acknowledge that she exists, we need to make peace with her. She wants what she wants…and our Forgotten Woman does not want to be forgotten! She exists to remind us of something. She exists to remind us of ourselves. She exists to remind us that we do take on many roles as woman, really important roles like wife and mother, and CEO of our companies. Along with that, we take her on as well. Our Forgotten Woman exists to remind us that self-love is not selfish, because self-love provides us with the opportunity to evolve and flourish and thrive, not only for ourselves individually, but for those whom we love and care for. Our Forgotten Woman has a voice within us. Finding her allows her to be heard, which is important because she represents our commitment to ourselves.
Begin today to connect with your inner child, maybe for a yoga class or a lunch out, or to draft a business proposal. Your Forgotten Woman has been trying to get a date on your calendar for a long time. Embrace her and befriend her; let her know that she is really important and loved. Listen to her, she has something to say and she needs to be heard. Get to know her, because she knows a lot about you. Finding your Forgotten Woman will unearth a part of you that has been muted and in the background, and she may even prove to be the catalyst toward connecting you to your dreams and igniting a few inspirational sparks along the way! Don’t leave her behind!
Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life – Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.™ Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. Their answers can be random and in the moment or they can be aligned with the above article. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.
1. What have you accepted within your life, physically and/or mentally? What are you still working on accepting?
Now that I embrace this forgotten piece of myself I understand my own journey with much more clarity. Sometimes we are working so hard on balancing all aspects of our lives that we neglect our own inner voice. Hearing that voice, following what is next for each of us allows us to create and carve out our own legacy. Until I really understood that I have the choices that I do, it was hard to make them. Connecting to the woman left behind is the fastest route to personal acceptance and action in our lives.
2. What have you learn to appreciate about yourself and/or within your life, physically and mentally? What are you still working on to appreciate?
I appreciate ME! I celebrate who I am…more importantly, who I have become. We are all the sum total of all of our life experiences. Once I embraced all aspects of myself the gears shifted for me. I believe they do for all of us when we make that connection. I stay mindful of understanding and listening to my inner voice, for trusting my decisions. We are all works in progress, life is continual research and we are forever beta testing!
3. What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What makes YOU most proud? What goals and dreams do you still have?
Actually, finding my Forgotten Woman was a defining moment for me and I am really proud of that. It is what lead me to coaching and to understanding that we create and design what we most want…it really is up to us to have the confidence to feel good in our own bodies and minds. I look forward to continuing to create my own legacy and to the twists and turns on the road of life.
4. We all have imperfections, so we think. The truth—we are all perfectly imperfect. What are your not-so-perfect ways? What imperfections and quirks create who you are—your Identity?
Finding our own inner child is all about letting go of perfect and embracing what is. When we strive to get it all right, we try to control our lives and the people in them. I challenge myself to control things less. What I have discovered is that when we let go a bit, the events, people, ideas that we are most supposed to have in our lives come back to us. In the process, we actually gain more control and insight in our lives.
5. “I Love My…” is an outlet for you to express and appreciate all the positive traits that make you…well… YOU! Sharing what you love about yourself will make you smile, feel empowered, and uplift your spirit and soul. (we assure you!) Identity challenges you to complete the phrase “I Love My…?”
I love my Forgotten Woman! She completes me. She is the bridge between old me and new me. She says “yes” when I say “no.” I love my ability to play with the possibilities and opportunities in life from a vantage point of what’s next! There is always a next!