What women shouldn't apologize for: an explanation from etiquette experts
The role of women in society was minimal for centuries. They had to be beautiful, comfortable, a good housewife and mother. And that was it. The rules of etiquette also contributed to this as they said do not be the first to speak or shake hands, do not express your opinion or feelings, remain invisible, do not forget to serve everyone, and apologize for every manifestation of your individuality.
In recent years, everything has changed radically, including the rules of etiquette. Best Life asked experts to explain what restrictions no longer apply, and what a woman should no longer apologize for. They named 8 clear points.
In the twentieth century, women won the right to work alongside men, but conditions remained unequal in some ways, including pay. Women were also long expected to work as hard as men, but they were not promoted up the career ladder. Ambition was considered a man's virtue and a woman's flaw. But this is no longer the case. Nowadays, you should not apologize for your professional goals, including financial ones, or for your desire to be a leader.
Some 20-30 years ago, mass culture aggressively imposed the cult of eternal youth, energy, and slimness on women. You had to apologize for every kilogram you gained, gray hair, not sleeping or not wearing makeup. And this impact is still felt today. But changes have already begun and we need to help promote them. Women should avoid apologizing and making self-deprecating comments about their appearance, which can undermine their confidence and affect how others perceive them. If your weight has changed in one direction or another, you don't have time or don't want to dye your hair, you're too lazy to do makeup and styling in the morning, or you're scared of anti-aging procedures, remember: your body is your business. So it's up to you to decide how you want to look. You are not obliged to meet any standards, especially at the cost of your own comfort.
3. Expressing emotions
Research shows that women and men experience the same range of emotions and experience them with the same frequency. But society still perceives the manifestations of these emotions differently. An openly emotional man will be called "passionate" in the same situation as a woman will be called "irrational" or even "hysterical". But in reality, this is not true. We have the same right to express emotions. There's nothing wrong with that. Thus, if you can't hold back your tears in one situation, scream in another, and laugh out loud in another, this is not a reason to apologize. It is a manifestation of your individuality.
4. Being single or childless
Personal decisions about your romantic life or family structure are no one else's business but your own. Therefore, you do not have to apologize to anyone for them. This includes family members who may take an obsessive interest in your personal choices.
You've probably noticed how some successful, talented, brilliant women begin to downplay their merits and seem to apologize for their professional or creative achievements when they find themselves in a male company. They often attribute them to luck rather than to hard work. And that's a shame. A woman should not apologize for her success. She should be proud of her own achievements just as a man would be in a similar situation. There is nothing wrong with being the smartest person in the room, and gender has nothing to do with it.
6. Saying "no"
Since girls are traditionally raised to be comfortable, pleasant and compliant, they begin to feel some guilt for defending their boundaries and saying "no" to someone at an older age. That is wrong. Saying no to things that you don't like or that do not meet your schedule is good for your mental health and well-being in general. You don't have to take on a bunch of responsibilities or emotionally serve other people to the detriment of yourself. After all, you're not getting paid for it. Respect your time and your resources, and others will respect them too.
7. Striving to prioritize yourself
Traditionally, society has required women to be good housewives, patient wives, and good mothers. In recent decades, this has been complemented by the requirement to be diligent and dedicated at work. And where is the place for you? Nowhere. And this is wrong. You should always think about yourself first, and only then about how to meet the needs of others. If your personal energy is out, how can you work successfully or raise your children well? Do you remember what they say on an airplane during the pre-flight briefing? First, you put on the oxygen mask for yourself, then for the person next to you. The same rule applies in everyday life. And there is nothing to apologize for. Try to take care of yourself first, and even your loved ones will notice how their lives will change for the better.
8. Other people's feelings and insecurities
If you default to taking responsibility for other people's feelings, it can cause a lot of problems in your personal life. For example, many wives feel responsible for making their husbands feel safe, not worried, not nervous. But a woman cannot be responsible for things that are beyond her control. Thus, if your husband comes home from work tired, upset, or angry, you should immediately remind yourself that his work problems are not your fault. You can show compassion and be polite, gentle, and kind to him, but you should never feel guilty or obligated. Your own needs still matter, and they should come before the insecurities of others.
Earlier, OBOZREVATEL spoke about ten phrases that have now turned from compliments into rudeness.