Have you thought about how you define yourself, like Sally’s mom or Joe’s boss? The greater your sense of self, the more buffered you’ll be from emotional fallout. In times when you feel most vulnerable, you’ll have other characteristics that can sustain you.
Core roles change when your daughter leaves for college or your son gets married, when you lose your job or get a promotion. At those times, what matters most to your wellbeing is the impact on your ideas about who you are.
But you don’t have to look at this concept in the extreme. Take a single event, like Mother’s Day. The role of mom is central to women’s identity. So it can be hurtful if the activity your family plans seems like an obligation instead of a celebration. We all feel disappointed when outcomes doesn’t meet our expectations.
Of course, relationships are complicated. And there could be various reasons why your special day falls short. But if you’re tired of trying to figure out why, shift the focus away from your family and toward yourself:
When you’re disappointed, try not to suppress your feelings in order to keep the peace. Express yourself, and be willing to listen to other perspectives. Find the courage to live a life true to you, not the one others expect. And don’t let your dreams go unfulfilled.
Acknowledge all that you are. Honor the other women in your life but indulge and pamper yourself as well. All the love and support you want is within you. Then, you can fully share that joy with others without needing anything in return.
Enjoy your special day and our Mother’s Day posts from the past several years: