Let’s think about the lyrics in, “I’m Every Woman,” a song sang by Whitney Houston.
“Whatever you want, whatever you need
Anything you want done, baby,
I’ll do it naturally
‘Cause I’m every woman (every woman)
It’s all in me, it’s all in me, yeah!”
The lyrics suggest that women can do it all with no problems. We know the vessel called female is pertinent to life; her body is used to nurture, protect, produce, and love. She is the glue that holds the family together. However, when a woman is broken, things around her fall apart. It is vital for the female to take care of herself. She is similar to the engine of a car, without her nothing will run. Just like that engine needs routine oil changes and maintenance so does she. In fact, recent studies show women suffer more mental health issues than men due to the stress of juggling their career, family, and other leadership roles.
In the midst of being every woman, she forgets about herself. Self love cannot be overlooked. Women have to focus on their desires, not what others may want for them. The female should always place herself first; her needs and joys. She should look at herself like a queen, a queen on her throne. Royalty sits pretty, they allow others to cater to them as they sit beautifully resting and waiting to be adored. Servants walk up the stairs to the throne pampering the queen with gifts, musical and dancing entertainment, comedy, spa services, fine cuisine, and love. This royal treatment is vital to every woman’s well being; mentally, physically, and spiritually.
Unfortunately, a large percentage of women, especially business women, never take time for themselves. They place their careers, family, and everything else first, which ultimately leads to stress. Freeman, Clinical Psychologist, states, “studies show 40% of women are more likely than men to suffer mental illnesses like depression, anxiety, insomnia, phobias, post traumatic stress disorders, and eating disorders.” Some women carry the pressures of being “every woman” in conjunction with being perfectly fit, pretty, and the bread winner. If time for the self is not allotted,mental illness may creep in.
Ladies, learn to love yourself. Know your worth, invest in self, possess self esteem and take time for you. You are the glue that holds the family together, but remember to hold yourself together. Escape from the everyday routines in your busy schedule and dedicate a self-love moment. Implement loving you first in every major decision you make because if you don’t love you, you can’t possibly love anyone else and nothing will work properly. I encourage all of my queens to place crowns on as they walk up the glass stairs to sit pretty on their throne.
~Karlyn LeBlanc, LMSW
Karlyn Leblanc is a best- selling author and founder of Love Le Menu, an educational organization that teaches self-love. Karlyn is a Chicago native who currently resides in the Atlanta, Georgia area. She obtained her Bachelor degree from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and her Masters from Tulane University in New Orleans. Her career began as a licensed master social worker where she spent twelve years counseling and assessing for depression, anxiety, grief therapy, behavioral problems, anger management, chemical dependency, mental disorders, financial problems, and other psychosocial issues. She also supervised master level social workers, facilitated support groups, and coordinated local community outreach fundraisers and events.
First published in our Women in Business 2015 issue.