Navigating Guilt in the Juggling Act of Womanhood

burnout guilt stress womanhood women stressor Apr 08, 2024

In the intricate dance of womanhood, which can resemble a mosh pit or spastic dance, we often find ourselves balancing, juggling, and running with our hair on fire in multiple roles. From raising children to maintaining a fulfilling career and nurturing a partnership, maybe taking care of elderly parents, the responsibilities can be overwhelming. Yet, amidst the chaos, a silent companion often shadows these endeavors: guilt. Can you relate? Ugh, guilt.

Guilt is a pervasive emotion, and has a peculiar knack for embedding itself in women's hearts, bodies, and minds as we navigate the intricate web of parenting, spousal duties, and professional endeavors. It lurks in the shadows, whispering reminders of perceived inadequacies and shortcomings, often amplifying the already considerable pressures women face. It can feel like dragging the lead (and then trying to do it perfectly).

For many mothers, guilt becomes an unwelcome companion from the moment they hold their newborn in their arms. The pressure to be the perfect mother, to fulfill societal expectations of selflessness and sacrifice, can weigh heavily. Every missed milestone or instance of needing to prioritize work over family can trigger a cascade of guilt, fostering doubts about one's capabilities as a parent.

Simultaneously, the demands of being a wife can add another layer to this emotional burden. Society often imposes unrealistic ideals of being a devoted spouse, further fueling feelings of guilt when personal needs clash with the relationship's needs. Whether taking time for self-care or pursuing individual goals, women may find themselves grappling with guilt for prioritizing personal fulfillment over perceived marital duties.

In the realm of work, women face a unique set of challenges that can exacerbate feelings of guilt. The pressure to excel professionally while balancing familial responsibilities can feel like an unattainable feat. Whether it's missing a school play for a crucial meeting or feeling torn between career advancement and spending quality time with loved ones, the guilt of not being able to give 100% to every aspect of life can be crippling.

The intersectionality of these roles further complicates matters for many women, particularly those from marginalized communities who may face additional barriers and expectations. Factors such as race, socioeconomic status, and cultural background can all influence how guilt manifests and is internalized.

However, it's essential to recognize that guilt is not inherent to womanhood nor is it a measure of one's worth as a mother, wife, or professional. It is a byproduct of societal constructs and unrealistic expectations that have been ingrained over generations. Challenging these norms and reframing our perceptions of success and fulfillment is crucial in alleviating the burden of guilt but also can be very difficult.

Just because we understand that we feel guilt and where it comes from doesn't mean it goes away. It takes work and integrating a new pattern that will feel uncomfortable in the beginning. Changing any pattern will be uncomfortable and if it doesn't, it usually means you are repeating the same pattern.

Empowering women to embrace imperfection, prioritize self-care, and set boundaries is essential in fostering a culture of self-compassion and acceptance. It's about acknowledging that it's okay to ask for help, to delegate tasks, and to recognize that perfection is an unattainable standard. Sounds simple in some ways but not easy to change what has been deeply imprinted in you.

Fostering a supportive community where women can share their experiences, fears, and triumphs can be immensely cathartic and life-changing. Through open dialogue and solidarity, women can find solace in knowing that they are not alone in their struggles and that their worth is not contingent on their ability to meet unrealistic expectations. We need each other to transform these guilt patterns. When I have seen someone shift these patterns, it has encouraged me to do the same. Otherwise, I feel like I am climbing Mt. Everest on my own.

In the journey of womanhood, navigating the labyrinth of guilt may be an inevitable part of the process. However, by challenging societal norms, fostering self-compassion, and cultivating supportive communities, women can lighten the burden and embrace the multifaceted beauty of their roles as mothers, wives, and professionals. It's time to rewrite the narrative and liberate women from the shackles of guilt, allowing them to thrive authentically and unapologetically.

Tune into my Facebook page or Instagram. I give little tips and insights regarding our mental health.

P. S.: I have an upcoming free mini-workshop at the end of this month for women "Stress, Burnout, and Unhealthy Self-sacrifice Detox." This workshop focuses on the core of what is contributing to both physical and psychological health challenges such as using vices (food, alcohol, screens, etc.), stress, rising auto-immune disease, anxiety, depression and more for women. As well as tools to break free from this unhealthy stress cycle.

P. S. S.:

Ways to work with me

  1. The Oxygen for Women Collective. Are you ready to get your Oxygen mask on first? This is for women who have given everyone their all and need to take action, prevent crises, and stop procrastinating their psychological & physical health for monthly consistency to restore & revive their health and passion for life. This is a low-cost way to support your psychological health. For more information or to get on the waitlist, go to
  2. The Possible Space (currently called Evolve & Elevate): This group coaching program is for women ready to move through their inner blocks and stuck patterns that are stopping them from achieving their purpose or dreams. For more information or to apply, go to

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