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Success is a relative term. It can mean a lot of different things to different people. But when it comes to being a successful woman, I believe there’s a lot to be said and much to be celebrated. There are also different challenges and things that make being successful not feel so successful – things like stress, loneliness, weathering disappointments, wrestling with doubts and discontent, and sometimes facing deferred and unfulfilled dreams.
And then there are those moments when you may feel guilty for being successful or feel the need to apologize for who you are. You may ask yourself, Am I doing too much? Am I doing too little? Am I enough? But before you begin dissecting and overanalyzing who you are and the wonderful person you’re still becoming, take a moment to just relax and breathe. You are more than enough. You have always been enough. And you don’t ever have to apologize for who you are or for your success. I know I won’t. I refuse to apologize or feel bad about being a successful woman.
I will not remain silent, even if my voice shakes when I speak up. If I have something to say or need to stand up for myself or for others who may be scared, you better believe I’m speaking up.
I will no longer seek acceptance from or try to understand other women who are haters. There’s more than enough room for all of us women to succeed, so if you want to waste time being a hater, that’s on you. Just know that it’s a choice.
I will not apologize for working hard to end generational curses in my family, even if that means moving in a completely different direction than other women in my family.
I will not apologize for making my relationships with my family and friends a priority. They keep me grounded and are the ones who matter most.
I will not apologize for being a risk taker. I’d rather risk going for what I want and not get it instead of taking no risks at all. Playing everything safe will only take you so far.
I will not apologize for refusing to allow anyone to manipulate me and to try and force their opinions on me in an effort to try to control my life. I simply can’t resign to that kind of suffering.
I will not tone down who I am or my personality just because it doesn’t fit who you want me to be. You can bounce.
I will not shrink to make you feel more comfortable. Toning down who I am because of how it makes you feel has nothing to do with me.
I will not apologize for being a smart woman. I cannot live comfortably with dumbing myself down and pretending I’m not smart just because you feel threatened and intimidated. If you can’t accept me for who I am, maybe you’re not the right person for me. And I’m okay with that.
I will not force marriage or motherhood upon myself or will them into existence to earn anyone’s approval or respect. My life will still be whole, whether those things happen or not.
I will not apologize for pursuing my passions and enjoying my work. Doing purposeful work that I love lights me up inside and makes me feel alive. There’s no way I can let anyone, or anything, take that away from me.
I will wear my smile big, my heels high, style my hair the way I want, and wear whatever I want as I please. And I won’t apologize for any of it. I’m going to live my life.
I will not apologize for being a successful woman and defining what that means for me on my terms. I hope you won’t apologize for who you are either.