The world today talks of women leading ahead, showing wonders in every field. I feel ecstatic when I see women leading from the front. It gives me a great pleasure to see them treading their path to success. Indian women are no exception in this regard; they are achieving new highs every day. The story of success is not different for Indian women too, but the difference lies in the amount of stress an Indian working women feels as compared to the women of rest of the world.
“Indian Women Are the Most Stressed on Earth” – according to “Women of Tomorrow” (2011), one of the reports of Nielsen. This is a matter of great concern. The woman is the anchor of the family, and if she remains stressed continuously for years, it adversely impacts the whole family. What has lead to such a stressed life? – Lets have a look:
1) The Stress of moving Out to Work
Most of the women belong to the first generation in their families who are coming out to work. They carry a social and a psychological pressure to prove their decision a right one. They fight a mental war not only for performance but for acceptance too.
2)The Rise in Expectations
On one hand where families are happily accepting and appreciating working women, on the other hand the parents want the girl to be married at a “suitable age”. No debate is required to put forth the fact that marriage in itself is a great test which demands preparation in terms of adjustment, compromise and patience and measures performance in terms of compatibility and understanding. Then the in- laws want grandchildren just “on time” (the timing surely gives the stress). The women keep thinking about the new expectations people have from her, amongst the job responsibilities that she holds.
3)The Role Conflict
Being a mother is the greatest gift to women from nature. Indian mother are most revered worldwide for their love and affection. With more and more mothers turning working, the role conflict has increased. The lack of social infrastructure like a reliable crèche and a good and a reliable domestic household help adds to their miseries.
4) Working Not for Luxury or Hobby:
That’s the saddest part of the story but so true. Today, Indian women work to maintain a decent living standard. The consumerist family aspirations compel her to go out and work. This naturally means they make compromises in their work.
I believe all those who are reading will find either themselves or their mother, sisters, wife in this lurch. In midst of all these problems I see opportunities; I find a silver lining in black clouds. So, Hey Ladies when we know that there is a problem, let’s find the solution. Here are few things for every woman to understand:
1) The Wake Up Alarm (Set it for yourself Please):
It’s not hard to believe that with loads of work, working women is dead tired by the evening. Having finished their responsibilities towards kids, job, family and husband all she requires is “ sleep”, yes but suddenly she wakes up and plans for next day- what is to be cooked, is the kid’s uniform ready, what is to be worn next day, are the husband’s clothes ironed and numerous such things wake her up. She tries to sleep and sleeps only for a little while. And as she wakes up , the list she had made in her mind on the previous night comes in front of her. Then starts “A race against the clock” – a big stress!!!. Hey Ladies !! Just Chill , please try and wake up at least 15 minutes ( Is it too much out of 24 hours, which you give to everybody else) before the usual time. Do breathing exercises and stretching. Have one glass of water (I know, for rest of the day you won’t get “time” to have water in peace) eat your breakfast properly and then leave for office.
2) You: The Weekend Queen
Pursue any of your hobbies on weekends. If you are interested in cooking, cook “YOUR” favourite dish and serve it for yourself as a queen. If you have a good hand at painting, paint something you love and present it to your husband (Do not forget to ask him to get your masterpiece framed). Understand that every small smile brings happiness to life. If you used to sing, then sing your heart out during weekends (If you are concerned about the reactions of husband and your kids start in the bathroom, who stops you there?). During weekends, be the queen and act like one.
3)Look for Happiness Not for Perfection:
It is perfectly okay to repeat your dress sometimes, It is alright if your son/daughter does not perform well at annual functions, there is absolutely no problem if your husband took a public transport to the office. Learn, to take life as it comes to you. Planning is a great thing, but adjusting to a situation where a plan does not work is a greater. Repeating your dress to the office shows, “how much you adore yourself in that dress”, your kid’s not so- good performance taught him/her that things do not always happen as we like, but we should not be sad else be cheerful about coming out of complacency and giving a performance. Your husband taking a public transport is actually a blessing, which can teach him that public transports do not only save money , but also reduce the traffic on roads, – So that you reach home early and have good time with family. So, be happy and cheerful.
The fast paced life in urban India is bringing loads of stress, but a small change in lifestyle and attitude can be the game changer. The most important thing “Love Yourself”, “Admire Your Stamina” and “ Be Proud of What You Are.”
By Swati Singh
Image Source : Wikimedia Commons