A strong woman respects and values herself highly. When it comes to beauty she is content with herself and accepts what others may see as ‘flaws’. She doesn’t feel the need to conform to other people’s perceptions of beauty. She doesn’t need to follow the latest fashion trend, if it means it would put her out of pocket. She doesn’t need to eat, or not eat, in order to gain, or lose, weight to attain “that” certain body shape, if it means damaging herself inside and making herself sick. She doesn’t feel paranoid and feel the need to cake herself in makeup just to attract that guy, because she knows sooner or later the mask has to come off, so what will happen then?

Instead she knows her real beauty lies in her confidence- it’s alluring and she oozes appeal. It cloaks her with a sexy elegance that lasts far longer than that £12,000 à la mode red designer dress. She embraces her unique personality.

A strong woman is passionate about something- she loves what she is doing. Whenever you hear her explain it, or you see her in action, it somehow becomes infectious. She is driven and has goals. She has the courage to make things happen, to step out into the unknown. She knows what she wants and doesn’t listen to naysayers. But she also knows to listen when wisdom speaks, because those words help her to find a better path to achieve those goals.

She is always striving towards something. She is forever learning and expanding her horizons.

She learns from her past mistakes and uses her bad experiences to make her stronger. She realises it’s ok to cry and to get angry when she’s hurt- she’s just getting it our of her system, it’s a process- but then she also knows when it’s time to forgive, let go, and move on, because at the end of the day she is freeing herself from “mental slavery”.

A strong woman knows there is a season for everything- to cry, to laugh, to be silly, to be solemn, to lead, to be led, to stand up, and to hold her tongue.

A strong woman possesses an inner strength. It’s something she is not entirely aware of until it kicks in when her world is turned upside down. Against all odds, despite all the mess, noise and chaos that’s happening around her, she manages to find moments of peace. When situations rock her to her core, she still manages to push on, even if it’s just by barely crawling. Her faith in herself, or in something higher, is her foundation.

She knows that independence doesn’t mean that she is alone, that she has to be defensive or aggressive. She knows she is not an island. She opens up to people and makes herself vulnerable. She admits when she’s wrong, and asks for help when she needs it. She recognises that she needs friends- friends who are there for her, to help her, comfort her, encourage her, to build her up, to speak life into her life, to ignite her inner being. She understands the value in this, and does the same for others as well.

She is not headstrong, boastful, or proud. She doesn’t need to brag about her accomplishments, because her actions speak for her. She rises above petty situations, but in no way does it make her superior. In fact, these sort of scenarios humble her, because it forces her to draw strength from her reserves. She also eventually realises that everyone has their weak points, and falls. She is humble and there is a certain grace about her.

This specimen of a strong woman, I’m afraid, is fictional. She is, in fact, a combination of several women I am fortunate enough to know. But do you see aspects of yourself in her?

Happy International Women’s Day!

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