Insecurities

Women have so many insecurities. Beauty is reported to be the biggest one by far. Where do they come from and how do we overcome them? Where do I start with this one? There were so many things I felt insecure about when it came to my physical image. I grew up surrounded by nothing but beautiful women and girls. From my mom, aunts, sister, cousins, to friends. Each one of them had a beauty that I admired, or a feature I wish I had. My most critiqued insecurities held me back from things I wanted to do in life. I had a hard time loving the person I saw in the mirror because I couldn’t see past all the flaws. I struggled with accepting my height, weight, and bad skin. I remember one-day feeling so bad about my weight that I put on layers of clothing to appear heavier. I also tried bleaching my skin because I had bad acne that created scars which left my self-esteem extremely low. I was experiencing some deep self-hate. I came to realize that God created the skin I live in and while I still have some of those same insecurities today I’m learning to accept myself and allow my inner beauty to shine on the outside. And with that attitude, I can’t help but glow. Would anyone be open to sharing any insecurities you’ve struggled with physically and how you face them along the way?

Communication

I recently witnessed a man and a woman arguing, both were of mature age. I could not determine the reason for the argument, but it was pretty heated and it seemed like every other word he said to her was disrespectful, degrading, and disgusting. All I could do is look at this beautiful woman and wonder, when did she lose her dignity. Emotional and verbal abuse can have some of the same serious effects of physical abuse. There are lots of people who have experienced verbal abuse growing up, in relationships, and even on the job. It’s often overlooked because most people feel like it’s the normal way to communicate. Verbal abuse is not normal and can have long-lasting consequences. Trying to find the words to express yourself can be hard when you are hurt and angry. So, how do we deal with and practice effective communication?

Expectations

Today I wanted to discuss how to break free from your family’s expectations of you. Yes, we all have family values, and we all want to please our families. But, how far do you go to show someone who you are vs who they think you should be. When you try so hard to be the person they think you should be, do the things they think you should do, talk and walk the way they think you should, and believe in the things they want you too, it becomes an unfulfilled expectation. It’s not a bad idea to listen to advice and respect certain views. However, you must remain confident in what you want for yourself and your future. Accept your family for who they are and stop being afraid to make decisions because a spectator is waiting to say “I told you so”. Realistically as long as you are happy, that’s all that matters. What has been the biggest expectation of you from your family? For me, I would have to say the pressure of having to be strong no matter the battle. My family seeing me in light of strength is very complimenting but my wiliness to fulfill that expectation challenged me and eventually caught up to me. Not realizing at the time, I’m human and everyone has a weak moment. I now give myself permission to not be strong if I don’t feel that way. To have a moment of circumstantial weakness knowing that the strength in me will bring me through.

Women’s Mental Health

I wanted to talk about women’s mental health and the symptoms we ignore that become a problem. Mental health deals with someone’s emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also plays a role in how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. I have experienced multiple behaviors associated with mental health problems. All very common, but what most don’t know is, you can get help and those problems can get better and many people recover completely. Throughout my life, I have battled PTSD Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. At 15 years old, I was walking down the street to a nearby restaurant, a car pulled up, a man jumped out and grabbed me and at that moment I became a victim of sexual assault, my life changed forever. I’ve also experienced Postpartum Depression. When my first son was born he had baby colic for about two and a half months. I felt incapable of consoling him and it sent me into a sad place. Next, Anxiety would follow. I endured two home burglaries and just two years ago the attempt of one. This one was the hardest on me because I actually looked the intruder in his eyes and the look I’ll never forget. He was determined to get into my home and commit some kind of crime. He was eventually arrested and taken to jail however, the anxiety it caused within me still remains. I also suffer from a great deal of OCD Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. I need things in a specific order, I obsess about things constantly, and I will do things over and over uncontrollably. Lastly, what I feel has been the biggest struggle for me is Prolonged Grief. In 2011 I lost my firstborn son. Years later I find myself still in shock and in denial. I often get drawn into reminders that would affect my daily routine. I would also avoid activities that remind me of my loss. While it’s normal to feel sadness and grief the prolonged intensity of the symptoms after years have gone by should be addressed and possibly treated. I decided to share this to help me because I was ashamed, and these major turn of events I’ve tried so hard to forget, But we fall silent to the very same things that take us down every day. It’s our nature to compete and prove to others that we are doing well. This is my truth and I have discovered the tools I need to cope with my symptoms. It’s not easy and it takes time. Through the grace of God, I have recovered from most of my mental problems, and I can honestly say, Today I’m thriving!

The WIPOP WEEKLY MEAL

Good morning to all the beautiful women. I hope your week has started off great and I pray you fulfill all your goals for the days ahead. I wanted to share something new I came up with. It’s just some food for thought through quotes I come across. So, for those who haven’t already joined the WIPOP family, do so! I’d like to see your views on the topics we discuss. Introducing:
THE WIPOP WEEKLY MEAL (EAT IT UP):

Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women
Maya Angelou

The Power In You

I am excited to post my first open discussion on women’s empowerment. I wanted to kick it off with the name of my movement. WIPOP (wee-pop). Did that throw you off a bit lol? WIPOP means Women In Position Of Power. What does that mean for you? For me, at any given moment things can show up in my life that I have to decide on. So as a woman who holds the power to make said decisions, I believe if I take the risk, use my voice, take control, and let no one stand in my way of greatness or alter my ability to make a powerful move, I can’t lose. However, I must stay in position while making those choices carefully. Whenever you hear the word power, you probably think of the authority someone could have over you. In my life, I choose not to give anyone the power over the woman I’m destined to be. The platform is there, we just have to stand tall, hold our heads high, walk with a purpose, and don’t let anyone bring us down. So, tell me what your position of power means for the woman in you. There is no wrong answer here, being honest and inspiring is the main goal! Peace & Blessings

Always be gracious

I design my life and write my own story

Thanks for joining me!

Behind every successful woman should be a tribe of other successful women who have her back!

Welcome to my very first blog. My name is Shay Hardwick, and I am known to my family and friends for giving great advice, encouragement, and comfort through word. I decided to start my own blog to take my passion of empowerment to the next level. I also want to hear the voices of others through all walks of life. My hope for this blog is to reach many, inspire all who connect, and, most of all, learn. This blog has no intention of judgement. I want each reader to feel comfortable sharing his/her thoughts, opinions, and experiences. You never know how it may show up in someone’s life and help! So, please stay tuned for some authentic conversations that are sure to give you a different outlook!

Peace & Blessings