So. I’m just going to jump right into this one, deal? I hear a lot of encouragement for today’s women to lower the expectations. We blame Pinterest and glossy inspirational blogs for setting an impossible standard and we preach for “normalcy” – for an everyday status quo that offers attainability for the masses (whatever the masses look like from where we’re sitting, of course).
But ladies, I don’t think the answer is to lower the expectations. I don’t think the goal should be to throw in the towel, snap photos of our messes and call it authenticity. (You already know how I feel about that.) I don’t want to encourage lesser versions of ourselves, just as much as I don’t want to encourage perfect, Stepfordized shells of ourselves. The why is always more important than the what.
So what if – instead of lowering the expectations – we shifted them? What if – instead of focusing on the outward actions or decisions or standards – we focused on our hearts?
Deliver the homemade, organic, free-range, gluten-free paleo braised chicken if it means you are loving your neighbor.
Drop off KFC if it means you are loving your neighbor.
Run a marathon if it means you are honoring your mother.
Sit on the couch and watch Lifetime if it means you are honoring your mother.
Send your kids to public school if it means you are providing for your family.
Homeschool your kids if it means you are providing for your family.
Organize your home if it means you are using your talents.
Make a mess if it means you are using your talents.
Create a beautifully crafted tablescape if it brings joy to your home.
Eat from paper plates and plastic flatware if it brings joy to your home.
Ladies, it’s time we stop apologizing for our whats and start embracing our whys. It’s time we stop lowering the bar – this expected standard of universal acceptance – and instead, raise our hearts and our minds and our souls. It’s time we stop playing Limbo with one another – how low can you go? – and start getting to work on our backbends. On our grace and flexibility and wisdom and perspective.
Let’s turn up the music and kick the Limbo bar to the corner. It’s time we danced.
Image Credit: Luke Chesser