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Little by little

Little by little
April 15, 2024 Hannah Rowe

Social media is constantly celebrating or encouraging awareness on the topic of the day or month.  Too much information weakens the value of the message.  This is true of April and Stress Awareness month.

I love that we feel able to discuss our mental health, but this can be generational.  Our workforce is made up of different ages and cultural experiences that go with it.  Millennials and Generation Z both grew up in a more connected world.  Discussions and acceptance around mental health, alongside greater tools being available, is a strong, fabulous characteristic for both age ranges.  Generation X grew up at the beginning of this movement so still struggles with stigmatisation worries and the need for a stiff, upper lip.

As a Generation X woman raised with pressure to have a stellar career equal to a man whilst also donning the traditional female mantle within the family, stress has become second nature.  We were told we could have it all – be and do anything but life is not that simple.  Instead, there is now a whole generation of women who feel like failures and are going into their menopause feeling exhausted and depressed, finding it impossible to keep over-functioning.

The idea of self-care can feel selfish. Even the words provoke a reaction in me.  It feels like something else I must find time to do.  Self-care feels stressful.  Do you want me to look after myself before I walk the dog, do more washing, shop, cook, clean, help my boys and parents, and oh, run the business?

But the truth is we need to look after ourselves otherwise nothing else will get done or matter.  Little by little we need to make changes so that self-care becomes a habit rather than something else to schedule in.  It can also be as simple as a change in mindset.

For me, I am focusing on how I react to things.  I cannot control what others do or what happens in life, but I can control how I react to it and the stress I feel from it.  That is my ‘Little by Little’ focus this month.  Learning to ignore the muppets in the world and appreciate the fabulousness around me.

Small steps but a start.  Sometimes it is worth paying attention to the social media topic of the day or month!