Conquering Guilt and Worry
Happy International Women’s Day! In celebration of God-given femininity and gifts, I want to share a post that’s for all of us but especially for my working friends. Just last week, I heard a woman say that she felt left out in the church as a working woman. Women’s studies are in the morning there, even though over 70% of American women work outside their home. She feels marginalize, but I want YOU to feel encouraged.
Today, I want to celebrate women’s gifts in the work place! Please meet my friends Lisa Grimes and Paula Stafford. Both are women of faith who have taken Jesus with them into corporate settings because He’s woven into the core of who they are. Their new book Remember Who YOU Are was written to encourage women in the workplace to build each other up not to compete. As you can tell, everyone can benefit from this book. Please welcome my friends, Paula and Lisa! (And leave a comment to enter the giveaway.)
As wives, mothers, and professionals, we understand the pressure that comes with attempting to fulfill all of life’s demands. If you are like us, it’s all too easy to set a high level of expectation for ourselves – and then feel guilty when something inevitably falls through the cracks. Truth is, though, that we can’t do everything, and we certainly can’t do everything well. But we don’t need to feel guilty. Perhaps we need to set more realistic expectations – and redefine how we view and accept guilt. First, let’s look at the differences between guilt that’s real and false guilt.
False guilt comes from things over which we have no control. Or it’s guilt that is placed on us by others. Or it’s guilt based on not meeting expectations. The list of things over which we can tend to feel guilty is almost never-ending. True guilt, on the other hand, comes from knowing we have done something wrong or knowing we have made a decision that doesn’t align with our priorities. This means we need to be clear on what our priorities are. Knowing our priorities not only helps protect us from false guilt, but can help us learn from our mistakes and help us make necessary changes. Maybe even help us set more realistic expectations.
We don’t have it perfectly figured out, but we want to share with you a strategy that has helped us be there for the things that matter and free ourselves from false guilt. This excerpt is from our new book, Remember Who YOU Are, which just released two days ago…
“The meal was cooked; the table was set; my husband and children were ready to eat dinner. The only thing missing was … me. I said I would be home for dinner by 6 p.m., but something came up at the office and I didn’t get home until 7 p.m. After a few times of this, my husband sat me down and told me bluntly not to promise something I couldn’t deliver. I adhered to that standard at work; certainly my family deserved the same treatment. He was SO right. I hadn’t realized how showing up late for dinner affected my family and stood to affect my children’s ability to trust me. Cue the guilt train. I nipped that in the bud quickly. If I said I would be home for dinner by 6:30 p.m., I would do everything I could to get home by 6:15 p.m. I told them what to expect, and then I did my best to meet it or exceed it. I was rewarded with more smiles and less guilt.
We believe one of the first and most important things women need to do when it comes to expectations is give themselves permission to say ‘no.’ No, we don’t have to do it all. No, we do not need to attend every sporting, musical or academic event in which our children participate. It’s OK to be OK with that – it’s OK not to feel guilty. Children are, for the most part, adaptable and resilient. If your son has eight soccer games, for instance, and you can put four on your calendar (you have just made this a priority), think of how happy he will be if you are able to show up for more than you promised. But if you promise you will come to every game and don’t follow through, your children will lower their expectations of you. Not only are we setting a bad example for our children, we just bought another guilt trip.
Setting realistic expectations allows us to focus our energy on what we are doing instead of what we are missing. This takes a lot of practice, we know, since it seems to go against our hardwiring.”
It’s possible – and it’s freeing. And all of this is neatly summed up in Philippians 4:6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, present your requests to Go. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Leave a comment today to enter to win a copy of Remember Who YOU Are.
Paula and Lisa are proven C-suite executives and speakers whose first book, Remember Who YOU Are, is available for purchase in bookstores, online retailers and at book.habergeon.com. It shares the wisdom they wish they had known at the outset of their careers and encourages professional women (and men) with immediate steps to more fully experience success, balance, and fulfillment in their careers and personal lives.
Follow them on social media @Habergeon LLC.
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O how I needed to read this. I am a wife and mother but also a professional working full-time outside the home. I recently had a close friend tell me I should volunteer to serve on some non-profit boards. I feel guilty that my ministry is my family right now. A sick elderly mother and a child in middle school with some learning issues. Where do I find time to do more than survive? I’m overwhelmed. Thank you for your post. It reminded me that it is okay to say “no” to some things,. Even good things.
I lost my husband 2 years ago and have 5 beautiful children. Trying to master “sole parenting” amongst other things, is so difficult. Saying no to them has not even been on my radar, but letting them down doesn’t help the cause either – I think this book would help me find the balance, and feel good about it. An encouragement will be greatly appreciated!
I work outside the home and any help or advise I will take. God Bless
Good afternoon, what women does not struggle with these issues Me for sure thanks for the chance I could use alot of help in this area thanks for the amazing chance !
I am a working mom and I have that guilt. I feel god led me here today
As someone who has recently faced life changing events over the course of 3 years, I find myself weary and exhausted by everything my husband and I have faced and continue to face such life changing events.
I would love to receive this book as I continue to lean on God and never lose hope that he is guiding us on the right path.
After the kids are raised and have moved on, I feel guilty sometimes over the mistakes and what I could have have done differently. The kids are doing great but it still follows me. I would love to win and read your book. Thanks for the post.T
Looks like an amazing book, Amy! Thanks for sharing your review!
This is excellent advice. Thanks!
Glad to hear about a book written by and for professional Christian women. My job was recently eliminated. Please pray for God’s provision of His perfect job for me in His perfect timing. Thank you.
Is it too late to get my name in the raffle to win a copy of that book? I really want a copy! I’ve been struggling with who I am ever since I had my baby two and a half years ago?. And my marriage is kind of shaky because I’ve been giving too much attention to our daughter. Please help me! This book would be very great or for me!!
Setting realistic expectations makes all the difference to maintaining peace and balance in life. I do find that once I can foresee how my actions can impact others, I am more willing to strive to find ways to help and fulfill obligations. The Lord also has His expectations. He only asks that we seek His Kingdom and righteousness in our living By focusing on Him and seeking Him, there is peace and joy within my spirit. It is a daily choice I make in order to continue walking in His ways. He knows what is best for me. Even though I try to choose activities that are counter to His will, He will not give me peace. It is a sure sign to cancel my plans and seek which direction He wants me to go. I am sure the book will be full of good examples of how to find God’s will and enjoy God in fall we do.
Thank you for the devotion. My husband always says ” Everything looks better in the morning. .Psalm 59: 16-17 : “But as for me, I will sing about Your power. Each morning I will sing with joy about Your unfailing love. For You have been my refuge, a place of safety when I am in distress. O my Strength, to You I sing praises, for You O God, are my refuge, the God who shows me unfailing love.” This very comforting.
As a mother of 5 children who are very active, this was a great reminder that it’s ok not to be everywhere all the time! perfect timing bc this weekend we have a tennis tournament friday night and all day saturday. My two college students are coming in for spring break also and have a chilled movie night planned for friday. I think I will skip the Friday night game and go Saturday 🙂 Thank you!!
Oh how I needed this today! Thank you! Can’t wait to read the book!
Thank you for writing this book I look forward to reading it and applying it Ginny life and circumstances. God Bless you for being working women of Faith.
I thank Paula and Lisa, women of Faith, for writing this book. Such a beautiful thing…women supporting other women! Thank you Amy, for adding such joy to my days (I also listen to your podcast) and for introducing me to this new book!
Thank you for this! It’s a great reminder to working moms that guilt is not from the Father.
Wow, where was this book 32 years ago when I started my career. I sure could have used it. That being said, I’m not too old to learn and I still have a lot of life left to live. I’d love to read this book and learn how to do this working /home life balance thing better. Thanks for sharing!