Thursday, April 14, 2011

Do you have to be a BITCH?

(This came out of a discussion in a confidence workshop I was giving)l..

There are women who believe that "bitch" is synonymous with a confident, assertive woman. From my perspective, this is structured on some false beliefs that will sabotage a woman's effectiveness in the long run.

One of the most common: a lot of women are raised in a culture that implicitly or explicitly inhibits them from asserting themselves when they have to or want to, so they internalize a certain amount of pain and frustration. When they get past the inhibition and get comfortable asserting themselves, they feel that someone has to feel pain, so they can only assert themselves if they do it at the expense of the feelings of the other person. (This can also be a rationalization for not asserting one's self!). They link their assertiveness with a sadistic edge and inflict pain and frustration on others.

Conversely, there are some women who feel a need to belittle and undermine others for the sake of thier own self-image, and justify that as "assertiveness," but it's a kind of rationalization.

A lot of people who aren't comfortable being assertive think that it needs a hurtful edge in order to be effective, but in fact, this can work to a person's detriment. Even when bitchiness achieves it's desired goal, it's overkill creates animosities that can sabotage your efforts in the future.

Anyone can be confident, uncompromising and goal-oriented without needless cruelty (notice I say needless--sometimes it's called for!!)

A person who is generally personable and confident actually has the freedom to be bitchy or cruel on occasion and will be forgiven, while kindness from a bitch counts for nothing. If you're cooking something, you can always increase the heat if you have to, but once the food burns, you can't take the heat away. (Was it bad to use a cooking metaphor? ;^{P~ ).

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