One of the many things that bugs me is adult females who act in ways which I think disqualifies them from the honour of calling themselves real women. I wish I could have given myself this advice when I was in my late teens / early twenties. So here are the qualities that I think every woman should possess, in no particular order:
1. Take responsibility: whether you have kids, are in a marriage / long-term relationship, are working or studying, you need to take responsibility for yourself and any dependants you may have. Being older than 20 and expecting your family to pick up the pieces every time you drop the ball is not on. Feeling a sense of entitlement without earning it is rubbish on every level. If you can vote, you are responsible for your own actions. If you feel that your private life is nobody’s business but your own, don’t expect anyone to pay your bills or fix your mess if you stuff up.
2. Be reliable: of all the words you would like people to describe you with, “flaky” is probably not one of them. Don’t let people down, don’t be late for meetings, appointments, work or exams and perform tasks and responsibilities on time.
3. Show honour: as an adult you must see all people as human beings and respect them equally as such. Put other people first and put yourself forward as an upstanding member of your community, your company and your family. Don’t follow; lead instead.
4. Find your dignity: this is not self-righteousness. Dignity comes from others respecting you as a person, and you perpetuating that respect. If something negative happens to you, don’t react negatively. Don’t drag yourself down to the antagonist’s level. If you feel angry or hurt, try to keep a cool head, don’t spit out abuse and go somewhere to cool off before you respond to the situation. Also, expect others to treat you with dignity. Don't allow your partner to treat you unequitably. If he can't treat you right, it's time to move on.
5. Lose the drama: I have known of plenty of women (whom I have since "unfriended") of all ages who share their sob stories with everyone to get sympathy. Their Facebook and Twitter statuses are filled with sordid details of make-ups, break-ups and insults aimed at in-laws, bosses, colleagues and friends. But often, making your personal issues public to the world can only cause more conflict, because gossip spreads like wildfire. Ultimately, you will come off worse for being immature.
6. Give instead of taking: Don’t expect everything to always be done for you. People who work and earn without depending on others for bailouts generally are much more independent, driven, ambitious and successful. In addition to this work ethic, helping others in any way (it doesn’t have to be financially) helps you to be a more compassionate person. Being a selfish human being is not a particularly desirable or attractive personality trait. When you become more considerate and helpful, you will find people will be more willing to help you when you need support. Remember, being negative attracts people who will respond negatively in turn and being positive attracts people who will react positively towards you.
7. Empower yourself: Don’t be a vegetable and wallow in misery or boredom. Get out there in the world and have a can-do attitude. Always expand your horizons and be willing to learn new things. Even if your current circumstances prevent you from fulfilling a dream, there is always an alternative, another path to travel that will lead you towards what you really want. It doesn't mean you have to be a ball-breaking business executive, though. Whatever makes you happy and boosts your self-confidence is just as good. Don’t put yourself down and say you’re not intelligent enough. Prove your inner demon wrong.
8. Be comfortable being alone: Don’t ever, ever allow a man to affect your happiness. If for some reason your relationship doesn’t work out, don’t abase your dignity and crawl back to him just because you can’t see yourself without him. And if it’s really over, don’t go jumping into the arms of the next man that makes a pass at you. You are a human being in your own right and if you can’t stand the thought of being a lone unit, one whole person that doesn’t need another to survive, then you need to talk to a qualified counsellor to figure out why you feel invalid as a single person.
9. Accept blame: Don’t blame your parents or your ex for your personality problems. You are an adult and as adults we all have to accept responsibility for our actions as adults. Yes, all of us have mother and father issues, sibling rivalries, previous boyfriend/husband issues. I’d guess over half of the readers here would consider themselves having had a ‘tough childhood’ or ‘bad parents’. However, any person should be able to work through their issues, learn from them and become better people, not worse. It’s a poor example of a woman that blames someone else for her inadequacies when it comes to life choices.
10. Do what is right: No matter what our religious background or family dysfunction, we have all learned the difference between right and wrong. Period. There are no excuses for lying, stealing, committing adultery, etc. A strong moral foundation is essential to being a strong woman. You can pretend to be a good, strong woman, but if you keep breaking the rules and acting unethically, one day the truth will come knocking and you will be exposed.
We all need time and experience to reach maturity after leaving school. Some people, however, can die of old age before they get there. So beef up and take responsibility for your actions before it’s too late!
Oh, and in case any guys are sitting back in their chairs comfortably, smiling at this post, your turn is coming…