From balancing career aspirations to maintaining relationships and caring for families, the expectations put on women can feel suffocating.

In today’s fast-paced world, women often find themselves caught in a relentless cycle of societal expectations, workplace demands, and systemic inequalities. From the relentless pursuit of perfection to the unyielding standards set by corporate America, the modern woman faces a myriad of challenges that can leave her feeling overwhelmed, squeezed, and gaslit.

At the heart of this struggle lies the clash between Western ideals and the reality of our lives. Western society often promotes an image of success defined by productivity, beauty, and achievement, placing immense pressure on us to excel in every aspect of our lives. From balancing career aspirations to maintaining relationships and caring for families, the expectations put on women can feel suffocating.

Corporate America, with its competitive environment and gender and age biases, further exacerbates these pressures. Women often find themselves navigating a maze of glass ceilings, unequal pay, and limited opportunities for advancement. When we voice our concerns, we’re too often met with dismissal or gaslighting, leaving us feeling undervalued and unheard.

These societal pressures play directly into women’s most common existential fears. The fear of failure looms large as we struggle to meet unrealistic standards set by society and the workplace. The fear of not being enough eats away at our self-esteem, leading to a constant battle with feelings of inadequacy. The fear of rejection becomes all too real as we fear not being accepted or valued for who we are.

Moreover, the fear of loss and the fear of the unknown compound these struggles, creating a sense of anxiety and uncertainty about the future. Will we lose loved ones, relationships, or aspects of our identity? Will we ever break free from the cycle of overwhelm and find true fulfillment?

In the face of these challenges, it’s essential for women to recognize that they’re not alone in their struggles. By acknowledging the societal pressures and systemic inequalities at play, we can begin to challenge the status quo and advocate for change. Building a support network of like-minded individuals and seeking professional help when we need it can also provide invaluable support in navigating these challenges.

Ultimately, it’s crucial for women to prioritize self-care, set realistic boundaries, and cultivate a sense of self-worth independent of societal expectations. By embracing our authentic selves and finding strength in our vulnerabilities, we can begin to break free from the cycle of overwhelm and reclaim our power in a world that often seeks to diminish it.

-Kaci Smith, LMFT

Share your thoughts and comments.

Our members are talking about this article on Belongly.
Register today and join the conversation.

About the Author: Kaci Smith
I’ve been working as a therapist and clinical supervisor, serving clients of all ages and backgrounds, and supporting dozens of aspiring therapists with their own professional journeys, for over a decade now. After the birth of my first child in 2020, I became increasingly more passionate about working with mothers and women. I created Women’s Therapy California to offer quality, affordable, and flexible online drop-in group therapy services for women across California.

Keep Reading

Want more? Here are some other blog posts you might be interested in.