For my entire life I've had an underlying need to be “good” which has led to an overdeveloped sense of "right." This has often inhibited my voice. This is not a phenomena unique to me. I’ve seen it in women who have taken my classes and with women I coach today. Unfortunately, many of we women use this overdeveloped sense of right against ourselves so that we never feel good enough, done enough, perfect enough. It undermines our self and body-image. It shows up when we sacrifice our time and resources, when we people-please, second-guess, don’t make waves. In this instance, having to be right is wrong.
On the flip side of this, many in our country today have an underdeveloped sense of right. The news is filled with a continual barrage of stories of people taking advantage of each other, hurting each other, people trying to save face by blaming others. People we’ve elected to run our country focus their actions to look right to the special interests they cater to. Heads of big corporations consider, calculate even, how to be right to their shareholders at their customers’ expense.
I know my overdeveloped sense of right sometimes causes me sleep issues because of second-guessing and rethinking in the middle of the night, so I’m curious, “How do the people with the underdeveloped sense of right sleep at night? With sleeping pills?” And I’m wondering, “What went so wrong in their upbringing that they lie, cheat, and steal?” Which leads me to the ultimate question, “Where is their sense of fair and good? Is all they care about money and power? Are they all so fearful for their own bank accounts that they’re blind to humanity and the notion originating in the bible of do unto others how you want them to do unto you?
My overdeveloped sense of “right” is wrong when it stifles my voice, loosens my boundaries and keeps me from progressing with my own dreams and goals. I know this. I work on eliminating this so that I feel right within myself while embracing my body as perfect as it is, my mind as good as it is, and my spirit as authentic and loving as it is.
However, when this need to be right keeps me from causing intentional harm, when I’m able to stand solid and stay true to my word and consider the fairness and outcome for all involved, not just my own limited selfish interests, I am right. I feel good. This is not an overdeveloped or misguided sense of “right.” This is common sense, basic human decency, the ultimate "right" way.
So, women (and men too) who insist on people-pleasing, second-guessing and rethinking things done in the past for the sake of being “right,” rejoice! Celebrate that you have the mind, spirit, and heart to think about others and to try to do the right thing for them, momentarily. Then find the best side of a quality you may not feel is in your best interest, like people-pleasing, so you can can feel something about it is right even if the characteristic feels like a flaw, even while you work to transform it. Rejoice, then get back to work dissecting your thoughts and motivations if in any way you're not accepting and loving your body and who you are today because you think you're wrong. Scrutinize your thoughts and actions if in any way you are stifling your own voice because you think you're not right. You owe it to yourself. This is your right. And it is right!