Redefining the superwoman

Lauren Heys

multiFrom our bra-burning ancestors to the new breed of mumpreneurs taking the internet by storm, the role of a woman has changed dramatically over the past few decades. With increased earning potential, responsibility and the opportunity to be recognised as leaders in the field of our choosing our trailblazing ancestors would be proud. Now women can have it all, a great job, a nice house, a family and a shoe collection to die for… or can they?

This change of role has brought with it a whole new breed of challenges: we are no longer struggling to be heard, but to make time to prepare meals; rather than struggling to be considered for corporate positions, we are rushing from home to day-care to work and back again in a frenzy of activity and misplaced bobby pins. Instead of fighting for the right to use contraception, we are flocking to fertility specialists because our busy lives have either meant we have left it too late or we haven’t made the time to meet Mr Right. Although it’s hard to compare the trials of our foresisters to those we have today, it doesn’t make any of them less or more important.

As we have risen up the ranks to be considered equal to the role of men in our corporate society, we have taken on additional responsibilities without releasing any of the traditional roles of a woman.  Although the new generation of men are taking more kindly to the thought of doing dishes than my father ever did, women still bear the majority of the domestic and caring duties. Now don’t take this as me getting on a soap box about blokes doing dishes – on the contrary, I believe women are designed beautiful, majestic and caring creatures. We are naturally pre-disposed to care for our loved ones and others who need our help. Just as men have bigger hearts and lungs and are naturally stronger then women.

The craziest thing about the expectation placed on the modern woman is that we do it to ourselves! How often does a man comment that the sideboard hasn’t been dusted or that it’s obvious that the host doesn’t have herself together because her hair isn’t perfect? I don’t know many! Not only are we the harshest judge on ourselves, we are the worst critics regarding our fellow super woman!

What does having it all mean? Is it really the job, house, car, Pleasantville family and a shoe closet Carrie would die for? Just reading that makes me tired! Perhaps the new ‘having it all’ could have very little to do with the things we acquire, how nice our tea set is or the ability to entertain 10 guests 20 minutes after getting home from a major sales presentation. Perhaps the modern superwoman is someone who follows her passions and embraces her version of perfection, whether that is knocking up the most delicious of carrot cakes while folding laundry, or heading up a board room or high powered investment bankers with poise and a pair of Christian Louboutin’s (channel Sandra Bullock).

So rather than judging those who are more comfortable in a pair of track pants and comfy jumper, or someone who puts her children in childcare and has a nanny so she can pursue her career, lets acknowledge everyone’s awesome. The most important thing is that we live for our purpose according to our values, not according to what you, me or the lady with the perfectly outlined red lips says.

Go forth superwoman – I can’t wait to see what you are able to achieve when you start living for you and the things/people you love!

Lauren Heys

Lauren is a born and bred Tasmanian with a passion for adventure and all things fantastic. She moved to Canberra in 2006 to take up a job with an international consulting firm. After years as a business consultant Lauren let her dreams run wild and started Moxxi, a business focused on building a community of vibrant and courageous women around Australia – and in time the world! She is an energiser bunny with a huge smile and a passion for life that is contagious. Find out more at More about the Author

  • I love this, such the right attitude. If everyone works to be the best they can be at what they are good at and love without being judged, it would be a great process.

  • We are so quick to judge, and so slow to stop and think that we are each on our own unique journey. Great share and words that resonate.
    Thank you

  • Anouska

    Thank you! I’m so glad I read this. A friend forwarded it on after me whinging about other people making me feel like a traitor or a disappointment for wanting to be a stay at home mum now. Women’s equality was fought for a CHOICE not because everyone wanted to be the CEO!
    Until we can be nicer to ourselves, we won’t know how to accept others and other’s decisions. Everyone is on their own path…, I’m proud of my kick-ass career friends as well as my friends who are wonderful and devoted stay at home mothers, neither one is the “right” lifestyle and a mixture of both is cool too!

    • Bindii

      Brilliantly put Anouska!!