Girls are just catty.
They can’t get along with one another.
Oh, it’s a girl thing.
Actually, its not. Its not at all. I believe that the above notions are completely false. So let’s explore these claims, because I guarantee that these accepted stigmas are impacting your own life or one of your valued relationships...
From the beginning of character development, women have had standards which merit a higher self worth. While the same can be said for men, our standards are not tangible or even talent driven, instead they are held completely in the perceptions of others. The desire to be perceived as ladylike, or sweet, or smart or sexy, is modified to each person as a manipulative tool for affection and approval.
If you think that this is dramatic, think about the way you present yourself to the teacher, your friend, the person you are attracted to, your family or the dean of your child’s school. It is different for each character. Perhaps you can see how you adjust your behavior to fit a certain role.
I read once that women ‘check themselves’ once every thirty seconds before then adjusting their figures to take up less space and reflect the perceptions intended. As women, we are so aware of the way we present ourselves. This awareness can also be extended outward, becoming just as aware of how other women present themselves. And thus the feelings of inadequacy, comparison and competition become engraved in the psyche.
I know this to be true with myself, personally, as the women who I struggled to get along with had characteristics that I feared. For instance, I had a fear of being perceived as ditzy, consequently, I have had a harder time accepting the women who do not explore their own intelligence. I have also admired women who seem to possess attributes that I am working to acquire. I have even compared myself to these women. I have come to believe that while recognizing others as being admirable or a role model is healthy, the constant comparison and competition will only damage your own sense of identity and confidence. This is the setting in which women succumb to their fears and feelings of inferiority to behave in a hurtful, catty, or mean way.
Understanding that someone’s gain is not necessarily someone else’s loss can be a hard trick to learn. But it is so worth it. So let’s get personal, and learn your own balance. It starts with your own person.
What are qualities that you already have? What are you often complimented on? What are qualities that you want to have? What are qualities that you do not want to have?
Make a list, journal it out. Get honest with yourself. Your behavior is a symptom of your emotions, so let the pen be free and without filter, so that your consciousness can make way for your truth.
This freedom is for your own self growth and empowerment. Letting all of your emotions and fears be freed onto the page- it will feel like anticipation and relief all at once. Refrain from judging yourself in this process. This is your attention and care being shifted back toward your self growth. You deserve to love the parts of yourself that you don’t like.
How do you make this change? It starts with the refusal to make room for everyone’s perceptions of you and to stop allowing their opinions to hold a power over your perception of yourself. Feed yourself this love, this nurturing, I know you have it within you. It is not until you have fed yourself this kind of care, that you can truly care for another.
Cattiness is not a girl thing. Intolerance and aggression is not any way to live, for it reflects the fears, sadness and comparison that the speaker accepts. Together, as a people, we should stop accepting that this behavior is something that we all need to make room for in our relationships. In social settings. We all are nurturing and creative people who have gifts to give this world. Each of us are unique from one another. Honor those differences, without fear. Without competition. Without jealousy. Let’s fill one another with support and empowerment. There are so many positive qualities that we can claim as the behavior and love of a woman.