***Disclaimer: I am a speaker at heart! These notes are either transcripts of the podcast or notes I made in preparation. For The Stress Club study, it will mostly be bullets with page numbers. Since you have the option to get the book free (details in episode), you'll be able to follow! Please forgive the inevitable grammar errors 😘
Welcome friend to Consider Yourself Hugged episode 64: Today’s Hug: Patterns of Women, Session 5 – Stress Club Study for Women. Click here or pic to listen.
I’m Dr. Tami West, here every week to bring you tips on living a life that brings you mental and emotional wellbeing.
Nice title, right?! First let’s review.
I’m beginning today’s session by just reading the excerpt that I open the chapter with, on p. 77.
Remember when I introduced you to the concept of interpretative repertoires, or themes? Today we are going to talk about one of three overall ways women talked about stress, and that is as “the plight of women”. In order to best understand this let’s start with a little biology.
I am not an expert on gender differences. I do have an undergraduate degree in biology so I have a decent understanding, but there is much debate over gender, how much is biological how much is cultural etc. So, as I’ve said 1 million times before, I don’t mean all women or all men even if I accidentally say it.
Remember we talked about language historically as being viewed as a weakness for women. Biology has been that way as well. It wasn’t even until 1920 that women were allowed to vote (At least all women, on a federal level). Part of that, even if it wasn’t explicitly understood by every group, was that women were not as smart as man. Our brains are smaller. We are weaker. And that is so unfortunate! As you know, we are brilliant!
But… we are different. In 2002 a researcher name Shelley Taylor at UCLA did a study and coined the phrase that applies to many women, Tend and Befriend.
I’m going to read lots of excerpts today.
First, p. 80, Bernie. And there were many others like this. Women support. We bond. We’re there for each other. I know… not always :)
Now back to the study and the theme of Stress as a Woman’s Plight.
Excerpt p. 81, Carolyn and Rae. You hear it, don’t you? The reality. Women don’t take days off. Being punished. Nonstop running.
I noticed two distinct ways that women talked about stress as our burden.
1. The first was talking about the societal expectations for women.
I’ll put link to Enjoli commercial in the Show Notes.
Relaxity Ad. I’ll put the picture in the show notes.
Read the excerpt, p 82. Dixie paper plate commercial, link in the show notes.
Extract p. 83 and the problem with saying I can’t and I'm not able to
2. The second way was to talk about it as innate to our nature.
Read passage p. 84-86
Is it? Is it inevitable? Let’s talk for a moment about men vs women role expectations.
(Pages 87 through 89.)
In live seminars if I ask the question: What do you see as traditional role of men? I usually hear provider, protector, defender.
In live seminars if I ask the question: What do you see as traditional role of women? I usually hear mother, nurturer, caretaker, homemaker.
You might be thinking/saying Those are dated!! Are they? Totally?
Our biological bodies are kind of designed for those roles. It doesn’t mean that we have to have children. It doesn’t mean that men have to be physically strong. But the biology is a trend.
AND we have brain differences, p. 89-93
· We have more neurons in language/hearing centers
· Hippocampus is bigger – connects emotions & memory
· Frontal lobe more active – think through consequences more
· Occipital lobe – see better in dim light – reading emotions
· Parietal lobe – feel more pain, enjoy hugs, braiding hair, holding hands
· Temporal lobe more active
· Overall, brains don’t shut off & brains crave activity & relationships are complicated so we do well with that!
· Oxytocin – feel good chemical – when I was breast feeding
SO, even if you don’t have kids, our bodies are designed for it. It would be INSANE for it not to be – WE CAN MAKE HUMANS!!
So what am I saying about all of this? (p. 93/94)
Is it inevitable that stress is the plight of women? We’ve spent a lot of time on this, but it’s so important, considering all of the women talked about stress this way. This indicates there must be characteristics, traits, etc., specific just to us. And there are. We do have the biology that predisposes us to caring and nurturing. But of course there’s more to it than just biology. We live in a society that oftentimes still places unrealistic expectations on us, stemming from culture, religion, or family values. recall the Happiness Formula we talked about in chapter 2. Genetics is part of it. Conditions of life are part of it. But most importantly, remember the value of voluntary activities. We are women, and we should become women of power and women of choices!
And sadly, as always, that’s our time for today. I am praying every day for our country, our leaders, everyone’s roles, and people affected. I hope you’ll join me in doing that AND in staying mentally and emotionally healthy.
As always, Please pass the show link along to a friend or two and subscribe, download, and review wherever you are listening. And look around here on my website to get info if you’d like me to speak at your next event and also you’ll find the promised links and info. And I’d love for you to follow me on Facebook and all those other crazy social media outlets; links are in the show notes. If you’re a woman and you haven’t joined my private FB group The Stress Club, please do that now! It’ll be your daily sources for exiting the life of stress! Link is in the show notes. If you missed the Stress Club free Kindle giveaway, send me a message in any format – email, social media, text – and I’d be happy to send you a PDF
Thank you so much for listening and growing our special community!
I pray that each day you remember to love, to serve, to feel worthy, to grow, to connect, to change, and to be the best person you can be for yourself AND for the other humans in your world!
And until next time, Consider Yourself Hugged 😘🤗