It’s that time of year again when the capitalist white hetero-patriarchy can rear its ugly head more often than not telling you to consume more than you need, then go on a diet and change your body cause it’s not good enough, buy and receive crap that you don’t need or actually want, spend your time with people that you don’t want to because you know, tradition and obligation, and stress out over everything.
Sounds like a good time, eh?
What if you didn’t have to play that game?
What if you didn’t have to feel bad about yourself?
What if you didn’t have to feel like you should change your body?
What if you could spend this time of year with people you actually enjoy and want to be around?
What if you could eat whatever you want and not feel guilty?
What if you could be clear about your needs and wants and truly take care of yourself?
Here’s the thing…
You can do all of those things.
This is what Feminist Coach Theory offers you. Feminist Coach Theory gives you mindset and self-coaching tools from a feminist lens so you can feel better. Gaining greater self-awareness and social awareness can support you in being more of your whole self and living a life that serves you best.
A feminist mindset challenges the white capitalistic hetero-patriarhcy and the ways its has screwed all of us over and doesn’t serve any of us. It gives you a new perspective that uses practices of liberation instead of obligation or oppression.
Using a feminist mindset and challenging the ways you’ve been socialized will help you feel better about yourself, your body, and your life. These are some of our top feminist mindset perspectives for you to use to feel better this holiday season.
Your Body Is Enough As It Is
If this one is difficult for you to believe, try thinking, “I’m open to believing that my body is enough as it is” or find ONE thing you love about your body and focus on that instead of all the “negative” complaints your brain likes to come up with about your body.
What if you could feel enough in your body right now? And not feel guilty about what you eat or are not eating? Guilt never got anyone anywhere. Guilt doesn’t help you take action that serves you, it only keeps you “stuck” feeling bad about yourself. You don’t have to feel guilty to make any kind of change you want.
And, you don’t have to make any change at all. There’s nothing about you that needs fixing. Bodies are neutral. All of them. Including yours. All other thoughts about your body are simply thoughts or judgements, not facts.
Practice believing what anti-diet and weight inclusive Feminist Coach Theory Teacher, Melissa Toler says,
“I have the right to reclaim my life and define myself the way I want to.
There is no right way to have a body.
There is no right way to be myself.
I deserve to experience myself as fully human.”
Give Less F*cks
Feminist Coach Theory Teacher, Airial Clark encourages us to stop giving a f*ck about the things that no longer serve us. If you’ve been socialized as a woman, then you’ve, especially, been taught to give so many f*cks about so many things that don’t serve you. You’ve been taught to put others’ needs before your own and to put other people’s opinions before your own.
You’re probably tired of giving all the f*cks and need a long nap! We don’t blame you, and, in fact, encourage you to give more of a f*ck about yourself, your own needs and desires.
Even if you weren’t socialized as a woman, there are still things that the patriarchy has told you to give f*cks about that don’t serve you. Identify what those are and begin giving less of them.
What do you want to give less f*cks or no f*cks about this holiday season?
Let Go Of Gender Expectations
Though many people are practicing more egalitarian roles in their relationships today, much of the work still rests on the hands of women. How are you participating in this patriarchal gender binary role? Is it serving you? Is it serving your partner(s) and family?
Expecting women to do most of the cooking, cleaning, planning, arranging, connecting, caretaking, etc can build anger and resentment and create an imbalance in your relationships. It also sets a patriarchal example for children and young people. This can add more stress to your entire family in ways that may not be obvious to you.
This is where adopting a queer perspective can free you from traditional cis hetero-patriarchal gender roles that aren’t serving you no matter what your gender identity is.
Non-binary egalitarian ways of thinking can help you shed the weight of gender expectations that keep you from living your best life and feel more relaxed during the holidays.
Give & Get Consent
Patriarchy has placed gender roles and expectations onto each of us without our consent. Have you ever stopped to ask yourself, Is this what I consent to? Are these the qualities of “woman” or “man” that I consent to within myself?
Similarly, we place expectations on each other during the holidays that aren’t necessary. What are you participating in that you haven’t actually consented to? Have you asked your partner(s), friends or family what they consent to?
Are you fully consenting to spending the holidays with family members you don’t enjoy? Are you consenting to the traditions you partake in or are you just doing it because it’s what you do?
As Feminist Coach Track teacher, Nicole Lewis-Keeber reminds us that consent is the basis of feminism in a world where patriarchy has denied it to us. We haven’t been taught to consent or to take consent or non-consent seriously. A mindset of consent respects your “nos” and “yeses” and other people’s “nos” and “yeses”. This way you don’t have to play silly patriarchal relationship games that don’t help you get your needs and desires met.
Ask For What You Want
Feminist Coach Theory Teacher, Lena West, points out, “Patriarchy says that women have to figure out the how in order to ask for what they want while men can just go for what they want.”
If you’ve been socialized as a man (a white, able-bodied cis hetero man, especially), then you’ve been taught that you’re entitled to getting what you want, which doesn’t help you actually get what you want. The patriarchy has screwed us all over in this way.
Do you forget about what you want during the holidays because you’re so focused on others? Or, maybe you secretly think you don’t deserve what you really want or believe you can get it so you don’t even bother.
Not asking for what you want can also build resentment and anger inside you and keep you from showing yourself the respect that you deserve.
You may not get what you want, but it’s important to ask. Asking is showing respect and love for yourself. Asking for what you want says I am worthy and deserving of this.
It’s okay if you don’t get what you want. You can’t always. Asking for what you want is less about getting it and more about building self-confidence and self-worth.
What do you REALLY want for yourself this holiday season? How do you REALLY want to spend it?
Believe in the possibilities for yourself and ask even if you’re scared. And, who knows, you just might get it.
A feminist mindset helps you have more pleasure, pleasure in the bedroom as well as in life’s everyday joys. Joy and pleasure are feminist acts, especially for those of us who have been sociaized otherwise without our pleasure centered.
“Men’s” pleasure has been centered more under patriarchy though that doesn’t mean that men are always receiving healthy pleasure or getting their desires met. The shift into centering pleasure is a feminist one that acknowledges this complexity and aims to balance it.
As Feminist Coach Theory Teacher, Celeste Hirshman says, “We would all get more done if we used a pleasure ethic more than a work ethic.”
Try centering your pleasure from life’s everyday little joys of sipping your morning cup of joe to being fully present in the bedroom and see how it has a positive ripple effect in every area of your life.
Center pleasure this holiday to destress and have more fun and joy. Shouldn’t a holiday be fun and joyful anyway?
How can you center your pleasure this season in ways that you’ve neglected?
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