BY AMY REED
Amidst relationships, some friends withdraw due to partner pressure, a toxic trait, despite friendships significantly influencing mental health; a strong woman values beneficial friendships, resists sacrificing them, and maintains boundaries against undue time or generosity demands.
Amid life's changes, holding onto hobbies amid relocations, new relationships, or parenthood requires strength and discipline, especially when facing opinions from others, as illustrated by a friend's mother who regrets giving up hobbies due to societal pressures, emphasizing the importance of resilience in maintaining personal interests.
Jealousy, a natural emotion, should be controlled, as it can lead to attempts to control a partner's actions; a strong woman persists in her fitness journey despite disapproval, valuing her well-being over others' insecurities.
Amidst encountering differing values, a strong woman stands by her beliefs, resists compromising due to others' lack of understanding, and doesn't succumb to peer pressure against her convictions.
"Letting yourself go" carries negative connotations, implying unfavorable changes based on others' opinions, but recognizing the distinction between personal growth and self-neglect is vital; a strong woman learns from past compromises and prioritizes self-care without sacrificing for others.
Balancing selflessness and self-care is essential in relationships and life; while compromise and prioritizing others are necessary, a strong woman recognizes the importance of loving herself and ensuring her well-being, akin to securing your own oxygen mask first on an airplane, as she understands that she can't provide for others from an empty reserve.
Preserving individuality is vital in relationships, as experts emphasize the fulfillment, authenticity, and personal growth that arise from maintaining independence; this not only strengthens the partnership but also eases the aftermath of a breakup by preventing the neglect of one's sense of self during the relationship.