Women who struggle to express their needs often display these 7 subtle behaviors without realizing it

Expressing our needs is crucial for healthy relationships and personal happiness. But, let’s face it, it’s not always easy, especially for us women.

Why is that, you might ask?

Well, sometimes it’s because we’ve picked up subtle behaviors that mask our true desires. We may not even realize we’re doing it.

Keen to know more?

If you’re a woman who often finds herself struggling to voice her needs, chances are you might be exhibiting these 7 subtle behaviors without even knowing it.

Let’s dive in and uncover them:

1) They often say “yes” when they mean “no”

Ever been in a situation where you agreed to something you didn’t really want to do?

We’ve all been there.

Many women find themselves saying “yes” when they actually mean “no”.

It’s a subtle behavior, rooted in the desire to please others and avoid conflict. But at what cost?

The problem is, this can lead to resentment over time and cause stress.

Not to mention, it also sends a message that our needs don’t matter.

If you catch yourself often in this ‘yes’ trap, take a pause.

Remember, it’s okay to say “no”.

Your needs are important too. 

2) They’re masters of indirect communication

I’ll be honest, I used to be an absolute pro at dropping hints.

I’d say things like “Isn’t it chilly in here?” when I actually wanted someone to close the window.

Or “I’m not really hungry” when I didn’t like the restaurant choice but didn’t want to seem difficult.

The truth is, women who struggle to express their needs think that by communicating like this, we’re being polite or considerate, but really, we’re just making it harder for others to understand what we want.

It took me a while, but I’ve learned that direct communication is much more effective.

It reduces misunderstandings and ensures my needs are met without any guesswork from others.

And guess what?

People appreciate the clarity.

So, the next time you catch yourself dropping hints, try being more direct.

It might feel uncomfortable at first, but with practice, it becomes second nature.

3) They downplay their achievements

Picture this:

You’ve just landed a major project at work, but instead of celebrating your success, you find yourself saying, “Oh, it’s nothing. Everyone could have done it.”

I’ve seen it happen too often.

We women, especially those of us who find it hard to express our needs, have a tendency to downplay our achievements.

We tend to brush off compliments and diminish our own successes.

But here’s the thing:

Diminishing your accomplishments doesn’t make you humble. It makes you invisible. It keeps you from being seen and appreciated for who you truly are.

When you achieve something, own it. Celebrate it.

Don’t let your fear of seeming arrogant or needy keep you from acknowledging your worth.

4) They shoulder all the responsibility

They shoulder all the responsibility Women who struggle to express their needs often display these 7 subtle behaviors without realizing it

Ever been in a situation where you felt overwhelmed with tasks but didn’t ask for help?

I know I have.

Many of us women feel compelled to take on every responsibility, whether at work or home.

We may think we’re being strong or capable, but in reality, we’re just piling stress upon ourselves.

Think about it this way – it’s not your job to handle everything alone, and asking for help doesn’t make you weak or incompetent.

If anything, it’s a sign of strength and wisdom knowing that you can’t do everything by yourself.

So next time you’re drowning in responsibilities, remember to delegate.

Ask for assistance. Share the load. You’re not alone, and it’s okay to express your need for support.

5) They bottle up their emotions

Another behavior of women who struggle to express their needs is we tend to keep our emotions tightly bottled up.

We fear that expressing our feelings may be seen as a sign of weakness or over-emotionality.

Not to mention, we’re worried about being labeled as ‘dramatic’ or ‘too sensitive’.

But here’s the rub:

Suppressing emotions can lead to a host of problems, like stress, anxiety, and even physical health issues.

Plus, it prevents us from expressing our needs effectively.

I know this first hand. I kept my true feelings tightly tucked away for many years, until eventually it started taking a toll on my body.

The doctors couldn’t pin point what was wrong, but starting therapy helped me understand how negatively it was affecting my health. 

If you often find yourself holding back your feelings, it’s time for a change.

Take it slowly, work your way up, but know that each time you express a need, you’re prioritizing your wellbeing

6) They put others’ needs before their own

I’ve seen it countless times.

A friend who postpones her dreams to support her family.

A colleague who works overtime to help out her team, even when she’s exhausted.

Does that sound like you?

We women are often nurturing and empathetic by nature.

We put other people’s needs above our own, sometimes to the point of self-sacrifice.

But here’s a gentle reminder:

Your needs matter just as much as anyone else’s.

It’s not selfish to prioritize your own happiness and well-being.

In fact, it’s essential for your mental health (and overall wellbeing as we’ve just discussed).

7) They hide their true selves

And finally, many women who struggle to express their needs often hide their true selves. 

They wear a mask, conforming to what they believe others expect of them, suppressing their true desires and feelings.

The problem is, this can lead to a lack of authenticity in relationships and life.

And authenticity is key to expressing your needs and living a fulfilling life.

So, if you often find yourself hiding your true self, it’s time to step into the light.

Let the world see you for who you are, with all your needs, desires, strengths, and flaws.

That’s what makes you unique. 

Embracing the journey

If you’ve recognized these signs in yourself, don’t fret. It’s just a sign that it’s time to start prioritizing your needs and expressing them more openly.

Begin with self-awareness. Notice when you’re displaying these subtle behaviors.

Reflect on moments when you suppress your needs, say “yes” when you mean “no”, or hide your true self.

As you become more aware, start practicing expressing your needs in small, manageable ways.

It might feel uncomfortable at first, but with time, it gets easier.

And remember, you don’t have to do this alone.

Reach out to trusted friends or consider seeking professional help if you find it challenging.

When you start honoring your needs and expressing them authentically, you’ll not only enhance your personal well-being but also deepen your relationships.

Picture of Ava Sinclair

Ava Sinclair

Ava Sinclair is a former competitive athlete who transitioned into the world of wellness and mindfulness. Her journey through the highs and lows of competitive sports has given her a unique perspective on resilience and mental toughness. Ava’s writing reflects her belief in the power of small, daily habits to create lasting change.

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