Unlearning the "Good Girl" Role: Breaking Free from Conditioning

Have you ever found yourself conforming to societal expectations, trying to embody the perfect "Good Girl"? From a young age, we are conditioned to be polite, docile, and always put others' needs before our own. While this may seem virtuous, it often comes at the cost of our own happiness, fulfillment, and personal growth. It's time to shed this role and reclaim our authenticity.

Understanding Conditioning

Before we can start unlearning the "Good Girl" role, it's crucial to recognize the deep conditioning that has shaped our behavior. Our family, peers, media, and society at large play a significant role in reinforcing these expectations. We are rewarded for compliance and punished or criticized for stepping outside the prescribed limits. No wonder it becomes challenging to break free from these ingrained patterns.

Example Scenario

At home, Tasha was raised by a narcissistic, abusive stepfather and a co-dependent, boundaryless mother (who was likely dealing with her own people pleasing).

Her story:

 “My survival depended on me figuring out how to be so good that I wasn’t a burden. If I weren’t a burden, then I wouldn’t get punished, and I would be pleasing to my parents, my teachers, and my neighbors, god etc. I was punished for questioning my stepfather and learned to silence my critical thinking and never question authority.

I truly believed my worth was in my good grades, perfect behavior, excelling at whatever activity I was involved in and fitting into a certain body type (ie. pretty, skinny, nice hair). 

And later, as a young woman and mother, I believed my worth was found in having a spotless house, volunteering my precious free time at the school or clubs, and supporting my husband in whatever ways society told me I should.

All of this led to me shrinking and silencing myself for decades because I just wanted to be “good”.“

Sound familiar?

Embracing Individuality

Unlearning starts with embracing our individuality. It's time to let go of the belief that our worth lies in pleasing others or conforming to societal expectations. As soon as we recognize that we are not here to play a role but rather to be our authentic selves, we begin taking our power back. Our needs, desires, and dreams deserve to be acknowledged and pursued, regardless of external approval.

Challenging Limiting Beliefs

To unlearn the "Good Girl" role, we must challenge the limiting beliefs that hold us back. Question the notion that being assertive, vocal, ambitious or strong is "unfeminine" or "wrong." 

Recognize there is strength in vulnerability, and that it's absolutely okay (necessary and healthy in fact) to express emotions, set boundaries, and say no when necessary. You get to redefine what it means to be a woman beyond societal expectations.

Prioritizing Self-Care

So often we prioritize the needs of others over our own. However, true self-care involves prioritizing our well-being, mental health, and personal growth. It's crucial to carve out time for ourselves, tune into our own desires, and engage in activities that bring us joy and fulfillment. By doing so, we empower ourselves and become better equipped to help others authentically. Extra caution for women who are parents or partners. We have a sneaky story around why it’s ok to put our children and partners first.

Building a Supportive Community

Breaking free from the "Good Girl" role can be challenging, but it becomes easier when we surround ourselves with like-minded individuals who support our journey. Seek out a community of like-minded women who value authenticity, empowerment, and unlearning societal conditioning. 

Celebrating Growth and Setbacks

Finally, it's essential to celebrate our growth and acknowledge that setbacks are a part of the unlearning process. Remember, unlearning conditioning is a continuous journey, and it's okay to make mistakes or fall back into old patterns at times. Each step towards reclaiming our authenticity is a step towards personal freedom and self-empowerment.

Unlearning the "Good Girl" people pleaser role requires a commitment to ourselves and our personal growth. By recognizing conditioning, embracing individuality, challenging limiting beliefs, prioritizing self-care, building a supportive community, and celebrating our journey, we can break free from the confines of societal expectations. 

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