Do you find it hard to make the space for yourself? Do you struggle to say ‘no’? Are you passionate about looking after the planet and other people, but forget to look after yourself?
As women working in nature conservation, we can get so caught up in looking after others (be it our children, parents, siblings), looking after animals and plants, caring about our planet - that we can forget to look after ourselves.
This is my biggest weakness. I get caught up in the impact I want for the world that I just keep going. Keep attending meetings, writing those reports or scientific papers, cooking the dinner, cleaning the house, helping that friend, fulfilling parental expectations, fulfilling societal expectations.
But, actually, what do I want? What do I need? Who is looking after me?
Interestingly, we have the insights when we take care of ourselves, when we give ourselves space. The insights that make our work more impactful, make our lives happier, see the truth in a situation, give us the pause between an event and our reaction, and brings us to that Zen place. That Zen place where we see the truth and the path forward.
I do wonder what nature conservation would look like if we paused. If we stepped off the hamster wheel of chasing grants, writing reports, attending meetings. Paused and allowed ourselves the space to be and took the time to care for ourselves. And through taking care of ourselves we have the strength, energy, and presence of mind to take care of others and the planet.
Photo courtesy of Mark Leslie
We Are All Wonder Women is an international movement for female conservation professionals to be inspired, connected, and empowered to create an authentic, fulfilling and happy career.