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A Woman Is...

What It Means to Be a Woman

What does it mean to be a woman?  There are many meanings, and different meanings depending on the woman.  I have my own beliefs, which may or may not be the same as another person's, but here they are.

A woman is strong.

I believe the first thing a woman must be is strong both inside and out. We all have an obligation to our bodies to keep them as fit as possible and not everybody has a home gym or gym membership but there are still a lot of ways to stay fit.

To firm your upper arms, push both hands together as hard as you can and hold for ten seconds. Fill half-gallon jugs with sand and lift them over your head and then swing the bottles in front of you and back out to the sides. Walking, housework and swimming are all relatively free. A lot of places let you swim for free or a small fee.

Being strong inside is just as important. A strong woman knows who she is and what she wants in life. She has strong values and stands by them, she has a strong faith that guides her no matter who or what her religion may be, and she does not do anything she does not want to do. She is determined and motivated to achieve her goals in life and works hard in that direction.

A woman is intelligent.

There is no reason for anybody to be ignorant with the advent of the internet. There isn't anything that can't be learned or researched and an intelligent woman will do what she needs to do in order to be well versed in many areas of life. Intelligence is not simply what we learn from books or studying, but it is many things. It is listening to your inner sense of what is right and wrong, and it is understanding what is going on around you and reacting appropriately. It is knowing when to speak and when to keep quiet and a true inner sense of understanding.

A woman is feminine.

I don't care if you ride a motorcycle or have your head under the hood of a car all day, you can still be feminine. Femininity is a feeling, not two tons of perfume and a lacy blouse. Being feminine, at least to me, is having a softness about you, a clean, bright, exterior and a sharp and loving interior. A feminine woman does not holler when she speaks, nor does she say words like "ain't" instead of what she should say. She speaks with a soft tone but is capable of kicking your butt if she has to. She has an aura about her that draws the opposite sex to her and maybe does not even understand herself why it happens.

A woman is creative.

By creative, I mean she is capable of adapting to any and all situations, not that she is a great artist or dancer. Of course, she could be creative in a special, artistic way but the creativity I am referring to is the ability to make something out of nothing. She needs to know how to make a house a home, not just a place to live. I struggled so hard with that when I was a young woman, trying to figure out what my mother's house had that made you feel warm and welcome, but mine didn't seem to have. She needs to learn how to make things that are for holidays like Halloween and Christmas that keep costs and expectations down. She should be able to take the oldest daughter's skirt when it is outgrown and figure out how to use it to make something for the younger daughter that is hip and with the current trends.

Sometimes in life, we want to live in the big house down the street but end up in the mobile home park. The ability to adapt while we continue to pursue the big house down the street helps keep us positive and pointed in the right direction. It is a fact that the more intelligent a person is the better their ability to adapt to new situations, not to mention the sooner you learn the streets in the new town the quicker you can independently get around.

A woman is many things.

There are more than the above-mentioned qualities that compose a woman. She should be patient, kind, and empathetic. She should also know how to defend herself and have a sense of who she can and cannot trust so she isn't walking around naive and vulnerable. She should respect her body and treat it well at all times. It is important to do this so the next step, self-love, is easier to accomplish.

As a woman who was a people-pleaser her entire life, I think one of the most important aspects of a woman is self-love and self-care. They go hand-in-hand and also are closely related to self-esteem and self-confidence. Once you care for yourself, you don't stop caring for others, but you begin to put your own needs on a higher priority list. You have a right to be happy and cared for and that has to happen before you have the ability to love and care for another person.

Remember, there is nothing more beautiful than a strong, healthy woman who knows what she wants and believes in herself.