Friends, we need to talk. I have a confronting question.
Are you doing enough?
I really doubt it. Let’s see.
Are you squeezing the most out of every minute of your day? Chasing your dreams? Being true to yourself? Refusing to take no for an answer?
How to spot and combat burnout. Post continues below.
Are you sending your boss links to articles about innovative business improvements at 10pm on a Saturday night?
Are your children enrolled in a mixture of after-school activities that perfectly balance their intellectual, physical and social development? Are you driving them to all those appointments yourself, in a non-carbon emitting, electric car?
Are you having interesting sex five times a week in a variety of hygienic locations?
Are you next in line for promotion at work, and grabbing every single opportunity to prove why you’re the person for the job, which perfectly aligns with your five-year plan and your boss’s ten-year strategic blueprint?
Are you there, smiling, at the school gate daily, after fitting in every important meeting and not missing an email?
Are you watching your alcohol intake, your carb intake, your sugar intake? Are you intermittent fasting? Are you totally Keto? Are you cooking from scratch every evening with only organic, paleo, dairy-free, meat-free, grain-free produce ethically-sourced from a plastic-free farmers’ market?
Are you networking, but never pushy?
Are you monitoring your kids’ screen time, while staying off your phone, while miraculously staying abreast of local and international issues so you can lead your well-tended friendship group in intelligent discussions about cancel culture?
I didn’t think so.
I told you, you’re not doing enough.
How could you possibly be? You’re a woman, living in an age of extreme expectation. Superwoman Syndrome has shaken off its shoulder pads, pulled on its activewear leggings and buddied up with Hustle Culture to provide you a continual feed of All The Ways You Could Be Better. If you’re a woman with a child, then throw in a dose of Peak Parenting, and the bar for a successful life is now so high the Hubble telescope would squint.
Superwoman Syndrome lives in the inspirational, ‘go get ’em’ memes scattered through your Instagram. It’s in the relentless productivity apps being advertised in your news feed. It’s in the ‘The Surprising Habits of Successful Women’ stories that algorithms and magazine supplement covers serve up to you daily.