INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY: Here are the things that make women feel more empowered

International Women's Day
International Women's Day
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Improving productivity and simply saying “no” to things have been voted as the best ways to feel empowered, according to new research conducted by health and wellbeing app, MINDBODY.

Marking International Women’s Day today (March 8),  MINDBODY surveyed UK women to discover the occasions and behaviours that make them feel most empowered. According to the research, the top ten things that make women in the UK feel empowered are:

1.     When they’ve had a productive day (54%)

2.     When they say ‘no’ to things they don’t want to do (45%)

3.     When they keep up with their healthy habits (28%)

4.     When they test their bravery/do something that scares them (27%)

5.     When their friends root for them, building up their confidence (22%)

6.     When they make time to focus on themselves (21%)

7.     When they’ve had a beauty treatment (20%)

8.     When another woman compliments them (18%)

9.     When a man compliments them (18%)

10.   When they cook a nutritious meal (17%)

Speaking about her thoughts towards empowerment, Rachel, a 31-year-old from Suffolk, says: “Sometimes I can forget just how good I feel when I’ve just been to a dance class, especially if I’ve been reasonably healthy throughout the week. Having fun at exercise classes and bossing my home-made lunches for work is the go-to routine to boost my self-esteem without really noticing!”

Faye Walton, Founder of MINDBODY studio CYC:D, also says: "First and foremost, I find empowerment every day in other people's motivation and strength. Seeing our clients achieve their goals and change their lives for the better gives me and our entire team at CYC:D a deep-rooted sense of satisfaction - supporting others is key and together we can achieve so much more! For me, empowerment is also about taking control. Facing my fears, setting and achieving my goals and finding time within my hectic work/life schedule for my own self-care are all at the cornerstone of my own personal empowerment. We all have different values we live by but here are few of mine which lend them self quite nicely to the subject of empowerment. Be kind, always, learn to love yourself, take risks and never pass up an opportunity as you never know where it may lead."

With MINDBODY’s research revealing that focusing on our overall wellbeing contributes towards self-empowerment, Zoe Bertali, founder of The Refinery, says: “Finding the space in a day to breathe and move is what makes me feel empowered. Allowing ourselves to take time out can often feel indulgent but recognising the after effects and benefits of yoga or exercise reminds me that we can achieve anything when we put our minds to it.

“We can be strong when we are able to let go of what we are holding on to, be it physical or emotional tension. Creating space in the mind and the body is like a daily declutter which has such a powerful effect on our wellbeing. Make sure to take the time every day to be good to ourselves”.

Being brave and doing something that scares you was also voted high on MINDBODY’s list, along with having friends that build up your confidence. Ashely Verma, Founder of MINDBODY studio, Define London, agrees: “Creating a business in a new country as a woman takes courage and requires a massive support network, especially in a male dominated sector. I am a believer that if you surround yourself with people that motivate you and lift you up, you will feel empowered every day!”

Ali Moore, Author of Reconnect Your Life, also comments: “Empowerment is about women giving themselves the permission to remove 'should' from their vocabulary. So much is based on what we 'should do' and what we 'should have done' or that we 'should be thinner'. When really, we 'need' to embrace who we are and what we want to achieve and feel confident to do this in order to get reconnected to what is actually important to us. The liberation of letting go of the word 'should' in life allows us to focus on the ‘can’… if we choose.”

Summarising the research findings, Charlotte Newton, Senior Marketing Manager EMEA at MINDBODY says: “It’s reassuring to see that feeling empowered doesn’t necessarily require action from someone else.

“Saying no to things may sound discouraging at first, but it’s important to see this as a positive too. We often put too much pressure on ourselves to complete tasks quickly or push ourselves to intense fitness classes when we’re just not in the right frame of mind, which can be exhausting in the long-run. Do whatever makes you feel empowered, whether it’s attending a new class, smashing a health target, or even saying the occasional ‘no’ and enjoying the benefits.”

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