Updated: Jul 31
Societal socialization is the process by which individuals learn and internalize the norms, values, beliefs, and behaviors of their society or culture. This process starts early in life through interactions with family members, peers, media, and other social institutions. Through societal socialization, individuals learn how to behave and interact with others in their society, as well as how to interpret and respond to cultural products such as art, music, and literature. The process of societal socialization helps to create a sense of shared understanding and cohesion within a society.
However, it is important to remember that as a part of this, each of us is wired uniquely and requires a different range of socialization from the community we surround ourselves with. Often, societal socialization leads us to believe we should “go” at a certain pace in our lives and “do” this or that which is deemed normal. This is not emotionally or physically healthy for many people.
Here are 6 tips to help evaluate what you need for YOU and break free from what society “expects from you” for a healthier well-being.
1. Recognize and challenge limiting beliefs: Start by becoming aware of the specific societal beliefs and expectations that have influenced your sense of self. Question these beliefs and challenge their validity. Reflect on how they have impacted your self-perception and held you back. Replace them with empowering beliefs that align with your values and aspirations.
2. Surround yourself with empowering influences: Seek out role models, mentors, and communities that support and uplift you. Surrounding yourself with individuals who challenge societal norms and embrace authenticity can help you shift your perspective and provide a supportive network. Engage in conversations, attend events, or join online communities that celebrate diverse experiences and empower women to break free from societal limitations.
3. Practice self-compassion and self-acceptance: Cultivate a mindset of self-love and acceptance. Treat yourself with kindness, understanding, and forgiveness. Embrace your imperfections as part of your unique journey and focus on your strengths and accomplishments. Celebrate the progress you've made and acknowledge that you are enough, just as you are.
4. Define your own values and aspirations: Take the time to explore and define what truly matters to you. Identify your passions, goals, and values independent of societal expectations. This will help you align your actions and decisions with your authentic self. Set meaningful goals that resonate with your true desires and aspirations, rather than trying to meet external standards.
5. Set boundaries and prioritize self-care: Establish healthy boundaries to protect your time, energy, and well-being. Learn to say "no" when necessary and prioritize self-care without guilt. Make time for activities that bring you joy, nourish your soul, and rejuvenate your spirit. Recognize that taking care of yourself is not selfish but necessary for your overall well-being and success.
6. Seek support and engage in personal growth: Consider seeking therapy, coaching, or counseling to support your personal growth journey. Professional guidance can provide valuable insights, tools, and techniques to help you navigate and overcome deep-rooted societal socialization. Engage in personal development activities like reading empowering books, attending workshops, or participating in courses that promote self-discovery and self-empowerment.
Remember, breaking free from societal socialization is a continuous process. Be patient and kind to yourself as you navigate this journey. Celebrate your progress and honor the courage it takes to challenge societal norms and embrace your authentic self. You have the power to rewrite your own narrative and live a life aligned with your truest aspirations and values.