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Maggie's Personal Self-Care Letter

November 07, 2018

The more I opened up and spoke about my struggles, the more I realize this common theme: We as women are so hard on ourselves.

Ah, Self Care and Self Love, they seem to be the buzz word these days. While it might seem easy to put together a Self Care Set to try to capture SEO or to be on trend, the journey behind it surely was not an easy one for me.

 

Where do I begin?

 

I guess I’ll start from the beginning of my business. When I was planning my wedding, I couldn’t find headpieces that I liked, so I created my own, and it became a business. And it grew. A year in, however, I became uncomfortable with the message that I was sending out into the world.

 

 

Every time I posted a photo of a bride whilst promoting my business, I felt that I was going along with this unreasonable expectation of women and sending this message that women can only celebrate themselves or be celebrated if they are getting married. This unsettling feeling became so strong, that I could no longer bear promote my business as what it was.

 

I took a few months break to look deep into my heart and discover what kind of message do I want to send out to the world. It was scary, difficult, and painful. While I started my business originally without much to lose, with this re-branding I felt that I had so much to lose, because I felt that I was throwing away all the work that I had done & the momentum that I had built previously.

 

In addition to that, a lot was happening in my personal life. A few months after our wedding, my husband was sent from New York to Singapore to work on a 6-month assignment, and I followed. What was a 6-month assignment turned into a year, and what was an assignment turned into a permanent relocation to Hong Kong. While I have always enjoyed moving around, it is much more difficult to do while you are trying to grow a business that involves inventory.

 

Where do I ship the merchandise to? Where do I store it? When can I start selling? I couldn’t plan any of those things until I have actually settled down in one location. While we were supposed to move to Hong Kong by April, the move was constantly delayed due to issues beyond our control, and we didn’t end up moving to Hong Kong until July. With so many unknowns and so many unexpected changes, it was very difficult for me to live in this constant flux of uncertainty.

 

I thought I held it all together very well until I arrived in Hong Kong in the middle of the July, the hottest & most humid time of the year, walking around the most condensed city in the world, looking at some of the smallest & saddest apartments I have ever seen. Within a week of landing in Hong Kong, I broke down in tears, in front of a group of strangers at a female entrepreneur event. I was so embarrassed and constantly replayed this in my head, thinking “Oh my god, I shouldn’t have done that.

 

But right after that, something amazing happened. I started sharing my struggles openly. For some reason, there was nothing holding me back anymore, because what can be worse than breaking down in tears in front of group of strangers right? The more I opened up and spoke about my struggles – with friends, acquaintances, and strangers I meet from wellness workshops, the more I realize this common theme:

 

We as women are so hard on ourselves.

 

Of everyone that I have spoken to, many of whom are amazing, well-accomplished women, despite all the accomplishments that they have made in their life & career, they all feel that they not doing enough – not enough for their business, not enough for their family, not enough for their friends. There are so many should’s that are expected of us from society, and even more so from ourselves, that it is almost impossible to match up.

 

Even when things were completely out of my control, such as logistics and visa issues that prevented us from moving to Hong Kong, I constantly blamed myself– that I didn’t foresee these issues, that I didn’t plan ahead enough, that I didn’t prepare well enough.

 

Ever since I have opened up about my struggles within my personal circle of friends & acquaintances, amazing things have happened. People I haven’t spoken to in ages have reached out to me to share their struggles with me, and acquaintances I barely knew before started sharing books and other resources with me on what has helped them during their struggles.

 

While I have debated for so long about whether or not to be open about this personal journey on my business platform, it is in fact the story behind what what has inspired me to launch a Self-Care Section on my website. With this Self-Care series, I hope to continue to share stories, not just from myself, but from women around the world. We are all in this together.

 

 

As we approach the end of the year, I would like to ask you to slow down, and take a moment to appreciate all the accomplishments you have made this year, no matter how big or small.

 




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