Ladies First — 6 Ways to Empower Yourself

Self-awareness and confidence are key to feeling empowered. 

Each year on March 8, people around the world come together for International Women’s Day (IWD) — a celebration of the achievements of women from all walks of life. But it’s not merely a one-day event, it’s an ongoing movement that was first celebrated in 1911 to empower women and encourage a more balanced society.

And, how can women feel empowered, you might ask? Because let’s face it, balancing your career with your personal life requires deliberate planning and conscious reflection. So, it’s no surprise that the one thing we tend to forget is, self-care. This is critical because in order to perform our best in whatever we do, we need to feel empowered and in control. We can achieve this, first by having a balanced lifestyle, and that starts from within. So, this IWD and beyond, take time to nourish your mind, body and soul. Read on for some ideas to get you started!

1. Heal Your Body

Massage your way to good health!

People are constantly looking for ways to de-stress, and one of the simplest ways to do that is to turn to massage for relaxation and tension relief. History even suggests that massage may be the oldest form of medical care.

In fact, some studies have found the existence of Egyptian tomb paintings dating as far back as 2500BC, that depicted Egyptian kings and queens getting massages! Why not, make like an Egyptian and let someone else’s hands soothe the migraines and back pain away so that you are always ready to conquer what life throws your way!

Book yourself a ‘Massage by Candlelight’ at Citispa, located at Northpoint City North Wing, (#02-23). Alternatively, relieve stress and anxiety with a foot massage at Kousei Foot Reflexology located at Bedok Point (#B1-03/04) and YewTee Point (#01-15).

2. Fuel Your Mind

Take a break and enjoy a good read at the park.

In the age of social media, reading books has taken a backseat (no, reading emails and twitter updates do not count!) Most books, even if they are fiction, are based on some nuggets of truth, so by constantly reading, you gain knowledge. They may not always be life-changing truths, but they do make for great conversation starters!

When you make time to read, you’ll be contributing to better emotional and mental health. Other benefits include increased memory and improved sleep. Start with quick and easy reads, once a month, just to get into the habit again and you will soon reap the health benefits that follow.

Find a book to lose yourself in at Popular Bookstore located at Causeway Point (#03-29/30), Eastpoint Mall (#03-23), Northpoint City North Wing (#03-12), Times Bookstore located at Waterway Point West Wing (#02-19) and Yishun Public Library (#04-01) located at Northpoint City North Wing.

3. Play It for A Change

Indulge in great music and pluck your stresses away.

Striking a balance between your work or home and your personal life is easier if you have other worthwhile activities that you are passionate about. After all, all work and no play is hardly the best way to go! Take it from the famous novelist Jane Austin who said, “Without music, life would be a blank to me”.

The power of music over the human mind, body, and emotions is enormous. So, instead of sitting back and binging on a couple of episodes on Netflix (something which a lot of us tend to do), pick up an instrument. Taking the initiative to teach yourself something new is one of the most empowering things you can do!

Symphony Music School located at Causeway Point (#05-04) and Cristofori Music School at Eastpoint Mall (#06-01) offer adult lessons in piano, violin, guitar and the ukulele. If you’re looking for something more mellow, try the cello at Edvox Music School located at Waterway Point West Wing (#02-08).

4. Fight Right

Learning how to protect yourself puts you on the road to self-empowerment.

The impact of the Internet of Things (IoT) has shaped the way we interact with the world. From communicating with friends and family, to shopping online, we are becoming increasingly fixated on what we see on our mobile screens. As such, we are often unaware of what’s around us.

So, to combat that, try engaging in any form of martial arts, as it teaches awareness of your body, your limits, and the environment around you. It’s also an incredible way of exercising your own power and confidence. In fact, the act of learning how to protect yourself is not only empowering, it can also be inspiring for other women!

Ildo Taekwondo Academy located at Bedok Point (#02-20/22), JM Taekwondo located at The Centrepoint (#05-03) and TKD Taekwondo Academy located at Eastpoint Mall (#02-11/18) offer classes for adults and focus on practicing offence and defence using the feet and hands through sparring, breaking, and self-defence techniques.

5. The Art of Empowerment

A picture paints a thousand words, so take your message to the canvas!

Stress is a growing problem in our society: we spend most of our time in the workplace, often with high workloads and time pressure. Bringing art into one’s life can give us much-needed relief, along with a sense of joy and contemplation. Yet art can bring even more: it can bring a sense of tranquility, empowerment, and emotional release.

Don’t have an inner Picasso? Don’t let that stop you from expressing yourself on canvas! Channel the famous Mexican painter Frida Kahlo instead, and start with portraits and stills inspired by nature. Whether your style is more Frida or fingerpainting, art as therapy relates in part to the body’s stress-management system. Take it as a means of communication that lets you express and explore your thoughts and emotions.

Join sketching or art jamming sessions, and let it all out at Umistrong Art Store & Art Studio located at Eastpoint Mall (#03-26)

6. Find Your Voice

Express yourself!

Have you ever belted out your favourite song and really gotten into it? If you haven’t, girl, you’re missing out! You will feel a rush of energy and the stress just melts away, leaving you full of energy and positivity. That is the power of singing. And it’s something that the Japanese have been taking advantage of for decades. It’s the reason karaoke exists.

Fun fact: 'karaoke' originated from Japan, and literally means 'kara' (empty) + ōkesutora (orchestra)

Wailing guilty pleasure anthems to a crowd of friends is so much better with a dash of girl power. So the next time you’re up, go for girl power classics like: “Girl on Fire” by Alicia Keys, “Roar” by Katy Perry, “Independent Woman, Pt 1” by Destiny’s Child, “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift, “No Scrubs” by TLC, and the list goes on.

This IWD, assemble the girls and head down to Teo Heng KTV Studio located at Bedok Point (#03-08/11) and Causeway Point (#05-01) and sing your hearts out!

This list is not the be-all and end-all of how to live an empowered life, but it’s a great, simple way to start! With that, we wish you an awesome Women’s Day celebration!