#536: The Price Women Pay to Be Perfect and on Good Behavior with Elise Loehnen

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Episode Summary

Why do women feel like we have to do it all? 

I’ve always prided myself in keeping all the balls in the air at once. And I’ve tried to perfect doing it all– often without even flinching.

But because of this, I’m burnt out. And the mental exhaustion is real. 

So why is it that we feel like we have to wear so many hats to be recognized as successful women– whether it’s in a career, family life, marriage, or all of the above? 

I know I’m not the only one working overtime, all the time. 

I carry the bulk of the household and caregiving responsibilities, on top of all my career work– every single day. 

And the stats across the board back it up– women have higher rates of depression, anxiety, and autoimmunity. Our bodies as women take a beating, but we’ve been convinced to put others’ needs before our own. 

To change this mindset and help us recognize we don’t need to be perfect at everything, I’ve invited expert Elise Loehnen on the show. She’s here to explain how these impulses– often described as unselfish and distinctly feminine instincts– have actually been ingrained in us by society for a long time. 

Elise helps us understand our innate need to be perfect as an aspect of being a woman and allows us to recognize how to adapt when we feel this need to do it all. 

Elise recently wrote a book called On Our Best Behavior: The Seven Deadly Sins and the Price Women Pay to be Good. And if you’ve ever struggled with self-sacrifice, or feeling the need to be good, this book is for you. 

Today’s podcast is one you won’t want to miss because Elise does a deep dive into the history of women’s behavior– all the way up to the modern day, and discusses how society has created ideas in our brains of who and what we have to be.

It’s time to break this mold and live the way we as women deserve to. To feel empowered, patient with ourselves, and perfectly imperfect.

So listen now to gain thoughtful insight and become the best version of yourself!

Elise Loehnen 

Elise Loehnen is a writer, editor, and host of the podcast Pulling the Thread, where she interviews cultural luminaries about the big questions of today. She’s the author of the New York Times bestselling book– On Our Best Behavior: The Seven Deadly Sins and the Price Women Pay to be Good

Elise has also co-written 12 books, including five New York Times Best Sellers. Previously, she was the chief content officer of Goop. While there, Elise co-hosted The Goop Podcast and The Goop Lab on Netflix, and she’s interviewed hundreds of thought leaders, doctors, and experts. 


“It didn’t explain what was happening for women and why there’s such a gap between where we are and where we should be and where we want to be in terms of equitable representation.” 

“We are running businesses and mothering our children and taking care of our communities and really trying to stand as equals. Definitely doing the work. Women are like boxers training at high altitudes.”

“We’ve been outperforming men actually in school for a century. So this isn’t a new innovation too. It’s not like women have only just stumbled upon our innate intelligence.”

“It’s just a process of removing all of these internal blocks so that we can step forward and support each other, push each other forward.”

“She helps us to pull the veil covering our eyes and gives us phenomenal perspective and then ways in which we can begin to heal and begin to shift the way that we operate here in this world.”

In This Episode

  1. Elise’s story and her exploration of women’s need to be good 
  2. The impact perfectionistic tendencies have on women 
  3. Discussing gender constructs throughout history 
  4. How the “Good Girl” mentality permeated into society 
  5. The connection between the seven deadly sins and our behavior 
  6. Discussing envy and what it can tell us 
  7. Getting clear on our own wants and needs 
  8. How self-denial can be detrimental

Resources Mentioned

Order On Our Best Behavior by Elise Loehnen Now!


Elise’s Instagram 

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#342: 10 Tangible Ways to Practice Self-Love In The Morning Before Work

#486: What Actually Gets in the Way of Completing Goals and How Can We Make True Lasting Behavioral Change? with Dr. Sasha Heinz

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