Navigating career and motherhood

By Kimberly Flanagan

It’s a rush, literally a rush most days. Maybe every day. Being a career woman and a mother. Both are demanding and as women,

The secret ingredient to both these very important parts of our lives as women is time and patience. Give yourself time and be patient with yourself. You will make mistakes, you will fall back, but as always you will get up and move forward.

It’s life, it happens.

Organizing your busy life is important, even if you need to slot everything into a big calendar that hangs on your wall or on your cellphone calendar. That’s the lovely thing about technology, there are notification and alerts that remind you of important dates and times. Try and organize your life around your daughter’s dance class and your son’s soccer practice and make sure you always slot in some time for yourself as well.

You can’t give from an empty vessel, so it’s vital that you take care of you.

Be good to yourself. Take time for yourself.

Go out for dinner or get your hair and nails done.

Sleep in and eat junk food if that’s what you desire.

You don’t always need to please everyone else.

You need to take care of yourself so that you have the strength and energy to be there for others.

If you are lucky enough to have parents that can take care of the children for a few hours, do that so that you can either rest or get some work done if you can work from home.

We try to do both to the best of our abilities. Sometimes we fail or we feel as if we have failed but if you look back from where you have come to where you are now, I’m sure you’ll see how much you’ve achieved.

Another important aspect is to have a designated babysitter, if you’re a single mom or if both you and your partner, have demanding jobs. Someone who you can trust and call on the days when you really don’t have another option. For me, grandparents are the best here because you can really trust them.

As women we strive to do the best in everything we take on and we usually push ourselves beyond our limits, which can be great because it shows you what you are capable of but then there’s the downside to it; the fatigue and lack of energy, the punishment you subject yourself to because you feel you didn’t do your best. It’s all normal but it’s not always healthy. There has to be a balance.

Exercise, healthy eating, time out, and hobbies. Make sure you make time for all of those.

Even if no one says it, you take it upon yourself to make sure your house runs smoothly and you try and break yourself into several pieces so that everyone can be happy.

You tell yourself that you can do this and you ignore the tiredness and frustration in your body.

That then is over-shadowed by the guilt you start feeling because your kids want your attention but the house is a mess and you still need to make sure all your work for the office is done. Many times you just feel like crumbling into a ball and crying your eyes out because you feel that you actually can’t do this.

But you can.

You can do this.

You can have a successful family and household and manage a great career. You can do it and you will do it.

All it takes is a little planning, time, patience and being kind to yourself.

But you are going to have to put in the hard work, sometimes you will have to sacrifice sleep or food, it happens but little by little you’ll find that you’ve actually started putting down the foundations of your legacy.

Make sure you count every success, it doesn’t matter how small it might seem to you. Every small thing you do counts.  Be proud of yourself for putting in the effort, even when you feel exhausted.

I know sometimes it feels as if you don’t spend enough time with your children, you feel like you’re missing out on something when you have to say no to playtime, or when your kid wants you to look at something you’ve seen a million times, but you’ll get the time back and eventually, all the hard work will pay off.


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