Yes, you can have both – a passion and a child!
I coach many women who feel guilty as they love their job or business but feel like they are not being a ‘good enough’ mum.
If you feel the same then please remember, you are a woman with passion, ambition, drive and intellect which can be channelled in other creative ways as well as being an awesome mum. I am sure you are doing a brilliant job of both.
I strongly believe women can make a beautiful job of being a mum whilst working, in fact I encourage it.
Susan Jeffers in her wonderful book – ‘Freeing Ourselves From the Mad Myths of Parenthood’, discusses how some mums absolutely love the process of being a mum and all that it brings with it and some of us don’t take to it as naturally and don’t love it so much.
Susan makes the valid point that both ways to feel are ok. Thank goodness as I came in the latter category and have had to learn to compromise my ambition with committing to my young son’s needs. I see the role of being a mum precious, as one day he will fly the nest, however it doesn’t mean I can’t commit to my job or business in the meantime.
Here are my top 5 ways to let go of the guilt and make both roles work.
1) Look at your week and commit time to different roles.
Break your week into time chunks and commit to your different roles – committing to ‘mum’ role, committing to ‘job’ role but also committing to ‘rest’ role. The latter is important to re-fuel you as a mum. When we are child and work free it is important to prioritise time for you. The hovering, bathroom cleaning, answering emails or attending a networking event should not be prioritised over downtime for you. Remember no ‘YOU’ – no job/business and the kids will suffer. It is important to rest and self-care.
2) Bring in an expert to help
I used to spend hours doing my accounts – it would take me a full day and I would dread it. Accounting is not my strong point. I then decided to task a bookkeeper with this. It would take her 2 hours to upload all the information into the spreadsheets. This meant I had a full day to see clients or even take the afternoon off so this was a much more beneficial use of my time. Who can you bring in to help you? Cleaner, coach, ironer, dog walker for example. Failing that, asking children or partners to help is important, it allows them to learn to take responsibility.
3) It’s ok to leave the housework.
I used to factor in a full house clean in my week. One week I thought I wonder what will happen if I don’t do a full clean this week so I didn’t do it. Nothing happened, other than I had more time for me! After that little experiment, I went from cleaning weekly to fortnightly. Do you really need to clean up or change the bedsheets as often as you do or can you get a cleaner?
4) Stop being a martyr.
I realised I needed a medal for the amount of times I was being a martyr. Family and friends would offer to help me, and I would decline. Boy would I then tell everyone how busy I had been in the week and how I had done everything on my own! This was until someone pointed out; “Well I did offer to help!” Check in if you are wearing your medal of martyrdom and take it off. It’s ok to accept help!
5) Ask the kids
If you are wondering if you are being a ‘good enough’ mum then ask the people who know. I often ask my son, how can I be a better mum? Be prepared to act on the answers though. One time he told me that I get angry over nothing which upsets him. It really made me think and now I try to stay calmer. Remember to ask them what you are doing well though, they will tell you, from their perspective of course.
You are doing an awesome job of being a mum and working so give yourself a pat on the back. Alternatively if you are thinking of going back to work or starting your own business then join all the fabulous women’s networking groups in your area and you will see it is possible to combine the two.
If you need more practical ways to develop your business and balance your mum and entrepreneur duties then please get in touch. I offer confidence coaching and seminars to help you balance all your roles. Check out my website www.couragequeen.com or join my closed facebook group ‘Courage Queen Group’.