Being a career driven mom means that you live with a constant conflict of time management. For some of us, our career goals and dreams came before our desire to be mothers. I allowed motherhood to stifle my professional growth, although I found raising kids to be rewarding, I felt a void by not reaching my personal goals.
When I received to opportunity to advance my career into senior management, I ecstatic. I finally began to find that old fire come back and my quest for world domination (kidding, sort of) was back! Sadly, for me, I do not know when to say enough is enough.
Last week, I was working one full-time senior management position, an interim controller position, and working on launching my strategic planning consulting firm. I had been in denial for the last 6 months that this was too much for one person to juggle. Add three kids and their various desires and it was a recipe for disaster. It became apparent last Monday, when I had lost my cool over the smallest thing, that I needed to reevaluate my goals. I quit my interim position on Friday.
Here are things I learned by taking on too many career goals at once:
1. Attaining work/life balance is harder than just reading books and attending seminars about it.
2. By juggling too much, you will not be the first to the top of the ladder, you will be stuck at the bottom.
3. Your body and your mind will eventually fail under stress and your mistakes will become marginal.
4. The separation of home and work will blur and so will your memories if you take on too many work responsibilities.
5. You will be moody and at the end, you probably won’t even like yourself.
6. Your kids will continue to grow and you will be missing it.
7. Learning to prioritize makes you focus on what is really important.
8. You can still “Lean in” without Keeling over.
I still am working on my climb to the top but at a slow, more calculated pace. What good is it if you get to the top but never stopped to enjoy the view?
Taking it one day at a time,
Mom under Siege.