Sunday, February 18, 2018

Can becoming a mom actually help your career? Yes!

Being a mom and having a career are two things that are often pitted against each other. Mothers can't be good at work because they're distracted by their children. Working women can't be good mothers because they're not the ones raising their kids 24/7. Time and again, we working mamas have proven these accusations as false. Many businesses are founded by women (shout out to my friends who are all businesswomen!). Many businesses have senior officers who are women (check out this 2017 PDI article: More women executives in PH, Asia pacific, but...). Many of these career women are also mothers and I celebrate how women can enjoy more aspects of womanhood—of life!—and this is truly a sign of changing times.

The three reasons I work so hard.

I will admit that juggling motherhood and career and marriage and self-care is a huge struggle. And I will also say that when the need arises, family always comes first. That's a no-brainer. I work because I love it, I love making my own money, I love providing for my family, and I love using parts of my brain for something else that doesn't involve children. I like being more than a mommy. That said, when the kids are sick, I drop all work. When a job offer of P200,000 a month came up but it would mean working practically 24/7, I declined. You can always make money but when family needs you, family comes first. I think most working moms know this and do this.

But that doesn't make mommies bad workers. In my experience, I have more to bring to the table now because of all the things I know as a mom. I'm better at understanding how finances work, for example, now that I have to manage a household. I'm now more organized. I can make the best decisions in a snap (trained by kids whose needs are always urgent!).  

Becoming a mother can give your career a boost in many ways. Motherhood and career don’t have to be mutually exclusive. So if you’re thinking about work after having children, or are yet to have children and wonder how you can make it work, then this post is for you. Here are some of the ways that becoming a mom can give your career the boost that it might need.

You FINALLY take that leap of faith.
Many women put off doing what they really want because they don't think they can make it. But when children are in the picture, you start to think of being a good example. How can you teach your children to be true to themselves, to chase after their dreams, to pursue their passions, and be proud of their talents if you yourself aren't fulfilling your own purpose in life? If you've always wanted to be a teacher, do it now. If you've always wanted to bake cookies and sell them, do it now. Nothing is sadder for a child to see than a regretful parent who says, "I always wanted to do this-and-that but I couldn't because I had to work for you kids/scared I'd fail/I didn't want to be laughed at/etc." I know because my own parents said that and it is heart-wrenching to witness wasted lives, buried talents, and crushed dreams, especially if those were your parents'.

Be the role model you want your kids to have! If you fail, then try again. At least your kids see that you were brave enough to live your truth, tried to make it work, and got up again. I really do believe this because that's what my husband and I do all the time. Making our dreams come true requires a leap of faith, yes. It took me a while to take that leap, I'll admit, and I was scared all the time. I'm still scared. But many mom bosses (like many of my friends) decided to leave their old career behind and carve out a new one for themselves—and they inspired me! 

You’re motivated for real success.
If you weren’t too motivated by your career beforehand, then it is important to note that becoming a parent can really give you the motivation that you need. Nothing motivates you more than the little ones that you have at home that need to be fed and cared for. I was interviewed for an article in a parenting magazine a few years ago and one of the questions was, "What motivates you to work?" And I replied, "The bills. Do you realize how expensive it is to raise kids???" Haha but it's true. I can get really lazy, you know, but those bills need to be paid, those kids need to be fed, those kids need to go to school, wear clothes, get their vaccines. So I can't ever be lazy!

Money issues aside, you also become more focused and determined to be a success because you want your kids to be proud of you. My son, Vito, is so funny. He brought a magazine to school because my photo was in it (it was the Biogenic ad) and he told his classmates and their moms: "Look at my mama! She's a model!" I was half-embarrassed and half-proud. I loved it that he was so proud of me! It made me want to work harder, you know? I'm sure you know what I mean, mamas.

Your skills improve.
Like I mentioned earlier, motherhood forces you to learn a lot of new skills that you didn't have before. It teaches you creativity, patience, razor-sharp decision-making, people management, mastery of juggling schedules, and a whole lot more. Many moms actually realize that they could capitalize on these new skills. I know many women who embarked on businesses like home organization, house-cleaning, virtual assistance, events management, catering, tutoring, kiddie fashion, baby products. 

If you're a mom who quit work to be with your kids, or you've found yourself having plenty of time now that the kids are in school, you may want to attend workshops or enroll in courses that can equip you to launch that business you always wanted to do. If you're employed, you may consider a masters degree to improve your skills and employability. Doing an MSW online, for example, could open up your career options and make you able to apply for that promotion that you’ve always wanted to do. 

You're more powerful now, oh so much more powerful!
As a working mom, you have a lot of things to be thinking about. And becoming a mom will automatically make you better able to manage time, prioritize, and organize. So even if you go back to your previous career after having children, it can mean that you’re better able to do the job you were doing before. You’re likely to be a much more productive worker as you know you have only got a certain amount of time to get the work done in.

Becoming a mother can give your confidence a boost. You have done something amazing when you grew a baby and kept that baby alive and healthy, too! For many women it can help them to feel more confident and comfortable in their own skin. It happened to me and I wrote about my empowerment because I truly felt more alive and more powerful. Your motherhood can be just the catalyst that you need for a mighty change!

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  1. I can totally relate to this. Juggling motherhood and career is really tough but it is possible to do both. because of our love for our children, for our family.

    Nakakatuwa si Vito. Naiimagine ko ang reaction ng classmates nya, amazed siguro sila. :). I also saw that ad last Friday while waiting for my turn for a hair cut in a salon. Dapat pala pinakita ko rin sa daughter ko, sinabi ko na nakita ko na in person ang model na 'to hehehe.

    Congrats, Frances and thank you for inspiring all the mamas out there who reading your blog.

  2. i am a stay at home mom, and i can say na madami din naman akong natutunan, from other mommies na nakilala ko thru mommy groups, and masasabi kong happy ako kahit hindi na ako nakapag work as long as natutukan ko mga kids ko

  3. Fb name: roj lamsin
    Ig: @rojlamsin

  4. I am a mother of 1 and I will honestly say na ang hirap pala talaga kahit isa pa lang ang baby mo pero we always choose to continue and never give up whatever the trial we are facing kaya pag may time pa ako I also work online as a seller.

    Kaya let's always be the best mom we can be ��

    Fb:Ea Caruelle

  5. I remember my mother who had to take care all 8 of us, and yet she still had time for her small business. She would wake up at 3AM and sleep at 9PM, sometimes later if she had lots of orders. I agree with you that if we really want to make things happen, we can and our family will always be our strength. Nowadays, full time housewives can take advantage of digital platforms to pursue their passion, may it be business or personal development. There is no more excuse to say that staying at home deprives us of a rewarding career. Staying at home can give you both.

  6. This post of yours, Frances, is really timely & synchronized with what's been happening in my life as a mom more than 2 weeks after I turned 40. I finally took a leap of faith of partly working at home again even when I know my skills are getting rusty and that having a toddler & being a wife can be quite a challenge. Both a struggle & a challenge (but somehow slowly thriving) to balance work, self-care, managing time in house chores & discovering & pursuing personal interests & buried long-forgotten passions. Gradually, I feel I'm getting empowered as a woman when i took this recent online gig. Hopefully, my skills will improve, learn how to effectively prioritize, organize & manage time well while I explore & discover my true calling & purpose. Yun nga lang kahit trying hard to balance everything & getting back in the flow again, ramdam ko my pores are getting larger & my eyebags are getting bigger. Kaya hindi ko matiis na sumali at magComment. Thank you for this wonderful Nivea Cellular Anti-Age Cell Renewal line giveaway.

    Ruby Ria Yanez-Yosuico


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