By Christina Schlachter, PhD | CEO She Leads, Author of Leading Business Change for Dummies, and CWCC Member
I had a great conversation over lunch today with a fellow full time-out-of-the-house-working-mom about what women do after having children. We talked about how so many moms are conflicted about what they should do with their life after having kids (stay home, work, work part time, work from home). Our society says “do it all” – be a parent, a worker, a spouse, a friend, and have a great body while you are at it with no laugh lines. Quite a large demand. I think Heidi Klum has it down, but even she dropped the spouse title.
Last year the media had a field day with Rahna Rizzuto’s choice to not want to be a mom anymore to her 3 and 5 year old; she wanted to be single and kid free to pursue her career. Anyone who is a mom (and has been out of the delivery room for more than 72 hours) would be lying to say they never once thought, “What was I thinking?” But most of us decide we love our children and would never give up being a mom for anything, even if it does mean giving up the fast track on our career or traveling the world for years on end.
If you love your career, here is a great message to tell your children (especially young girls). Imagine the power of simply replying to your young children when they ask why you work outside the home with: “I am so lucky to be able to love you and be your mom AND have a job that makes me happy. When you become a mommy/daddy, I hope you have a job you love too!”
For moms that love being moms AND want to work at the same time, it is time we stick together. Instead of waging mommy wars, let’s try and use our choice to educate and inspire our children. I am fortunate to write for a number of blogs, but I am always a bit taken aback when women criticize others just because they have different on opinions working moms, what to eat to lose weight, or even how to celebrate Christmas! Shouldn’t we take advantage of the brilliant community of women around us and support one another? Shouldn’t we do all that is in our power to treat one another with dignity and respect?
There is no one right way to raise a child, have a relationship, get your pre-baby body back, or balance a successful career with a wonderful family. We are all in this together and all we can control in this world are our own actions towards ourselves and one another. Let’s all learn something from the women out there that give passionately and support each other through thick and thin. Imagine what womankind could do if we did it together?
About Dr. Christina Schlachter, PhD, is the Founder and Chief Leader of She Leads and is the author of Leading Business Change for Dummies (Wiley, 2012). As the Leading Change Expert, she deliver sreal-world coaching for leaders who are tired of too much fire-fighting and are ready to create meaningful, positive, and lasting change. Used successfully by thousands of leaders worldwide, Christina’s matter-of-fact 12-week turnaround process has cemented her role in helping leaders reinvent both themselves and their companies.