MUM STATUS SHOULDN’T HOLD YOU BACK
There are so many theories about been a mum that can make you feel like you HAVE TO slow down, give up big dreams or let them slack a bit…or a lot.
Many girls are still dropping out of school due to teenage pregnancy and not returning. A good number of women are mentally checking out of their careers, confused by the popular opinion that a woman’s career growth is inevitably detrimental to the stability of her home. It is a dangerous perception because mums have been holding up the fort for a long time, directly or indirectly. This fast-paced world needs mothers more than ever before.
Here are 10 solid reasons why you should not be afraid to advance in your chosen career just because you are a mum:
1. You have added some more skills to your resume so don’t be afraid to brag:
One thing that definitely sets you apart for greater results is the very fact that you are a mom! You understand the true meaning of multitasking, you have developed persuasion skills. Persistence is a part of your daily life and the reality of a lean budget doesn’t scare you so much anymore (nothing’s scarier than the bills that come along with kids). So don’t underestimate what you bring to the table. Be proud of these skills and put them to use at every opportunity.
2. You know those guys that tag themselves Creatives? Guess what? You are one of them!
Creativity is a part of your daily life and if you don’t believe me then list 10 things you have done today and I will show you at least 3 ways that your creativity helped you make progress. Channel this creativity into your hustle and you will be amazed at how unique your approach will become.
3. Mothers tend to look at the bigger picture.
As a part of a team, they are usually the meticulous ones because details are super important in their daily lives. Above all, they are good at bringing the rest of their team back to earth when they start getting carried away with what’s trending, what’s hot and all of that. They might not seem like fun when they are doing this but you will be thankful for them when you realize that their plans have saved you a lot of heartache in the future.
4. Focus on the fact that your service or product will matter whether you are male or female.
It will wow others because of how it changes their lives irrespective of your kind of underwear. Stop dwelling on the fact that women often get the raw deal, or that things aren’t designed to favour us or that sexism and the glass ceiling are strong forces keeping women down. There are issues that keep men down too. Don’t throw a mommy pity party and avoid hanging around those who do. Pity parties make you less creative and more accepting of failure and you don’t need that. Not when the world is waiting for your contribution!
5. Mums have to go out, at the drop of a hat sometimes.
Going out may refer to work, meetings or it may mean the market, the hospital, school, shopping malls, parties and family events. These are all great places that can provide inspiration and offer you a superb networking abilities. Instead of viewing it as a drudge, think of it as avenues to interacting with people from all works of life. Boundless opportunities you would not get if you didn’t have any kids. Take advantage of these network by asking questions, listening carefully and keeping an open mind when brilliant ideas start rolling in. Some of the greatest ideas have started in this very way.
6. Delay does not mean denial so don’t force it to.
Sometimes we get discouraged when difficult times come and then we give up. Success journeys are never without their fair share of bumps so why should ours be any different? These bumps you are so scared of are what prepares us for tough competition and slow months. You can handle delay, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. In the words of Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka – May Your Road Be Rough!
7. Many mums will tell you that they have never felt as driven as they did when the kids started coming.
It’s probably because moms feel that they have a lot to prove to their children. We may want to leave a legacy for them, let them know that we didn’t just curl up and hide from our problems. We are proud of them and we want them to be proud of us. Plus we want to provide them with a comfortable life. Such determination is exactly what our hustle needs. It’s what will make us capable of working longer, harder and faster. It will help keep ego from interfering with anything that will give our kids the best.
This alone makes us formidable assets to ourselves and anyone affiliated with us.
8. Wise mums are quick to learn the dangers of comparing their kids to others.
Every child is different, unique and special. Comparing them will give you headaches and heartaches that will keep you up at night. I was in a near panic when my son turned 13 months and still wasn’t walking. I felt like I was somehow to blame and the panic would take deeper hold every time people asked me if he had started walking or whenever I saw a younger child toddling away. 3 months later he was toddling so fast that people started mumbling about harnesses but I had learnt my lesson to focus on what was important and stop comparing. Do not get carried away with what everyone else is doing or how fast they seem to be doing it. Focus on your advancement, cautiously attempt strategies that have worked for others and seek expert advice. Above all, trust your instinct.
9. Sometimes children can be as unpredictable as the weather.
One minute everything is fine and then they are yelling and fighting the next minute. You can’t predict what’s coming with them and it can get exasperating. However this part of motherhood is the exact reason why we are great with unpredictable coworkers and clients. We can read signals when someone requires reassurance or calming words. We don’t panic when well-laid plans seem to be veering off course because it’s a scenario we handle all the time. Mums are pros at facing surprises headlong and carving out Plan Bs.
10. Whether you are the religious kind or not, you will acknowledge the role hope/optimism/faith has to play in keeping the hustle going.
Especially when you are still trying to make a name for yourself. Sometimes you will have to cancel plans, projections will not come close to the real thing and it will even seem like those closest to you don’t believe in you. Stay optimistic and keep working at it. No one will believe in your dream if you stop believing in it. Most of the time, we are responsible for our own failures.
Avoid surrounding yourself with people who try to remind you of ‘a woman’s place’ or make you feel guilty for trying to make a success of yourself.
Be confident that you can make it and you will.