My blog could be written in one sentence: work/life balance doesn’t actually exist anymore, you just learn how to manage.
Approximately two months ago, I walked away from a leadership role at a Fortune 16 company to embark on a career here at ReluTech as their Director of Sales. When I tell you that going from corporate America to a company with 54 employees was a major change, I’d be grossly under describing the transition. I was very vocal with the leadership team before deciding to take this, about wanting to make sure I kept the “balance” I had in my old career.
I laugh thinking about that now because I’m not sure I’ve ever had what people consider “balance.”
You tend to just figure it out. Your balance may not be the same as someone else’s balance but how you navigate it is what is most important.
At a very young age, I knew that I always wanted to have a strong career. I didn’t have a desire to be a stay-at-home mom – not that I saw anything wrong with doing that, I just knew it wasn’t in my cards.
I got married six years ago and was right in the middle of my career going full swing. I had accepted my second promotion, and traveling for my job and attending networking events after hours was easy. I had it all figured out. Then I got pregnant. We were so excited; however, I would be lying if I didn’t tell you I was really worried about what that meant for my career.
I kept feeling, and quite frankly, continue to feel a burden of guilt with any special moment I miss. FaceTiming him from a hotel room is something I’ve had to come to terms with as being a “blessing,” as opposed to a negative because when my dad spent so much time traveling when I was a child, we didn’t have that option.
I would sit on panels in a room full of women who were ready to take their careers to the next level and get asked “How do you do it all and focus on your career?”
What they meant was, how do I manage to be married, spend quality time with my child, workout, take care of myself, keep the house together, run errands, spend time with family and friends, and have a life.
The answer is in that question; I manage.
I manage to make it all happen because sometimes, I’m not afraid to ask for help, and sometimes I’m okay when something doesn’t get done. We are blessed to have my parents nearby who step in when they are able to as well as close friends who do the same. We have babysitters we trust with all of our heart and try our best to not allow ourselves to feel guilty about using them when we need it.
I will absolutely, hands down, order groceries on Instacart and have them delivered to our doorstep so that I can take my child to the park instead of to the grocery store. I have taken him to a pilates class and equipped him with an iPad and headphones so this mama could get her workout in. We have taken one of my best friends up on her repeated offers to babysit a few different times in order to get in a much-needed date night. We have called my parents to watch him when he’s sick because we both had meetings we absolutely could not miss that day. Remember when they said it takes a village? I don’t know who “they” were but they were so right.
So my answer to the people in the crowd as I sat on those panels was “don’t ever be afraid to ask for help” because this goes for anyone, regardless of their stage of life, with or without kids, married or unmarried, going through a major life crisis, need to travel for a week and don’t want to pay for doggy daycare – just ask for help when you need it.
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