Before baby, work was your schtick: You were good at your job, and it was your life, your role, your title, your priority.
But now that you have a family, your work life likely seems a million years—and miles—away.
Whether your job was just three busy maternity-leave months ago, or an entire preschool education in your past, going back to work might seem like a quantum leap. The good news is you can succeed in both worlds with the right know-how.
Recruit a Winning Team
Balancing work and family is a job in and of itself; you need an excellent support system to be a happy working parent. Susan B. Silver, the executive vice president of Millenium Properties, explains, “We have had the same nanny working with us for a very long time. She is a part of our family, and in many ways, she serves the role of a third parent figure for our kids. I never realized how wonderful this could be, but I adore her place in our home.”
Learn to Let Go
According to Highland Park’s Kristen Pate Ramirez, who works as a senior assistant general counsel for a real estate investment trust firm, she quickly learned that she couldn’t control every detail of her kids’ lives. “It was a lesson in letting go of the small things. I had to trust that my nanny would do the right thing with, and for, the kids. I realized that I couldn’t micromanage the semantics of day-to-day childrearing, like what they eat for snacks, wear on play dates, and watch on television.”
Be Your Own Boss (and Woman)
Deerfield resident Dana Weiss, founder of possessionista.com, only works two full days a week, yet she finds herself thinking about work when she’s parenting, and about parenting when she’s working. “It is very hard to give 100 percent to both fronts, without feeling like you might be letting one of the jobs down. But if you remember that it’s okay to be your own person and a great, attentive mom, it makes working easier, and mommying even better, and more fulfilling.”
Once you let go of the guilt—and you must, as there is nothing to be guilty about—your life will feel fuller. The best part of working, for Weiss, is “realizing that I can do it all—bake cookies with my kids, and be a hard worker.”