RESET, not REGRET
This month, we are specifically focused on our working moms…which is really every mom.
For those with kids going back to school, August feels like a second start to the year. And this is not just any year. We have been through some tough times with the unknowns of the spikes and reprieves from Covid to the changing working environments and fluctuating economy. What the data is saying about that is: Moms are feeling it the most.
We are seeing this too in our business. Moms, sitting at major career junctures, making big family changes, and at a minimum, contemplating big moves and life decisions. One thing we can agree the pandemic gave to us is that we saw what was possible…a different way to live and work, and this is quite frankly the reason women are finding themselves in this crossroads.
While this crossroads can create so much reflection and opportunity to reconnect with values, for many moms, it’s causing them to shrink back – either scaling down or leaving the workforce. There can be good reasons for both of these to take place, but we want to hone in more on the powerlessness that moms are feeling (and normalizing!) in the current workplace.
This intersection is an opportunity. Its one to wrestle with and to give thoughtful consideration to. It’s a chance to answer the question: Am I shrinking back, or am I stepping up?
These are two very opposite questions and they look very opposite when lived out. Shrinking back can not only be making ourselves small, it can even be staying the same as we were and not trying anything new. When we step up (and we aren’t talking about title or status), we do try new things, we get back in the driver seat, we call more of our shots. Can you guess which one people tend to choose more often? Can you also guess, as moms, which one has the most impact on our families?
The #1 reason why any of us choose to shrink back is because we think we have no control. We let the calendar, other people, what we think other people think, even guilt control us. When we are fixed to this mindset, we become victims and we show up to our life that way. This can be hard to admit to and sometimes easier to see in others than ourselves, but one clear indication that a shift needs to happen here is that “time” and “people” are to blame for what is not going right for you. That can sting, but the blame game is really just giving up power and ownership in our lives.
To create more control, we have to recognize our finger pointing and stop playing victim to the circumstances in our lives. Moms, you cannot forget who you are and that you have a voice, a purpose, and a mind of your own. Time can no longer be a solution, and people can no longer be an obstacle. Removing these scapegoats will help you step into power, hold yourself accountable, and create a change you wanted to see.
Another reason we aren’t stepping into power is because we are overcommitted, overextended, and over-serving in every way. The “do it all” and “have it all” mentalities breed resentment, burnout, and inauthentic lives.
The reset here? Stop pretending you can do it all. Sounds simple enough, but as long as we are even secretly trying to manage the image of doing it all and having it all, we are perpetuating the cycle of staying overcommitted and overextended. Instead of realizing we are doing this to ourselves, we begin the blame game (again). We have to see that it truly stops with us. We love the quote from Angela Ahrendts, former CEO of Burberry and former executive at Apple: “One of the most important parts of my job is showing you can’t do it all.”
AND ONE LAST THING…
There is a mom culture that is hard to ignore. Perusing coffee mugs on the shelves of the store will give you an idea of what this culture says to us: “There’s no time”, “Just need wine”, “The kids are crazy”, “I can’t deal”.
These are not empowering messages. These catchy phrases and mom culture languaging are fueling a narrative that is feeding the cycle not just for one mom but for all moms.
Let’s make sure we are speaking truth here. We CAN deal – we are in charge.