From a successful career, a loving family and even time to pursue their personal interests, some mothers just seem to have it all. While there’s never just one approach to juggling family and career efficiently, what the approaches all have in common is that a choice and equal opportunities are presented to working mothers.
While the journey to motherhood differs for each woman, here are four inspiring working mums and their secret to balance family and career:
Diana Ser – TV Presenter
Singapore’s own Diana Ser has gone on the record to talk about her regrets leaving her job as a TV presenter after having her first child over ten years ago. Despite her passion for her job, she ultimately chose family over career. A key contributing factor to her departure was that flexible work hours were not an option readily available at the time. Even though Diana is now back to hosting, her story has raised awareness for how working mothers like her may struggle with the fear of being severely underpaid after returning from maternity leave. Since then, new policies, such as flexitime, have started to gain ground in helping working mothers in Singapore achieve greater work-life balance in a fairer and more sustainable manner.
Jacinda Ardern – Prime Minister of New Zealand
Jacinda became the world’s youngest female leader after she was elected as New Zealand’s prime minister in September 2017. She then became e the first elected leader to go on maternity leave during her stint in office. Dispelling the public impression that she’s got it all covered as a soon-to-be mother as well as the PM, the Kiwi credited her partner Clarke Gayford, who will be looking after their child full-time, as the key to juggling work and caring for her baby. If there is anything we can learn from Jacinda, it’s that mothers should never be afraid of seeking help.
Susan Wojcicki – CEO of YouTube
Susan began her tech career at Google in 1999 before rising up the ranks and ultimately assuming her role as CEO of YouTube – which is owned by Google – in 2014. As a firm believer in work-life balance, the working mum has since been on five maternity leaves during the course of her career. Inadequate maternity leave forces mothers to head back to work before they are mentally prepared to do so, which often have adverse effects on mothers as well as their child’s health. As a CEO, Samantha is an outspoken advocate for paid maternity leave, crediting it as a major factor to boosting productivity and retaining talented mothers in the workplace.
Adele – Singer/Songwriter/Producer
Beyond the glitz and glamour of the music industry, Adele has opened up on her struggle with postpartum depression and how she overcame it by giving herself short “breaks” from motherhood. The condition is aggravated when she is away for work at tours, causing her to feel guilty for not being able to be by her child’s side. There is no doubting a mother’s love for their child, but sometimes juggling career and family time is exhausting, and working mothers also need to make time for themselves, without feeling guilty for doing so. In fact, taking short breaks for alone time allowed Adele to recharge, enabling her to perform even better in both the capacities of a mother as well as an artist.