Whether you are a new mom who has just returned to work or a mom working from home while you run behind your kids, motherhood changes who you are and how you work significantly. Here are a few ways in which motherhood has changed how I work and, in fact, has made me a better manager and a better leader.
Multitasking took on a whole new meaning
As a mom, the one thing I became adept at is multitasking. I learnt to finish a whole conference call while consoling my toddler who just threw a fit, while stopping my puppy from nibbling the last door mat, while answering the door bell and for the 100th time telling the sales guy that I do not need an encyclopedia for my 2 year old, all at the same time. Well that might sound like a simple day at home that hardly requires any effort but it isn’t really! This is just for a start. Motherhood taught me to multitask efficiently.
“Never put off for tomorrow what you can do today”
This quote never meant so much to me before motherhood. Earlier I was so used to putting away small tasks in the office until the next day. But once I became a mom, even when I’m always on the run, I find there’s still a lot of work that is pending. I seem to have targets that keep piling up and deadlines that keep dwindling. Procrastination became my worst enemy. If I put off one task, I saw a truckload of tasks accumulating. “Do it now” became my ultimate mantra. I started completing every little task that needed 5 minutes or less, then and there.
I found a renewed strength
A status review meeting, last minute client visit plans, all would make me nervous, before I became a mom. I never knew what nervousness actually meant till I waited patiently, holding back my tears, when my kid got his vaccination shots. There are several such situations that brought out the inner strength in me, like when I could go days without adequate food and sleep whenever my kid would fall ill and yet have the energy to get up and run around the house. This gave me a lot of strength to handle anyone and any situation at work with greater strength and confidence, which I never knew lay buried in me.
Delegating work became a priority
Before I became a mom, I shied away from asking for help. Even for those tasks I could delegate to my team, I paid utmost attention and made it a point to do them myself. But, after my kid came into my life, there are a lot of situations that gained priority. I realized that I had to start running more. I realized that I had to focus my strength on only what was really essential. I learnt to ask for help. The word I hated saying before pregnancy became normal after my baby arrived, for I knew, I had to gather my strength and I had to avoid using it on tasks that I could get help for. I no longer wanted to be the only one doing everything in the house nor in the office. I started realizing that I couldn’t do it all by myself. I finally gave up my ego, and started accepting whenever I needed it.
It taught me how to manage time
I had always been good at managing time. But motherhood made me better at that. I learnt to understand and set priorities. I learnt to plan my day ahead and to actually stick with my plan. If I began a day without a plan, I was left with a lot of pending, forgotten tasks dangling in front of my eyes. So, I started to spend a few minutes daily to actually write down the day’s schedule. This helped me plan ahead and execute my tasks in a more timely way.
It improved my communication skills
Motherhood gave me an opportunity to talk to a little human being who could probably not understand a word of what I was saying, and still make him do what I intended to convey. It made me understand the cues of someone who could neither speak nor give me the slightest clue about what he wanted. Understanding client requirements was no longer as difficult. Empathizing with my co-workers became easier. I started understanding people better and really started communicating with them more.
I got a lesson in perseverance
Whenever I get upset about things not going as I would like, I see my toddler who falls a hundred times as he learns to jump and still tries to jump again with the same enthusiasm. He gets up with more confidence each time and never gives up till he has mastered what he has started. What better motivation would I need to teach me what it is like to actually be determined about something? Motherhood taught me to take my failures positively and bounce back with more force.
It taught me to adapt
In the office, it was difficult accepting last minute changes. Adapting to any sudden turn of events was stressful and tough. But after I became a mom, no matter how well I plan my day, with a kid at home, last minute cancellations, last minute inclusions are always part of a normal day. This made me better at accepting changes. It taught me to adapt and go with the flow, whenever required. I no longer complained about or blamed myself for tasks that went out of my hands in spite of my well-planned efforts.
As a mother, I started living more in the present. I started enjoying everything I did. It gave me a whole new perspective on everything, which I had been seeing all my life but hardly noticing. Motherhood has made me a better person on the whole.
About The Author
Abirami is an engineer by profession and a writer/photographer by passion. When she decided to quit her career and welcome motherhood with both hands, she decided to bring back to the front seat, her passion for writing and photography. And now she is a freelance writer/blogger and a full-time mom and her son’s personal photographer. When she is not running behind her toddler and her puppy keeping the duo away from trouble, you will find her hiding in her reading nook with a crime fiction or with her notebook penning down anything and everything that flows through her mind! She also loves baking, traveling and crafting and recycling old stuff!