Achieving Work/Life Balance Is Possible—and Worth It
I would be lying if I said it was easy juggling my career, motherhood, marriage to a surgical resident, and my sanity. There have been times I’ve questioned whether my quest to attain work/life balance was worth it, or even possible. However, I love my career as an employment attorney. It’s this passion that fuels my desire to integrate my work with the rest of my life. Through this journey, I have learned that work/life balance is not only possible, it is essential.
For me, the first element of achieving work/life equilibrium was ranking my career and personal goals in order of importance. Balancing career and personal life means making certain sacrifices, and even being judged for them (like being told by my six-year-old that I was the “only mom” not at the school fair and being asked colleagues if I “plan to return to work” after having my second child). However, by prioritizing my personal and professional objectives, I know when sacrifices are necessary in order to achieve my ultimate goals.
The second element has been surrounding myself with a supportive community—a spouse who believes in me and my career, family members who can help watch my children, and friends struggling with the same issues who offer words of encouragement. At Terex, I’ve found mentors whose personal and professional success I greatly admire. I’m fortunate to work at an organization that champions diversity and welcomes different ways of thinking, including supporting creative ways of accomplishing work, while making time for personal priorities.
Finally, my achievement of work/life balance offers an example to others who seek both a successful professional and personal life. Remaining in the workforce allows me to overcome the stereotype that employees with responsibilities away from work are not as dedicated or valuable as those who do not. And, I can serve as a mentor to others and show them that having a career and a satisfying personal life is possible.
My precarious work/life balancing act never seems quite perfect, and I often feel I need to work twice as hard to prove I’m committed to both work and family. I truly believe the fight for work/life balance is worth it—so that I can mentor others, set an example for my daughters; and prove to the naysayers that it is possible to balance your career and your life.