Today as my son goes back to school and my daughter goes to her childminder it feels like it’s a new season in my business and work.
This summer I took more time off work than I had planned.
The good news is that running my own business gives me that flexibility and control.
The bad news is that I’m not sure it worked for me…… or my children.
By not creating the right balance and boundaries with my work I felt like I wasn’t always as present with them as I wanted to be. And I didn’t feel whole. The part of me that loves to mother had a great time. But the saying ‘too much of a good thing’ comes to mind. I found that something that I love and enjoy becomes difficult if I don’t give time and space to the other parts of me….. in this case the part of me that loves my work. The professional me.
I’ve done enough work on myself to not feel guilty for this. This summer felt like an experiment (isn’t the whole journey of motherhood just an experiment??) testing out whether less work felt right for me and my family. The results I got from this experiment will definitely change how I approach my work going forward.
But I recognise it’s all an experiment – next summer my children will be a year older, my work will have evolved and what feels right now might not be right in 11 months. But hopefully I’ll carry the wisdom from this summer with me. Again…..that’s the whole motherhing journey right there isn’t it? We’re winging it and collecting wisdom along the way.
What this summer did was take me into the fertile void – that place of not doing and not knowing with my work. A place that feels uncomfortable for me and I don’t think I’m alone. Our culture tends to celebrate planning, productivity, certainty and constantly moving forward. So to take a step back, slow down and allow ourselves to drift can be damn hard. Well it is for me anyway!
But what tends to happen in the fertile void is
- new ideas emerge
- thinking gets integrated
- creativity is sparked
- the space to re-evaluate is created
Like winter when nothing seems to be happening but under the surface all the magic is happening in the soil. And springtime always comes after winter. New energy and ideas emerge.
So it feels really exciting to be entering this new season that going back to school creates. Also the fact that I’m increasing the number of days I’m working feels liberating. And I can’t wait to share with you the new ideas that have emerged during this unintended downtime.
How about you? How was your summer? What wisdom have you gained from this time? I’d love to hear about it – share your thoughts below or come over and share in the Wisdom For Working Mums Village facebook group.
We’re genuine, like-minded women, just like you!
We’re a community, reinventing how we combine work and motherhood without sacrificing our sanity and wellbeing.