Gone are the Mad Men days of women staying home to care for their babies while men bring home all the bacon. Today, more than 57% of women in the U.S. work outside of the home, increasingly holding positions of power, with mounting responsibilities. With that comes the growing struggle to find work life equilibrium. As if we don’t put enough pressure on ourselves, there’s an unrealistic definition of what it means to have it all out there, along with an expectation to do it all. Think: images of women running a company and caring for family, with spare time to shop, get a mani and enjoy nights out with spouses and gal pals.
What we need to remember is that we can’t let others define what success means to us, what it means to have it all, and what mix of work and life is best for us. There is no universal perfect recipe for achieving work life satisfaction. There are too many personal variables that go into defining it: Personality, expenses, number of incomes, amount of care needed, schedules, commutes and level of flexibility offered are just some.
The good news is we’re not limited to two choices: to work or not work. With advances in technology and expanding mindsets, it’s becoming easier for moms to maintain some sort of presence in the workforce—to choose an option that lies somewhere in between, one that works for you and your family. You hold the reigns to create your work life satisfaction. What to do?