I have recently re-read Karren Brady’s book as her story and lessons learned helped me through many challenges over the years. By chance I was flicking through TV on a rare day off and I caught an interview of hers, and one thing that stood out to me was the struggle of being both a parent and business woman.
I certainly have felt tremendous guilt over the years as I found myself a single parent to 2 children at 20, returning to education, getting my degree, climbing the corporate ladder and then starting my businesses. I’ve felt guilt the entire journey as I strived to create a wonderful life for my children.
Society places such pressure on us, but no more than the pressures we place on ourselves to be the best business owner, the best parent, the best wife, the best friend and still somehow find time in our crazy schedules to be healthy, happy and give back to the world.
- I’m not working enough on my business
- I want to be there for my children more
- I’m not able to be there for my friends
- I’ve not got enough time for my husband
- I don’t take good enough care of myself
- I don’t have time to give more to the world
I've lost track of the number of times I've heard people say one, many or all of the above, including myself.
I do think this is a struggle that we all deal with, and none more so than as business owners too. It is also clear that the more we talk honestly about it and share our struggles, the more aware we become that we’re not alone in the difficulties.
I’ve felt continual struggle and continual guilt at each stage of my own journey, but as I got older a feeling of acceptance that I’m never going to be amazing at everything – all I can really do is my best. I am not superwoman and I don’t set a good example by pretending to be that. You set your children up for future failure.
I’ve learned that sharing that struggle with my children instils an incredible work ethic in them and they feel happy knowing that it’s ok to fail, it’s ok to fall and it’s ok to struggle in life.
I also share that struggle with my community of business owners, who take great comfort in knowing they are not alone in their own challenges.
So let go of the guilt, do your best and be honest about your challenges – especially with yourself.
Does this resonate with you? Drop a comment below…