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Posts Tagged ‘career’

New Year always brings about resolutions.  But before we resolve to do the things that we haven’t been doing, why not take stock of the present and decide to leave behind things and practices not worth continuing?

1) The job you hate.

If you have been dreading your waking hour for the most part of this year because you have to go to work, then its time to fold.  Make an exit plan.  Starting now.  You determine whether you want to be an entrepreneur or be an employee in a company you love to work for.  Either way, write down a step by step action plan to make sure that six months from now you will be doing something that you love instead of something that brings in a monthly paycheck only.

This is the year you decide that you will have both.  Because you can.

2) The relationship that stifles.

Are you with somebody who limits your growth instead of enhancing it?  If you feel like you have exhausted all communication channels and stated clearly what you both need and can offer to each other and still nothing works, its time to move on.

Life is too short to spend it with people who do not share your dreams.

3) The friend who smothers.

There are people who suck your energy after spending one hour with them.  They are the ones who gripe about what an ugly day it is, or how disgusting the food is in a restaurant and how the world is never enough.  If you hang out with such people and walk away every single time as if the life has been drained out of you and you feel like screaming your head off, its time to stay away from them. For good.  For your own sake.

4) The credit card charges.

Are you cash strapped as you enter the New Year?  Would you have been more liquid had you decided to skip the latest Blackberry on the market; or bought a Renault instead of the BMW which you are struggling now to maintain?

Realize that the things you own do not define you as a person.  And the next time you want to buy an expensive item, save for it.  An empty bank account is un-cool.

Keeping up with the Joneses has never been good for everyone’s pockets, and you’re still left with the credit card debts to pay.

5) The stuff which clutters.

Let go of things which consume space but do not add value:  the shoes you haven’t worn in a year or the clothes (with price tags still attached) in your closet for the last 3 months.  Somebody else will benefit from those.  And you will brighten someone’s day.

What can you add to this list as 2009 draws to a close?  Would love to read your thoughts below.

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It’s 2:00 in the morning and I’m sitting up in bed with my 7-month old in my arms.

She’s running a fever of 39.9 degrees Celsius.  She’s teething; her first incisor just broke through.  She has been crying pitifully for the most part of the night.  She has a cold and her nose is stuffed. Saline spray was administered through her nose earlier; the relief was temporary.   When laid down she shifts her head restlessly from side to side.  She can hardly breathe and she wails in a heartbreaking sound.

I pick her up and cradle her in my arms.  She relaxes and slowly drifts off to dreamland.    I hear her laboured breathing through her stuffed nose.  I hold her for half an hour more, wanting her to get the rest she deserves after all those hours of discomfort.  Soon my arms and eyes start to give.  I lay her down gently in the crib.  This time she stays asleep.

I hit the bed and before I know it, morning breaks through.  I get myself ready to call my office that I won’t be coming in today.  I always feel uneasy to say I can’t be at work.  I feel even more uncomfortable at the thought of going to work knowing that my baby is not well.  I get a sinking feeling at the pit of my stomach.

When it comes to childcare and household chores, the default person in-charge is almost always the woman.  It would have been so much easier for us then to opt out from the workforce and stay at home once we start having babies.  It is easy to lose ourselves in the whole family and kids equation.  But working outside the home, aside from being professionally rewarding, provides a welcome break from the diaper duties, the baby talk; and everything that has to do with running a household 24/7.

It is a woman’s way of holding on to a piece of her own self.  It provides a venue for adult interaction about things that matter in the workplace.  It gives her validation that she’s contributing something significant to society; not as a mother, not as a wife, but as herself.

Combining professional work with raising kids are two equally demanding tasks.  By choosing to work outside of the home, we are confronted with the dilemma: are we putting too much on our plate?  Would it make our lives simpler if we only had two choices:  to be a stay-at-home mom or a working mom?  Has the feminist movement done us any good by giving us more choices?  Or has it raised our stress levels just a notch higher?

There is no perfect solution. And I am thankful for the many choices I have in front of me.  I would not want my love for my children nor my parenting skills to be questioned or challenged just because I want to develop myself professionally.  We deal with the issues as they come and we hope that the workplace will be more enlightened about the struggles confronting women everyday.

At the intersection of every woman’s career and home life, we will continually face situations which will force us to make a decision.  Either way, that decision will make us uneasy or guilty.  Either way, something or someone will have to take a backseat for a while.

And that is not going to be my daughter.

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