Work-life balance from a teen mother’s perpective in FT – too good to pass!

One of my all-time favourite topics, and one that will never have a right answer. How to combine work and motherhood successfully? The topic was visited by one of my favourite columnists, Lucy Kellaway, on Financial Times:

Jobs, motherhood and varieties of wrong

[You need to register with FT to read the full article]

One of the points that hit home: the absence of any better way of measuring how we are doing, we compulsively engage in something soul-destroying: we compare. We compare ourselves to Ms Slaughter and to Ms Mayer, and when we’ve tired of comparing ourselves to outliers we go on internet chat rooms and compare ourselves to people who can’t even use capital letters. But mostly we do what the women at the party were doing and pointlessly compare ourselves to people we know.

“Comparing” must be an original sin to (wo)man. I at least can’t get enough of it. Even when times are brilliant and I am blooming, I feel the need to compare – and to feel bad about feeling so good! However, mostly it is the opposite, and results in the worst: self-deprecation. What is the use in that? I think we look for the best examples to allow us to wallow in self-pity from time to time. If we didn’t compare, how could we feel bad for ourselves? I guess that is human nature too, to do such a silly thing. It is probably acceptable as part of who we are as long as at the end of it we pick ourselves up from the couch and get on with it.

Mother or no mother!

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