Randomly, this post is related to Bruno Mars. I saw him in concert the other night and I have to say, he was great. Even better, he was authentic and frankly, that was refreshing. You can say he reminds you of Michael Jackson or anyone else, but you get the feeling he was inspired by them, not that he was trying to be them.
So, that’s the tip today for us single mom’s trying to lean in. Do it your way! You may have been inspired by managers or leaders you’ve worked with, but when you find your right rhythm that’s perfect for you, that’s when you’ll be able to accomplish more and be happier doing it.
What does this mean at work? I’ve mentored a few women in my career and eventually, I usually hear the comment, “but I’m not you.” And that is true. What I do works for me because it’s authentic and true to who I am. But I find so many women who are afraid to be themselves at work. They believe their real personality isn’t professional enough, doesn’t seem powerful enough, isn’t manly enough. I once had a woman who worked for me who was very quiet in meetings. She rarely shared her opinion and people tagged her as an introvert. However, when I had the chance to go to lunch with her, I found a very outgoing, opinionated, funny person. I of course brought this contrast up to her and she told me she didn’t want to seem overbearing or threatening to people. And I understand that, but her choice to hide the real her didn’t result in anything better. When I left that job for a new opportunity, my advice I left her with was to find a way to blend her true personality into her work personality. I hope she has because people like people who are authentic and consistent.
At home, this translates into ‘not keeping up with the Joneses’! Comparing yourself to another mom, single or married is a futile exercise. What we all know is that no one’s life is perfect. But the good news is your kids were made perfectly for you. They were built to stand up to your crazy schedule, traveling, late night projects, and multi-tasking. You may eat out a few more times than you should and they may miss their bedtime more often than you like, but if you accept your way of life, they will too. If you show them that your way is okay too, even if it’s different from their friends, you will teach them one of the most valuable lessons they can learn…to love themselves and be grateful for the life they’ve been given.
Now that’s how single mom’s lean in!