A baby is born approximately every 10 seconds in the United States alone, and that mother then has to decide how the next few years of her working life will go.
This is a huge decision. Choose to give up your career for a few years, and you’re contributing to the fact that only a small percentage of people in upper management roles are women. Choose to go back to work, and you’re missing those important moments of those first few years, and the guilt can be crippling.
This is why it’s so important for working mothers to have household staff. While we would like to think that our husbands and partners would pick up the slack, research has shown that while attitudes are beginning to change, women still do around 80% of the housework, and devote more time to the kids, while also juggling a career in there somewhere as well. No wonder women are consistently feeling stressed, burnt out, and exhausted.
In the book Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Crating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder, Adrianna Huffington talks about how women need to look after themselves. One of the key points is getting enough sleep, and how many women are functioning in a state of constant sleep deprivation- a time when you’re guaranteed to make some of your worst decisions.
While it’s easy for Huffington to promote the advantages of meditation, naps, and exercise, the average working mother would find this laughable…unless she has help.
When it comes to hiring help, many women feel like they’ll be judged by their peers. However if more women admitted that they occasionally need a hand, there would be less stigma around having someone else to help pick up the slack.
Whether it’s a cleaner, housekeeper, nanny, cook, or driver, those hands may be the difference between a smoothly run household, and one where the constant stress and pressure gets everyone down- including the children.
Sometimes there’s simply no way to get everything done. And when you have a deadline at work, the kids need to be picked up from school, dinner needs to be made, and the house needs to be cleaned, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. These feelings of inadequacy and frustration aren’t what most women signed up for when they decided to be mothers, and it doesn’t have to be this way.
Women (and men) are increasingly realising that hiring some household staff can be the defining decision in their lives. Marriages are more likely to succeed, careers are more likely to be fulfilling, and both men and women are more likely to feel like they’re getting quality time with their children, and not fruitlessly trying to constantly juggle commitments.
If you’re looking for household staff, you’ll want to find people who are trustworthy, good with kids, and able to handle an emergency. It’s important to take your time when choosing staff, and choose people who you can picture being a part of the family for years to come.