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FAMILY AND CAREER: YOU CAN HAVE THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS

When do you say you are accomplished in life? Is it when you are at the peak of your career or have become that big business shot? When you have built your own house, bought your cars? Or is it when you begin a family?

Different strokes for different folks right? But are you aware that you can have it all? Yea, sure you can – the successful career, a beautiful family, a wonderful home…..the whole shebang. The key to this is finding the balance in life.

So, I was at a friend’s place when a woman and her daughter dropped by to come pick some stuffs. The person she came to see wasn’t in and so my friend had to attend to her. Unfortunately, she couldn’t pick the things she came for because my friend had no idea where they were. She was encouraged to come back some other time but in the course of the conversation, she did mention she was a very busy person and didn’t know when next she could stop by.

To buttress her point, her 8-years old daughter said “She’s hardly home. In fact, today is the most time we have spent together”. The woman smiled guiltily as she admitted it was something she was working on – to spend more time with her daughter.

This is the story for most of us, busy people. We are so involved with our careers that we often lose sight of what is most important to us – the seemingly insignificant but then most important things in life – family, friends, time to smile, time to laugh, time to be creative, time to be neighbourly, time to just be.

In a movie, I watched a while back, a very busy lawyer in her defence for not having a life, said, “My life is perfect. Not every woman needs kids, a spouse or a mini-van to complete her. My friends are my family; the firm is my spouse; I wake up every morning a happy, single, successful woman wondering what else in the world I could possibly need?”

She was convinced she had it all figured out. Her sole goal was to make partner at the Law Firm where she worked and that was all that mattered until she was shown otherwise.

The truth is often times, we get caught up in ourselves and forget what matters most. In this era of career advancement where everyone is struggling to make a name for themselves; where parents work so hard to make more money to provide a comfortable life for their families, the balance of life on the scale seems tipped over with the side of work on the high pedestal and that of family low to the ground.

People wake up as early as 4 a.m every weekday in a bid to beat the traffic so as to get to work on time and come back as late as 10 p.m feeling really beat and just head straight for bed. Your kids are already in bed by the time you get home. You don’t have the energy to even go through their school work or check in on them. You have just one thing on your mind – sleep.

This routine works all through the week, and on weekends, while some do more work on their computers, others still just sleep in a little while longer to make up for the tiredness they experienced all through the week. This cuts across all genres of profession – entrepreneurs, lawyers, doctors, bankers, businesses of yields etc.

Thankfully, there are domestic staffs employed to keep the home running at the back-end but the truth is they can only do so much. As important as money is in running the affairs of our day-to-day lives, there are more important things that are not to be taken for granted or considered less important and one of such is family.

At the end of the day, work is just work and would pass. The family is what remains. The family is the one true thing you have. Give it top priority. Give it your all. Find the balance between your work life and family life. Don’t get it wrong – Career is great. No one wants to be a liability but never choose your career to the detriment of your family.  

Your family is your real investment. Your kids are the reason you work so hard. Let them see you and learn from you. Do not be an absentee parent who thinks money covers all. Money can only do so much but can never make up for your love or presence in their lives.

PHOTO CREDIT: trustmatters.co.uk




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