Working while raising a child can be a challenge. Working while raising a child as a single mother brings on an entirely new list of challenges. I happen to be a single mother and have learned a tremendous amount during the process.
Prior to being a single mother, I was married, and even then, it was a challenge to be a working mom and CEO simultaneously. The self-awareness required to be able to pivot, admit when you are inexperienced in a matter, and look to others for help is critical. The phrase “just fake it until you make it” doesn’t work in this scenario.
With that said, I’ve been observing trends, seeing other single mothers who try to balance their work with being a mother, and I want to share three tips that will help single mothers overcome the most common workplace challenges.
You Are Not Alone
47% of most professionals in the workplace are single mothers according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Don’t be afraid to befriend other single mothers. Be open in your communication, share tips, and know that it’s healthy to allow yourself to be vulnerable with them. You will learn new things while making new friendships, and once you open up you’ll quickly learn that you are not the only one facing similar challenges.
Do Not Forget About Self-Love
Taking time off to love yourself is very important. If you do not take proper care of yourself, you will not be able to give the best version of yourself to your children or to your colleagues. Blocking off time to talk a walk, listen to music, soak in a bath, light your favorite candle, or drink your favorite tea is a great way to give yourself time to recharge.
Do Not Feel Guilty
Often as single mothers, we feel guilty because we can not attend every single school function. Sometimes we feel guilty and question whether we are working too much and not spending enough time with our children. Rather than always feeling guilty, make it a point to give yourself some credit. Every day when we rise, we start our day by taking care of our children, getting them ready for school, and getting them out the door for the school bus or taking them to school ourselves. More likely than not, your day begins with you giving, and that’s something you should be proud of.
We, as single mothers, do have the ability to control and navigate these workplace challenges. There is no reason to feel shy or any less empowered to speak up. Remember, you are not alone and should feel proud of being the extraordinary single, working mother that you are.
Written by Christina DiArcangelo.