When I was very young and beginning my career, I wrongly believed that my real life and my work life were unrelated. Kicking *ss at work and a messy personal life were separate continents in my world.
I look back and laugh. Of course they were connected – by me! The liar I was at work and the liar I was at home may not have had the same immediate impact or pay-off’s, but they were certainly related.
‘Twas not until I separated from my husband and didn’t get a job I wanted — the first time ever and since that I’ve applied for a job and not received an offer — that on the plane home, I suddenly realized the connection.
Work Me and Home Me are the same me despite playing to different strengths and weaknesses at any given time. This is a good thing. Through the years I was learning to live with my husband, my work relationships benefited from the same skills. Drop It, Ease In, and Let It Go are all useful tricks in either place.
And my general happiness at being a manager — after years of leading by influence — has a lot to do with my general comfort with myself and what I stand for. “I’ll make that call; send them to me if you have any problems,” is applicable at work or home, right?
I own my decisions and defend my people.
I had a sneaking suspicion the next big perspective shift — epiphany opportunity, we’ll call it — would happen after having kids. Without being able to put my finger on it, given my lack of actual parenting experience, I have a strong feeling the lessons I’ll be learning will be useful at work, too.
So while I have qualms and concerns (that’s part II), I’m also looking forward to the growth. And lucky enough (ha – I chose this place for this reason, among others) to work for a corporation where everywhere I look, I see female executives with young children as role models. Okay, not everywhere, but right over there. Some of our teams are led by strong women with young children, too. Many. Enough that when I get around to telling people I’m knocked up*, I have a strong network of female friends to tap for advice and suggestions on this whole maternity leave extravaganza**.
*Nope, still haven’t told. Have now decided I will do so after my yearly review. Chicken? Totally. More on that on my next post.
**Awesome-pants: my company offers a salary continuation program, so some portion of my leave will be fully paid (6 – 8 weeks), additional time at the discretion of my business, then vacay and personal time kick in.
Confusing: they deduct your sick leave while paying you through the SCP, so essentially your sick leave just gets wiped away. Since sick leave gets put back one year after the day you use it, I kinda want to take a bunch of it now so I’ll get it back sooner. These are the things my friends will advise me on.
Not-so-awesome: we can’t save up vacation. Any amount of your yearly amount (mine’s three weeks) gets wiped if not used every calendar year. So, I haven’t been able to save up the vacay over the years I haven’t used it, rather, have lost it or blown it on pajama days.