Motherhood is perhaps the single biggest change that you will ever go through in your life. Your life switches from being focused on your own experience, to being focused on your children as they make their way through life. There’s no doubt that motherhood is a learning curve, but it’s one that is always 100 percent worth the effort you put in.
The learning experience of motherhood is a factor that is worth lingering on. None of us knew how to parent before we had kids; we might have had ideas, but we didn’t know the reality of raising a child and ensuring the best for them every day. When we have kids, we have to develop a huge new range of skills– and some of those skills may be useful in the workplace.
If you’re curious about the motherhood skills that may assist you with a change in career, then read on to learn about the areas you may want to consider…
Being a parent is all about teaching. It’s about teaching the most basic, fundamental things in life– the things we all know how to do as adults, but which children have to learn afresh. As adults, few of us can remember basic things like learning how to tell the time or tie our shoelaces, but we nevertheless had to learn, and that meant that our parents became teachers. With our own children, we do the same, teaching thousands of lessons through the course of our children’s childhood.
We also have to teach our children various academic pursuits; be that helping with homework, or guiding them on the right direction to finish a school project.
Given all of the above, it is perhaps inevitable that teaching is the first suggestion in this list. Many parents have already mastered the essential skills of a teacher, skills such as:
- Patience when dealing with young children;
- The ability to explain complex information in a simple, easy-to-understand manner;
- Knowledge of how to help children retain information;
- The knowledge of when a child needs a break and when they are ready to learn;
- An understanding of how children’s brains work, and how to focus children so they are in the best mood to learn.
Teaching is a valuable career that is well worth considering if you have found teaching your children, and guiding them to the best possible start in life, rewarding. It’s also an occupation that tends to be under-staffed, so if you want to move into a career sphere where you’re always going to be in demand, this is definitely an aspect you’re going to want to consider. There’s also plenty of opportunities for career progression; you never know, you may be setting yourself on a path to working as a principal one day.
If you want to venture into teaching, the entry requirements tend to vary state by state. You will be required to have a degree in most cases, but you should always check with your district to see what the exact requirements are.
When you’re a mom, you learn your way around a first aid kit. All kids will experience the odd sprain, lump, and bump; it’s a natural part of growing up, especially when they are playing outdoors.
Dealing with these issues helps to prepare you for life as a nurse in a variety of different ways:
- You learn to keep your cool when under stress, dealing with someone who is in pain. If you can do this when it’s your own child that’s in pain, you’ll be able to be cool as a cucumber when handling patients.
- You learn a few different ways of coping with injuries, as well as judging whether or not a situation is serious.
- You know how to reassure someone when they are concerned or worried, tapping into patience reserves you didn’t even know that you had.
If you have no formal nursing training, then this is a career switch that is going to take some work. You will first need to obtain your BSN, which is the standard licence for a nurse. This is a long process, but one that offers you a lot of opportunity in the future. From your BSN, you can progress to other areas of nursing if you so choose; you could teach other nurses in the future, taking advantage of great MSN education jobs that provide a high level of career satisfaction. Alternatively, you could look to progress up the ranks and move into more senior nursing positions as you develop your clinical career– the options are endless.
3) Child Counseling
Child counseling is an incredibly valuable field of medicine, helping children to find their way in life and assisting in coping with any issues they experience. Child counselors work with patients as young as five right through to working with teenagers, primarily as a school guidance counselor.
Whichever age bracket you choose, there’s no doubt that motherhood has prepared you well for the role. As a parent, you develop listening skills and a way of giving advice that is hugely valuable to your child’s development. You learn how to talk to your kids, how to make your point, and how to detect signs of emotional discomfort or stress.
However, it is worth noting that counseling children (or teenagers, if that is your preference) can be emotionally grueling. You may often be the only person a child can talk to, which places you in a position of a huge amount of responsibility. However, this also gives you a position in which you can make a real difference to a young life, extending your nurturing nature to children who may be in need.
If the idea appeals to you, then you will likely need some kind of formal psychological training. There are courses online you can sample to see if the idea works in practice as well as in theory, and then develop from there, focusing on the area in which you wish to specialize.
4) Project Management
When it comes to motherhood, there’s no doubt about it: you have to become a master of project management. The “projects” you take control of are endless. You are in charge of an entire other person; their schedule; their activities; their education; and their view of the world. This alone is enough project management practice in and of itself, but there’s more:
- As a mom, you will have gone through projects relating to pregnancy and giving birth– experiences that required you to pull together a number of different threads and make a number of decisions.
- If you’re a mom to multiple children, then this will have prepared you well for juggling different demands and needs– a skill that all project managers rely on. If you’re an expert at leading negotiations on which movie your kids should watch on movie night, then these skills will come in very useful should you decide to change your career.
- You will also have learned, as part of the standard worrying that all parents go through, how to see the potential for problems in various activities and experiences. This ability to see the “big picture” rather than being distracted by the small, everyday occurrences is vital for working in project management; and you’ve been perfecting it for years.
Project managers work in a variety of industries, and what’s more, many are freelance– a flexible schedule is always desirable for a parent. Project managers work on almost anything that requires good organizational skills, from overseeing the construction of a building through to planning a child’s birthday party. As motherhood will have made you an expert at planning, managing, and executing a wide variety of different areas, you should be able to turn those skills into something that can be a viable career.
Project management is generally studied and qualified in, though this depends on what you want to do. For specific roles, such as those in construction or finance, training and education would be a necessity. Alternatively, for party planning, experience tends to be more important than education and certifications. Read through a few job adverts for roles you might be interested in; this will give you an idea of the criteria that they expect from the people they hire. When you know what might be beneficial, you can go about gaining the required experience and/or qualifications, and thus enter into an entirely new phase of your life.
The career options above can ensure that your newly-discovered motherhood skills are put to a second use, offering you a chance to expand your career options and explore new areas. If you’re looking for a new direction in life, then it’s well worth considering if a switch to one of the options above might be beneficial for you. All of the above will take the skills you already have and turn them into a commodity that you can earn money from; the ultimate in mom multitasking!