Apparently You Can Have it All... Whether you have to work, want to work or fall somewhere in-between, a recent study by the American Psychological Association revealed that full-time working mothers are happier and healthier than their non-working counterparts. Perhaps it's time to let go of the working mom's guilt and instead focus on the many benefits working full-time brings to a mother and her family. Here are seven ways full-time work benefits mothers:
1. It allows moms to live out their purpose. For many moms, their purpose doesn't stop with motherhood. Every woman is created for something special. For many women, this something special includes and extends beyond being a mother. Passions, talents and interests often guide a woman's educational career path and choices. If their purpose beyond motherhood is left unfulfilled, mothers may feel unsatisfied and even resentful.
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2. It gives moms financial control. As valued financial contributors, full-time working mothers aren't forced to rely solely on the income of their spouses. Mothers who earn a full-time income feel confident in their right to make financial choices for their family and don't feel guilty about spending someone else's money.
3. It helps moms maintain their identities. Being a mother doesn't exclude moms from being their own unique individual. Too often, once a woman becomes a mother, she completely loses her own personal and individual identity. Working full-time allows mothers to maintain and nurture their sense of self. As children grow up and discover that they are separate beings from their mothers, having an individual identity for mothers becomes even more vital. Mothers who don't have their own identity may have a hard time separating and letting their child grow.
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4. It allows moms to build and maintain social connections. Even though being a mother is filled with busy days and a constant companionship, many mothers experience feelings of loneliness and isolation. Being proactive about staying connected to friends can be a challenge at the end of a tiring, long day. Working full-time guarantees mothers the opportunity to build and maintain social connections with adults. For some moms, this is a sanity saver.
5. It gives moms a sense of independence. Working full-time can put a woman in the driver's seat of her life. While she may value and appreciate the contribution her spouse brings to her life, she's confident that she doesn't need his influence or support to exist. Mothers who work full-time have a sense of self-sufficiency and self-reliance.
6. It forces moms to require more of their spouses. One of the most overlooked benefits of being a full-time working mom is the opportunity to cultivate a more involved spouse and dad. For moms to work full-time, it often requires their husband to increase their level of daily involvement in caring for the children and maintaining the home. To have a dual-income family, both parents must contribute a fair share to helping care for the kids and the home.
7. It gives moms the opportunity to be a special role model for their children. Working moms set the bar for having a solid work ethic. They also teach their children the value in prioritizing, decision-making and sacrifice. Children with full-time working moms learn from an early age that there are rewards for hard work. These include family vacations, educational opportunities, having new school clothes, playing sports and engaging in other activities that they may have otherwise not.
Whether you're a working mom or stay-at-home mom, guilt is "mommyversal." The good news is that when the benefits of working full-time are closely examined, working moms may discover they have less than they thought to feel guilty about.
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Written By Michelle LaRowe For YourTango.com
Michelle LaRowe is the editor-in-chief of eNannySource.com. eNannySource.com has been helping families and nannies find each other since 1994. LaRowe is also the author of Nanny to the Rescue!, Working Mom's 411 and A Mom's Ultimate Book of Lists. She was the 2004 International Nanny Association Nanny of the Year.
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