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Embrace the Pause: Why Taking Your Time Before Returning to Work is Worth It

In today’s fast-paced world, the pressure to resume your career quickly after becoming a parent can be overwhelming, especially at this time of year. Society often encourages us to bounce back as if nothing has changed. However, there’s immense value in taking a step back, re-assessing your priorities, values, and what you truly want to do.

Here’s why embracing the pause before returning to work can be one of the best decisions you make:

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1. Rediscover Your Priorities: Parenthood can be transformative. It provides you with an opportunity to reevaluate your priorities, which will have almost certainly changed. Taking time before returning to work allows you to ask yourself what truly matters to you and your family. It’s a chance to realign your professional goals with your personal values.

2. Chance to Adjust: Those precious early years with your child are irreplaceable, and you will have likely spent every waking minute with them. So it can come as a little shock to find you haven’t got a little shadow following you around everywhere repeating your name over and over again. Now they’ve started school, give yourself a few days to adjust to the extra space you have, to regain some energy and to have a coffee in peace.

3. Personal Growth: Parenthood often brings about personal growth and self-discovery. The pause allows you to explore new interests, develop hobbies, and even pursue further education or training that aligns with your evolving aspirations. These experiences can enrich your life and contribute to your future career success.

4. An Opportunity to Dream: When you’re deeply immersed in your career, it’s easy to lose sight of your dreams and passions. Taking a step back can reignite your creativity and inspire you to think about what you truly want to achieve in life. It’s an opportunity to dream big and set new, meaningful goals.

5. Reduced Stress: The transition back to work can be stressful, especially if it’s rushed. Taking your time allows you to plan and prepare for the return, making the process smoother and less anxiety-inducing. It can also provide you with peace of mind knowing that your child is well-adjusted to their routine.

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6. Flexibility and Work-Life Balance: As you reassess your career, you may find ways to achieve a better work-life balance. This might involve negotiating a flexible work schedule, pursuing remote work options, or even exploring entrepreneurship to have more control over your time.

7. Networking and Skill Enhancement: During your break, you can maintain and expand your professional network. Attend industry events, webinars, or networking groups related to your field. You can also take online courses or attend workshops to stay updated with industry trends and sharpen your skills.

8. Be an Example: By taking your time and following your own path, you set a powerful example for your children. You teach them the importance of pursuing their passions and maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to parenthood and returning to work. What works for one family may not work for another. Embrace the pause and take the time you need to reevaluate your life, goals, and desires. When you do return to work, you’ll do so with a clear sense of purpose and a renewed enthusiasm for your career.

If you're unsure of where to start, or how to go about re-assessing your priorities and goals, then reach out to one of our Return to Work coaches. We are here to help you when you're ready.

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