Working women :
How to come to terms with having to manage two careers?
Women have been making a name for themselves in every sphere of life    from the Diplomatic Corps to the armed forces and from the software industry to prestigious boardrooms.
Ever so often, we hear of women who have excelled at their chosen careers, often unorthodox ones.
Almost unanimously, they tell of the amazing support they got from husbands and families. But rarely does one hear of the thousands and thousands of ordinary women, for whom the choice of working at an outside job has been made for them by economic or some other consideration.
Nor does one hear of the increasing tribe of women who have had their careers interrupted by the arrival of a child, but have managed to pick up the threads again, and make a go of things as best as they can, with little or no support from any quarters.
It is these women who are torn by divided priorities, who are worn to a shadow of their former selves in trying to give their best to both home and office, who find themselves burdened by guilt because they have opted for outside jobs, who are emotionally, physically and mentally drained at the end of the day, but still paste a smile on their faces and go on bravely.The point is that the smile is unnecessary    unless it is sincere.
Instead of adding to the pressure by pretending that everything`s just great, it would help to talk to someone in a similar situation. A problem shared is a problem halved, so to speak.
Women going through similar situations can give each other courage and encouragement and also learn lessons from the others experience. Also, tradition has imposed upon women the role of the main caregiver, and the modern woman finds it difficult to balance this perception with the concept of a career.
Consequently, most working women try to assuage their subconscious guilt feelings by trying to give more than their best to their families, going out of the way to cater to all demands, physical or emotional.
On the other hand, she also ends up being apologetic at the workplace because of having to balance the demands of her career against those of her home. If she is to succeed in managing her two roles, she will have to work at getting rid of guilts of both types, psychologists say.
She will have to put across convincingly to all concerned that her situation is different from those with less commitments at home or outside, and hence her responses will be different, but she is no less committed than any other person, man or woman, to both responsibilities.
To make life easier for her to cope with, working mothers need to be confident about the caregivers of her family in her absence. It pays to put some effort into getting the right set-up.
Further, she will have to be ruthless about setting apart some time for herself, to relax, chat with a friend, or just to do her nails. Flexibility and independence of spirit are also worthwhile attributes to cultivate. With the right attitude, the woman on the street can indeed make a success of two careers    her home and her office.
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