Three years ago, I walked back into my office to make my return from maternity leave. Thankfully, it was the first day my company moved into their new headquarters, so everyone was a bit discombobulated. It made it slightly easier to deal with the awkward, crazy way I was feeling inside. Everything was the same, but I was a different person.
Since then, I have learned to work smarter and not harder to help me spend my time on what truly matters. As a result, I’m a happier mom, more productive employee and more compassionate boss. Over the years, I’ve immersed myself in content to help me continue to optimize my family’s routines to leave more time with my son. Here are three books that have helped me do this.
“I Know How She Does It: How Successful Women Make the Most of Their Time”
Time management expert Laura Vanderkam set out to add hard data to the debate of women “having it all.” She collected hour-by-hour time logs from 1,001 days in the lives of women who make at least $100,000 a year. And she found some surprising patterns in how these women spend the 168 hours that every one of us has each week. I read this book immediately before returning to work from maternity leave and it gave me great insight into the routines of successful of working women.
Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids
In “Simplicity Parenting,” Kim John Payne and Lisa Ross focus on the overall routines of family within the home, but I found great insight that applied to how I balance work and life. It inspired me to leave more white space in my weekends which helped me spend more quality time with my family instead of rushing around trying to do it all in a 48-hour period.
Grace, Not Perfection: Embracing Simplicity, Celebrating Joy
Let’s face it, working women have more on their plates than ever before. Tactical advice can be great, and I’ve already provided you with a book that will give you lots of it. Sometimes, a perspective change is needed and “Grace, Not Perfection” was the book that did this for me. It helped me let go of the need to be the mom that handmade my son’s daycare valentines and instead I became the mom that embraced Amazon Prime and a free online printable.
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