If you have ever been on maternity leave in a corporation, either they do it right or they screw it up royally. I’ve never seen a company land somewhere in between. This is why maternity leave can leave you feeling unappreciated.
The corporate world, as you well know, has very high demands. That environment expects work done at a faster pace than any human can achieve. Then, when you become pregnant, that pace doesn’t change, but your ability to deliver to that pace does take a hit. Not by design, not by choice, but simply because there is no other option. You have another human growing inside of you. Nonetheless, you work your butt off, you sacrifice, you miss dinners, you work weekends, all because you feel guilty for being pregnant.
Then once you are on maternity leave, you don’t feel like you can take your time away. You feel torn between your child and your job, and you feel like if you don’t hurry up and come back, you won’t have a job to return to. Does anyone know what I am talking about?
Now hopefully you don’t work for a company or a boss like that. But many of you have experienced that or know someone who has. And let’s just call it what it is, it’s crap.
This is why many women want to start their own businesses and I don’t blame you. How can having a child make you feel guilty, not worthy, and undervalued in the place you have dedicated countless hours? How can a place make you feel like you haven’t given enough when you have sacrificed more than you could ever think possible?
If you are in this boat, know that you are enough, you are good enough. Establish the boundaries as we talked about in the past, set clear guardrails, and if the business can’t support you doing that, then create your own business and be the leader that you needed when you were preparing for and were on maternity leave. Be the difference-maker.