Greetings ladies! My name is Irma Arreaga. I'm a Senior Manager of Learning and Organizational Development and Operations here in Guatemala. I currently manage a team of supervisors and facilitators dedicated to teaching and improving business communication, product and brand related training while supporting the company's employees to achieve their desired goals. As with all careers, it is a challenging but rewarding role. I value my job and appreciate the wonderful teams that I have the privilege of working with on a daily basis.
Like all career driven parents, even though my shift ends, my job doesn’t. I get to go home and work hard at being the best mom I can be. The time I get with my girls is solely for them, no email checking or phone calls. Yes, I know it is easier said than done. But, it’s about establishing limits and setting priorities. In order for me to have the right balance and be the best mother and wife my family deserves, I must be present and in the moment. I realize that I am blessed and am extremely fortunate to have a great support team which is my husband, mother and mother-in-law. They are my pillars when it comes to the care of my two girls.
I’d love to say that my journey on balancing a career, being a mom, having a full-time job, while recently enrolling in university has been picture perfect, but the truth is that there is no one-size-fits-all template. Finding that balance is chaotic and most of the time, I find myself grasping at straws. Through experience, I’ve learned to ask for help, multitask, do my best and come to terms with not being perfect.
As a mother, you are no stranger to the constant, “I want a snack. Want to play? Help me with homework" or the frequent yet last minute “I gotta go to the bathroom.” Finding the time for myself is no easy feat but it is a must.
I start my day by dedicating time to my spiritual Christian life with prayer, reading and reflection. This helps me have a clear mind and put my thoughts in order. I want my daughters to get to experience the best version of me and that means having personal goals and dedicating time to be at the top of my game while wearing a number of professional and personal hats.
And ladies, one of the most important lessons I’ve learned along the way is to admit and allow myself to schedule “me time.” That time doesn’t have to be elaborate, costly, or even long, you do what you can with what you got and you make it work for you. Sometimes, for me that means, meditating and doing my devotionals, catching a coffee with my girlfriends, getting my nails done or going on a drive or a romantic dinner with my husband. By doing these quick self-check-ins, I’ve been able to maintain my sanity and I am a firm believer in that there is nothing wrong with treating yourself. “You too are enough.”
So, I urge you to schedule time for you, and refuel every now and then. At the end of the day you can’t run on “E” forever.