How to start turning your career dreams into a plan

Becoming a mum can change your life in so many ways. Life coach Helen Watts explains why it’s important to take the time to re-evaluate what we want from our professional lives, and how to turn your dreams into a more concrete plan for your future.

Women make huge sacrifices in choosing to have children. And while the benefits may outweigh any disadvantages, many of us end up in an identity crisis of sorts at some point.

When the children go off to school we start wondering what’s left of the real ‘me’. We pour so much into being a mum that it can be difficult to remember what we used to enjoy or what gave us fulfilment. (Please note that I am certainly not knocking those whose satisfaction comes purely from raising their children!) We’ve lost sight of our skills and passions. What happened to all those dreams we used to have?

This stage of questioning that many women go through at some point is so valuable, precisely because it gives us the chance to shape the next stage of our lives. It’s easy to just go with the flow and saunter through life doing what we’ve always done, dreaming of future times when we have more freedom. I would suggest that we can take advantage of our identity crisis and use it to strengthen us. What if we were to sit with the questions a bit more, dream those dreams again, and see where they take us?

Where to start

You could start with a simple dream board. Set up a Pinterest board (if you don’t already have one) or find a cork or pinboard and start pinning things to it which have meaning to you or which spark something in you. Think about who you would like to be. What you would like to have or create. What you would like to do. Take pages out of magazines, postcards, newspaper items, flyers, whatever takes your fancy. Just don’t censor it! Look for the links between the different things that you pick, see if anything strikes you. Make it an on-going project.

Dreaming doesn’t have to take long. As working mums we’re all busy – but who can’t spend 15 minutes a day pondering on and moulding the future? Dreams that remain in your head remain dreams. Those that are written down and explored have a chance of becoming reality, no matter how unrealistic they sound to start off with.

Let me encourage you to take time for you. Invest in the rest of your life – don’t let it wait longer till you have less energy and less capacity for taking on new things. Give yourself time to work out who you have become and how you want that to affect what you do next. Don’t let life slip past, drifting from one thing to the next. Use your opportunity to work out more who you really are and what you have to offer to the world – now that’s something truly beautiful!

Pin Board by Pins and Ribbons at