Why It's Perfectly Okay To Pause Your Career For Your Future Family Now

by Niki McGloster
Treasures & Travels

For a majority of career-ambitious women, children are but a distant goal -- one most certainly set in our internal iCal, but lacking the alarming reminders.

As much as perfect Instagram filters outweigh ovulation cycles right now, 37 percent of forward-thinking Millennial women are designing their careers with planned pauses for future parenthood in mind, according to a new Harvard study.

Women’s moods are shifting, and having it all –– CEO status and a bustling, well-oiled home life while still finding time to toast with gal pals –– is simply an archaic, unwanted pressure.

That perfect, work-life balance played out in lives of pop stars who have round-the-clock nannies is a fairytale many Millennial women have long since stopped subscribing to.

Instead, young women fiend for flexibility, bracing themselves for maternity leave while ditching any notions of forfeiting their careers to flourish as stay-at-home mommies.

Sure, there’s a time for clocking in 60-hour-work weeks, but many young women are anticipating breaks to achieve out-of-office accomplishments and map out what matters most.

Remember: You’re not lowering your ambition or quitting your dreams like season 2 of "True Detective." You're devising a life-long scheme to have a little of everything you want when that time suits you.

Here’s why it’s okay to shape your professional goals around a future family:

You know exactly what you want already (and how to articulate it).

Pew Research shows women are twice as likely as men to believe reducing work hours to care for a child hurts their careers. Knowing early on your main goal is to ultimately accommodate your future matriarch status allows you to lean in Sheryl Sandberg-style and demand elasticity at work.

Yes, career curveballs are a part of life -- watch out for promotions or layoffs! -- but vocalizing your initial desires upfront in anticipation of child care leaves little room for dropped balls.

Working moms are the real MVPs anyway.

Little did you know, you’re already assisting your kids’ future success.

Baby fever may riddle your womb well before conception, but your unwillingness to sacrifice your career goals before and after motherhood will give your future children a one-up on little ones reared by stay-at-home moms.

Not only will your kids reap substantial benefits because of strategic outlining, but also those Mother’s Day cards will mean so much more.

It's a responsible thing to do.

As much as we hate growing up, it’s inevitable. And one of the most adult things you can do in life is be prepared.

While gender equality is much more prevalent in workplaces today, women still bear the brunt of work-family balancing acts.

Admit it: It’s daunting to pop up preggers without much thought. Carving out time for baby-making is the mature thing to do, and will rid your life of unnecessary pressures.

Stability and contentment doesn’t mean being stagnant.

Just because you’re strategically planning for stability before leaping into mommyhood doesn’t mean you’re clipping your professional wings altogether. You can still move forward in your occupational pursuits post-baby.

Chasing unattainable perfection is frivolous, and young women today are ditching an all-or-nothing approach for a little more "give and take."

And really, who can blame them?