Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Modern Woman Debates

This topic is by no means new but I feel the urge to explore it. It really troubles me. 

In the past couple years, there has been a lot of buzz about Sheryl Sandberg's book Lean In and the movement of Lean In, the concept of the "retro wife." Countless people and publications dove into this topic like: The Feminist Housewife explored by New York Magazine and a fascinating article in The Atlantic "Why Women Still Can't Have It All". So maybe this is a silly topic for me to breach.... but here it goes! 

Why can't a modern woman just be who she wants to be? Why is all there this pressure to "lean in" or to be such an amazing and full force stay-at-home mom? These extremes really are seriously stressful. 

I am corporate working woman. I want to be challenged by work and continue to succeed but I have no desire to be in the C-suite of my Fortune 500 organization. The lifestyle at that level is so dramatically different that it wouldn't support any quality time for my family life. I am okay with my concept of career success and career drive that isn't to the highest level. I know Sheryl Sandberg has great intentions about women recognizing they are limiting themselves and others but sometimes it is okay to "lean back" a bit. To enjoy life.To enjoy family. I don't think it takes away from my value at the office. 

The other extreme of this is the "retro wife" who puts full energy into the perfect home and family is also very unrealistic. Even for someone home full-time. It is virtually impossible to have happy kids, an organic dinner, clean home, clean laundry and individually decorated gluten-free cookies all the time. I see some of my stay at home mom friends with almost all of these things working in their households and it amazes me. But these amazing moms and homemakers seem to feel this pressure that all they are doing isn't enough. What??!! Being at home with little people or even teenagers is extremely challenging. There are just so many things to do. If these amazing moms who do so much at home and also are even a little involved at the kids' schools feel like they aren't doing enough... something is off. 

My hope is through all this exploration of the modern woman, the modern mom, is that we all find a way to be okay with our choices. To let some of the guilt go. To rock on with our daily grind in a way that makes us feel good. It is okay to not have everything. That is the beauty in life, we get to make decisions based on our opinions. 

Cheers to happy moms! 

PS -- Tomorrow I am dialing into a call where Sheryl Sandberg will be speaking hosted by PwC. I am very curious if her message has changed since her book was released last year. If she shares anything new or particularly insightful, I will be sure to pass it along. 


  1. Lisa this is my favorite post from your blog. I have shared it with multiple people, and posted a link to it as well. I keep coming back to it to read it. A big THANK YOU for writing this.

    1. Thanks so much for your support! It means a lot to me. You are an amazing mom who manages it all too.