5 Benefits of Taking a Career Break in Early Motherhood

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Taking a career break can always be a great idea, even if it seems counterintuitive. In a world of hustle culture, let’s slow down to look at the five key benefits of taking a career break in early motherhood.

Should you take a career break in early motherhood?

Picture this: it’s 7 a.m., and you’re rushing to get ready for work while simultaneously transforming into a human milk machine for your little one. Sound familiar? Well, it’s time to give your sanity a much-needed makeover.

Few mothers take the plunge to extend their career break beyond their paid maternity leave. And they might be missing out on what could be one of the best decisions of their lives.

Taking a career break in early motherhood can feel like getting off a wild rollercoaster ride and finally breathing in some fresh air. It’s a chance to recharge your batteries, embrace personal growth, and take control of your life.

So slip into some cozy pajamas, pour yourself a glass of something delightful, and see how this break can be the ultimate game-changer!

woman holding coffee cup

1. Reclaiming Your Sanity and Finding Clarity

It’s time to take a deep breath and reclaim your sanity. A career break in early motherhood is like a refreshing oasis in the desert of chaos. It’s a chance to press the pause button, step away from the relentless demands of early motherhood and prioritize your well-being.

Imagine indulging in guilt-free self-care, enjoying moments of peace, and finding a sense of balance that has eluded you for far too long. So go ahead, trade in your power suits for cozy loungewear, and embrace the break that will restore your sanity and give you the strength and energy to conquer motherhood.

Sometimes, stepping back from the relentless corporate world is the very thing we need to gain a fresh perspective on life. A career break can be an invitation to pause, reflect, and realign your values.

As the chaos of daily routines subsides, you’ll find yourself appreciating the simple joys and finding clarity amidst the noise. Suddenly, the true priorities become crystal clear — your baby’s belly laughs, the warmth of family, and the pursuit of simple happiness.

Make your break an opportunity to let go of what no longer serves you and embrace a path that aligns with your authentic self. So, mama, open your heart, soak in the beauty around you, and let the career break guide you toward a life filled with purpose and fulfillment.

a woman enjoying a spa day

2. Reconnect with Yourself and Re-Discover Lost Passions

Remember those dreams you had before motherhood became your world? A career break might just be the key to rediscovering your passions and reigniting your inner spark. Whether it’s diving into that unfinished novel, picking up a paintbrush, or honing your inner yogi, the possibilities are endless. A career break doesn’t mean hitting the pause button on things that bring you joy.

More of the adventurous type? Pack your family and go travel the globe and learn a new language while you’re at it! More the introspective type? Use this time to connect with your community or work with a coach to rediscover what makes your heart beat faster and creates purpose in your life.

It can be easy to lose your interests and passions over time, as work and a corporate career have possibly shaped a majority of your adult life. So, take the time to step back from the chaos and noise of the professional world and reconnect with the most important person in your life: you.

3. Strengthening the Mother-Child Bond and Creating Lasting Memories

You can always make more money but you cannot make more time. These precious early years of motherhood will pass in the blink of an eye. A career break offers a priceless gift: the opportunity to strengthen the bond with your little one and create lasting memories that will last for a lifetime.

From morning cuddles to afternoon adventures, you’ll be there for every milestone, every giggle, and every magical moment. No more rushing out the door, missing out on the little triumphs, or feeling like you’re running a never-ending race. Mid-week hike or beach day? Check! Sleeping in with your little one? Check! Seeing your baby grow and develop without the looming pressure of work? Double-check!

You can check out my article on simple activities to do daily with your baby for some ideas that don’t require much effort.

It’s time to slow down, savor the sweetness of motherhood, and immerse yourself fully in the joy of being present with your child. These are the memories that will weave the tapestry of their childhood and mold your identity as a mother.

woman and baby doing yoga

4. Embrace Personal Growth and Upskill

A career break doesn’t mean you have to stop learning. With the extra time at hand, you have the chance to acquire new knowledge, embrace online courses and workshops, or expand your professional repertoire.

Upskilling during your career break may be just what you need to get back into your career at a higher pay grade. To enhance your professional skills, consider obtaining a certification that aligns with your area of expertise. Alternatively, you can create your own customized learning plan by accessing free online courses available on platforms like edX, LinkedIn Learning, or Coursera.

No interested in thinking about work in your career break? Then try to learn a new skill for yourself. An instrument, sewing, woodworking, gardening: there are many fun skills to learn just for your own personal growth.

By investing in your personal growth, you’re not only enriching your own life but also setting an inspiring example for your little ones. Go ahead and let your passions soar! So, take this time to really explore who you are and all that you’re capable of. This break from work could be just the opportunity you need to discover your true potential.

5. Reskill and Change Career Trajectories

If going back to your career is not in the cards, switch gears and use your career break to reskill and change careers.

Always wanted to start a career in tech? Now is your time to take a course or certification in coding, or get a degree in IT or analytics. Feel like you’re done hustling back and forth to an office and want to have a stay-at-home working mum career instead? Now would be the time to scout opportunities and upskill to land that perfect WFH job.

Or finally start that business or side hustle you’ve always dreamt of but never found the time for. This is the time to re-assess your professional values and adjust your career accordingly. The world is your oyster!

Will a career break in early motherhood hurt my career?

The biggest value of taking a career break may be to open doors that would’ve stayed closed otherwise. Similarly, a career break can provide a valuable chance to explore opportunities that may have been out of reach before.

If having consistency and staying in the same job long-term is important to you, a career break may hurt your career in the short term. But more likely than not, it will unlock skills and interests you haven’t known were there, re-energize you, and open new opportunities for growth, self-discovery and development.

So, don’t be afraid to take a step back and reassess your career goals. A break may be exactly what you need to achieve greater success and fulfillment in the long run.

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About The Author

Julia Billings

Hi, I'm Julia! I am a working mother, professional life & leadership coach, international HR expert, and motherhood advocate. Upon becoming a mom, I quit my coveted United Nations career to pursue more flexibility and freedom so I could be able to combine professional aspirations with how I wanted to show up as a mother. In my work as a coach, consultant and facilitator, I help other moms make similar bold decisions in their careers.

My approach integrates my 7 years of experience as international career & leadership development professional, my personal journey as a mother and my proficiency as a Certified Professional Coach (CPC) holding an M.Ed.

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  1. This article is like a breath of fresh air. Just wish I’d read it seven years ago when I first became a mother. Taking my six-week-old baby to daycare while I went to a job I wasn’t in love with was sooooo hard. Awesome post. Thank you.

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment on my blog post, Laura. I’m thrilled to hear that the article resonated with you. Wishing you continued joy, fulfillment, and success in both your motherhood journey and your pursuits!

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