Are you one of thousands of moms at a crossroads in your career and home life?
The decision to stay at home is a tricky one. The weight of finances, career goals, and childcare can dictate the basis of your decision. But if scales tip towards you staying home, you might be like me and see a hazy unsureness of your professional future.
I rushed through college with an eagerness and natural knack for marketing. With an internship locked into my future career, my path was set, but my heart wasn’t. I’ve known since I was a little girl playing “house” in preschool that I’d arm wrestle to be the mommy. My dream was to stay home and raise my children. And thanks to a lot of luck, finagling, and the best husband in the world, my dream became a reality and matched both of our family values.
Now that I’m a stay-at-home-mom, I daydream about the day where my toddlers are in grade school and I have five to six hours to bake cookies, watch soap operas, and nap. While that’s my current daydream running on a few measly hours of broken sleep, I still want my options open to me if I decide to #Mompreneur and #Momboss to my heart’s content. Doesn’t everyone want all of their options open to them?
And how do you keep your options open? You keep yourself marketable.
If you let your resume collect dust and a gaping blank space for 10 years, you may not look so nice and shiny to a highly desired future employer. But if you’re like me, you’re busy potty training and cutting the crusts off of peanut butter and jellys.
You have opportunities within your current hobbies that can keep your resume (and personal life) up to snuff! You just have to dig a little to see what you 1) have time for and 2) can commit to.
For example, I love to write, craft, and hike with my family. While staying at home, I use my free time to blog on Madison Moms blog as well as various other websites and in-print magazines. Staying relevant with my writing is restorative for me, and something I can put on my resume for future employers. Along with the other sites, I manage my own blog, Homemade Hometown, which also has an Etsy shop for my crafts and card-making. Being a small handmade shop owner is experience that can be fruitful for a variety of positions. Within that blog I use my own web design knowledge, graphic design, marketing, sales, brand promotion, networking, photography, customer service, and more! Using that knowledge I was able to reach out to our favorite park that we hike as a family, Donald Park. I offered to volunteer with them, and while bringing three boys under four out to do trail maintenance wouldn’t be super helpful, they did need help with their website, social media marketing, SEO, and more—which was an easy role for me to fill!
So if you dig deeper in your interests and see what is capable to be plastered onto a resume, you’ll be keeping yourself YOU all while keeping yourself competitively employable. Do you love yoga? Look into starting and managing a small social yoga group or getting your certification to teach it! Do you love helping others? Nursing homes and hospitals always accept volunteer visitors which would be impressive hospitality on your resume! Have a love for shoes? Look at thrifting good finds and selling them on your own EBay shop! Have an inner Joanna Gaines? Local Facebook resale sites are great for repurposing furniture and giving home goods a farmhouse facelift while turning a profit! “Furniture restoration” is a skill that can totally be slapped on that resume!
If you’re at the fork in the road of staying-at-home or staying-at-work and you’re worried about that piece of paper [your resume, guys] losing it’s value, know that that doesn’t need to be the case at all. You can keep yourself marketable and still stay at home for these precious kiddos. Have your cake and eat it too, I dare you.