Most Australian mothers suffer from a lack of confidence when they return to work after having a baby, a survey has found.
It surprises me that mothers don’t have more confidence when they return to the workplace – as they are armed with a host of new skills and experiences.
More than half of the women surveyed – 67% – spent a year at home before they returned to work.
However, in the Get Qualified Australia study of 550 mothers – aged between 18 and 64 years – only 32% of women felt confident to re-enter the workforce after giving birth.
The biggest concerns for mothers returning to work related to finding a good work-life balance and having up-to-date skills.
It seems the variety of skills mothers develop while staying at home are even under-rated in our own eyes.
My first day back in the office from Mums Milestones. Image supplied.
Leaving the house with a newborn, dealing with post swimming class meltdowns, washing and blow-drying my hair were all real achievements of my first three months with my son.
But my long days of being a new mother sometimes added up to:
"What did you do today honey?"
Mothering isn't counted as a series of key performance indicators. It's not a confidence booster, you just get through it somehow.
You don't get a gold star or any praise for soothing a screaming-baby, learning to breastfeed or coping with relentless night-shifts. I'd say they are all under-rated skills in life.
Watch Jamila Rizvi on returning to work at Mamamia. Post continues after video.
I'd argue the patience needed to deal with a toddler tantrum is far greater than any communication challenge in the workplace.
These unique skills that I have built, specifically for my son and I, may not be work-transferable but you can't help but grow as a person and become more adaptable when you parent.