Mother Knows Best

How losing my mom lead to my life of development

I am a total development junkie. I am obsessed with learning, growing, and trying to understand why I do the things I do. I’m an optimist and a strong believer that work can be a meaningful component of every woman’s life. I refuse to believe the statement that I’ve heard so many times that “work is just hard work”.

I don’t deny that it can be hard, of course, but I chose to believe that if you’re passionate about the work that you’re doing that you will be ready and able to weather the hard times. Your goal will be your North Star. That is a belief that I personally do not waver in.

Why am I so sure of that, though?

So much of the reason that I was propelled on my path of self-development and why I now spend my time supporting other women who believe that their careers can be a meaningful piece of their overall life is due to my mom. I lost her to terminal cancer a year and a half ago, but her life and her legacy taught me this lesson so clearly. Today, I pass that on to you.

My mom was a badass.

Growing up I always had her in my life as an amazing example of a woman who knew what she wanted and did what she needed to make that a reality. She was fearless, even in the face of fear. I remember always feeling apologetic to whichever poor representative was on the receiving end of one of her calls to Customer Service. She’d simply ask, “Can I please speak with your manager?”, until she got the answer she wanted. Something she learned from her days as a rep at PacBell (back when that existed).

My mom would ask for what she wanted, work around the rules that she thought were “just a guideline”, and always lived in the moment. “We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it,” was a favorite saying of hers.

Not only did my mom teach me that a woman could be a force to be reckoned with, but she also taught me so much about doing what was best for me. While she would get nervous about me changing jobs or following whatever grand idea I had (like moving to Colorado when we had a perfectly stable life in California), I learned from her example and not her words. Her words may have been saying, “Are you sure you want to do that?!”, but her example was saying, “Do whatever your heart desires! You know I would”.

Not only did my mom teach me so many lessons while she was here on earth, but her parting lesson was a doozy too: life is short, so do whatever you freaking want.

Towards the end she told me, “Some people are too scared to rock the boat. I say, ‘f**k the boat’ ”. What a message! F**k the boat, indeed.

For me, the best honor I can do is to devote my life to doing whatever the hell I want. For me, learning, growing, and pushing others to expect more of their lives is the thing that keeps me going every day. My mom pushed me to commit to that by showing me just how precious life is, and that’s why I believe it’s my job to make every moment of it.

I’ve seen a good enough example to know that you have control to create the life you want.

Don’t we all have something that pushed us to be the best version of ourselves?

What pushed you to be your best version of you? I want to hear about the awesome people you’ve learned from, too, so share it below in the comments.

If you are a professional woman who is also a career development junkie, join our tribe here. Our group is focused on career advancement and there will be some free trainings rolling out soon. You can also follow Empowered Achievers on Facebook and LinkedIn, and subscribe to my email list here.

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