The importance of work and life balance

“My career has been and is such an important part of my life and who I am as a person.

I know I work extremely hard and as I have climbed the career ladder I have worked harder and longer and always strived to learn and grow and be the best in everything I do, whilst passionately giving back.

I am very proud of that… BUT
I took a look at my work / life balance and realised that I had allowed my self to be consumed by work to the detriment of my own health, happiness and the ones close to me.  I hadn’t picked my own son up from school for over 18 months but was picking up my phone 100’s of times a day.
The conclusion I came to was to make a very hard decision and give my notice to my COO role and take what has been my first career break for my whole working life of 20 years to really think about what is important to me and what my future looks like.
I’ve taken time to reconnect with my 6 year old son, have fallen in love but also really think about what I want to do in the next stages of my life.  I have deep rooted passion around girls and women in business and technology and have had the time to really see where my experience and voice in this space can add value.
I’ve taken time to talk and listen to other peoples ideas and shared mine freely and I believe though the exciting opportunities uncovered and realised I will make real change and not just give add hoc talks or support… So watch this space as I’m planning fantastic projects.
I’ve also been reminded there are really fantastic humans out there who believe in you and will help and support you, some that you maybe never expected.  I now also know its ok to call in the favours that you have done for others and its ok to ask for help and not be an island. Sometimes when you are sat on a board and spend your time supporting others its easy to forget you need support too.
So I guess the moral to all of this for me is that I kept thinking, “I can’t afford to do this” but actually I couldn’t afford not to.  I’ve gone back to basics, taken time to stop and think and its really helped me refocus what really matters and what does actually makes me truly happy.
The last month has been one of the most liberating, fun and personally enriching experiences of my life and although my future is still not firmed up fully, I know that if I do things that I love, then its going to be fantastic.
I will make sure there is a balance in my life that works for everyone that is important to me.”

– Sarah Tulip

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