We’re celebrating the wrong things

Watching part of the Today Show this morning, a headline story was being broadcast about a mother being celebrated for giving up her own life to care for her 3 children. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m sure this woman is a saint, and probably a better mother than I’ll ever be. But why is giving up your life the tag line, and not actually what she contributed as a mother to these 3 kids? 

We see this same tragedy in other aspects of our lives too – at work, employees are celebrated for working all night to finish a project – celebrating the sacrifice of sleep. Since when did sleep deprevation help anyone in their career and enhance their ability to perform or drive results?

Why don’t we celebrate the individuals who managed their time carefully, completed their work and were able to go away for the weekend with their family?

We need a paradigm shift – one that celebrates the results of our impact, not the steps leading to the end goal.

This starts with us as individuals, mothers, bosses, spouses. And it starts with the little things:

  • Acknowledge others for their effective time management
  • Encourage those around you to take care of themselves – and they’ll have the energy to then care for others
  • Celebrate the ability to unplug and take time away from the daily stresses of life

In doing these things, it’s my goal that we teach our children that sacrificing yourself isn’t the end goal – but taking care of yourself, and defining your own path to happiness will free you to be the better mother, employee, spouse and friend. 

Until then, you’re just running on empty.

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