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I found an interesting article the other day that speaks to me as a mom. It’s about the need for career-minded professionals to have a “second life.” I’m not talking about the Web site Second Life, although that certainly can foot the bill in terms of having an alternative to your day-to-day.
Get another life,” by David D. Perlmutter, on Chronicle.com talks mostly about educators and how they balance life on the tenure track with having a family or a hobby, but easily translates to motherhood and the importance of having outside interests.Â This could be outside your career or just outside your role as a mother.
David Heenan, a management scholar, makes the intellectual case for having multiple lives — career, personal, communal, spiritual, and even artistic — in his 2002 book Double Lives. He documents how some of history’s most successful (and busy) people found it both necessary and enriching to devote time to alternate forms and forums of creativity that seemed, on the surface, to have nothing to do with their more famous vocations …
Heenan argues that even those of us whose career ambitions are on a lower scale than saving the free world should find a similar “second life.”
Bottom line is this … outside interests have the ability to cleanse the mind and fulfill needs that you may never get from an employer. For SAHMs it can be the window into yourself … doing something you love that has nothing to do with being a mother.
When choosing your “second life,” Perlmutter gives advice, summarized here:
- Whatever you choose, be passionate about it …
- Don’t let your second life be all-consuming …
- The joy of escaping into that second life can lull people into thinking that it can or should be their only vocation. Don’t be like the assistant professor who spent so much time playing computer games and daydreaming about designing new ones that he failed in his tenure bid, and then didn’t find a job in the video-game industry, either.”
Read his full story here.