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Balancing Work and Life as a New Mother

Tripta Gupta

Engineering Manager at Brex

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Problem

When you become a mother, you’re responsible for a tiny human - priorities shift as your identity grows with your new child. Luckily, when my daughter was born thirteen months ago, I was already working remotely.

Being present for my family and staying connected with my reports were both goals to uphold; although I had been planning on leaving my role at the time before becoming pregnant, I wanted to do so responsibly.

Actions taken

Wrapping up my role as a manager involved passing my responsibilities on before going on maternity leave. The key was structuring my time intelligently. By organizing my agenda, I was able to reduce my working hours, meeting my deadlines while also giving my child the bonding time that we both deserved. Some working mothers end up making their time off permanent. After doing a bit of soul-searching, I decided that the best path for me was to continue working while raising my family.

Separating work life and home life was also very important. Maintaining a strict border between both allowed me to focus and commit to either my stakeholders or my daughter exclusively without distraction. This was at the beginning of the coronavirus lockdown - it was very fortunate for me, as my entire team was now working from home, as well, making the transition a group effort.

Through these challenges, I needed to trust my team - my team in the workplace, as well as my team at home, namely, my husband and nanny. I realized that managing the home is a lot like managing an office, and, operating from this now more organized, functional space, I was able to enhance my performance professionally.

Lessons learned

  • A sound mind makes for a more effective leader. When both halves of my life are in harmony, I am calm, focused, and more deliberate in my work.
  • A solid support system of people who you can rely on is just as relevant in the home as it is in the workplace. Setting these foundations correctly prepares you for every possible scenario. This is important to remember when first building your team.
  • If you are a new mother, being efficient in your professional life will give you ample time to devote to your growing family. Choosing a company whose company culture supports the working mother should be a priority if you and your partner wish to start a family together.

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Tripta Gupta

Engineering Manager at Brex


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