Being a working mum in today’s world is a daily challenge. Even more so for single mothers or those with no family support.
There are so many financial and social challenges to navigate, in addition, to some of the expectations imposed on women by society that at times, are quite unreasonable. Women are often expected to be superhuman in many ways.
Trying to juggle the demands of a professional career, home and young children can create a huge role conflict and can sometimes feel like we are choosing between either work or home as our main focus. 
It is not uncommon to see mothers suffering from burnout, especially if they do not have other support around them.
I was raised in a family where my mum and dad both had full-time jobs and shared equal parenting responsibilities. I remember my dad contributed equally if not more, towards all the household work. He prepared meals, cleaned, got us ready for school, read us stories before bed and helped with our homework.
My mum travelled for work and I remember staying with my dad for weeks at a time. For me, it was quite normal for both parents to be equally sharing household and parenting responsibilities. 
I realised when I left my parent’s home and stepped into the world on my own, just how different things were.  It seemed that in most households, women were expected to be the main homemakers, and men the breadwinners.
Women often end up compromising a great deal in their careers. Whether it means letting go of certain career opportunities or having to put the breaks on our professional goals, or to simply give up on certain professional dreams and ambitions and settle for less.
Even though we are now seeing a shift in the mindset of our global society with the expectation of gender roles changing - we still have a long way to go.
If we want to see more women in leadership positions, we need to move away from traditional beliefs about gender-specific roles. We need to fight back against these stereotypes and outdated traditional perceptions.
I feel highly privileged to be working for an organisation such as Interrelate that are so supportive of mothers trying to have successful careers.
In my situation I have been offered flexible working hours, a part-time position, the option to work from home, as well as trust from management in my ability and work ethics. The combination of all of this has allowed me to come back to work after maternity leave, against many odds.
Without this support I don’t know how else I would have managed to return to work in the capacity that I was able to.
I advise to women to never doubt yourself. Believe in yourself, believe in your capabilities. Don’t let the gender bias and stereotypes bring you down.
It’s ok to be ambitious, and I think it’s very important to listen to your own voice rather than the voices of other people around you. It’s not a race after all.
Always be kind to yourself. No one is perfect and we all make mistakes, so don’t beat yourself up if you don’t always get it right. It’s ok to be confused or lost sometimes or to not have all the answers right away.
We’re all trying to figure out life, so if you’re feeling that way it’s important to remember that you are certainly not alone. We all need to challenge the labels that other people can impose upon us, embrace our superpowers and wear our capes with pride.
I hope that this year employers step up and offer the resources that working mothers need to successfully progress in their careers.