×

Executive mom in viral post: Career breaks 'don't define you'

Ifeoma Chuks-Adizue of Lagos, Nigeria, had to temporarily give up her career to take care of her son. However, she shows other moms that career breaks are not a bad thing.

Executive mom in viral post: Career breaks 'don't define you'
Image Source: https://exquisitemag.com/

More often than not, women are forced to choose between taking care of their families and their careers. This is an unfair burden placed on them, and there is no doubt that men need to pick up the slack that they have for so long ignored. However, in the meantime, executive mom Ifeoma Chuks-Adizue of Lagos, Nigeria, has some advice for mothers like her who have to take a break from their careers: you don't need to sweat it. In a viral LinkedIn post, she explained that the start of your career does not define you, Good Morning America reports.

 



 

 

"Sometimes one has to make tough career choices for the family," she shared in an interview with the news outlet. "It can be really painful especially when you are a career-driven person but I've learned that it pays off in the long run." Her insights come from her own experience of having to give up her career, at least temporarily. When her son OJ was having difficulty at school and with speech, she decided to pause her career in order to support him. "June 2015, they told me my son had to repeat the class due to speech challenges," Chuks-Adizue wrote on LinkedIn. "Wow! That meant his bossy little sister in the same class with him! I sure needed to focus on the little man and the highly recommended one-year therapy abroad."

 



 

 

It was definitely not an easy journey for the mother, who was previously dedicated to her career. She continued, "It was HARD! I was leading the biggest brand at work through a very significant time. I asked myself, 'What would it profit me if I proved I could turn around a declining big brand but my son started on a downward journey psychologically?' I cried a lot but knew I had to resign." Thankfully, her company was understanding of her predicament and gave her a year off so she could focus on her family.

 



 

 

Ultimately, the family did not go abroad. Chuks-Adizue returned to work after 10 months of intensively caring for her family. "I resumed a happy mom and grew my new brand double digits in a recession," she stated. "Two years later, I finally got another opportunity to prove I could grow a declining big brand." As for her son? He is "on fire," as the mother describes: "For the first six years of his life, OJ spoke gibberish and was considered a 'dullard.' In these past four years, he's been on FIRE!"

 



 

Through her experiences, she has four lessons for other moms who find themselves in this tricky predicament.

Lesson 1: Family is key. May you always be present when they need you.
Lesson 2: Opportunities seemingly lost for family ALWAYS come back beautiful.
Lesson 3: The start of your career doesn't define you. Don't quit!

She said of the post, "[Mothers have] taken time off work to sort out the family and though deep down they want to return to grow their careers, they battle with self-doubt and wonder if they can catch up. I wrote this post to also show them that it is possible especially if their jobs make them happy."