12 min read

Blog 53: Coming Back Strong: Empowering Mums Returning to Work After Children

Discover Nitasha's journey as a dedicated mother of three, navigating the intricate balance between family life and a fulfilling career in safety and wellbeing.
Blog 53: Coming Back Strong: Empowering Mums Returning to Work After Children
Photo by Dakota Corbin / Unsplash

Discover Nitasha's journey as a dedicated mother of three, navigating the intricate balance between family life and a fulfilling career in safety and wellbeing. Dive into her insights on self-care, time management, and professional growth as she shares her experiences and offers valuable advice for fellow parents returning to the workforce. Join Nitasha on her empowering journey of resilience, development, and finding harmony between personal fulfilment and community service.


woman holding man and toddler hands during daytime
Photo by Jessica Rockowitz / Unsplash

Step into Nitasha's world, where the joys of motherhood blend with the challenges of a thriving career in safety and wellbeing. With her three beloved children, Nitasha gracefully balances caring for her family with excelling in her profession. Through heartfelt stories and wise advice, Nitasha welcomes you to join her journey, discovering the secrets to effortlessly harmonising work and family life. Follow her lead as she champions self-care, resilience, and the pursuit of fulfilment, providing comfort and inspiration for fellow parents venturing into the rewarding journey of returning to work.

Nitasha, tell me about yourself, your personality, and your passion. How do you serve yourself? Also, how do you serve the community? Who do you work for?

I am a full-time working mother of three beautiful kids aged 12, 5, and 1 (two boys and a baby girl). I have many interests. I love fashion, music, Netflix, Korean movies/ dramas, listening to podcasts, learning—reading, travelling, food (experimenting with new recipes), being out in nature/walking and catching up with family and friends.

I love my career. I work in the safety and wellbeing space, which serves the community by staying informed and alert and advocating for people to take charge (of their wellbeing and mindset). This includes health promotion and motivational interviewing: Helping people change, encouraging people to take care of their psychological and physical health and wellbeing. I have a HR Business Partner Advisory role in a large government organisation.

 10 Questions for Nitasha

1.      Balancing work and family life is no small feat, especially with three kids! How do you manage your time effectively after returning to work? 

My Mantra/Mindset as per below: 

Don't sweat the small stuff. Richard Carlson

Let go of the ideology of being perfect. 

Do things that spark joy. Marie Kondo

Set boundaries at work.

Surround yourself with like-minded, positive people. 

Take time off to rejuvenate. 

There will be challenging days; Tomorrow is a new day, and you can always reset and learn. 

 I also teach my kids to do chores, e.g., helping load the dishwasher, tidying up, etc. (I hope this translates into life skills for the boys.) My husband is also very progressive in this aspect, he shares the load around the house ad takes care of various task with enthusiasm. I am passionate about normalising equal parenting; it’s a crucial way to break away from outdated gender roles and ensure that both parents have the opportunity to engage in the parenting responsibilities.

2.      Welcome back! Returning to work after a year off can be both exciting and challenging. Can you share what motivated you to return to the workforce now?

 As much as I miss the long cuddles, they say you never have to work a day if you love what you do. Yes, there are challenging, busy and unpredictable days (some days can be busy, some a bit relaxed); however, overall, I love my work. It's good to keep your mind active; I love learning and making a difference in people's lives. I want to continue and have a long career. I have a lot to contribute with my experience in the Safety and Wellbeing field. I do not see motherhood as a roadblock. One can really leverage this experience by embedding empathy and care in their approach. It’s a feel good moment when people can reach out to me, and in turn, I am able to offer advice sometimes in some of the most stressful situations of their lives. It's very rewarding, gives me a sense of fulfilment and purpose. I also feel this is a way of setting a good example for kids, as kids watch and are more likely to learn from parents’ actions.

3.      What skills or experiences from your time as a parent do you believe will benefit you in your professional career? 

Motherhood has taught me to prioritise my time and attention and set boundaries; not every request requires my urgent attention. Also, it has taught me self-care; I can't take care of little humans if I am not well (something I have to remind myself every day). This also means I can't perform well in my role if I am struggling or unwell. Also, I have become better at time management and planning. It’s also taught me gratitude and mindfulness. Being in the moment and value of time.

4.      Returning to work after a break can sometimes bring feelings of self-doubt. How do you plan to overcome any challenges or doubts you may encounter?

This is my 3rd time returning to work after one year of parental leave, and I still find it overwhelming. Getting back to high level of concentration/focus and remembering things such as protocols, procedures, and some minor aspects such as changes in systems/IT procedures is challenges particularly in a large workplace. From my observations, task which were a breeze, are now suddenly cumbersome and yes, I can’t deny my feeling of self-doubt. I must remind myself to take each day at a time and not drown myself with unrealistic expectations. I also have a good support network, and I don’t hesitate to reach out to my colleagues and mentors for help and advice. I am lucky my workplace allowed me sufficient time to settle in and bring myself up to speed. My workplace has carious inclusion and diversity networks and a huge emphasis on inclusiveness (carers network, women’s network). I am aa member if these networks and I believe these networks do a lot of work to raise awareness of such challenges.

 5.      How do you prioritise self-care and maintain a healthy work-life balance while juggling work and family?

 Negotiation skills and knowing your value. Even though I was working from home before this, my role required me to travel regionally, and thus, I thought to myself - I better start looking for other roles. I was unsure if I could continue in this role as it would be challenging to travel and balance our parental duties such as school runs, packing lunches, helping with homework, etc. This is because this time around, with three kids, there was no way my husband could manage all three kids by himself with me being away. I encourage others in my shoes to have a sincere and transparent conversation with your workplace (particularly if you work in large organisations) if you believe you will struggle to fulfil your parental responsibilities whilst working or if your circumstances change. I was lucky my request (not to travel regionally) was granted, and I felt valued. My workplace also has flexible working arrangements, whereby if we work extra time, we can convert to flex days, and you can have shorter days or longer days as long as you work core hours. This way, I can take time off for self-care, such as exercising and attending school functions. Being present in your kid's life in this aspect is very beneficial. 

girl wearing white sleeveless dress beside balloons
Photo by Senjuti Kundu / Unsplash

6.      What do you hope to achieve professionally in the next few years? 

I wish to roll out the People at Work project successfully in my HR Business Partner Role. This project involves a psychosocial risk assessment tool that helps create psychologically healthy and safe workplaces. I wish to learn and grow in my role and continue to make a positive impact in people's lives. I also want to be a positive role model for others considering full-time work with primary carer parental responsibilities.  

7.      Taking time off to care for your children can provide valuable insights and experiences. How do you believe your time as a parent has influenced your approach to work and personal growth?

I admire how kids are so honest and resilient. For example, my 5-year-old son told some kids during playtime, "You hurt my feelings". He was honest and told them how he was feeling, then picked himself up and moved on to another activity. I thought to myself, as adults, we can learn from this. This concept influences me professionally, as my role involves educating staff on dealing with interpersonal conflicts.  I draw inspiration from this and encourage others to respectfully talk about issues. Speak up if you need help. Sometimes, it helps to talk about things rather than bottle it up. That way, you can come to some resolutions and move forward. I also love how kids take joy in simple things in life, like painting, creating and reading. This has taught me to live in the moment and practice mindfulness. I believe hustle culture is overrated and contributes to burnout and therefore I wish to sustain a balanced work -life arena.  

8.      Reflecting on your past year, what have been some of the most rewarding aspects of being a stay-at-home parent, and what are you looking forward to as you re-enter the workforce? 

Having long cuddles and being there for their milestones. Now, I look forward to my baby girl making some little friends and exploring and sharing her experiences through the eyes of her educators. 

9.      What message or words of encouragement would you like to share with other parents navigating similar career transitions? 

 Do not fear change, as change is the new constant in this ever-changing world. Enjoy the journey. Professionally reconnect with colleagues. Take each day at a time; don't overthink things. Practice mindfulness and gratitude and remember to celebrate small wins. 

10.      Something I wish people knew about me?

 I embrace my authentic self while enjoying simple pleasures of life: a steaming cup of tea or coffee, and the company of like-minded souls engaged in authentic conversations. There's a certain magic in free-flowing, non-judgemental conversations which fosters genuine connection. 

Is there anything else you would like to add here, Nitasha?

Kids grow up too quickly, so enjoying and cherishing their younger moments is essential. I promise you will look back and be thankful you took that time off. 

Embrace Self-Care: Take a moment today to prioritise your wellbeing, just like Nitasha does amidst her busy life. Whether it's a walk-in nature, a soothing cup of tea, or a few minutes of meditation, invest in self-care to rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul.

 Top Quotes

a branch of a tree with white flowers
Photo by Kelsey He / Unsplash

Nitasha likes this quote:

 “Do good and good will come to you/the universe will reward you”.  Based on the concept of Karma.


Below are the quotes I like on this topic:

“Welcome to the working moms club. And tears are perfectly ok.” Isabelle Roughol
“I think every working mom probably feels the same thing. You go through big chunks of time where you’re just thinking, ‘This is impossible-oh, this is impossible.’ And then you just keep going and keep going, and you sort of do the impossible.” Tina Fey
“When new mom first come back to work, they need to stop feeling guilty. A child needs a happy mother not a 24/7 mother.” Jainee Gandhi, Style Theory


Questions and Reflection


a row boat sitting on top of a lake next to a mountain
Photo by eberhard 🖐 grossgasteiger / Unsplash
  1. Question: How do you prioritise self-care in your daily routine as a working mum, and what activities bring you joy and rejuvenation amidst your busy schedules?

Reflection: Take a moment to consider Nitasha's approach to self-care and how you can integrate similar practices into your own life to nurture your well-being.

  1. Question: What support systems do you have to help you navigate the challenges of balancing work and family life, and how do you lean on these networks during times of need?

Reflection: Explore the importance of seeking support from friends, family, and colleagues, as illustrated by Nitasha's reliance on her husband and workplace flexibility. Reflect on your support systems and how you can leverage them effectively.

  1. Question: In what ways do you celebrate your personal and professional achievements, and how can you incorporate a mindset of gratitude into your daily routine?

Reflection: Consider Nitasha's emphasis on celebrating small wins and practising gratitude. Reflect on how you currently acknowledge your accomplishments and explore opportunities to cultivate a mindset of gratitude in your life.

Seek Support and Mentorship: If you're navigating a similar journey of balancing work and family life, remember you're not alone. Reach out to friends, family, or colleagues for support, or consider seeking mentorship from someone like Nitasha, who has successfully integrated both aspects of life.


three people having a toast on table
Photo by Pablo Merchán Montes / Unsplash

In conclusion, Nitasha's narrative embodies resilience and evolution, gracefully balancing motherhood with career aspirations. Her story illuminates the significance of self-nurturing, effective time management, and adaptability. As she embarks on her return-to-work journey, Nitasha's experience inspires others to embrace change, prioritise self-value, and cherish incremental achievements. Her dedication to family, profession, and personal growth is a testament to perseverance and the art of harmonising life's complexities. Let Nitasha's tale serve as a beacon of encouragement and empowerment for all striving to thrive in professional endeavours and personal fulfilment.

Celebrate Small Wins: Reflect on your achievements, no matter how small they may seem. Like Nitasha, acknowledge your efforts to juggle responsibilities and take pride in every personal or professional milestone. Celebrating these victories will fuel your motivation to keep moving forward
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Join our community to share your experiences, insights, and questions. Together, let's cultivate a supportive space for growth and transformation.

Cheers to a vibrant, energised, and thriving you! 

 Thank you.

 Let us activate your growth and celebrate together as you unlock your true potential!

 Do not hesitate to contact me with any questions; I love interacting with the community.

 Just a heads up – I'll be taking a time out from blogging over the school holidays. But fear not! I'll return on May 5th with a fantastic new blog featuring the incredible Emma Lagerlow, a Wealth, and Mindset Coach. Trust me, it's going to be worth the wait! Stay tuned!

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Photo by Christin Hume / Unsplash

Transformative insights and actionable tips await to elevate your wellbeing! Keep the excitement alive for your upcoming wellness adventure! 

Live your Life on Purpose!

With much Love

Mukti Santos  

“I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life.” Abraham Lincoln

Journal Prompts

Take a moment to reflect on how parenthood has reshaped your life and career. Think about how being a caregiver and a professional has influenced your values, mindset, and goals. Discuss how you've blended family life with your career, contributing to your personal growth.
Delve into the essential practice of self-care and the delicate balance between work obligations and looking after your wellbeing. Explore the routines and practices that rejuvenate your mind, body, and spirit despite daily pressures. Consider how prioritising self-care enhances your resilience, energy, and alignment with your life's purpose.
Look ahead to the vast potential of your personal and professional future as you continue your path of growth and achievement. Set clear intentions for your development, with concrete steps to turn your dreams into reality. Draw on the wisdom from your experiences to enrich your career, serve your community, and reach new heights.