What Personal Success means to me – Emily
In this series of interviews, Successful Mums founder Jane Knight talks to a number of women about what personal success means to them and how they combine work and family to achieve it.
Some of the women we work with believe age is a barrier in their 30’s, so it was refreshing to meet up with Emily, who continues to study and make things happen at 70!
Retired mum of 4, had a career in medicine and is now working towards a MSc Mental Health Science through The Open University.
What does a typical day look like to you?
There is not a typical day but would usually start at 6.00 am with quiet time, bible reading. Study until about 8.30 am. I fit in the cleaning, shopping or time with husband, family or friends and further study. I also do voluntary work every Friday.
In what ways has being a mother had a positive impact on your approach to working?
Work-life balance was/is always a challenge. Good childcare in the past made it possible to work and enjoy work. The time spent with my children was extra precious. The need to be flexible, adaptable, compartmentalise tasks and feelings.
My family life helped me to understand the pressures others were experiencing. The inter-relationship between working, studying and relationships with children and grandchildren widened my horizons, bringing new experiences which can be shared and enjoyed. Now in older age, I enjoy and appreciate the support from my family. I’m aware of the need to ask for help when difficulties arise and to value family, friendships and faith.
What does personal success mean to you?
Service, fulfilment and intellectual growth.
What one piece of professional advice would you give women thinking about going back to work?
You are an individual with your own gifts and talents. Childhood passes quickly so it is important to give quality time to the family as they have their needs too but it is possible to find time to work. There is plenty of time to change career direction or develop careers further when children grow up and use all management skill in running a family to enhance other skills and develop work in your chosen profession.
What one thing for yourself do you always make time for?
Family, church and reading.
If you were invited on Desert Island Discs, what would your top music choice, book and luxury be?
Hallelujah Chorus from Handel’s Messiah – associated with special family occasions. The Rhymes of G.A. Studdert Kennedy and photographs of my family.
Is there anything you’d consign to the ocean & why?
Sometimes my computer!
Finally one last tip for women considering retraining or learning something new?
Just go for it!