The Higher Up You Go, The Harder You Have To Work

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The higher up the career ladder you get, the harder you have to work.

Well, that was what I believed for ages, anyway. That making it to the C-suite meant foregoing downtime, or meaningful breaks. That it is all go, go, go for the business. It was a message I had received in childhood. And I had seen it in many of the high-ups I used to work with; it wasn’t just a figment of my imagination

I speak to a lot of women about their careers and I have heard this time and time again. Perhaps not consciously so, but somewhere in their brain there is a connection between senior positions and hard work.  Sometimes it’s a parent that has modelled this. Sometimes it’s a boss or other senior figures in the companies they work for.

And it puts them off. Not because they’re lazy slackers, but because they have other ambitions too, and are unwilling to give their life to their work (only). It stops them from actively reaching out for their next step, because that comes with sacrifices they’re not willing to make. Or so they tell themselves…

Here’s the truth, though.

Staying stuck in lower or middle management is going to get or keep you exactly in the place you don’t want to be in, where you work too many damn long hours. It’s because you’re at the mercy of other people’s agendas, and not in control of your own schedule.

Working hard, even crazy hours is NOT a function of your level of job. It’s a function of your boundary- setting. YOU are holding the power to decide on how many hours you work. YOU are holding the keys to how much of your life you give to your work. YOU are in control.

It has nothing to do with how high up the ladder you are. Just as there are many overworked, overstretched CEOs and senior leaders, there are also relaxed company leaders, who work smart, not hard. And precisely because they are in positions of power, they get to call the shots on their agenda.

See how it works?

So, my friend… if you are stuck on the idea that if you were to get promoted, you would somehow lose out on something, please re-assess these thoughts. It is not true, it’s not helpful, and it will keep you stuck. 

Instead, take control, set boundaries and soar, both in your work and private life!

If you want help in doing this (it’s not easy, I know), do let me know. Together, we can see if I can support you.

Book a call with my team for a free coaching session and let’s see what we can do for you!