Being true to yourself – Helen Clayton’s thoughts on International Women’s Day

As it is International Women’s Day, I thought I should follow up on an article I wrote a couple of years ago. That article was about finding balance in my life as a working mum and recognising that my balance isn’t the same balance that another working mum might have found or indeed be looking for.

We’re all different and that’s exactly what makes life fun, allows us all to achieve and be successful in whatever way we choose.

Since writing that article, that balance that I talked about has been tipped here and there.  Everyday life, the stuff you can’t plan for – it all arrives and needs dealing with, which is fine.  Life cannot be perfect.

In that time however, what I have come to realise that being true to yourself is critical.  I write this still as a working mum, as someone that has renovated their whole house over the course of the last nine months and as someone who is now a very proud part owner of my business. As much as today is about celebrating women across the globe, I absolutely recognise that being true to yourself isn’t about being a female – it applies to us all.

What does being true to me mean though?

To put on what some might call my ‘selfish hat’ (I prefer a self-love hat), I make time for me.  I need time out, I need time to do my ‘stuff’.  I find this provides far more mental and physical stability than anything else.  Really, it’s just looking after myself far better than I ever did.  Building resilience in myself, as well as helping those around me to do the same, moves us towards being more robust individuals. We should all treat the past as learning experiences, nothing more.

Time

Time is a funny thing.  The saying that time ‘flies by’ seems to become more prevalent the older we get.  Yet it doesn’t at all! It moves at the same rate that it always has and always will.  I’m currently learning how to use my time more effectively for this to make my life more enjoyable and, increasingly, to create more memories.

Purpose

I’ve also worked out what my sense of purpose is.  As business owners, the word ‘purpose’ is cropping up more and more.  What is the purpose of PM+M?  We thrive by helping our clients succeed.

I also have a personal purpose – my reason for being is to leave this life with a huge sense of pride and with a fantastic legacy across everything I get chance to influence and be a part of. I don’t like to put in half an effort – what’s the point? Creating the memories is a huge part of this purpose.

To conclude, I believe that personal development in the world we live in is vital.  Self-reflection, listening and adapting are great to have in your tool belt – man or woman.