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Can You Really Have It All?

Written by: Michelle L. Raymond, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


I can almost hear the coaches and business success gurus chorus “YES! Of course, you can - whatever you want, you can achieve!”

Here is where I go against the grain. You can have it all, but then you will also be doing it all.

The question of how can you have a successful career and still raise a happy family became somewhat of a treasure hunt for me in my early years. I had not seen many good examples from the people around me and was curious to find out if it could be achieved and how to do it.

What I Discovered

Most people were very reluctant to share their thoughts on this topic. And the reason - I very quickly discovered - was that their stories were riddled with guilt and doubt.

Guilt because they had to sacrifice time away from their family to get ahead in their careers, and doubt, because to this day, they still are not sure what they are doing with their lives.

A majority of my research included well-respected leaders in business, influential executives, successful entrepreneurs and (more surprisingly) coaches.

The Shadow Side of Wanting It All

There are very few people who have their priorities in place, where they can manage all the responsibilities that come along with wanting it all - a career and a happy family. Those that are aware enough to make changes to their lives have done so by recognising their failures, hearing the wake-up calls and even ultimatums.

The complexities, growth spurts and unexpected events from having children make it nearly impossible to plan effectively. How does one manage, balance and coordinate the sheer volume of work and responsibility required to care for yourself, your career and your family?

Take the example of a child waking up every 2-hours with a fever at night and then having to present to your team that morning. Or working towards a promotion that requires you to travel the world, but at the cost of missing birthdays and special events. Or working long hours to prove yourself to get to a point where you can provide financially for your family.

A Reality Check

My clients and other successful individuals reaching retirement age all say they have had an amazing career with incredible opportunities; but they regret missing out on so much of their loved one's lives and milestones.

The reality is: In sacrifice and compromise, someone always loses.

Where to from here?

Take some time to reflect on your own life and decisions and consider the following:

ŸShould you have it all, and what will having it all get you?


Take a future-back approach. What can you prioritise now that will reap the most benefit later on, not only for you but for your legacy?


What are you teaching your children through your actions? See yourself through their eyes. Remember, the well-intended actions of parents are not understood by children.


Hypothetically speaking, if your grandchild sat in an important meeting with you, how would you conduct yourself?

You do not have to limit yourself by choosing either family or career. However, you do have a responsibility to ensure that:

  • ŸYour work does not jeopardise your well-being.

  • ŸYou are emotionally available for your children when they need you.

  • ŸYou can still find time to use your gifts and enjoy your lives.

Final points

As leaders, coaches, business people and human beings, you have the extraordinary privilege of influencing those around you. Whether you are aware of it or not, your presence, or lack thereof, speaks volumes to those who depend on you, love you and need you.

Are you living a life that serves a purpose greater than your wants?

Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and visit my website for more info!


Michelle L. Raymond, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Michelle is a multi-potentialite. She has worked in numerous industries throughout her career, gaining extraordinary experience and perspective. This has given her a unique ability to creatively problem-solve, strategise and connect with people on a deep and authentic level.

Her experience includes Executive and Leadership Coaching, Psychoneuroimmunology Diagnostics, Trauma Coaching, Relationship and Family Coaching, Young Adult Coaching, Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consulting, Integrative Well-being and Spiritual Coaching. Michelle looks at things holistically and has a practical and "down-to-earth" approach. She is trained and certified in numerous methodologies and frameworks and thus can pull from her knowledge and intuition to find the best fit for her clients' journey and outcome.

As well as being an avid writer, Michelle also records podcasts and vlogs to promote conscious living, personal mastery, spiritual growth, healthy relationships and parenting and mental health.



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