Tamara Loehr Balance is B.S. Interview

Tamara Loehr Balance is B.S. Interview

How To Ditch Expectations

"Balance is B.S." is a handbook designed to change the mindsets of women in the U.S. who are the primary breadwinners of their households. Confronting head-on that the "work-life balance" doesn't actually work, Loehr has figured out a new solution after more than 20 years as a global entrepreneur. She outlines how to ditch expectations, uphold one's values and embrace a work-life blend.

In the U.S., and in Australia, where Loehr is based, a vast growing number of households are now helmed by breadwinning women. Gender diversity has proven positive impacts for businesses, and is seemingly a win-win: great for the economy, and great for ambitious women. However, Loehr believes this trend is giving rise to a problem that's hard to talk about across working households: women are working more outside the home, but they're not really working less inside the home.

Says Loehr, "My new book calls the 'B.S.' on 'balance' and presents a different way, giving women permission to blend their work and personal lives together without getting burned out. Women are increasing their expectations in their careers, but are not adjusting their expectations around their partners, parenting and personal lives." She continues, "Everyone is in pursuit of the elusive 'work-life balance' and is feeling guilty because it is simply impossible to get there. With my new book, I'm offering a different path for women to get out of this endless cycle."

Inclusive to all working women regardless of career trajectory or level of earning, "Balance is B.S." focuses on a unique self, work and personal blend in what Loehr calls "A Workbook for Rising Women." The title is broken down into three segments outlining how career-driven females can eliminate outdated expectations and gender roles in their work and personal lives. Highlighted topics in each section include focus on Self: filling up your soul; breaking of your bubble; Work: choose your own adventure, work-life blend, coping with pressure and financial promises and Personal: expectations, agreements; parent guilt; family dynamics; foster friends and why blending matters.

Each chapter is supported by practical exercises that readers can complete to identify their values, align their energies with what matters to them most, set expectations with key people in their lives, and map out the lives that they actually want.

Tamara Loehr is an Australian native, wife, and mother of two, who started her first business at the age of 19 after graduating college with a Bachelor of Visual Arts. Her 'sweat equity' model led her to winning a range of global awards. In 2018, she served as president of the Queensland Chapter of The Entrepreneurs' Organization (a 15,000 strong global network from America), and is now a member in the Young Entrepreneurs' Organization, representing 22% of the female membership and inspiring women to increase this number.

Loehr has also delved into the world of investment with a current focus on her online beauty-disrupter 'Dollar Beauty Tribe,' designed to promote cruelty-free, vegan indie brands. Loehr has become globally known as a leading wellness entrepreneur, and is the first Australian investor to commit 'Buy1Give1' to all her assets. She is proud to use her platform to share how women can have 'blended' lives without compromises.

Balance Is B.S.: How To Make A Work, Life Blend
Wiley
Author: Tamara Loehr

Interview with Tamara Loehr

Question: What inspired you to write Balance Is B.S?

Tamara Loehr: It started with my tribe. I always seek out a like-minded community where there is no B.S and judgement. A place where you focus on being the best version of yourself: in business, self and family. I found my tribe through EO and YPO (Young Entrepreneurs Organisation). YPO has an average turnover of $45M US but unfortunately has less than a 10% female membership. When it came to breadwinners, this is now 40% of women in the US. But women are doing more, not less, in the home.

What I discovered over my 20+ year journey as a breadwinner and entrepreneur is that balance is B.S. The women who had managed to become part of this small group of 10%ers were those who blended everything, not trying to balance. This inspired me to write the book as I felt compelled to share the formula for creating a life where you can have the best of all worlds (work, self and family) without compromise and burnout.


Question: What will readers take from Balance Is B.S?

Tamara Loehr: My book calls the 'B.S.' on 'balance' and presents a different way, giving women permission to blend their work and personal lives together without getting burned out. Women are increasing their expectations in their careers, but are not adjusting their expectations around their partners, parenting and personal lives. Everyone is in pursuit of the elusive 'work-life balance' and is feeling guilty because it is simply impossible to get there. With my new book, I'm offering a different path for women to get out of this endless cycle.

Inclusive to all working women regardless of career trajectory or level of earning, "Balance is B.S." focuses on a unique self, work and personal blend in what I call "A Workbook for Rising Women." The title is broken down into three segments outlining how career-driven females can eliminate outdated expectations and gender roles in their work and personal lives. Highlighted topics in each section include focus on Self: filling up your soul; breaking of your bubble; Work: choose your own adventure, work-life blend, coping with pressure and financial promises and Personal: expectations, agreements; parent guilt; family dynamics; foster friends and why blending matters.

Each chapter is supported by practical exercises that readers can complete to identify their values, align their energies with what matters to them most, set expectations with key people in their lives, and map out the lives that they actually want.


Question: What advice do you have for those suffering from parenting guilt?

Tamara Loehr: I share a lot about my family. One story that resonates with a lot of mums is titled 'Mummy don't go'. The guilt you feel as a mummypreneur can sometimes be overwhelming. It's important we put this into context.

Now, more than any other time in history, parents are spending more time with their kids. I don't remember spending as much quality time with my parents growing up. I emphasise 'quality'. Not being around your kids whilst they watch TV and you spend 3 hours cleaning and cooking.

When my daughter said to me 'mummy, please don't go' as I head overseas for a work/self-trip, I didn't take that guilt onboard. I know I have a lot of quality time with my children. The way I chose to look at this is by empowering her to see things differently and through my eyes.

My response was, 'You love school and get to go and see your friends every time you go. Mummy loves her work, loves travelling and meeting up with her friends. It's something that makes us both happy and we both get to do it.'

My book provides some context around what makes you a good parent, defining your role as a parent and how to stop entertaining the self and societal guilt.


Question: How can we ditch the unrealistic expectations we put on ourselves?

Tamara Loehr: We're told that women can have it all. So we put pressure on ourselves to achieve that. Now that we've managed to break into the business arena, we don't want to stuff it up by admitting that we have to make some compromises. So we tell ourselves it's possible to be 100% invested and kicking goals at work and 100% present at home as a wife and mother. It must be possible! We're supposed to have it all!

The reality is, 100% investment in every area all the time isn't possible. It's never going to happen, and when we try it and fail we just feel guilty. So the script in our heads is telling us that we can't really have it all, even while we keep pretending to try. It's a recipe for more guilt, more shame, more overwhelm. Instead of celebrating our high-powered, high-earning careers, we're worried that our husbands feel threatened and our kids feel neglected. Instead of enjoying our marriages, our children and our social lives, we're half-thinking about work all the time.

But I think women can have it all. I feel like I do.

It's just that 'having it all' might look different than the picture we've had in our heads. It might look like taking your husband with you on your business trips and enjoying kid-free time on the plane. It might be encouraging your employees' personal goals outside of work, to build a culture of reminding people in your company (including yourself) that they're human. You might choose to employ people you're friends with so that you can spend more time with them day-to-day.

You might just have to be more choosy about where you invest and when, and make the decision to get over anxiety about missing out on the thing you're not investing in right now. I like to say you can have it all, but you can't always have it all at the same time. I can 'have it all' in terms of having everything I want right now, today, but that doesn't mean I want everything all at once.


Interview by Brooke Hunter





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