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Want to become super efficient at work? Have a baby

Want to get something done? Ask a busy person.

Want to become a master of efficiency at work and home? BECOME A MOM.

An awesome study out of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis reveals that over the course of their careers, it is women with children—more than any other demographic, including men, fathers and women without kids—who achieve the most at work.

For the group studied, motherhood was in fact a catalyst for increased work output. In this case, the number of academic papers published by professional economists was greater for mothers, more than any other group, both before and after babies were born.

There’s more, via The Washington Post:

The authors found that within the first five or so years of their career, women who never have children substantially underperform those who do. Mothers with at least two children perform the best.
Source: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis
Source: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

The study found that in the early childhood years, women’s work output takes a dip, but those same women actually more than made up for that brief decline through increased work output in the years before and after a baby’s birth.

As Quartz notes, women make up for the stress of new motherhood “by being hyper-productive before they have kids, and after.” Turns out that the demands of mom life—changing a diaper with one hand while feeding a toddler lunch with the other, for example—actually do give you powerful skills that translate to kicking butt at work.

Over the course of a career, mothers are the most efficient workers around. Boom.

P.S. Want to find your superpowers as a new working mama? Check out our video course taught by weeSpring founder (and super-efficient mom of two) Allyson Downey. Work It: Your inspired guide to rock working motherhood is a video workshop that teaches you exactly how to get more done in less time, and how to make more money by overcoming the “mommy penalty” at work. You can feel less frazzled—PROMISE. Join us!

Liz is an award-winning journalist and editor, and the co-founder of Motherly. A former Washington Post editor, she thrives on all things digital community + social media strategy. Liz resides outside NYC with her husband, two sons, one daughter and one amazing au pair.

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