Rachel Nicks on How She Relentlessly Prioritizes as a Working Mom

“Stressing is not productive.”

Rachel Nicks is a certified hatha yoga, barre, T.R.X., kettlebell, Pilates, prenatal and postpartum fitness instructor, one of the main instructors for the MIRROR, a certified DONA doula, and a working actress who appears on popular shows like “Grey’s Anatomy” and “New Amsterdam.” When asked what her most important role is, she answers: “mother.” She works hard to make sure she prioritizes her family, while still bringing her best at work — without adding the unnecessary guilt of perfection. 

“At any moment, I may have an audition sent my way. There are weeks when I have five auditions plus MIRROR, and sometimes I’m shooting a show, on top of being a wife and a mom. It’s extremely difficult to prioritize,” she tells Thrive. “But what I have accepted with my busy career and motherhood is that I don’t have enough time for everything. So I pride myself on being completely present when I’m working and mothering. I’m honest with myself and others about my situation, but I’m human, and there are only 24 hours in a day.” She jokes that after having her son, she said to her husband, “I’m the most unprepared yet the most present I’ve ever been.”

“The other crazy thing is that my careers in acting and fitness have blossomed more than ever since having my son,” she adds. “Now, I use the time I have wisely. I try not to waste time second-guessing myself or stressing about my lack of time. As a wise teacher of mine at Juilliard taught me years ago: Stressing is not productive.” 

Getting enough rest is key. “As a busy working mother, I prioritize my sleep,” she adds. “I have worked really hard to accept that a rested Rachel is better for everyone.” 

And she notes that it’s important to remember that if everything on your list doesn’t get done in the most perfect manner, it’s OK. “ If there is a pile of folded clothes in the corner, or some dishes in the sink, I haven’t failed,” she explains. “That is an ongoing challenge for me. My grandmother told my mother years ago, and my mother reminded me when I had my son, that ‘No mother gets an award for a clean house.’” 

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