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Reese Witherspoon on Having a Career and Being a Mom: ‘It’s Good for Kids to See Women Working and Being Successful’

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Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Acting, running a business and being a mom to three kids? Yep, Reese Witherspoon does it all.

In fact, her ability to wear multiple hats is something the A-list star is keen to pass on to her kids Tennessee, 4, Deacon, 13, and Ava, 17.

“My mom worked, and I think it’s good for kids to see women working and being successful,” Witherspoon, 40, tells InStyle for its December cover story.

She adds, “I think it’s going to make them hard workers because they see that I don’t get much sleep.”

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The Oscar winner and Draper James founder admits that even though being a working mom is something important to her and her family, that doesn’t mean it’s easy.

“I’m just trying to hold on, trying to make it through,” she says. “My older kids help with the little one. It’s nice to have a big family.”

Witherspoon, who also has a helping hand in husband Jim Toth, knows the work is worth it for the zest for life she’s instilling in her children.

“I want them to grow up with passion,” she says. “This is the one life you get, and you have to live it to the very end.”

InStyle
InStyle

Another plus of the Wild actress’ seasoned years in the business? Being able to hand-pick her projects based on what she wants to do and whom she wants to work with.

“I’ve realized that life is too short to spend my time with anybody who doesn’t appreciate me, treat me with respect or bring value to the relationship,” she says of getting older. “I’m much more confident now, and I feel like I have the ability to say, “Nope, I don’t want to work with that person.”

RELATED VIDEO: Reese Witherspoon’s Street Style Decoded

And Witherspoon says her southern-inspired clothing and lifestyle brand, which just had its second store opening in Dallas, is something she’s extremely proud of.

“I’ve been acting for about 25 years, and I still love it, but I like the challenge of trying something else too,” says the Legally Blonde alum. “I find there are a lot of people talking about New York and Los Angeles, but there’s a whole world out there in between, and that’s who I like to tell stories about and make products for — people who love the life they have and have a sense of style that’s uniquely their own.”