As a prelude to this let me confirm that I am nowhere near perfect at this and I’m pretty sure there is no such thing for any parent as the perfect balance. If you asked any of the important people in my life how good I am at balancing things I think that they would laugh and then fluff some form of answer. So as you read this, please realise that you are doing a great job! Leave no room for judgement of yourself and your current situation.
4 WAYS TO MANAGE WORK/LIFE BALANCE AS A MOM
- You do YOU
Create routines that work for YOUR family. This is so important. I often find myself consumed in how it’s going for my friends and how great their lives are that their routine is so flexible and they can do what they want to do when they want to do it. I call b.s. on a lot of this! As just as quickly as I’ve been swayed to think that things are perfect for them I soon realise that they have their own issues with how things work for them. There is EXTREME power when we lean in to our own instincts, trust that what we can give is enough, and allow ourselves the freedom to do things our way. There is NO such thing as balancing life perfectly, so don’t judge yourself based on what others are doing, or what others think you should be doing. The bottom line is that we will balance better the things that come easy to us, and what we value most. For some that is a clean house, or hitting the gym or pilates everyday, or meal planning, some value social outings with family, while others like staying in with their kids. Whatever it is…you do you! Don’t scroll small squares on your phone and say ‘gosh I need to be taking my kids to do more outdoorsy things” or “hmm I must not be prioritising my marriage because we don’t do date night every week”. Turn off the lies that tell you that you need to be balancing every one of those things perfectly in every season of life, and it needs to all be Instagram worthy. Turn off the lies that say our lives all need to look the same. Find what works for your home, for your sanity, and DO THAT!
- It’s ok to start again
This has been my biggest, and most valued lesson as a Mom in the last year, we are never stuck. I don’t like changing my mind, I like making plans. I REALLY like when these plans get accomplished (and quickly please), but that’s just not my life right now with my two little men and my business and my plans to move house. Even if that means I may look a little disorganised at times, the reality is I am NOT stuck. My family has the freedom to do what works best for us, and do what provides us the most mental space to love, and give and enjoy. You also have this freedom, so if something doesn’t work or you have a bad day/week/moment, start again. It’s ok!
This was probably the most important thing I have learnt since having kids. Whether it’s help in the home, help with the kids or their activities, help with work etc, don’t be afraid to ask for help. This isn’t showing weakness, in fact I truly believe this is showing your strength. Some of the greatest business minds of our time have talked about the importance of delegating and asking for help. Jessica Jackley one such hugely successful entrepreneur said “deciding what not to do is as important as deciding what to do”. Asking for help and delegating out roles is key, even if that means you can’t return the favour at that moment. You will honestly be a better mom in the long run for it.
- Let Mom Guilt Come and Go
It just isn’t possible to talk about working mom life or even mom life alone for that matter and not talk about mom guilt. This could be an essay in itself. But the truth…… your kids don’t want perfect, they just want you. So even if it is just 30 minutes a day, climb over the Lego and LOL dolls (mind your feet!!) and sit with them in the mess, be ok with them seeing you tired. They don’t crave balance, or perfection or all the toys and treats in the world (ok it’s possible they may think they do lol), but the reality is they crave you.
You’ve got this, I say it all the time, but I believe it. You are enough, balanced or not!