You may be a nurse who wears a medical uniform or a teacher who spends her mornings in the classroom, but most importantly, you’re a mother. And as a mother, you have a family to care for, bills to pay, and a busy life, to boot. All this makes balancing work and family life a little complicated, but it can be done. And once your life is more balanced, with time for yourself, time for your family, and time for your work, life can be so much more satisfying.However, there are several impediments to achieving this balance.
Perfectionism is a big one. Now, there’s no denying that perfectionism is important; attention to detail can prevent embarrassing mistakes in your work or at home. But not always is an overabundance of perfectionism necessary, or even helpful. An employee with an extreme drive for perfection will often take on more work, feel more pressured, and may develop more anxiety than the average worker. This can be detrimental to emotional health, and may cause burnout. It is also a likely way to disturb a work-home balance; a mother who is so busy at work may not be spending enough time with family, or caring for herself.
For some people, it is literally impossible to accomplish everything they seek to complete in a day. These people run themselves ragged, trying to stuff everything in, but something always gets left out; whether it’s sleep, self-care, or spending time with family. Don’t wait until you reach that point. Organize your day so that the things that are most important to you get done. Delegate, when necessary. Sometimes, you don’t need to be the one doing everything. Accept that you are doing what you are able to do in the best way possible, and that is truly impressive. Anything else is superhuman.
Combatting stress begins with accepting reality. You can only overcome that which you accept. Once you are aware of the stressors in your life, you can figure out which can be partially or completely eliminated, depending on your priorities, and then you can work to develop coping strategies that will allow you to deal with the remaining stress.
Often, chronic stress results from a lack of self-care. Exercising, or spending time writing out your thoughts and the events of your day in a journal, are two excellent options for releasing your stress. If you see that your work-life is overshadowed by anxiety or overtiredness, you may want to make self-care one of your priorities.
Stress can often be the result of a lack of balance in life. Moms today often feel the need to “do it all.” They want to provide everyone and everything in their life with extraordinary care and devotion, but not always is this possible. They aim to create a fully balanced life, but the only way to truly balance things out is to compromise. That way, what gets completed is done well. Taking too much on yourself doesn’t help anyone. Sometimes, it is necessary to say no to something, in order to say yes to something else. The question is, what do you want to say yes to?
In order to know where you want to draw the line between home and work, it is best to evaluate your priorities. What is more important, being home when your son comes home from school, or earning enough money to pay for him to go to school? Or perhaps the most important thing for you in your life is caring for your elderly parents, when you know they’d prefer your care.
Sit down and discuss these with your spouse or partner, and decide together on what you should be contributing to the relationship and to your family overall, and how to balance it all out.
Once you figure out where your priorities lay, you can arrange your schedule to truly fit your needs and values. It may not be able to be done immediately, but it can be done slowly, over time.
And often, compromising is the best way to balance things out.
Managing time wisely allows you to find more time for the different things you want to complete each day. Balancing home and work often requires you to set limits on the amount of time to be spent on each.
Aside from spending time with family and at work, take care to take the time to care for yourself. Exercising and healthy meals may seem unimportant, but they are extremely beneficial habits for moms, or for anyone else, for that matter. Exercise done correctly (in the right increments) will lower your stress levels. Exercising, and eating healthy foods, will both boost your immune system, help you stay physically fit, and strengthen your muscles.
Shifting the Balance
Life circumstances change as time goes on, and your priorities can change, as well. What works for you today may not make sense in another ten months. Therefore, every so often, reevaluate, and see if you’d like to readjust the balance you’ve created. There is no ideal universal balance; every mother has different goals and unique circumstances in life. You can choose the balance you feel is best for you, and that can be your perfect balance.
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