In an ideal world, working mums want to spend their days killing it in the office, and continue their rock stardom when going home to their families, with everything running smoothly until bedtime when they get to go to sleep and do it all again the next day.
However, many working mums are aware that the relentlessness of a full-time, pressurised job can often come against her when navigating her way around parenting, too.
Is it possible to juggle everything in a way that works for both her family and her? Let’s explore the ways in which working mums can reach their career and mum goals at the same time.
Establish a Routine
Part of successful parenting is to work by the clock, navigating systems and routines in the day-to-day. When kids and parents know what to expect on a given day of the week, everything runs more smoothly meaning that less energy is used on stress management and more can be used on potential hiccups or busy times.
This helps to teach kids about the importance of working in a team to get things done. For example – when the children get home from school, teach them to empty their school bags so that no letters from the school are missed. Change out of their school clothes and get clothes ready for school the next day. Do homework before watching TV and work together to get the house in order.
Routines will help to establish responsibility for your kids, which is an excellent tool for them to have in the future, as well as helping with daily operations in the future.
Make Time for Family Time
Quality time with your family matters and this is, even more, the case for working mums. Each day, whether its 30 minutes or a few hours, take the time to spend quality time with the family. Be present with your family and your kids – they will thrive on this quality time, as will you!
There are many benefits of reading with kids, for example- as it helps with their cognitive development, speech and language skills, as well as helping to increase their imagination and storytelling. Make that a part of the routine so that kids will look forward to quality time with their mum.
Do fun, outdoor things at the weekends, taking your focus away from work.
Work Out The Definition of ‘Balance’
Who can be sure that work-life balance actually exists? Work out your personal definition of the term to allow for flexibility- more like ‘work-life ebb and flow’. By renaming that concept, you are reminded that there doesn’t need to be established balance in all areas of your life.
Sometimes work will have to take priority, and vice versa for family time- eventually it will all balance out. As a working mother, your life is about adapting and blending things together.
Managing an event with a baby on tow might seem like hell to some, but be assured nobody will bat an eyelid. Also, it is perfectly doable to breastfeed and work on the computer at the same time – pillows make excellent baby props!
Operate Flexibly – Know When to Let Go
There will be times when you will be torn between a school concert and running a conference call- staying home with your sick kid, or bringing them to work with you- this could mean working overtime or working from home. Stay flexible.
As much as you may want to be all and do all, there will be times that you will need to delegate to others. If your organisation operates online, using Software development services will help to manage the day-to-day operations. Other people become experts in their field while you get to make sure the kids are well looked after.
Think about what is important in the moment. Knowing your business is running smoothly or being there for your child when they’re sick? Yes, it is important that you make the money, but the wellbeing of your kids is important, too.
Communicate with Everyone
Communication is key in any relationship whether it’s explaining to kids why you can’t do things or talking with your employer or employees about the needs of your family at that moment in time. Being honest and open in your dialogue is a very important element of keeping relationships healthy and creating an understanding and levels of respect.
‘If you don’t ask, you don’t get’ and this is very much the same concept when communicating with important people in your lives.
Kids are very understanding once they know and understand why something is happening that way, but there is a degree of them having to be flexible and forgiving of your time. Treat them with this reason in mind- thank them to let them know that you appreciate the fact that they give up their time with you so that you can work to support them.
Focus on Your Reason Why
Working hard and bringing up a family can be emotionally and physically draining at times. It may be hard to remember exactly why you chose to do this. Focus on the bigger picture, keeping family goals in mind in addition to your career.
Don’t let the guilt of working take away from your reason for doing so- to support the family. If guilt every does rise, remember the reason for doing this and refuse to let guilt get in the way of you working towards your goals. You are doing all you can for your kids, and you’re acting as a role model for their future.
Manage Your Expectations
While you can work to earn enough to take your family on holiday every year, you don’t have to kill yourself in order to achieve that. Society has an excellent way of telling others what they should and shouldn’t do or be in order to be deemed successful.
You don’t have to work to earn more than you need because society says you need a large bank account. Think about the things that mean success for you. Is it having enough and a loving family, or is it having several zeros in your bank account at the expense of your kids?
Working mums may be able to have it all after all, but take the time to work out what ‘it all’ means to you on a personal level.