Time Slow Down: 5 Tips for Creating Balance for the Working Mom
I sometimes feel like the subject of "balance" is a complete waste of time. Let’s face it, if our to-do list is completely full of action items that absolutely must happen today, and there’s usually no way around that. However, I have realized that usually we tend to put too much stress on ourselves to complete every task possible in one day, or we’re seriously being unrealistic about our task-time expectations. This typically holds true for women period, not just the moms.
Since working in the corporate world and building a social marketing business at the same time, and then transitioning to being a full-time work from home mom I’ve definitely learned a thing or two about non-existent balance haha! So these are 5 of my top tips for attempting to create balance while working, mom-ing, being a good partner, drinking plenty of water, growing full thick edges, doing squats, having full eyebrows, and not killing myself while sucking my stomach in for pics :-).
1. Make time to organize your thoughts. If you don’t pay attention to anything else I write, THIS is key. I’m not really sure what happened with my memory post kid #2, but if I don’t write it down, it’s not going to happen. So what I do is pull out my planner on Saturday evening or at some point on Sunday and I write out things that must happen each day for the upcoming week. This includes my schedule, the kids’ schedules (because I was the world’s WORST mom at the start of Kindergarten and forgetting due dates), and I even write down the day I’m going to grocery shop. Sometimes if there are specific meals I want to cook I’ll throw them on there too just to help with prepping in advance. If things change during the week evaluate nightly or early in the mornings before anyone is awake to determine if you need to make changes. My planner of choice the past 3 years has been an Erin Condren. This year I switched to the monthly planner design and added additional note pages in the back so I could just take one book with me vs. a planner and a notes book. You have 5 -10 minutes to do this step, I PROMISE!
2. Know that you realistically can’t do it all without something suffering – PRIORITIZE. I think that’s pretty self explanatory. Prioritize and work your way through the day accordingly. I pushed so hard my 1st 2 years in my home-based business while still working that there were some things that I just couldn’t do (cook everyday, some Saturday girl’s hangout), but it as TOTALLY worth it. My priority was paying off debts, saving, and traveling with the family. Easy decision. On a daily scale you have to determine what won’t be detrimental if it just doesn’t happen. Then don’t beat yourself up when it doesn’t happen.
3. Schedule “me time” like everything else is scheduled. Here again, no explanation needed. If you don’t schedule it, it might not happen. And don’t forget to put the childcare on the schedule for this as well. If you don’t take care of you, you CERTAINLY can't efficiently take care of anyone else.
4. Set family expectations when you will be unavoidably busy. Let the kids, spouse/partner, and bff’s know that this week or month is going to be crazy, but that you will make time for them. You don’t want to work so hard that you forget to live, but if there are days when you know without a doubt you can’t cook or take the kids to the park let them know in advance. The family needs love too, so you may need to schedule play time as well.
5. Make sure your personal expectations are realistic. Don’t put 30 tasks on your to-do list when you know good and well that your 18 hours awake won’t allow for it. Know your limits and spread your tasks accordingly while you’re doing #1.
If you know me personally, you know I personally feel as though balance doesn’t exist, but these are some of the things I do to keep myself a tad but sane. Let me know what you do to help find balance or if any of these help you!