Maintaining a a healthy work family balance is one concern almost every working mum I know has. You probably worry about this as well.
Just recently I got this comment on the super working mum facebook fanpage:
“I work so hard, it keeps me away from my children; and that makes me so unhappy”
My heart reached out to this mum. I replied briefly on facebook but I thought to address this in depth since you probably have this same thought passing through your mind constantly.
Can I have it all?
My opinion and you don’t have to agree with this is that motherhood is a large part of who you are as a woman and this will affect every other thing you do.
You may ask yourself “Can I have it all?” I agree with Oprah Winfrey who once said – “You can have it all not just all at once”.
I also read somewhere that out of work, family and marriage- a woman must choose TWO to succeed in or flunk at all three.
I personally think every super working mum can avoid failing at all three by realizing that there is a time for everything.
With a change in mind-set and the tips I outline, I believe you can achieve a healthy work family balance.
Ditch the Working Mum Guilt
First of all, you need to ditch the working mum guilt. I am sure you are working for a good reason and at this point doing your best for your family.
Drowning in guilt will not help you improve the situation. This is your current reality. You can either choose to continually get depressed by it or change it.
What you need is an action plan on how to enjoy your work and your family simultaneously. Need guidance on how to deal with working mum guilt, click the link.
What Can You Change to Achieve Work Family Balance
Take a step back and assess your current situation and what you can change about it. At this point in your life, what is important?
If your work is not allowing you spend time with your children and this is making you unhappy then what can you do to achieve work family balance?
- Can you change your job to a less strenuous job?
- Can you ask for flexible working hours or fewer hours at work?
- Can you start a work from home business instead?
- Can you reduce your business hours?
Change is one of the hardest things ever. Moving from something that is certain to uncertainty takes COURAGE. It will cost you but the good news is that you will be gaining much more.
Money isn’t Everything
You may ask yourself how will you cope with the less income if you reduce your hours at work or take a less paying job. I had this same worry when I changed jobs in order to spend more time with my daughter.
I did get a pay cut when I changed jobs as I decided to work more locally and not in the city. However I understood that money isn’t everything.
The question I asked myself was “what is the point of having all the money in the world and not have a good relationship with my daughter?”
A pay cut may mean a change to your lifestyle and spending habits (yes we are back to this word “change”).
- What can you do without?
- In what ways can you spend less?
- How can you save money?
Being CONTENT with what you have will help you live within your means and avoid horrendous debt.
The irony is that a pay cut may work in your favor. Because I work locally now, I spend less on transportation, food and even my wardrobe!
Get Some Support
Get support from your spouse, if you are married and most especially from other working mums.
No disrespect but sometimes your spouse may not understand the internal struggles you are dealing with as working mum. He gives you advice from his point of view and I am sure you appreciate this but sometimes it is not enough to propel you.
So more importantly I suggest having a support network of other working mums, who are liked minded and also desire to achieve work family balance.
Encourage one another. Share with each other what works for you. Knowing you are not along in this struggle will help you a great deal.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Other Mums
You may see another mum doing it all, climbing the career ladder smoothly, driving the latest car, living large and on top of all that, everything looks fantastic with her marriage and family.
That’s her and this is you. Like they say, the grass always looks greener on the other side.
Every mum’s situation is different. You don’t know what sacrifices she might have made in the past or what her life is about.
Stay focused on you, your family and your goals. Comparing yourself to another mum would only depress and slow you down.
Keep Evaluating Your Situation
Keep in mind that this won’t be your situation forever. When your children are older, or things are better, you will know what needs to be done.
The bottom line is take each day as it come. You would have invested in the right thing and will reap the rewards in due season.
Who said being a working mum was easy?
I would love to know how you manage to achieve work family balance? What areas are you struggle with? Please share in the comment section below. Thank you
Read this mum’s experience on how she achieves work family balance.