Jori Hamilton 3m 847 #motherhood #career
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
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Women have been hit with stereotypes and societal pressures for years. Once upon a time, it was expected that women would stay home, away from the workforce, to raise children. In the 1980s-1990s, the “working woman” began to rise in popularity, both in the real world and in pop culture.
Today, modern women are expected to strike a balance. They have to be good mothers to their children while maintaining a successful career. But, if that sounds like you, you already know there are only so many hours in a day, and you can only stretch yourself so thin.
Thankfully, it’s not impossible to find that balance in a healthy, effective way. With some time management strategies and a focus on self-care, you can truly “have it all”.
Children and adults alike thrive on routine, and it’s important when you’re a working mother to follow one. Not only will it provide your children with a greater sense of security, but it will ensure you maintain a healthy work-life balance.
If you work out of the home, keeping a routine is easy. But, with millions of people making the switch to remote work, it’s important to set boundaries and basic schedules at home, too.
Working at home is a great way to spend more time with your family, but it can also be distracting. Keep the following tips in mind to establish a routine that helps you maintain balance:
- Have a dedicated office space within the home and keep work devices away from every other area
- Wake up at the same time each day
- Establish morning rituals
- Take breaks throughout the day
- Have lunch with your kids when they’re home
- Stop working at the same time each day
While you might need peace and quiet to get your work done, make sure to engage and interact with your kids whenever you have a break during the day. Limit their screen time so they’re not staring at a computer or tablet all day while they wait for you to finish. Engaging with them offering them some fun ideas will keep them busy and will ease your distractions.
If your job doesn’t allow you to work remotely, you’re unhappy in the office, or you’re feeling burnt out and overworked, it might be time to make a change.
It’s not easy to leave a job, even if you know it’s the right thing to do. If you’re a single mother and the sole source of income for your family, a successful career transition is important. So, understand the following as you make a switch:
- Know your strengths
- Push your boundaries and step out of your comfort zone
- Research potential companies and their environments
Sometimes, making a switch is the right thing. Just make sure you go about it the right way, so you don’t add more stress to your life and time away from your kids.
Speaking of stress, how are you feeling?
A poll from 2017 found that 57% of working mothers felt guilty over not spending enough time with their kids. Even if you’re able to find a healthy balance, “mom guilt” is very real and can take a toll on your mental health.
So, if you’re trying to be a super mom by maintaining a successful career and being there for your kids, that’s great. But, when are you taking time for yourself?
Self-care might sound like a buzzword, but it’s extremely important – especially when you’re trying to do it all.
You can’t give what you don’t have. So, if you’re burnt out, drained, frustrated, and fatigued, you’re not going to be able to focus at work or be the kind of mother you want to be. Find time each day to do something that relaxes you and reduces stress. It could be anything from exercising to journaling.
Additionally, watch out for common signs of anxiety and depression, like consistent feelings of worry or sadness. If you think your mental health is starting to be affected by your daily habits, seek out professional help. You’re not alone as you’re trying to balance these two aspects of your life, and you don’t have to go through it without support.
As you can see, balancing motherhood and your career is completely possible. It requires a few important choices, a lot of dedication, and a little bit of extra time management. But, when you do strike that balance, you can have the best of both worlds while focusing on the things that really matter.
Jori Hamilton is a freelance writer from the Pacific Northwest. She’s always interested in learning new things which leads her to write about a wide range of topics. When she’s not writing, you can find her hiking or buried in a book at a coffee shop. To learn more about Jori, you can follow her on Twitter.