Some women have the choice to stay at home permanently and be full time mothers, while others have to or choose to work. Still more try to maintain a balance between a satisfactory career and a fulfilling home life. If you are a full time working mum with a family to care for what can really work is a strong support system in the workplace and within personal relationships. A pre-planned support system allows you to manage in cases of unplanned situations or emergency, such as a call from the schools sickbay.
Some Tips for Achieving Work Life Balance
- Set Priorities – “You can do anything you want, you just can’t do everything.” We are women need to understand and accept this. It is helpful to set priorities, to look ahead, do your planning, set your priorities and goals and then work the plan.
- Mange Job/Work Stress – The last thing you want to do is take your job frustrations out on your family. It is unhealthy for everyone in the family to suffer for your job/work stress. It is better to vent to someone else or set and agree to specific times to discuss work with your partner. It is important not to continue to think about work after you get home – Distinguish between Work time and Family time. Decide to ‘close the door’ on your work each day and be completely present with your family. “If you’re half-working throughout the evening, you won’t be giving your complete focus to your work or your family, thus decreasing the quality of your efforts on both.”
- Take a Mini Break – If after a hard day at work, more tasks await you at home, take a break. After work, if you have the opportunity do something to break the day before going home to start the “second half of the day” try going to the gym or running errands like grocery shopping, a visit to the salon or something as simple as using your commute time to unwind, listen to music or an audiobook. This can give you the energy you need to deal with the homes’ demands and put you in a better frame of mind.
- Managing distractions – Most of the day is usually spent responding to bb messages, texts, phone calls, face book, in addition to emails. It is important to manage this flow of information and not to allow it all to become distractions in your day and stop you from getting through your tasks. It could be helpful to set aside a set amount of time per day to deal with all this information, return calls and respond.
- Learn to Say “No” – to achieve work-life balance, you need to get really good at saying No. Measure yourself against your goals, not other people. Because you can do it doesn’t mean you have to do it all (at the same time). The main challenge is learning the delicate act of “balance”. We all know women who are burnt-out, over-stressed, and ultimately missing out on the benefits of what a balanced life can afford them. However, consciously choosing what you spend your time doing can increase the odds you will be balanced and fulfilled as a wife, mother and/or career woman.
- Plan some time for you – Most mums spend all their time thinking about other people – the spouse, kids, home, domestic staff, boss, in-laws, events and in all of that rarely find the time to dedicate to just themselves. Do not underestimate the importance of taking time to recharge and focus on you. Find what is relaxing for you and make time for it. Decide how frequently you can do it and stick to it! Make time to spend time with your girls to just hang out and spend time together. You find that you come back home more energised after some “me” time.
- Lastly spend time on Romance – As cliché as it sounds find time to “date” your husband again. How many mums with all they have to do remember to create time to spend with their spouses? Spend time doing the things that you both enjoy. It can be helpful to set specific day(s) in the week to spend time alone, go for dinner, watch a movie, just sit down and talk. Maintaining the intimacy in your relationship is key to being a truly balanced mum (working or not).
Do you have some tips or strategies to manage work-life balance? Do share with us at LagosMums.