While it's easy to think of mothers as the ones who stay home with their kids, that's not always the case. Some mothers work while still taking time off to raise their children. And while this can be a challenging balancing act, there are ways that you can have success in both worlds without feeling guilty or resentful toward either one of them.
1. Prioritize what is needed
Are you a post-partum mom who is deciding to go back to work? Or are you a working mom for years and want to make a change? It depends on what stage you are in. If it is easier for you, you must let go of some things and prioritize what is needed. For example, if you just gave birth, consider your health and your newborn; who will care for your little one? You can rest, choose to be home with your baby, or find a job where you can work remotely. There is nothing wrong with deciding what you think is best for you and your child. Remember that this is only temporary, and it will all pass.
On the other hand, if you have been working for years and want to spend more time with your family, take time off, or check other jobs that will suit work-life balance. It is important to consider your mental health and that you should be happy where you are. Being a happy mom motivates us to face daily challenges, make our family well-taken care of, be more driven to reach our goals, and be more confident and beautiful than ever.
2. Overcoming mom guilt
Juggling work and being a mom can be tiring and challenging. Oftentimes, moms feel guilt if their decision to go back to work is right. Sometimes they feel they are not a good mom for going back to work. It is normal to feel that way but sometimes, you have to do what is best for you and your little one. If it will make it easier, ask a trusted person like a family member or hire someone that can take care of your child while you are away.
Moms also feel guilt whenever they go out with their friends. You have to admit; that every time you are away, you feel guilty for leaving your baby at home. It is not wrong to go out and spend some time with your friends once in a while. Every mom needs a break, and you should do that too. It will help relieve stress and positively impact your mental health. After all your hard work (giving birth, breastfeeding, postpartum depression, sleepless nights, etc.), YOU DESERVE IT.
3. Have some alone time
Moms need to have alone time. It is a necessity. Experts say that lack of alone time or self-care may have negative effects like experiencing parental burnout, isolation, being overwhelmed, resentful, and anger, among others. If parents are unable o manage the mental, physical, and emotional load of being a parent, it can lead to more complications. A 2018 study shows that moms only have 32 minutes of alone time per day on average. It is important to ask for support whenever a parent requests alone time. It means they need a break on things and check on themselves, this is where the support of the spouse and other family members comes in.
In your alone time, you can sleep, take a shower, watch a show, or read a book, or you can just simply talk to your partner about schedules or plans on how you two can have breathers.
4. A good quality rest
Working moms or not, most of us lack quality sleep, especially those with babies and younger kids. Being sleep-deprived can have negative effects on both our physical and mental health. And with our health affected, it can also bring not-so-good results in our work, such as not performing well, being unable to focus, and the possibility of making bad decisions.
Lack of sleep can also affect our parenting, making our patience thin, leading to yelling, easily angered, irritable, and more. We need to recharge our minds and body. Being well-rested helps boost our immune system, be in a positive mood, think well, and be more productive. Practice healthy sleeping habits with your kids. Avoid caffeinated drinks and refrain from screen time a few hours before going to bed. Ask for help if you need someone to care for your baby, take a nap, and leave the chores behind when you feel sleepy; getting sleep is necessary. Remember, when we are energized, we can give our 100% love and support to our family.
5. Find your balance
You have to distribute things evenly in your life. Balance is important for your overall health and well-being. Sometimes, some situations are difficult to balance; like if your child is sick, you need to be 100% there for him. If you are working on a big project, you will put more time and effort into that need. It is important to determine what balance is needed in every situation. Do not overwork and stress yourself in doing everything.
Determining your balance depends on your priorities, job, support, wants, or needs. Once this has been determined, work on a solution on how you can balance each need. The key to this is if you and your family are happy with what you do, you can say there is balance. Know that each of us has different priorities, and what works for others may not work for us. Your balance will continue to change as you develop your career or as your kids grow. You also have to communicate this to your partner so you can both work together in tending to your family's needs and find balance in everything you do.