The Working Mom- An age old balancing act
If you think being a mom is a full-time job, try being a working mother. It's literally a roller coaster ride, as you are constantly juggling between work, kids and household, and are expected to be efficient with all the tasks at hand. As rightly said by Annabel Crabb, a journalist, TV presenter and mother of three “The obligation of working mothers is a very precise one: the feeling that one ought to work as if they do not have children, while raising one's children as if they do not have a job”. Only women, especially mothers have the superpower to execute this supernatural phenomena. Jobs are demanding and so are the kids. In this constant struggle to make ends meet, women find themselves constantly guilty for not giving enough time to their kids.
Are you too an overwhelmed mother struggling to create that balance? Relax, the good news is, you can be both a good mom and working mom.
Here are a few golden tips that can help you manage your kids alongside of a full-time job:
Prioritizing is the key: Everyday is different, sometimes the kids are more demanding and other times your work needs you. It's important to prioritize and give your full concentration to whatever needs your attention more. We understand its taxing and very difficult but trust us it will definitely help you win the deal.
Planning: We know your hands are super-full, it’s almost next-to-impossible to go as per your planned schedule, but it surely helps. It’ll keep you organized, so follow it as much as possible. It helps you make sure you spend quality time with your kids. Take them for outings on weekends, plan something super-fun with them. Making a to-do-list and setting reminders will also help you channel your energy efficiently throughout the day.
Prepare for the week during the weekends: Do your time-taking chores like washing, cleaning and organizing during the weekend. Prepare for meals in advance, example: prepare and freeze gravy masala for the whole week, chop veggies and store them in airtight containers so that you spend less time cooking during your busy weekdays. Best time to do these things is when they sleep till late or their nap times.
Involve and include: Take time to make fun learning games or tasks for them, which they can play/do during your absence. They will be super-excited to show you what they have created when you are back from work. Also try to include them with you when you are going out for a walk or workout sessions, during cooking, cleaning etc. This way you can catch up on all your tasks at hand along with never missing them and their smile.
Learning to be more patient with your kids: Famous author Franklin P. Jones once said that “You can learn many things from children. How much patience do you have, for instance.” We know they ask questions, and that too, too many of them, call you over and over again while you are doing something important. We understand that it’s irritating and frustrating however you need to be mindful and patient. Don't snap at them, be patient and tell them to give you time. Explain the situation to them so that they understand.
Take it easy: Being easy on yourself by being more practical and realistic. Someone rightly said, “There is no way to be a perfect mother but a million ways to be a good one.” Don’t be hard on yourself, keep realistic goals, allow yourself to make mistakes and be ok with it.
Don’t stop their inquisitive mind: Growing up, kids constantly ask questions and they don't stop. After a long tiring day, sometimes it gets frustrating to answer the never-ending questions repeatedly on loop. Here it's important for the parent to keep calm and understand that kids are piecing together information in order to further their knowledge and make sense of the world. So don’t stop them, instead ask them to hold their thoughts and give you 2 minutes and make sure you get back to them in that timeframe and listen to them.
Get adequate sleep: We know it's a struggle to put them to sleep. A good night's sleep is important not only for them but for you too. So sleep at least for 7 hours as your body needs it. It helps you get your energy levels up and you feel refreshed and get going for the rest of the day.
Get some “me” time: Wake up before your kids and family, and spend some time with yourself. Have a cup of coffee in your garden or balcony, read a book, exercise, do what you like to do. Investing in “me” time is also important as it helps you unwind,release stress and connect to yourself. So make sure that you get some “me” time during the day. Morning is the best time as it's the only time you’ll be alone with yourself during the day.
Take a break; raising kids is no walk in the park. For a working mother like you, it's even more difficult as it stresses you out physically as well as mentally. Taking out time for yourself is really important. Go out for an hour or two with your friends, talk to your partner and ask him to pitch in for babysitting while you’re out. Or if you are blessed to have an extended family don’t shy away from taking their help and spend some quality time with your partner. After all, you deserve that break.
Get help: Ask your loved ones to pitchin. Hire a househelp, or nanny to look after your household work and the kids, so that whatever time you get at home, you are able to spend quality time with your little bundles of joy.
It's time that working mothers realize their true potential and continue moving forward and not to be bogged down by self or societal pressure. We strongly believe that a woman can be both an aspiring and ambitious work professional and yet be deeply connected and committed to their kids and family.