Every mother is unique. Although there are standards we can set as a society for being a “good mom,” we can’t define motherhood for everyone. Balancing the priorities of career and motherhood have long been discussed and analyzed. What can we share on the subject that is new? How can we perform better as mothers and in our career? Here are three things to let go, if you want to achieve balance between work and home.
Let Go of the Guilt!
Don’t let the haters occupy your brain rent-free. There are many people who judge others for spending too much time at work, for falling short on duties at work, for not being ambitious enough, or for allowing career ambitions to impact family time. Some are so skilled they can flip back and forth and argue both sides of the debate. The time you spend defending yourself or worrying over others’ opinions of you is a waste of your time. These people may be your neighbor, your sister, or even your mother-in-law. It does not matter. Free your mind of these judgmental people and let go of the guilt.
Let Go of the Anxiety!
Make good decisions on the front-end and reduce worries later. When you are juggling responsibilities, you will need to delegate. At times, you must delegate childcare duties. Carefully vet anyone who cares for your children, including nannies, daycare professionals, pre-schools, and summer camps. Don’t be embarrassed to ask questions. Always get referrals. Verify companies with the Better Business Bureau. If you do the research on the front end, you can have a semblance of peace that you child is all right so you can keep your head in the game at work.
Let Go of the Need to Do It All Yourself!
Regardless of your income level, everyone can create an environment of support. Categorize and prioritize the things you want to accomplish in your home and family life. Categories may include: Housework, Cooking, Homework, Family Time, Reading to the Children, and other things. Next determine items that are family relationship builders and make those items a high priority to do yourself. Perhaps you make a vow always to read to each child every night. Seek support for the lesser tasks. Trade services with a friend. Maybe one week, you spend your Sunday afternoon making 10 crockpot freeze-in-a-bag meals for you and your friend’s family and the next week she does it for you. If travel is part of your job, perhaps you can find a college student who would love a few days away from the dorm to be a nanny at a reasonable rate. Accept that you can’t do it yourself and be creative to find ways to create an environment of support.
The Bottom Line
Balance is difficult. Let go of these three things and increase your clarity of thought, your confidence, and efficiency. The result may be a balanced lifestyle. Don’t expect perfection. One week you may be a bit short in career and the next in motherhood. Take it one day at a time and do your best.