What is it like being a full time mom and a full time entrepreneur? Many working moms desire work-life balance, but what does that even mean?
Motherhood is a beautiful journey, but it can also be challenging to balance with a career. Balance makes me think that I have a juggling act to perform. That everything needs equal attention; otherwise, I am not doing it “right”. But perhaps the idea of work-life balance really needs me to pay attention to these different areas fully at the right time of day. Whether you run your own business or are employed, here are some thoughts about what work-life balance might look like practically in daily life.
1. Prioritize your time
When balancing motherhood and a career, it’s crucial to prioritize your time. Make a list of what’s important and schedule your time accordingly. This way, you can ensure that you’re spending time on the things that matter most, both at home and at work.
2. Be present
When you’re at home, be present with your family. It means putting away distracting thoughts about that work situation and turning towards them as a person. It’s about leaning in, listening to their stories about their day, engaging with them in a game, and laughing about a song they made up in school.
It means having meals without devices and truly feeling the warmth of a hug, soaking in the emotions that arise from that. Being present in the moment is crucial for building strong relationships with your family and ensuring that you’re not missing out on precious moments. When you are at work, be fully present and committed to your clients and tasks at hand, but at home, attempt to give your full attention to your children and husband.
3. Set boundaries
It’s important to define your boundaries according to your priorities and values. Let your colleagues or clients know when you’re not available, and don’t feel guilty about it. It’s about making choices to say no to some things so that you can say yes to your family.
4. Create a flexible schedule
One of the most challenging parts of balancing motherhood and a career is finding time for both. Creating a flexible schedule that works for both can make all the difference. Ever since the pandemic hit, more employers have offered flexible working hours. Perhaps you could consider setting aside chunks of time dedicated to work and creating a schedule that works for you and your family.
5. Delegate tasks
Delegating tasks can help ease the burden of balancing motherhood and a career. Assign age-appropriate tasks to your children, enlist the help of a babysitter, or hire a part-time helper if possible. I know that chores can seem endless, but if you work out a plan, it won’t feel as overwhelming. Just remember that it’s ok to have a home that is less than ‘perfect’. Sometimes, laundry can wait until tomorrow. After that last game of Monopoly Deal.
6. Take care of yourself
As a mom, it’s easy to put yourself last. However, taking care of yourself is vital when balancing motherhood and a career. Schedule time for yourself, whether it’s exercising, reading, or taking a relaxing bath. Working moms always struggle with guilt. How would your life look if you showed more empathy towards yourself, especially when you fall short of the ideals you had in mind? Your life shouldn’t only revolve around your children or work; you also need to prioritize your own needs, listen to your exhausted body, or make time to process your emotions because you can’t shake off that guilt and don’t know why.
Moms, this list is not meant to burden you. It’s not meant to set unrealistic expectations for you. Think about what’s important to you and just take little steps towards creating the life that you dream of. Let’s embrace the fact that we will never be perfect and that it is OK. We can try our best to be present with all that intentional effort towards building a better family environment while chasing after our dreams. And that is more than enough. You are more than enough. You’ve got this.
If you would like to work through the guilt you feel as a mom, read this article by one of our working moms, Chayenne Tan.