With Mother’s Day right around the corner, it’s really making me reflect on the last three years I’ve been a mom and how each year was so different. I think becoming a mother has been the hardest but the most gratifying job I’ve ever had. I’m sure all mothers can relate when I say that that being a mother is the absolute hardest, but also the most rewarding job ever.
Being the working mom that I am, it throws a different set of challenges. Through it all, I’ve been able to learn how to prioritize and create boundaries. Not to say that I’ve figured everything out but I feel like I’ve finally gotten a hold of this whole working mom thing (let’s not jinx that as Chloe’s getting older)! So, this year, I teamed up with DSW Designer Shoe Wearhouse to share some of my truths about being a working mom!
Here are my top 7 Tips on What I Feel Every Working Mom Should Know:
My first tip, though it might be repetitive, is communication. On top of a group chat, we have a master family calendar visible in our home. I write down dates that I’m traveling or days that I might have a late night for events. This way Allen, and my in-laws (aka Chloe’s babysitters) are fully aware of my upcoming schedule so nothing is put on them last minute or a surprise. Being away from your family is stressful for you, but also for the people around you too! If you’re more digitally inclined, a shared Google Calendar works great too! I’m just old-fashioned in the sense that I like to have dates on paper!
2. Understand Your Limits
It’s easy as a working mom to feel guilty and to feel like you need to overcompensate. I used to try to do everything when I got home from a big trip. From the early mornings, to breakfast, to getting ready for school, to cleaning up, to picking up from school, bath time, dinner time and then bedtime! I would feel so bad for not being able to do the little things when I was gone that I felt like I had to do EVERYTHING! I’ve since learned that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Splitting responsibilities, setting ground rules and knowing your limits are super important. It’s not realistic for someone to do everything, so take it in stride!
3. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
With that said, it’s important to have a few people in your life that you can count on. Just like the saying goes, ‘when it rains it pours,’ so if you ever feel like you need a “you day,” or even an hour to get back into the groove- ask someone to help! Nothing is worse than bringing the stress of work back home. So if you need some time to clear your mind, don’t feel guilty!
4. Family Time Should Not Be Interrupted
I love what I do and nothing comes between me and my work, and that is my same attitude with my family. Boundaries and rules on both sides are paramount. Whether it be one hour or thirty minutes, just do your best to put that phone away and fully focus on making memories and being present. When Allen and I have family time, we love to take Chloe to get ice cream and she loves just running around at the mall or the park. Any wide open spaces, actually! There is no better feeling than seeing your child laugh so freely out of pure happiness.
5. Play Fair
Most of the time, I keep work at the office and when I’m home, I’m totally present with Chloe. There are days every once and a while that I work from home, and I have to get a lot of things done but those are the exceptions. I know that there are some parents who might be against this, but if mommy is doing work, I have to be fair in that I can’t expect her to entertain herself so I allow her some screen time. I’m vocal about it, so she knows what’s going on. When I’m writing emails, she can watch children-friendly YouTube shows, but once I’m done, screen time is over. You can’t expect them to be perfect, so you have to find some meet them in the middle!
(There are plenty of great educational videos and games that I’ve discovered that encouraged her learning vs just zoning out! Would you guys like me to do a post about that?)
6. Be Excited to Work
It was funny because a few weeks ago, Chloe told me that she didn’t want to go to school, she wanted to work instead. I don’t know if she fully understands what that means, but she assumes that work is fun for me because I express work with so much joy. I think she might think it’s playtime for mommy. Positive affirmations are so important, in all spaces! Kids are sponges and they absorb everything! Just last weekend, I ask if she wanted to go to the park or to work and she says work! Although we all work hard and have hard days, instead of complaining you should express how much you love to work and what a blessing it is to go to work and provide for the family. Hopefully, it will encourage her to be a strong working young woman.
sponsored by DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse, but all opinions are my own.
7. Ban the Word Balance
Some of you guys have probably heard me talk about this before but now I try to stay away from the word balance because we’re all trying to chase balance, and it’s exhausting! Once we feel like we’ve figured it out, all of a sudden it will shift and everything is out of whack again. If we’re constantly trying to chase balance, then it’s a never-ending uphill battle. I try to look at things as kind of a see-saw approach. There will be seasons that your work will be crazy and your personal life might have to be sacrificed. And there will be seasons where your family and your personal life will need you more and you’ll have focus more on that! It’s really hard to find the middle ground for a see-saw. So as long as you understand that there’s a season for everything, then you’ll feel a little bit better everything!
Like I said, I don’t have it all figured out but these tips and reminders have really helped me stay sane! Are any of you working moms? I’d love to hear your thoughts and your tips! Let me know down below!
PS: If interested, you can shop our family’s DSW Shoes via the below links!