Being a mom of two, a wife, blogger, and an entrepreneur with a long to-do list, I know how tough it can be to find that elusive work-life balance everyone seems to be striving for. In fact, maybe balance isn’t the right word after all. There will always be times when one area of my life demands more of me, so it’s more a matter of adapting and going with the flow, wherever it may take me.
As much as I love every bit of this life I’ve chosen and all the blessings that come with it, I still struggle to feel fully caught up sometimes. I question whether I’m distributing my energies fairly amongst myself, my loved ones, and my work. There are days when I feel like I don’t even have a minute to breathe and be fully present so I can truly enjoy every moment I spend doing things I love with the people I love. Some days, I’m working on several projects with deadlines looming and I barely get any quality time with my children. But being a business owner and having a wonderful team also means that I can take a day off to be there when my children need me most — to chaperone field trips, attend ballet recitals and care for them when they are sick.
I often refer to what I call the “seemingly unattainable (insert unicorn pic here) work-life balance.” Finding balance is a song and dance we play between giving enough of ourselves to the world where we’re impactful and effective and giving ourselves what we need to rest and reset. There is no black or white here. Just do the best you can and give yourself some grace.
How to Create More Balance in Our Lives
Maintaining balance (or harmony) between life’s demands is key to preventing chronic stress and burnout. Here are 10 tips to help you create more work-life balance in your own busy life.
#1 Set boundaries.
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m guilty of working late into the evening and on weekends. One thing I find helpful is to give myself working hours and then try to stick to those as closely as I can. If you’re a working mom and managers or coworkers try to contact you outside of working hours, don’t be afraid to set boundaries with them, too. No one else can advocate for you but you.
#2 Stay organized.
Build a system that works for you and saves you time in the long run. Sure, setting up an organizational system can take some time on the front end. But once it’s up and running, you’ll feel more relaxed and easy-going because you have everything laid out. Use a weekly planner, Google calendar, your notes app, a dry erase calendar or board in your home, or explore what organization apps are available to help keep you on track.
#3 Make time for yourself.
Whether daily or at least once on weekends, block out some time in your calendar that you dedicate to yourself. Do some exercise, read, journal, take a nap or pamper yourself — do whatever helps fill your cup. When you give yourself time to rest and reset, you can show up for the rest of the world feeling more grounded and energized.
#4 Connect with other moms.
As a working mom, you should never feel like you’re alone in this because you aren’t! There are many ways to connect with other moms, such as through your kids’ schools, Miami Mom Collective meetups and events, and online community groups. Here you can find lasting friendships, plenty of advice, and a supportive shoulder to lean on.
#5 Get your kids involved in home tasks.
For example, get your kids involved in dinner prep, cleanup, and after-school/weekend chores. There are plenty of age-appropriate chores you can delegate. And the time it saves you results in more time you can spend having fun with the fam.
#6 Practice being more present.
Avoid spending excessive time thinking about kid or home-related stuff when you’re at work. Likewise, when you’re with family, maximize your time with them by staying off your phone and not worrying about work.
#7 Streamline your life.
Nowadays, we’re so fortunate we can do so many of our errands online or via an app. Target’s drive-up service is a working mom’s dream and Amazon Prime can (almost) guarantee two-day delivery on most items. Many local businesses also have curbside pick-up available. There are many ways to get your groceries delivered, too. And while it’s still nice to pop into the store and browse, you can save a lot of time by having it delivered.
#8 Schedule family fun time every week.
Create a ritual where the whole family gets together for an evening or a full day of fun and games. You can even use this time to go for a walk, swim, or bike ride together and get some exercise while spending quality time with each other.
#9 Curb your expectations and standards.
The truth is that sometimes the house will look like chaos. And you have to be willing to say, “So be it, I will deal with it tomorrow.” Be realistic about what you can truly take on and manage in one day and allow room for imperfection. Don’t be hard on yourself when you can’t “do it all!” Just do your best but leave room for yourself to breathe and relax, too.
#10 Ask for help.
When you’re drowning in tasks, ask a friend or family member for help, delegate more tasks to your team, or talk to your manager about any adjustments or time off you may need to keep the whole show running smoothly. Communicating our needs clearly to others can buy us the extra time we need to catch up.
I hope you found this list helpful.
Tell me, what are some of your secrets for inviting more work-life balance into your life? I’d love to hear them!