Like most women, the balance of family and career can be overwhelming. Here are 5 tips to guarantee success in both areas of your life.
1—Start with routines: when you do the same thing over and over again, not only do you get really good at it, it becomes second nature. You can have several sets of routines for your entire day. Consider having a morning routine, after work routine, and/or a bedtime routine. It is helpful to write down everything you do, or need to do, to get to bed at a decent hour, to get out of the house in the morning to get dinner on the table quickly and easily. I suggest writing out lists of what needs to be done at each section of your day. As we get older and more forgetful, it is helpful to have a reminder of what needs to be done. When you are rushing around, it is easy to forget something important.
2—Learn to say “NO”—we hear this all the time, but do we practice it? As women, we are people pleasers and we don’t like to upset others or feel like we have let someone down. Instead, we need to feel that way about ourselves. Think about how upset you would be if you add one more thing to your “to do” list. Say no for your children as well—don’t let them be involved in too many activities.
3—Be sure to schedule appointments to take care of yourself, whatever that might be. Whether it’s getting your annual physical, going to the dentist, or meeting your girlfriend for a day at the spa, you have to take care of yourself first in order to properly take care of the other people in your life. This may require creative networking on your part, if you have small children. Offer to swap babysitting services with another young mom on your block.
4—Exercise has both physical and mental benefits. Even 15 minutes of exercise will cause the brain to release chemicals which will improve your mood and give you more energy throughout the day. The exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous; taking a walk in your neighborhood is a great idea. You may have to put the baby in the stroller or your older child on his/her bicycle. You won’t have to look very hard to find an excuse not to exercise.
5—Use a Master Calendar to keep up with everyone’s schedule and appointments. How many times have you missed an event because you forgot or over committed you or your family. A master calendar will solve this problem. As soon as you get an invitation, announcement, or other event notice, put it on the calendar right away, and then throw it away! Record everything you need onto the calendar and throwing away the rest will help to eliminate clutter. Don’t stress over what type of calendar to use, just do what works best for you. What you use isn’t as important as just using it!
Balancing career and motherhood can be challenging. By implementing these strategies, you will be ahead of the game and enjoying everything that your life as to offer.