Are you struggling to juggle your work with motherhood? Often feel stressed or frustrated? Read five ways to be a happy working mum and LOVE what you do!
This morning’s breakfast dishes are still in the sink, the laundry basket is overflowing, your baby is crying on your lap and you have dozens of urgent emails to reply to.
We all have days that look like this, and make us question exactly why we’re trying to build a business or work from home. Sometimes it feels like being a working mum is the toughest job in the world.
But as hard as these days are, there are just as many positive reasons to confirm that you’ve made the right choice – and ways you can make your life easier. So you can feel happier and more confident in the path you’ve chosen, and pursue it with more energy and enthusiasm.
Five ways to be a happy working mum
To help you face fewer challenging days, here are five ways you can be a happy working mum – whether you run your own business, work from home or are a freelancer.
1) Look for a balance
Never compromise on your family time for your work. Grabbing just a few minutes here and there to check emails or write a proposal can soon slip into huge chunks of time away from the people and things you love. Or push your stress levels up as you try to juggle two tasks at once.
Over time, letting work get in the way of your personal or family time can leave you feeling overwhelmed and dissatisfied with your job or business.
The trick is to find a balance between your work and your life. Create a schedule and build in special slots such as ‘mum time’, ‘fun time’, or ‘me time’ (the latter is an absolute must). And once you have your balanced schedule, stick to it!
2) Focus on the big picture
One of the things that often hampers the efforts of working, freelance or business mums is perfection. Many women are prone to perfectionism, but when you’re juggling so many things at once, perfection is a luxury you can’t afford.
So learn to let go of the little things when you need to. No time to cook? Order a takeaway for once, or buy a healthy ready meal. Your house is a mess? Look into hiring a cleaner, or learn to prioritise the tasks that you REALLY need to get done now.
The key is to focus on what matters most and let the rest take care of itself. Let yourself off your own expectations of perfectionism and focus on the things that are important – without guilt.
3) Teach your kids to help out
Think of your kids not just as mess makers, but a potential army of trainee helpers! There’s absolutely nothing wrong with asking your children to take on age-appropriate task around the house.
In fact, giving children household chores at an early age helps to build a lasting sense of mastery, responsibility and self-reliance. Research by Marty Rossmann, professor emeritus at the University of Minnesota, found that young adults who began chores at ages three and four were more likely to have good relationships with family and friends, to achieve academic and early career success and to be self-sufficient.
Tips on successfully introducing chores include:
- Create a chore schedule so they know what to do when.
- Turn chores into games or competitions to make them fun.
- Get them involved in chores that benefit the whole family, not just cleaning their room.
- Ask then to help with ‘our chores’ not ‘your chores’.
- Avoid dishing our chores as punishment to prevent them getting a bad association.
4) Pray and meditate
If you find your daily life hectic and stressful, it’s important to carve out niches of positive calm and introduce habits that encourage inner peace and wellbeing.
Praying and meditating are perfect ways to overcome the stress and frustration that can build up when you’re trying to juggle your work and motherhood.
You don’t need to make huge life adjustments to benefit from positive new habits. Try to set aside a small part of your day to ask the high power for guidance and allow that spiritual connection to become your source of inspiration, and always remember to be grateful for what you have.
If prayer and mediation feels like too much of a leap for you, even creating preciously guarded moments for yourself to enjoy quite contemplation can make a massive difference to how you feel. This can be as simple as an early morning cup of tea before the rest of the house stirs, a walk around the park, a relaxing bath (without children!), or sitting quietly in your garden watching nature.
The important thing is that you press pause on everything that is buzzing around your head or demanding your attention and just allow your mind to go quiet. You’ll be amazed at how refreshed you are afterwards – and how much more creative you can feel.
5) Remember why you’re doing it!
Lastly, and most importantly, keep reminding yourself why you do what you do. With all the fuss and flurry it’s easy to forget why you chose your career or business in the first place.
To put those thoughts to rest, you need to zero in on what lighted up that spark. Revisit the reasons why you love what you do, and see how far you have progressed from the first day in your career, or the moment you launched your business or freelance career to where you are now.
You’ll be amazed at how changing your perspective can affect the way you feel about what you do – and the enthusiasm with which you approach every area of your life. So consider why you should be grateful for your life, your work and your family, and count your many blessings. As Buddha said, “Your mind is everything. What you think you become.”
Need more work-life balance tips?
You’ll find more advice in these articles:
- Seven mistakes stressed women make
- Five tips to help you focus on the right things
- Five quick tips to help you find me-time
- Quick and easy ideas to give you an instant lift
Jillian Petrova is an experienced educator employed at a digital firm writing for businesses like UK coursework experts Coursework Spot. She loves to blog on anything that catches her interest. When not working, she loves to blog on women empowerment and career.Hannah Martin