The Struggle To Find Balance As A Working Mom
I just put my baby girl down for the night. Or at least I thought I did. Now she’s crying for me once again. I put my toddler down about a half hour ago. Although he jumped on the couch (and all over me while I was trying to nurse baby sister before putting her down) he went down somewhat smoothly. I was a good wife tonight and told hubby to get out and go to the gym after he finished work. I knew it would leave me alone at bed time, but I thought to myself… “Come on, I can do this”. Well… who knew putting two kids to bed by yourself was practically an Olympic sport? Sure I’ve done it a few times now, but wow it’s not an easy task.
I have NO idea how moms of more than two kids do it on their own in the evenings.
Now, the reason for today’s post is to chat about balance. Balance….. What balance? I’m sitting here at 8:00 pm writing a blog post. Dylan is on his way home from the gym with Chinese takeout. I really want to veg out for the rest of the night, drink a glass of wine, and watch Friends, but… there’s that voice in the back of my head telling me I still need to get work done.
I’ve been busy all day with the kids, and I still have so many things to check off of my to-do list.
Balance… there simply isn’t a place for it in my life right now. Although I yearn for days where balance is a priority, most days it just isn’t, and I really struggle to find it.
I’ll tell myself “Okay, for the next 4 hours you’re not going to touch your phone.” You’re going to sit on the floor and play with your kids”. I’m good for about an hour, and then my mind starts to wander….. “Oh crap, I need to pay that bill”. “Dang, I forgot to send that email”. “Oh shoot, I am so behind on direct messages & I wanted to get that blog post up today.”
My to-do list starts to stack up in my mind, and I realize I’m not going to get any of it done until the kids go to bed.
Once I finally get the kids to bed, I’m EXHAUSTED….and my to-do list that I was so ready to knock out, gets moved to the next day. This seems to happen over and over again, and it get’s really dang hard to find the balance between being a good mom, being a good wife, being a good friend/family member, and being a good blogger/entrepreneur.
The day starts again, and my intentions are always great in the morning. I start off very positive about getting things done, and my goals are set in my head for everything I need to get done that day. Inevitably, something sways off my “goal path” and I feel like I’m already behind. Noah wakes up grouchy and wants to cuddle for 20 minutes before we start the day. Emma wakes up two times that night, so I start the day exhausted. The dishes are a mile long in the sink because I was too tired to do them the night before. Emma pooped on her only pajamas left, so I have to throw in a load of laundry. I get a call from my sister who wants to chat (and although I want to just unplug and chat with her SO badly, my anxiety creeps in and I remember my to-do list and goal-path that just keeps getting pushed further and further away.
I get Emma down for her morning nap, and Noah is happily playing with his cars for a little bit. I’m able to push out about 30 minutes of solid work, but that time is nowhere near enough time to get through most of what I need to get done. The one thing that has made me the most productive during those 30 minute crunch sessions is setting a clear intention, and not straying from it. If my goal is to crank out a blog post in that 30 minutes, I must focus on that task, and only that task. If I look at my phone or open up my email, I’m instantly taken off of the intention.
Try that method for your next 30 minutes that you get (if you’re lucky enough to get 30 minutes, am I right?!)
In my mind, your 30’s is where you really set up the way you want things to go financially for the rest of your life. So even though my kids are young, I want to continue to hustle and work towards my goals.
Although I may literally have 15 minutes here and there to focus throughout the day, I must use those moments to focus. Although that may mean I don’t get to shower that day. Showering is overrated, right? Ha, not really. There’s nothing better than a 10 minute hot shower to clear your head (especially one that is uninterrupted & where you don’t hear a baby crying in the background).
This morning my goal was to do a 10 minute workout (we can all commit to 10 minutes for our health, right!?) & then finish out this blog post that I started last night. Luckily I’m almost done with those two things that I intended to do this morning. Sure there are 7,000 more things I need to get done today, but I already accomplished 2 things I wanted to do today, and it’s only 8:30 am.
Setting those intentions and carving out small chunks of time was key in achieving those small goals.
I’m off to a good start. Now let’s see how many road blocks we have today? Now let’s rephrase that last sentence and instead of considering those things road blocks, let’s remain positive, and understand that those road blocks are inevitable, and are just part of the day.
Your mindset is what will carry you throughout your day.
And if you get all frustrated when your little one just wants your intention you won’t feel like you’re being a good mom. Instead, take a deep breath, acknowledge your little one. Give him or her your undivided intention. Play interrupted with them and focus solely on them for awhile. Once you give them this time, you will soon be able to get back to work, and they will be happy as well.
It’s hard, I know. But being home with my kids is the greatest gift.
Noah will eventually start preschool and the day will free up a lot for me. So for now, I must enjoy these moments and learn how to tackle my day by first setting my intentions & by not getting upset when the “road blocks” come my way.
I must take deep breaths and acknowledge every road block in a positive and calm manner, and then I can get back to work later. Even if later means 8 pm after the kids are in bed. This is just the season of life I’m in. And no matter how difficult this season has proven to be, it’s been my favorite.
If you have any tips for moms striving to find balance, please leave them in the comments below. I would love to hear from you guys on this topic.