I am a cheerleader for moms. Being a mother is beautiful and challenging. It is a 24/7, 365 day a year role and the demands are very real. Being a working mom is true of all moms whether working inside the home or outside the home. One of the opportunities for many moms today is finding the flexible work model that works best for her home. There is no boundary line for what qualifies a “working mom,” but there are tips that will help you if you find yourself in a working situation away from your children.
1. Start your day strong. Getting up 30 minutes earlier or planning 30 minutes longer in the evening can make all the difference in starting your day strong. Ten minutes of quiet time, ten minutes for that shower, and ten minutes to get ready for the kids to get up can make all the difference. The transition time to work requires emotional energy as well as physical energy. Make that transition as positive as you can.Guilt will rob you of the joy of your family and the joy of your work. Click To Tweet
2. Be fully where you are. When you are home, you need to unplug from work and focus on your family. When you are at work, focus on your work. Guilt will rob you of the joy of your family and the joy of your work. Focusing on your work doesn’t mean you aren’t praying for your children or thinking of them, but you are doing so with a settled heart not a troubled heart.
3. Plan for the unplanned. We are always surprised when interruptions come whether at work or at home. I’m not sure why because they always come. So when things are going smoothly, do a little preplanning for the surprises. Go ahead and talk to your boss about some flexible options when you will want to go to your child’s school play or when you get the call to pick up a sick child. What is the plan for the unplanned? Also, what happens when you’re in the middle of a big work project that unexpectedly requires you to do some extra hours? Have a plan in place when the work surprises come too. A little preplanning for the unplanned things in life will help you not be overcome!
4. Daily 15 minute refreshers. Try to work in some short refresh moments to help you transition from work to home and from home to work. The drive into the office or the drive home are great ways for you to get your thoughts focused on what is in front of you and release what is behind you. A 15 minute brisk walk, relaxing bath, or drinking ice tea while just sitting are all great options for a refresher! You think you don’t have time and you feel guilty asking, but a few minutes to refresh your mind and body will greatly help your heart.Everyone working together will create more space, time, and energy for everyone to play together! Click To Tweet
5. Ask your kids how you are doing. I highly recommend family conferences starting when your children are very young. These times of open conversation with the family are great opportunities to teach your children about God, ask for help around the house, plan and save for a family vacation, and to ask your family how it’s going with you working outside the home. I asked my daughters and my husband that often and their honest feedback and support was so valuable to me. Ask. Your children will tell you the truth, and you will be surprised by their support and willingness to help.
6. Ask for help. You can’t do it all. You can’t be the perfect mom. If you need help, ask for it. Ask your husband, your friends, your children, and your coworkers for help when needed. It’s a wonderful thing to teach your children that sometimes they need help just like you. Don’t try to do it all. There is no gold star for perfection and you will find yourself exhausted and resentful when you try. Let meal planning, preparation, and clean-up be a family event. Teach your children early to help with laundry and household chores. Everyone working together will create more space, time, and energy for everyone to play together!
What other tips would you add for working moms?