Like most mum’s I am still trying to work out how to do this parenting thing while still trying to tick things off an ever-growing to-do list in a day that seems to be 18 hours long rather than 24. Yes, I am a multi-tasking mom, almost always achieving much less than I set out to do yet adding at least 4 unexpected, undesired tasks to that list.
The fact is no matter how much planning I put into it, the day never goes as planned yet not planning it is completely out of the question. To skip the to-do list is to be out of rhythm and to set oneself up for disaster! (I would much rather fail to achieve at someone else’s hands – usually someone very cute with adorable eyes and a naughty glint in their eyes!)
Yes, children are precious! And they give you precious little time to do what needs to be done. A working mother wears many hats – parent, chef, housekeeper, full-time professional. And the list goes on… handyman, first-aid nurse, counselor, you name it. Yet everything that needs to get done gets done.
Every time I seem to be losing my sense of balance, I look at my reason for being this seemingly professional juggler of sorts and I am inspired to not only keep going but to strive harder! More recently I also realized that the best way to be a good mother is learning how to take care of myself better. I am that emergency fire blanket that needs to be present in every kitchen, the emergency number you call even when your mobile phone has no simcard.
The warning alert that needs to detect potential danger and the one member of the household who must always know how to work smart to keep the harmony in a household full of individuals that more often than not have different personalities living together as a unit!
The bottom line is moms must find a way to keep up the energy and be the heartbeat of the home. So we need to take care of ourselves. Some advice that has worked for me as a mom….
Be prepared for the unexpected and learn to be flexible. The to-do list is a handy tool but it may not always work. In fact it doesn’t work at all for some. Brace yourself for anything and everything. Being a mother means you are your family’s designated shock-absorber! Not only will your stress levels be lower, but you’ll be able to react to emergency situations in a more capable and reliable way.
Knowing what is most important to you and your family will help you stay flexible and balance work life, social life and family life better. Try to avoid taking work-related frustrations home so that you don’t eat into precious family time feeling miserable or anxious about work! Focus on work at work, and on your family at home.
Know your boundaries
Recognize signs that you have let your priorities slip. Sometimes it happens but you should be aware enough to recognize signs that you have slipped and make an effort to correct it. Are you feeling resentful? Or simply too tired to enjoy anything? These may be signs that you need to PAUSE to revisit or rework your priorities. You need to pause and check to see what needs to be done in order to restore the smile on your face and those around you! Sometimes, just taking a day off for yourself and clearing your head benefits your relationship with your family and your performance at work.
Be good to yourself!