A life without balance will crash. That’s why most parents, especially single parents raising a child, are prone to nervous breakdowns, mental and emotional stress. The reason is that they struggle at balancing work and family. Oftentimes, various aspects of their lives get abandoned— either their children or their personal lives get to suffer the grievous heat of these imbalances.
Consider the below story.
Awaken by the beep of their alarm after several times of pressing the snooze bottom. Mr. and Mrs. Amed hurried out of bed, behold it was already 6:50 am. In a haste, Mr Amed rushed into the bathroom trying not to miss his bus by 7:15 am. Similarly, his wife dashed into their kid’s room, unsure of what to do first; either fixing breakfast, preparing the kids for school, and making it to her office on time.
The previous day, they had returned exhausted from work by 5 pm. So, while she tried fixing dinner her husband assisted their kids in their school assignment—in a bit to enhance their academic performance. In addition, there was piled-up laundry to be done, yard work to do, and foodstuff to buy from the market. This couple had no personal time and always ended up going to bed tired. For Mr. and Mrs. Amed balancing work and family appear unachievable.
Similarly, there are numerous parents out there whose lives are turned into chaos and even worse compared to the family illustrated above. However, this article is designed to provide you with effective methods for balancing work and family.
7 Ways to Balance Full-time Work and Parenting
1. Plan Ahead to Achieve Balance
Don’t wait until the last minute of an event before you begin planning how to carry it out. Oftentimes, this attitude subjects an individual to extreme stress as they attempt to achieve a whole lot of things within a little time frame. Therefore, To balance work and family begin by having a mapped out plan of your daily activities, weekly and also monthly. This is achievable using a calendar that serves as a reminder. As a parent, become disciplined enough and stick to your set routine.
Furthermore, planning will require that you have a plan B should in case things don’t work out as planned. For instance, you woke up late as a mom, unfortunately, in the next few minutes your kid’s school bus will leave. At such an instance, it’s unproductive to prepare breakfast that would take up to an hour. In contrast, you can avert such by applying your plan B. This could be preserving cooked meals in the fridge the day you were opportune or having snacks in the house. This saves you and your kids from going late to school and work respectively.
2. To Balance Work and Parenting, Create Boundaries.
Setting boundaries is the act of knowing your limit without exceeding it. Perhaps, if you go beyond your limit, another aspect of your life will suffer from it. Therefore, at work be committed to doing your best at the activities you excel at. Avoid going for tasks that aren’t within your skills or ability. Having set boundaries prevents you from burning out before you return from work. In other words, you still have the strength to attend to your family when you return home.
Similarly, at home set boundaries to the activities, you can carry out. Perhaps, you’re disturbed about how to go about the rest of the home chores, relax as it will be discussed later.
3. To Attain Balance Learn The Attitude Of Time Management
All humans have 24hours in a day and that’s a constant factor that can’t be altered. Irrespective of your status; a full-time working parent or a part-time working parent. However, what matters most is your ability to utilize it properly. Therefore, time management Is the ability to utilize one’s time effectively doing the needful while bringing the needless to a standstill. It’s advisable to assign time length to your activities—valuable activities. To achieve this, begin by arranging your order of priority when it comes to your activities. Furthermore, your kids must be among your top priorities — it enhances the love bond between you and your kids. In addition, most of your weekends should be spent together with your kids.
Subsequently, as you plan, important events must always come first with a larger time range. Also, eliminate distractions to the minimum level and suspend other activities with little or no value. This principle makes it easier to balance work and family together as it applies to both.
4. Apply The Principle Of Division Of Labour
A common cliché “ One tree can not make a forest” is manifest in a family where only one parent attempts to carry out the whole home activities. Sooner or later that person will burn out. Therefore, if you’re wondering who would do the rest of the work when you set your boundaries? Worry less! The application of division of labor in the family makes work easier and faster. This implies that every member of the household must be assigned a task—including the kids. How? By assigning the household chores suitable for kids to your children, while you do the ones you can and assign the remains to the next agent to be discussed below.
5. Balancing Work and Family Requires an Assisting Hand
Your working schedule won’t give you the luxury of time for other activities. Therefore, hire someone to take care of those other things for you. Most especially household chores and looking after your kids while away— this should be a reliable person. However, This isn’t a weakness or portrays you as an irresponsible parent. Rather, it’s a way of preventing you from undergoing stress and managing your time most effectively. Therefore, don’t give in to self-guilt.
6. Be Bold to Discuss Your Routine With Your Children
Oftentimes, kids begin to feel abandoned when you aren’t there for them. Hence, they keep what’s bothering them secret. This attitude makes them vulnerable to bad influences from others. However, you can prevent this by discussing your work schedule with your children. Also, instruct them on how to behave while away most especially regulating their screen time. This makes them understand you better and put on good manners. If this process seems difficult for you to do then learn about the 7C’s of communication which enables you to relate better.
7. To Effectively Balance Your Work and Family Create a Me-Time
What Is Me-Time? This is the time set aside for yourself away from disturbances— a time for relaxation, reflection, and meditation. This routine is pivotal to your health because without sound health your work is unproductive. Therefore, to actualize this, be disciplined to abide by the listed principles outlined above.
Furthermore, let your work assignment end at work. For no reason should you bring them home? It hampers the flow of your me-time. However, you should fix your me-time during the weekend. Perhaps, your work deprives you of your weekend then you need to have a second thought if it’s worth it.
Balancing work and family is a gradual process not instantaneous. Therefore, it’s fine to miss it one or two times. With patience, you will learn the art. However, as a parent becomes too focused on a given task in time. Avoid doing multiple jobs at a time. Likewise, feel free to share with others how you’re coping. It provides you with encouragement and advice. Furthermore, eradicate the feeling of depression and ease frustration.
If you’re a parent who has struggled at balancing work and family and has overcome or is still struggling. Don’t hesitate to share your own experience in the comment section below.