Photo by Liana Mikah on Unsplash
When you’re a working mama, you often know that your time can be stretched. Especially when you’re self-employed, run your own business, or work from home. You’ve got a lot on your to-do list and not always enough time to tick everything off. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re going to struggle forever. Sure, at first, you can feel as if you’re struggling with work and life, because not everything can be a priority. But, is there a way for you to change this? The short answer is, always!
Now, to some, the balance is never quite balanced. There are always going to be things that come your way and throw you out. And this then means that you’re struggling. That there’s no real way for you to figure out how you can make these two sides of your life to work. But there is. Yes, it takes work. And yes it also takes practice, but it’s certainly not impossible. You just have to go through a trial and error process, and most importantly of all, learn to say no! But we’ll talk a lot more about that later.
Let’s take a look at some of the challenges you face and the best ways to remedy them.
Decide What You Want
First of all, you’re going to want to make sure that you know what you want. Do you know what matters most to you? Do you want a thriving home business or something small-fry and passive? Do you want to be a hands-on mom who’s always there, or a bit more distance? The actual ‘what’ you decide on doesn’t overly matter here – as long as it’s right for you and you’re able to get that idea firmly in your mind.
Now, when you know what you want, it’s time to work on your priorities. Because if you’re going to be able to find that balance, you need to have things that matter to you more. But when you can prioritize one or two or things things in life, it will help you to get that balance.
Cut The Fat
As you’re going that, you then need to cut the things that don’t matter. Say you have parenting, business, home, social, group, health and fitness, and community commitments, you cannot do them all, so what matters most? Can you get a cleaner or reduce the number of groups you’re in to make balance easier?
Say No More
The next thing that you need to do here is make sure that you’re saying no a lot more! If you always say yes to people in life and you feel like you’re letting people down, see it as you’re out of balance. If you start to say no because you’re focusing on those priorities, you’ll feel much calmer.
When it comes to your work, you need boundaries. That’s just how this is. You cannot just take on everything and be available to your clients or customers at all times. Setting working hours and making sure that you’re not accessible around the clock is so important for you here.
Manage Your Time Better
If that sounds alien to you, maybe you’re not managing your time as well as you could be? If you give yourself those set hours, such as 7am-12pm, or 8am-4pm, or even 7-9am and then 4-6pm, then you know you only have set a number of hours to get things done. And your clients know when you contact you too.
To help you do that, you need to make sure that you are as productive as possible in the time that you’ve set for working. The more productive you are when you’re working, the less time you will need to spend working to get it all done. It can help you to get a better balance.
Separate Your Worlds
Something else that may help you here, is the ability to keep your working world or business and your home life separate. And when you work from home, this may seem hard. But you can do it but creating an office in a space that is not openly integrated with your living space. For this, you may want to convert something like your garage, or even build a space using residential precast concrete retaining walls to make that happen. Then, you can physically keep the worlds apart, which makes balance much easier.
Photo by Sai De Silva on Unsplash
Now, let’s think more about your home or personal life. If you know that you struggle to separate the worlds because you’re always thinking about work when you’re done, it’s time to learn how to switch off more. You will find that those working hours will help you, and separating the worlds will too, but then you’ll have to intentionally make sure that you are in the moment, rather than still lost in work thoughts!
Be More Present
Now, when you’re aiming to do that, something that will help you, is aiming to be more present. If you’re always in your mind and you’re thinking or planning or worrying, you’re missing out on the moment. And not only that, but if you’re not in work mode when you want to enjoy family time, you’re not making the best use of your time. So aim to be as present as you can at all times.
Align Your Actions
Another thing that you may find really helps you here, is making sure that you align your actions with what you want. If you know that you want to spend more time with your kids, bt you’re always working, then you need to rethink this. However, you should find that if you are being more intentional, you have priorities, and you’re present, you should be able to make this happen!
Assess As You Go Along
Finally, you’re going to want to make sure that this is always seen as a work in progress. Because if you work through each point (or the ones that best speak to you) and then stop, you may find that your time slips and you’re struggling again. This is something that you constantly – and consciously, need to be working on. Make sure that you’re assessing how things are going for you along the way. When you do, you’ll find that it’s much easier for you to make this work.
And that’s all there is to it. Sometimes, it’s easy to think that you’re always going to struggle, and that you’re never going to be able to find a balance in life that you’re happy with – but that’s just not true. You don’t have to find this hard. You really don’t! You can make this work and enjoy a healthy work-life balance. Or, business-life balance, should we see.
The whole idea here, is for you to get better at balancing everything out. If you can make sure that you’re able to set your priorities, be tough on yourself and others, and learn to say no, it gets easier. Because you get a lot clearer on what you need to do. Not only that, but when you can focus more, and use your time more wisely, that helps too!
So, ladies, go forth – know what matters the most to you, be sure to pick and choose the right tools to help you work smarter and live more intentionally. And then, you’ll find that your business-life balance is blossoming!