How to Have a Great Career and Be a Great Parent July 29, 2015 – Posted in: Personal Development – Tags: balance, bath mums, career, co-dependency, coaching, confidence, control, fear, gratitude, growth, happiness, Life Coach, Life Coaching, parenting
One of the biggest challenges of modern life is how to juggle our work with our family commitments. Whilst some parents choose to stay home with their kids (and hats off to them!), most of us have to work or choose to work AND raise our kids.
So, how can you manage this in order to feel like you’re winning at both?
For me it comes down to three things – drop the guilt, use help and be in the moment. What do I mean by these?
Drop the guilt
For years I felt like my kids and my clients were always getting the scraps of me rather than all of me. This negative thinking then caused me believe that no one was really getting what they needed from me. It was my own coach who challenged this belief by asking me why I thought everybody needed all of me in the first place…? It was a light bulb moment! I suddenly realised that I was putting a lot of unnecessary pressure on myself (something I can be very good at if I’m not careful!) to be everything to everyone.
The minute I relaxed, dropped the perfectionism and stopped feeling guilty I felt more able to be ‘good enough’ as a mum and ‘good enough’ for my clients. And actually, this was when I became a better mum and a far better coach because I was no longer stepping over unnecessary guilt all the time! Life began to flow. It’s still a juggle but I no longer have to keep the balls of ‘unnecessary expectations’ and ‘guilt’ in the air along with all the others.
I’ve always believed that the more positive relationships my children have with a range of adults the more confident and happy they will be. So, use a child minder or an after school club or whatever you need to do to get your hours in. As long as you choose your provider well I believe you are giving your children an opportunity to learn and thrive in a variety of settings, which is brilliant preparation for life! If budgets allow, invest in a cleaner or get the kids to clean their own rooms – do what you can to ease the pressure on yourself
Be in the moment
This is the greatest tool I have in my how-to-be-a-working-mum toolkit! It’s simple – when I’m at work I focus on my work and when I’m at home I focus on my children (or all the housework they create!). It’s very rare that I allow my two worlds to cross because each role is demanding and requires my full attention. Communicating this to your boss, that you will be fully available in work time but unavailable when you are doing your other job might also help reduce your work stress.
Of course, there is no magic answer to our modern-day work-life balance issues but we are lucky to have a choice. Many women of my mother’s generation would’ve given their eyeteeth to get out of the house. The trick is to do your best in every moment and try not to sweat the small stuff.