How do you balance home life, family, and your career without losing your marbles? While the ideal situation is to be home with your young children all of the time, some parents find they want to work outside or in the home at least some of the time. For others, it’s a necessity. In my case, I was getting stir crazy after having J and I knew I needed to start working from home in one way or another. I was lucky enough that my husband had the means to support our family without me working but I missed working – it kept my mind fresh and in turn made me a better mother. I would be kidding you if I said everything was easy but I made it work and still do.
Is it Easy?
Some people tend to think of blogging or content creation as a hobby but I assure you that it is not. It takes time and effort just like any other career, the only difference was that I could do my work from home and work around my schedule for the most part. There were many nights I stayed up way past my bedtime but it comes with the territory. I cannot tell you how many people have told me to just concentrate on my child and leave the work for later. In my opinion, I really don’t care what anyone has to say. Here are a few simple ways I learned to create some happiness through it all:
- Forget Balance. When I say “balance” work and family, this implies some kind of happy equilibrium. Forget it- the best you can hope is for OCCASIONAL peaceful coexistence between your family and work. Something will always be working to upset the balance such as childcare, sickness, job demands, deadlines, etc.
- Do The Math. Sit down with a piece of paper and do some serious cost/benefit analysis before deciding whether to return to work or not. You would be surprised at just how many hidden costs are involved when it comes to working, especially outside of the home. I mean think about transportation costs, gas, taxes, and not to mention the cost of someone else essentially raising your child. For many of you, the benefits do not outweigh the costs. Sometimes you may have a high paying job but when you factor in the cost of childcare amongst other hidden expenses it truly diminishes your earnings.
- Dual Careers=Dual Sacrifices. Both you and your spouse MUST make sacrifices for this to work – regardless of whether you work in or out of the home. While nothing in life or marriage is always 50/50, both parents must help to make the schedule work.
- Meet your new boss – YOUR CHILD. That means your old boss at work must adjust to your new life. I mean who wants to work for a boss who doesn’t put family first? If your boss does not understand that there will be times when you need to take time off to tend to your child/children then it’s time you find a new place of employment.
- Avoid Guilt Trips. Whatever you decide for your child, get ready from second-guessing from friends, relatives, and even complete strangers. In essence, a happy mother and father make for a happy child. If you are fulfilled and enjoying your work and believe you have made good choices then your children will thrive.
- Will it matter next month or next year? When you have to decide whether to work late or another weekend, ask yourself: “How important is my job compared to my job as a mother or father. Will this project matter next month, year, or in five years? The answer is NO but your child most definitely will!
Making the right decision as to whether to work after having Children is truly dependant on each individual Family. It’s not a decision that can be made in a day or week. I cannot tell you how many friends I have who fully expected to go back to work after their maternity leave was over and changed their minds. My biggest factor in deciding to stay home was that I did not want anyone else raising my child in his formative years. It was my choice to have children therefore it is my responsibility to see it through. I do not employ a nanny or a housekeeper nor do I have any friends or family to help and that is my CHOICE. I do not judge anyone that does. It is their prerogative as my decisions are mine. I hope this helped you all a bit! Till next time!