Achieving a healthy work-life balance can be a delicate juggling act for most people. But if you’re a working mum or dad, balancing the demands of work and home life can sometimes send your stress levels through the roof. So do you know how to balance your work and life actually? Here’s 6 work life balance tips for parents.
First and foremost you have to ask yourself what is good work-life balance.
Everybody sort of idea of balance is very different. It depends on your personality. It depends on what kind of life you want, what you like, what you enjoy. So you have to sit down and reflect on your life. And figure out what kind of life you want to live, how you want to set your priorities, how you want to be there for your kids, and what kind of parent you want to be. Then take some time to figure out what is an ideal schedule or ideal week for you. And start planning and start organizing different things around that idea. Have something in mind as opposed to just trying to blindly look for balance in your life. So figure out what it is exactly that you want. And then we can go from there.
The next tip I really want to give you guys is to be organized now.
When you think of somebody who works for a company or works at an office, you obviously assume that they’re going to have some sort of agenda or calendar or a to-do list where they mark off things that they do, write out their deadlines. But there is no reason why, for example, even a stay-at-home mom or stay-at-home dad shouldn’t have that sort of system as well. Raising kids, in my opinion, is one of the hardest jobs in the world. And I’m sure you will all agree with that. And everything is just so chaotic. Sometimes there’re a lot of things going on in your head and outside of your head as well. So you do need something that can really organize things for you. Therefore it’s so important to have a calendar. It’s so important to have a to-do list and not just any to-do list. You should have a to-do list that sets apart things that are urgent and are of priority versus things that can wait. So definitely writing things down will strain your brain a little less. And it’ll help you remember things. And you don’t have to stress about things. So organizing is a lot of fun once you make it a habit. In the beginning it might be hard but once you make it a habit, it should become automatic.
Next tip for work-life balance is to learn to say no.
This is definitely not an easy one, especially for me. Because I’m a pretty big “yes” person, so I have a problem with this as well. But it’s really important to set boundaries because everybody has 24 hours in a day. But as parents, more than half of that time is spent on taking care of the kids. So the time that you have left is so incredibly precious. It’s really important to be very intentional with what you do during that time. You also need to make the difficult decision in filtering out things or activities, or even people that don’t really impact you in a positive way or don’t add value to your life now. Once you say no, and you go through with it, it becomes a lot easier. But it’s still working progress for me. But I can tell you one successful aspect of that in my life:
Years ago I used to love watching the latest dramas. When I had nothing to do, I would just turn the TV on and start flipping channels, but at one point I decided that TV wasn’t really adding much value to my life. It was wasting my time and it was also making me sleep later. As a result, I was losing a lot of sleep over it as well. Then I decided to pretty much quit TV. And yes, I do watch it once in a while maybe when the TV’s on. When we’re on vacation, one exception is maybe watching a movie with my husband. But other than that I hardly watch any TV. And that has brought so much in my life. So much time first of all. And I find that because I’m not watching TV my kids don’t watch as much TV as well. So it’s a win-win situation.
Then the next tip I want to give you guys is to focus on you and to focus on your health more.
If there’s no you there’s no work and there’s no parent, ultimately you are the one who’s providing love and support to your kids. And if you’re not taking care of yourself, your energy will be depleted, you won’t be as present. You probably might be in a cranky mood and just physically it’s going to wear you down. So it’s really important that you take care of yourself not just physically. Yes, it’s important, not only to nourish your body but also to take care of yourself mentally and emotionally. Therefore if you’re the type of person who feels recharged when you’re alone or doing a certain activity maybe a hobby or a sport. Do that thing that you love regularly. If you love to be with friends, make sure you take time out of your week to just meet a close friend and just recharge your energy again.
Another thing, sleep is so important and a lot of parents lack sleep.
I definitely lack sleep and it’s also one thing that I really struggle with. I know it’s easy once you put the kids to bed you just want to go online, go on social media see what everybody’s up to or watch some TV. But at the end of the day you have to tell yourself: is this really good for me? Because when you get better sleep or when you get enough sleep, it improves your overall health. It not only improves your mood but also improves your cognitive ability. So the next day you’re much more productive and you’re better at taking care of tasks.
The last and final tip is to be proactive.
I think we all kind of sort of struggle with this. We talked about our ideal lifestyle, and how we want to be, how we want to have a more balanced life. But I think we give ourselves a lot of excuses that we can’t do something, like we don’t have enough time, like I’m too tired. But at the end of the day you have to make the time to do what you want to do. It’s being more proactive and also being more diligent about certain things. Parents just have a lot less time than somebody who doesn’t have kids obviously. Therefore the time that you do have left for yourself just realize how precious it is. And be intentional and yeah think about the goals that you want, think about the life that you want to live. And just make it happen. Sometimes it just means sacrificing certain things. But if that’s what you want ultimately it’s what you got to do. Essentially, a good balance is different for everyone. But we really only have 24 hours in a day. Just be intentional and realize how precious time is. Then just make the most of it. Do what you can but also plan ahead and that will save you so much time in the future.
Above is the 6 tips on how to balance work and life for busy parents, hope it will be helpful for you.