You’re expected to be the super woman with a red cape – solving everyone’s problem. You’re also expected to be a super employee in your organization.
It can be more daunting with the era of social media where everyone seemingly has a ‘perfect’ family while you’re struggling to get everything together.
Here are some suggestions on how you can balance two important aspects of your life (Motherhood and WorkLife):
Have a Great Support System
It can be overwhelming most times but when you are getting positive vibes from positive people, there is a lesser tendency for you to feel guilt. This doesn’t mean you won’t have people who will make annoying statements to you but you have to ignore. Be with people who understand you and are willing to support you.
Ask for Help
A lot of women are perfectionists. They don’t feel their husband can bath their baby or do normal house chores as much as they would, so they tend to over- work themselves. If you fall down and collapse because of being a perfectionist, life would go on so why kill yourself. Ask your husband to do little things for you while you focus on other things. The highest he can say is NO, but by the time he sees your tired face, he will stand up and help you. E.g of things you can ask your hubby to help you with is monitoring the laundry from the washing machine, washing dishes, bathing for your little one, helping you iron your child’s clothes etc.
Plan Plan Plan (Time Management Skills are essential here)
What makes people overwhelmed is when they are unable to handle so many duties which makes them unfulfilled. Set time limits to each task and plan a routine that works best for you. Google Calendar is a life saver(Learn to use it effectively). Draw up daily to-do list on my ever Notes App and attach an alarm to task to remind you.
As women, we are the Supply Chain Manager and Admin Manager of our homes so make use of apps as your personal PA if you can’t afford to employ one.
Learn to say No
Motherhood changes your life. The 24hours you had to share with yourself, spouse/partner, family and friends now has to be split with a child (who now becomes a priority) and your 24 hours won’t increase.
It’s not every event that you need to attend. Learn to say a big NO to events that won’t add value to you or your family. One lesson I learnt from my husband is this: If they won’t notice your absence at the place, then your presence isn’t really needed. Be careful to also make out time for immediate family (Parents, siblings, spouse). Make choices you would be thankful for later
I have a personal rule that works for me. When I’m at work, I WORK. I try not to get distracted with household issues and give my best when at work. When I’m at home, I give my ALL to my family. This means I try not to take my laptop home unless necessary (And if I do, doesn’t necessarily mean I’m working with it). Taking work home robs you off family time which is bad. Decide to be strict about the boundaries you have set. “Do not rob Peter to pay Paul” (which is rob your work for family or rob your family for work).
Get a good Creche, DayCare, Nanny (or whatever works for you)
I don’t always advice mothers to take their children to a daycare near their office UNLESS your office is close to your home. If you live in Lagos, traffic can be unpredictable and it would be stressful for a child to go through that kind of traffic with you (even if you have a car). It’s always better if it’s near your home. Remember to always do what works for you and not your mother or that special adviser that thinks he/she knows it ALL.
Last but not the least, Make out time for YOU. Yes YOU!
Prepare a warm bath, scented candles, a cool music and just relax your nerves once in a while. Visit the spa and get pampered. Take yourself out on a date, go see a movie, go out on group tours where you would only think about yourself for few hours. Eat right and live healthy for YOU.
Do what you love to do frequently and be selfish once in a while. Watch your mental state and don’t begin to feel like you have lost it all because you gave birth. You’re very important! Let that stick.
I sincerely wish you the best. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions.