Working moms: Is the balancing act driving you bonkers?
Today, in the United States, most women with children are “working moms” who have either full or part time jobs, or own their own businesses, in addition to their full time jobs on the home front. Studies show, even though there may be a fair amount of help from “dad”, the “mom” is still the main manager of keeping the family unit functioning with all its detailed operations.
This requires a tremendous amount of physical, mental and emotional energy, which can drive even the most well intended mom bonkers. Articles abound in women’s magazines, for these notoriously busy women, on how to “balance” it all out, indicating how really big this problem is.
Yet, in spite of all this information, women are still feeling like they are ready to go bonkers and wondering why it has to be that way. This is an issue causing lots of stress for working moms, and is a common theme many of my women clients seek hypnotherapy for: they want more balance in their lives, to feel good about themselves and get relief from the stress of being a working mom.
They are ready for a “make-over” and have real balance, instead of being on the brink of tipping over.
Do you need of a “make-over” in your balancing act?
Feeling overwhelmed with so much to do?
Finding yourself unproductive at work or at home?
Feeling guilty because you take time away from your family to work?
Consistently saying “there isn’t enough time”
Having tension and/or pain in your neck and shoulders?
Feeling inadequate with thoughts such as “why can’t I do it all?”
Feeling resentful of not having alone time?
Missing your “women” get-together times
Too tired to get any activity in?
Wondering “is this it”?
Tips to get started on your balanced life “make-over”!
Take care of yourself!
You have to start here. Yes, you are very busy and if you don’t take care of yourself first, you will not have the energy and focus required to be your best for your work and your children. Take as good care of yourself as you would your children: get plenty of sleep, eat healthy, and get in some activity. Activity releases stress easily and so does fun, so combine the two, maybe even with children. Do something active and fun and you’ll feel so much better.
Set healthy boundaries!
The desire to do their best in their many roles as mother, worker and partner, can leave many women feeling they can never say no. This is exhausting and dilutes the engagement and enjoyment of all of these roles. Instead, create healthy boundaries. Exercise the “NO” muscle to requests that aren’t vital to your family and success. Say “YES” only to those things that are in alignment with self care, family and work priorities.
Staying connected to your children is as vital as setting healthy boundaries. Staying strongly connected to your children keeps the stress levels down, as it feels good emotionally for moms, kids and partners alike. For example, instead of running in from work to immediately start cooking dinner, take time to stop, talk to your children, and find out how their day was. It will provide a break from rushing about and give everyone a chance to connect to one another. Doesn’t that feel better?
Focus on Stress Relief
Working moms need to be proactive in managing their stresses. They need a toolbox of stress relief methods to quickly access, as well as ones to use consistently and build up, what I call, the “calm fund”. Whether it’s for a child’s meltdown or a disagreeable co-worker, having and using stress relievers regularly will condition the mind and body to respond in more healthy ways.
Quick stress relievers:
Use your breath. Take 2-3 deep breaths. Allows release of tension quickly and to rise above the knee jerk reactive mode.
Reframe the situation-finding another way of thinking about it that feels better. Use the breath first, then ascend the thought ladder, working up to better and better thoughts.
Move your body:stretch, walk away for a few minutes when appropriate.
Walk at lunchtime to release the negative conversations jumping around in your head.
Long term stress relievers-to invest in your inner calm reserve:
Do a daily mediation or self hypnosis practice.
Keep a gratitude journal-allows you to be present to what is great and positive in your life
Keep a success journal-focusing on your successes feels good.
Get regular massages.
Commit to using these tips for the next 3 weeks and watch the working mom stress melt away. Isn’t it time?