Juggling Work and Parenting – How to Keep it All Flowing
Facebook makes parenting look easy, doesn’t it? Every post is of happy smiling kids and parents enjoying an outing or making some super cool homemade project. I’m admiring their pictures wondering how they are juggling life to look so happy and content.
That’s not what my experience is with juggling work and parenting! Let’s take for example last Saturday. I had ONE thing on my to-do list that I really, really needed to get done, and that was to go buy a few things we needed for dinner that weekend. Kind of important–eating. So it’s 3 o’clock and I realized that I did not go and buy the food. The problem was the store that I needed to buy the items from closed at 3. It’s almost like life was mocking me that I realized exactly at the time of closing that I needed food!!
Who forgets to buy food for their family?! Apparently, me. There is so much happening in life that it is hard to keep it straight and orderly. Don’t you think? Kids, work, husbands, errands, chores, starting a new business, cooking, social life (what?), hobbies (what, what?), the list goes on and on. I feel like there is so much to do and so many things that need my attention, that NONE of those things get enough of my attention.
So what are we to do?! First off, give yourself some grace. Yes, the same grace that we are told to extend to others, pass a little on to yourself. I surely wasn’t feeling like mom or wife of the year last weekend, but we made it work. We went out to eat a lot, but whatever, we still ate! Beating yourself up doesn’t help and it sure isn’t going to make dinner for you! Don’t trash talk yourself into thinking you are inadequate!
Second, try a little harder next time. Maybe I need to stick a big sticky note on my head, or better yet on my coffee maker, so I am sure to see and remember the things I need to do. This wasn’t my first dinner mishap and I promise you that it will not be my last! But, I owe it to my loved ones to try a little bit harder in the areas that I am lacking.
Third, prioritizing is a good thing. Dinner — important; laundry — important, but not quite as important as eating. Laundry is probably more important that surfing the internet all morning. You get the idea.
Fourth, plan out your priorities. I tend to procrastinate on things to the point that I feel pretty crummy for not being more on the ball. I find that if I have a plan laid out, I get more accomplished. So the night before your day, kind of walk through the things you need to get done, instead of blindly walking into the day with no plan. There are many weekends that because I didn’t have some kind of plan, the weekend went by in a blur and I accomplished nothing!! I’m standing there Sunday night in a daze wondering what kind of time warp just robbed me of the weekend. There was no time warp! My procrastinating robbed me of my weekend. I am not in the habit of using a planner, but I bought one and I am making efforts to use this thing to keep schedules and things to do a little more organized.
And finally, don’t sweat the small stuff. Things just aren’t going to be perfect at our house. My husband and I both work, we are both currently venturing out a little: me with this blog and he has decided to start a little business of his own. Then, we have 4 kids, appointments to keep, the house to take care of, stuff to do. So, even with the two of us pitching in, things slip through the cracks and that is LIFE. I always remind myself that one day I may look around and be retired, with my kids all grown, maybe my husband will have went on to be with the Lord, and I will be longing for the craziness of this moment.
Well, I thought I was done, but ladies, feed your head and your heart good stuff. Don’t feed your soul garbage by trash talking to yourself that you are a bad mom, or a bad wife, or a bad employee, or you’re not smart or good enough…just STOP! I’m telling you the truth here because I have been feeding this garbage to myself. Do you know it’s not easy to start a blog and gain readers?! Who knew?? Not me, I thought this would be cake, but it’s not, it’s hard work! And so easy to tell myself that I’m not good at this, or question myself, like “what are you doing?!” Be intentional about how you talk and think about yourself. Start your day by reviewing all that is GOOD and RIGHT in your life! Look around and see the beauty in life, not just the long to-do list.
So, this week I am challenging myself (and you) to put a little more effort into planning, but enjoying this crazy life at the same time. And to be good to yourself, speak love and goodness over yourself and your family! No stinkin’ thinkin’ this week!
Do you have a “mom” moment that you would like to share or a tip of how to keep everything together? Please share in the comments. We all could use a little help and encouragement!
Until next time,