There was actually once a time when a working mother was highly frown upon. At that time, society perceives mothers who have careers to be irresponsible or neglectful of their children. Fortunately, times have changed and working parents are highly respected for their efforts of juggling work and family responsibilities.
Just because most of us are working parents now, it does not mean it is any easier than before. You have your 9am-6pm job to handle, deadlines to meet, pressure from your bosses, heavy workload to manage etc. Then you also have your 24/7 job, which is being parents, that means making sure your children's needs are met, spending enough time with them, providing them with the guidance they need, and of course making sure they are coping well in school. Not to mention household chores that needs to be done every single day. I guess working parents might have just outdone Superman, Wonder woman, and The Avengers altogether.
Jokes aside, working parents indeed have a lot on their hands. As much as you love your work and families, it can be overwhelming and tiring sometimes. We are here to help you out.
Here are some reminders for you amidst your hectic schedules as working parents.
1. Work life balance is important.
It is hard to have the weight of the whole world on your shoulders. You work really hard at your job, proving to your bosses and colleagues that you are as capable as the other single employees without children. You go home, you try your best to be the perfect parent, proving to other parents and your relatives that you are equally good as stay at home moms and dads. As much as you can work extra hard by having only 4 hours of sleep, and no time to rest, it is very important to get a work life balance. Give yourself some leisure time, be it reading a book on your own, dropping by a cafe for a good meal, spending a relaxing day with your family members, it is important to take a break. This can keep you physically and mentally healthy, and of course, feeling happier.
2. Learn to deal with your stress and anxiety.
I know this is much easier said than done. But it is really helpful to give it a try. Try not to drag around your worries around every minute of the day. After work, the stress of your next deadline may bother you, but that should not affect your entire mood when you go back to your family. It can be unfair to your children for you to be yelling at them over petty things because your boss yelled at you during work. At the same time, it is also difficult for you to focus on work if you are constantly worried about your children's exams. Hence, deal with one problem at a time calmly, instead of piling up your worries and stress. Remember worrying does not help at all. Once you deal with your stress and settle the problems one at a time, you will feel much more relieved.
3. Do not be afraid to ask for help. It is normal for us to take things all on our own. We think that asking for help shows that we are weak or incapable. However, there are times when it is okay to ask for some extra help to lessen the burden. In terms of work, you can delegate some of your tasks to your colleagues or discuss it with your boss. It may seem crazy, but if you are a dedicated employee, I am sure they are willing to listen to your reason and share your workload. When it comes to your children, you can carpool with other parents to save time on fetching them to and fro. You can also discuss with your spouse or relatives to help manage your children's needs like transport and food. If your children are falling behind their studies and you have no time to guide them through, you can get them an experienced home tutor to help out. Do not be afraid to ask for help when you need. Then you have sufficient time to get your own responsibilities done better.
4. Talk to your children about your feelings.
Often parents tend to hide their feelings from their children in fear that it will affect them negatively. However, if you talk to them in a mature way, they will learn to understand you better. Share with them your worries and stress in a rational manner, and explain to them why sometimes you cannot be there. Allow them to help out in simple chores. By this way, you can have more time on your hands to spend with them, and they will also feel independent and learn to be responsible. As a working parent, you can actually be an inspiration to them, to work hard and achieve their dreams.
5. You are only human.
This cannot be emphasized enough. We have so many expectations for ourselves that we often forget this. We are only human and can only do a certain amount of things. Yes, we can strive to get as many tasks taken care of, but do not be too hard on yourself when you cannot get everything done. Give yourself some credit. You are managing your career and your family at the same time. You are dedicated to working towards your career goals and also give your best care towards your family. This alone deserves a pat on your back. Reward yourself from time to time, take breaks, get enough rest etc. You are only human. You can always try your best but you do not have to be perfect.
Studies show that stress and anxiety contribute to at least 80 percent of all illnesses that people suffer from. Over 19 million people are negatively affected by stress related disorders, but you don't have to be.
With all these tips in mind, I hope you've got a sense of comfort and relief as a working parent. While juggling work and family responsibilities, remember these tips to help you through your busy day. Give yourself credit, because you are already doing your very best. Congratulations, to all working parents!
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