Balancing The Mother-Load. How To Get That Balance Thing Working In Your Favour.

Kids. Life. Work.

by Lauren Millman
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Kids. Life. Work….It’s a crazy time when your day isn’t all about you anymore, and you have a thousand things on your plate, in your head, and on the to-do list, never mind the diapers, pull-ups, potty training, meals, snacks, laundry…Motherhood is a vortex of doing, thinking, feeling, organizing, maintaing, and cat-napping. Never-mind that suddenly, you’re chef, chauffeur, maid, housekeeper, handy-man, launderer, teacher, doctor, nurse, mediator, event-planner, and creator-of-everything good, happy, and functionable. Except maybe, yourself. Life has become a hurricane of business overnight. Groundhog day on repeat. Get-me-off, right?! Ive got 3 kids myself, all under 14, and I’m 50 next year with a successful Relationship and Parenting practice in-tow. Sometimes I forget my kids’ names, give the wrong lunch to the wrong kid, and serve breakfast for dinner because I’m darn too tired to even think. But I’ve had to learn how to get the Life-Work-Balance right, and it took years. How’d I do it? I will share that with you now.

The first ting I did was let myself off the hook. You are Super-Mom, but you’re human too, like you. Realize that you’re not a machine and burn-out can happen fast. You are not responsible to do every thing every day. Tell yourself that right now. I give you permission. You are now officially let off the hook. I quickly found myself overwhelmed, tapped-out, and extremely on edge, moody and combative. So, what’s the worst thing that can happen if you don’t cook dinner, make the beds, or you don’t tidy the house? Worse thing? Nothing. Nothing will happen, other than the kids will know exactly where the toys were left from the day before, dinner will either be cereal or brought to you by the hubster, partner, friend, or the freezer, and the beds will be nice and ready to hop into, already indented and ruffled to your liking and comfortability. Aesthetically speaking, perhaps a bit unappealing, but no one will suffer. Not even you, because I’ve already given you the go ahead to mentally release yourself from your go-getter, I-have-to- make-sure-everything-is-perfect-and-right mentality. I lived here for many years, and when I realized I could get through a day of mess, disorganization, and unpreparedness, and everyone was okay, including me, it made find some balance easier.

The second thing I did was ask for help. Oh, the dreaded ask, yes, but you do have to ask! Contrary to what us women think, and it is wishful thinking, our husbands do not know what we want or what we’re thinking. They aren not the mind-readers we wish they were. We have to tell them. Oh my god, really? Yes. They want to know what you need. More importantly, they want to know how they are needed. Men are intrinsically wired to be doers and problem-solvers. They want to know how they can help. Your mother and mother-in-law are no different. They may not have offered any help or support because they don’t want to intrude on step over any boundaries. (If there are other reasons, call me. We can talk!). The point is, no one wants to offend, and no one knows what you want unless you speak up. Go!

Thirdly and lastly, breathe, relax, and make time for YOU! As the saying goes, “happy wife, happy life”, the same is true for you, Mom. If your’e not rested, and haven’t had any “me-time”,  you’re at the beginning of the proverbial recipe for disaster. When we’re tired, we’re irritable, curt, offensive, defensive, emotional, and unable to maintain emotional control, keep our wits about us, and keep that gorgeous smile of yours planted beautifully on your face. Every day, make some time for you. Include your husband or significant other in there too, if you can. Go out with a friend, take a nap, catch a quick lunch, go outside for a walk…just do something for you. Schedule it, so it happens, like an appointment. Scheduling me-time will help, but be flexible, because the little one may throw that off. And if that happens, make sure you go-with-the-flow. You can not control things that are out of your control. Once you accpet this, everything will become easier and more manageable. 

Happy-go-lucky goes a long way. Balance ahead!

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