Monday, September 14, 2009

Balancing Work and Family Life

It has been a little crazy around here since school started and I'm trying to balance everything out. So after a week my life isn't completely balanced out yet but it is significantly better. For some of you, work might be paid work and for others, work is housework. No matter what your work is, you need to have balance so you can have a happier and healthier you.

First you need to set a goal. What is your ultimate goal for you? Is it to have a happy/healthy family? Is it to see your kids grow into successful adults? Is it to have a home that others will feel welcome in? As you make decisions think about your goal and ask yourself how your decision will impact your ultimate goal.

Next, you need to determine what your values are. A value is defined by relative worth, merit, or importance. Sometimes our values can conflict with each other. For example, you might value getting to work early but you also value seeing your child off to school. When you are faced with conflicting values, look at your goal and choose which value is more important and act accordingly.

Setting priorities and managing time are two of the most important aspects of achieving a balanced life. Determine what you need to accomplish and when and write it down. Keep organized. My biggest problem is prioritizing. I spend a lot of time working on things that don't move me closer to my end goal. You may have daily priorities, weekly priorities, monthly priorities, and yearly priorities. Sometimes you can combine a couple of priorities and manage time better. Two of my priorities are spend individual time with my children and fold laundry. I can accomplish both of these by having a child work with me to fold the laundry. My child learns a skill and we have time to communicate with each other. On occasion, I have conflicting priorities. I like to have my kitchen cleaned before I leave the house but some mornings I haven't got it done and I need to leave to Yoga class, another priority of mine. When this happens I have to look at my overall day and determine which priority will benefit me most for the day.

The last thing to remember is to just let go. We can't be supermom/dad all of the time. The last couple of weeks I've realized I was trying to do too much at once and needed to let go of something. I chose not to post new blog posts and instead used the time to catch up on some much needed housework. If you are a mother you know guilt. Don't feel guilty for letting something go to achieve more balance. It is a waste of energy and time.

When, not if, you find your life out of balance, take a step back, look at your overall goal, reassess things, and make adjustments. The sooner you do so the better off life will be for you and your family.

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