By Elle Kaplan
Finding balance as a working parent can be a challenging and often overwhelming task, especially when you are juggling the responsibilities of a career and raising children. This can be especially true for women who, despite progress, still carry a disproportionate burden of the work of raising children.
Being a mother has its glorious times, and it also involves overcoming difficulties. I remember that during the first year of my babies’ lives, I had to have my hair styled in a ponytail all the time to avoid being spit up on — glorious times indeed. But I’ve cherished every moment of being a mom, despite the challenges.
As a businesswoman, I find it nearly impossible for me to just turn off my computer and leave work behind. I’m constantly thinking of ways to improve my business, solving problems, or planning for the next day’s tasks.
I believe that, with some awareness of the hardships and benefits of working both outside and inside of the home, it is possible to find the right balance that works for you and your family.
One of the greatest hardships of working outside the home is the challenge of balancing the demands of work with the needs of children. It can be challenging to find reliable childcare, and even when you do, you may worry about whether your child is receiving the level of care and attention they need.
Additionally, when you are at work, you may feel guilty or worried about what is happening at home with your children. You may miss important milestones or simply feel like you are missing out on quality time with your children.
Working inside the home comes with its own set of hardships as well. Being a full-time caregiver can be physically and emotionally exhausting, and you may feel like you are constantly on call. Additionally, being the primary caregiver can make it challenging to find time for your own personal interests and professional aspirations.
Despite the challenges, there are many benefits to both working outside and inside of the home. Working outside the home can provide financial stability and opportunities for personal growth and development. You may enjoy the social and intellectual stimulation that comes with a career, and you may find that your work provides a sense of purpose and fulfillment beyond the demands of parenting.
Working inside the home can be incredibly rewarding as well. You may enjoy the flexibility that comes with being a full-time caregiver, and you may feel a sense of satisfaction from being able to watch your children grow and develop firsthand. Additionally, being the primary caregiver allows you to create a deep and meaningful bond with your children that can be difficult to replicate in other settings.
It’s Not Realistic to Expect Perfection
It is important to remember that there is no one-size-fits-all solution to the challenges of balancing work and parenting. Balancing both roles requires a lot of trial and error, and it’s okay to make mistakes. It’s also okay to ask for help when needed and to take breaks to recharge.
Every family is unique, and what works for one family may not work for another. It is important to avoid comparing yourself to others and to focus on finding a solution that works best for you and your family.
Finding Balance Between Both Types of Work
Finding balance between working outside and inside of the home requires careful planning and communication with your partner and family members. Here are some ideas that might help you finding that balance.
Establish Clear Boundaries
Being a parent who works both inside and outside of the home can be a balancing act. To avoid feeling overwhelmed, it’s important to establish clear boundaries between your personal and professional life. Create a schedule that works for you and your family, and try to stick to it as much as possible. You might set aside specific times during the day to focus on your work, and other times to be fully present with your children. By setting clear boundaries, you can manage your time more effectively and reduce stress.
Find a Supportive Community
Building a supportive network of other parents who are managing both work and family can be a great source of advice and encouragement. Look for online communities or networking events that cater specifically to working parents. Reach out to other parents in your area and set up regular meetups to share ideas and provide support. By connecting with others who are facing similar challenges, you can feel less isolated and more empowered.
When you’re juggling both work and family responsibilities, it’s important to take care of yourself. Make self-care a priority by scheduling time for activities that recharge your batteries, such as exercise, meditation, or spending time in nature. Even small acts of self-care, like reading a book or taking a bubble bath, can make a big difference in how you feel. Remember, taking care of yourself is not selfish — it’s essential for your well-being and the well-being of your family.
Learning how to delegate tasks effectively is crucial for parents who work both inside and outside of the home. Consider hiring a babysitter or enlisting the help of family members to watch your children while you focus on work. You might also consider outsourcing certain tasks to freelancers or virtual assistants to free up more time. Delegating responsibilities can help you reduce your workload and feel less overwhelmed.
Remember to be kind to yourself as you navigate the challenges of being a working parent. You may experience setbacks or make mistakes along the way, but try not to be too hard on yourself. Focus on your accomplishments and celebrate your successes, no matter how small they may seem. Practicing self-compassion can help you stay motivated and positive, even during tough times.
Juggling the responsibilities of being a parent and a professional can be challenging, but it can also be a fulfilling experience. It’s important to recognize both the difficulties and the rewards of each role and find a balance that works for you and your family.
If you’re a parent who works outside of the home, what advice would you offer to others who are navigating the same challenges? Have you faced any unique obstacles or discovered any strategies that have helped you manage both roles effectively? Please feel free to leave a comment or reach out to me via Twitter or Facebook. At LexION Capital, our priority is to make our clients’ financial goals a reality by providing hands-on wealth management solutions, backed up by science-based insights into the financial industry. We help you maintain well-diversified investment plans. Should you need help in the aspect of financial growth, please visit my company’s website, LexION Capital.
Elle Kaplan is the founder and CEO of LexION Capital, a fiduciary wealth management firm in New York City serving everyone who feels left out by traditional “Wall Street”, including women and the families they love.