As a parent you may often find yourself pushed and pulled in the many different obstables of life. According to Forbes, more than half of all employees report that job demands interfere with their personal responsibilities, and 43% of employees say that their family responsibilities interfere with their work performance, according to a 2007 study from the American Psychological Association.
It is no easy task to manage a successful career and a family, and this very thought leaves parents feeling guilty and frustrated. Parents who are able to be an active part of their childrens' lives while also maintaining a career have to make sacrifices in order to keep the peace. Below you will find tips on how to achieve a successful work-life balance.
1. Ask for Help
Sometimes it truly takes a village to raise a child. Seeking support from family members and even close friends can be one of the biggest keys to success, especially for single parents. Successful parents don’t necessarily depend on others, but are often willing to trade favors. For example, they may ask for help driving the kids to soccer practice in exchange for taking over weekend carpool duties for other busy families. When parents arrange for assistance that ensures their kids are being cared for, they’re able to be more productive at work.
2. Make the Mornings Easier
Avoid starting the day on a frazzled note by getting organized the night before. This may seem like a daughting task after a long day at work, but the benefits of having a smooth morning makes this a great idea!
Pack the kids' lunches, lay out their clothes (plus your own), and have everyone shower. To get an even greater head start, decide what to make for breakfast,and repack the diaper bag, backpacks, purses, or work bags and place them by the front door, right next to your keys.
3. Set aside some "Me Time"
There’s a reason why airlines say that in the event of an emergency you should put your oxygen mask on first, before assisting anyone else. If you don’t take care of yourself first, you won’t be much help to anyone else. When you’re feeling overworked, it may seem incomprehensible to squeeze in a little “me time.” But, these times are the times when you need “me time” the most.
4. Create and Organize a Family Calendar
A calendar can include dates when bills are due, a chore chart for the kids, a list of school and family events, extracurricular activities, birthdays, and more. You can even use calendar apps which can be easily shared and synced on smartphones.
Set aside 10 minutes each Sunday to review and prepare for the upcoming week's schedule. This helps eliminate surprises during the week. Families should share the calendar with their babysitter or nanny so that everyone is up-to-date on activities.
5. Let Go of the Guilt
Rather than dwell on how you're not with your child, think about how your role in the company is benefitting the family. Perhaps you can afford certain classes or educational opportunities for your children or you're able to put away savings for college. Accept that there will be good and bad days.
6. Find Quality Childcare
Ask your network of friends and family for references to nannies, babysitters, and daycare centers. Create a list of criteria that are important and then schedule time to interview qualified childcare providers or to tour local daycares.
A good childcare provider should have extensive experience, excellent references, and a record to prove it. A good daycare facility should have flexible hours, a low teacher-to-student ratio, outdoor space, up-to-date licenses, and employees who have had their backgrounds checked.
For tips on how to find the best childcare provider for your family read more below!