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How to Balance Parenting When Your Work Life is Intense

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What happens when things at work dial up to 11? If you’re anything like me, you give all you have there and come home drained only to realize that your second job starts the moment you walk in the door. So you find something in you that gets you through bedtime. It may not be the easiest night ever, but you get there.

But how do you do it when every day at work is an 11? I have found helpful advice and inspiration in these quotes. These steps have allowed me to feel balance, even when things are completely out of balance.

Focus on self-care

"As a mom of 3, I struggled for a long time because I was putting everyone’s needs before mine. I had lost who I was as a woman and was only defined by my role as a mom, business owner, daughter, sister, etc. I was trying to be the best for everyone but myself. I had to make myself a priority again. I had to take small steps to getting ME back. I started making appointments with myself and actually putting them in my calendar with reminders. I made time daily to move my body, journal and meditate, even if it was just 10 minutes. I made time to rekindle my relationship with myself. Self care is one of the most important things I’ve done for myself, those around me and my business. Running on empty was serving nobody!" - Jen Gagnon

It's not about the balance, it's about focus

"Any parent with a very intense career or works from home can relate to this problem. But the truth is, it's not about the balance. Nothing in life is ever fully balanced. But what you can do is focus on the task at hand. When I’m parenting I’m intensely focused on making sure my children are being put in a position to win (by win I mean do chores and homework). When I’m working, I’m intensely focused on executing my task at hand. This way, neither my career nor parenting are sacrificed". - Eddie Smith


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Consider the seasons, and get as much help as you can

"Work-life balance is impossible to achieve. Instead I focus on prioritization and ‘seasons’ where family or work are more heavily weighted. We rely heavily on routines and making sure key things for our family life are booked into the calendar. If it's not scheduled, it doesn't happen - both for our family life and my work! So schedule in your ‘seasons’... And get as much as help you can! Things like hiring a house cleaner and using a meal prep delivery service or even batch cooking on the weekends when there's more time means less stress during the week when my work day may stretch longer. And whatever you do, be kind to yourself! Parenting is difficult". -Susan McVea

Adjust your schedule to prioritize your children

"Since having kids, my life was turned 180 degrees but I have never been happier. I changed Corporate Meetings for Diaper Duty; instead of creating charts, I was watching Paw Patrol. I learned to adjust my schedule to my wife’s needs while she was at work and then work once she got home. I learned fighting over not being able to get things done while watching her was not going to get me anywhere instead I enjoyed her company and got to create those amazing memories. A child should never be in the way of success, if you make your child your happiness and why you reach that success". -Fernando Sustaita

Redefine what balance means to you

"Kids bring in variables that we can't always manage or control. One day things can be going great and you feel like you have caught a glimpse of that ‘balance’ you hear everyone talking about. And the next day you're sidelined because of a kiddo who crawled into bed at 2:00am that night or a tantrum that causes you to show up late for a meeting. Drop the mirage of this ‘balance’ they speak of. Redefine what it means for you in this phase of your life. Enjoy the moments that go smoothly. Work on yourself so much that you're mentally strong enough to handle the moments that don't. Drop the guilt. Embrace the ride and never forget why you started your career in the first place," -Jesse Penner

True balance is a myth, but we are all Just trying our best to make these short years of parenting meaningful for our children, and for us. It’s important that we take the time to take care of ourselves, ask for help when we need it, consider our children when we think about our priorities, and really think about what “balance” means to each of us.

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