Working Moms: Avoid Burnout With These 4 Essential Strategies
Working moms have the vastly difficult challenge of balancing motherhood and its related household tasks, as well as their own needs and careers. Even for women who consider themselves to be highly organized, achieving this balance can feel elusive. Working as either a full-time mom or a full-time professional can be overwhelming enough. When combined, it is helpful to know what work-life balance strategies will be the most beneficial.
If you are striving to achieve a balance in your life — and to avoid burnout — explore the following four tips from Working Mum Kitty.
Practice radical acceptance for the things you cannot change in life as a working mom.
A common term that is now widely used by psychiatrists and counselors is “radical acceptance.” As part of DBT therapy, radical acceptance is defined as fully accepting your current reality, and letting go of the negative emotions surrounding a situation that you cannot control or change.
As a mom and working professional, there will be tough situations that arise. You may have to use personal time to take care of your sick child. You may not get to apply for a promotion due to family circumstances.
You may need to work late and miss your child’s bedtime. Getting upset at these situations is natural. However, since you are unable to control much of what happens, becoming angry or frustrated can harm your own health. Instead, by practicing radical acceptance, you can feel more at peace with reality.
Working moms are to use technology in ways that benefit your health.
Oftentimes, technology gets a bad reputation when it comes to our physical and mental health. Despite this reputation, there are numerous apps and tech devices that can actually help you unwind. At home or the office, you can use
quality earbuds or speakers to listen to soothing music, download one of today’s top meditation apps (such as Headspace), or purchase a relaxing foot massager.
Don’t be afraid to invest in smartphone apps and tech devices that will help you take care of yourself.
Develop a consistent self-care routine for yourself as a working mom.
Having a consistent and robust self-care routine is essential for preventing burnout. Although it may not feel as though you have the time for any kind of self-care, taking preventative measures with your health will reduce the risk of burnout and illness.
What your self-care routine looks like may look totally different from another individual’s routine. It is important to engage in activities that are life-giving and beneficial for you. This can include reading books, yoga, meditation, deep breathing exercises, prayer, hiking, tai chi, at-home spa evenings, or acupuncture.
Set firm boundaries in your work and life.
Saying “no” can be an especially challenging thing to do. If you are a high-achiever, or if you are someone who struggles with people pleasing, it can be tempting to take on anything that is asked of you.
Answering a work email at 9 p.m.? No problem. Waking up with your child at 3 a.m. when your alarm is set to go off at 5 a.m.? Of course.
As you may have already experienced, saying “yes” to too much leads to exhaustion. This is why it is critical to set firm boundaries in your personal and professional life.
Set the expectation of when you will/will not be available, without fear of disappointing others. Although this skill takes practice, it is an effective way to keep your days from becoming more chaotic than they have to be.
Above everything, resist the urge to let guilt creep into your life. There is no such thing as striking the perfect work-life balance, and as a result, some parts of your life will be out of balance at times.
Give yourself grace and compassion, and feel the assurance that you are both a wonderful mom and professional.