The biggest challenge that many working moms face is how to balance career and mom lifestyle.
You have the demands at work to show up and give your best and sometimes more. Then you have to give your best to your kids at the end of the day.
I’m not going to lie. This is hard.
I’ve learned a few things after juggling a full-time job, a part-time job, plus this blog and podcast while raising two little ones.
But I’m no expert. That is why I got the help of 36 other working moms that are juggling it all to give their best tips on balancing career and mom life.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Cendu | Cenzerely Yours
It can be so difficult and overwhelming to balance mom life and a career.
I’m a WAHM so in order to get things done I do a few things. First, I make a commitment to get up well before my little one. This gives me a solid few hours of focus time that’s uninterrupted.
Making the most of that time means staying organized. I plan out what I need to get done over the week on Sunday and put these as daily goals in my calendar. This way I can jump right into work without procrastinating.
A pro tip: leave your phone on but in a DIFFERENT room/table etc.
So much time gets wasted browsing and its too tempting with distractions in plain sight.
Another way I maximize time is by splitting chores with my husband and using a chore chart. Everyone knows what needs to be done and when.
I also schedule at least one day a week for hubby to take the little one out to give me time to get things ready and organized the following week. It’s all about being organized, consistent and working as a team!
Abby | Abby Von Fossen
Stay organized, intentional, and accountable!
If I’m not organized, I find that I don’t really end up getting much done. With the lack of organization and getting things done, my mind ends up a swampy mess and I can’t even seem to be truly engaged with my kids when I’m with them.
Keep yourself accountable by noticing when you’re slipping on your organization, and get back on track as best as you can.
Even a little bit of organization re-set and clarity on what tasks are important and which need tossed altogether can help me feel more present during my time with my kids.
My goal is to be as fully present as possible both when I’m working and when I’m with my kids. Staying organized helps make this attainable.
Aysia | Mothering the Mama
I know motherhood can be especially hard but throw in a career and it feels almost impossible. For me the best tip for balance is all about planning.
Plan everything down to naps and breaks. Plan out when you’ll do work versus when it’s time to take a break, all of those things are important. And MOSTLY plan out your self care moments. Even if that’s a face mask.
Being intentional with your self care is my number one tip to make sure it gets done!
Pray and ask for help
Kale | Steak and Kale
Girl, you need to pray and ask Jesus for help every single day when you are trying to balance your career and your mom life!
I had NO IDEA how difficult it would be to teach full time and be a mommy at the same time.
The work never ends…in the classroom and in your home. I worried about everything. I felt like a failure a lot of the time.
Reading my Bible, quoting scripture throughout my day, and asking God for help is what got me through most of my days!
Aubri | Mama Jackson
Help. It’s hard as a mom to ask for it, but man does it make life easier.
Whether it is from in laws, siblings, or my husband. I am someone who tends to try to go it all alone.
Once I realized I had help, it had made my life ten times easier! Whether it’s watching baby Gray or just having someone to talk to, when I’ve hit a rough patch.
Don’t ever feel like you can’t ask for help…it’s one of our greatest assets.
Brittany | Thrifty Brittany
Take one day at a time.
Find a routine that works for you and your child.
Except help from anyone!
Avoid negativity whether it be people or media. You only live once so if you don’t love your life make new goals and accomplish them!
Nicole | @GooseWorks
Ask for help!
I wouldn’t be able to do my job and run a company, even a home based one without help. My mom and dad watch the baby (18 months old) 3 days a week. My in-laws pitch in if we have unexpected meetings and when school gets cancelled for holidays or a snow day. We couldn’t do it without them.
And let go of expectations on what life looks like. We don’t have a schedule that’s typical and it took a long time for that to feel “normal”. But everyone’s normal is different these days and that’s ok!
Louise | Discover Your Joy
My best tip for balancing career and being a mom is easing the load of meal preparation.
I cook big meals on the weekends. Then I separate and bag the food into meal portions. In the freezer they go.
During the week, I can pull out a meal and we’re ready to eat quickly. After a few weekends of cooking, I have an assortment of meals in the freezer to choose from.
I also keep a list of what’s in the freezer so nothing gets pushed to the back and forgotten.
Devy | Thousands Of Miles Away
Time management is always the key as well as knowing my priorities and multi-tasking whenever possible.
I schedule everything and do routine housework such as cleaning the house, doing laundry, ironing, etc on certain days.
I make a month worth of meal planner in which I put delish food menu that I can freeze. So, I often cook the food in a batch and freeze them. This saves a lot of time.
For grocery or clothes shopping, I do it online mostly. It saves time and avoids unnecessary shopping items. Normally I do this online shopping at the same time I give my little one company to watch his favourite TV programme, or when I play game board such as Monopoly with the kids.
We have a wall planner/calendar for every member of the family to put their activities. So it’s easier for my husband and I to decide on childcare because our kids are still too young to leave alone at home.
Have support at home
Emily | Websites From A Van
If you have chosen to balance a career with being a mum then you will need a support network to help you navigate these two important parts of life.
In the modern world, this will mean relying on your children’s other parent (or possibly family members) to help share the child rearing and household responsibilities.
Career mothers will find that the day to day running of the house may need to be handed over to a husband or partner. This can mean letting go of control and expectations.
Things may not always be exactly how you would like them to be at home, clothes may not be folded properly, the dishes may not be done when you walk in the door, but if the kids are happy and fed then some standards may have to slide otherwise you will never relax!
Reclaim your life
Maggie | My Au Pair And Me
I used to laugh at the term work-life balance. As a young professional my idea of work-life balance was to work, then figure out how to fit the rest of my life around it.
Then entered graduate school, my first management position, and a year later we decided to start a family. I was so unprepared to actually manage my work-life balance!
In my 4 part blog series I detail the techniques I use to reclaim my life when things get out of control. It is an ongoing battle, but one I happily fight to stay sane and fulfilled.
Step 1: Say “NO.”
There are things in your life that bring you more joy than others. The first step in reclaiming your life is to cut (or at least reduce) the things in your life that take more time than they are worth.
Step 2: Engage Your Village.
You can’t have it all if you plan to do it all by yourself. By coming together to create a village you can gain economies of scale and save everyone time and energy.
Step 3: Make a Plan and Stick to It
Bottom line: If it is important to you, then add it to your schedule and make the commitment to be there.
Step 4: Make the Most of Your Time
In the same way that I hate to waste money, I also hate to waste time. I use automation to streamline tasks like email and creating lists. I multi-task to fill the time I would otherwise waste by myself. Most importantly, if I devote time to someone, then I try to be present.
Jess | Just Call Me Jess
Make sure that you are not pouring from an empty cup at work or in your personal life.
Remember, that at times we pour negativity into the things we value most. Find your balance and include self care in it!
Cristy | Alaska Mom Life
You have to take care of yourself FIRST. If you have to, you must block time for self care.
If your health suffers everyone else pays the price.
So it’s counterproductive to keep going and run on empty. On the other hand, if you’re happy, energized and well, everyone and everything benefits.
Victoria | Sincerely, Victoria
Take care of yourself first!
Practicing self-care and minding your mental health should always be a priority.
Listen to your body and make the time to relax and rest when needed. As you become the best version of yourself, you can serve the ones you love at a greater capacity.
Kristin | Kristin Pearson
Be present wherever you are.
If you are at work, you shouldn’t be worried about what’s for dinner or which kid has a sports game this weekend.
Trying to “multitask” is just making both tasks take twice the amount of time to get done. Being more effective at work will make it so you get enough done in the office that the stress/work does not follow you home.
If you need to do some “mom stuff” during the day, completely step away from your desk if you can and take care of it. The balance is absolutely possible because as women, we are superheroes and CAN do it all… just not all at the same time.
Collene | Rest & Chaos
Be fully present wherever you are. We often give our jobs 100% and then our families get the leftovers.
Find a way to refresh yourself by listening to great music, or an inspiring podcast on the way home to signify the transition from work to home. And then give your family 100% of you as well.
Focus on being fully present and engaged with your family because they are a great work, too.
Stephanie | Diapers & Cocktails
Compartmentalize! It’s so hard to give 100% to both career and family, but if you observe the most successful people in the world they always give 100% of their attention to the person they are speaking with at that moment.
When I am at work, I try to be 100% focused on work. Especially when traveling , this can sometimes mean not checking in at home until the evening so I can give my clients and coworkers my undivided attention.
When home with my kids, I put the phone down and sit on the floor with them and play legos or color and make sure to give them my undivided attention whenever possible so they feel like they are the only people in the world.
I feel by following this approach, that even though I might not be spending as much time, the time I do spend is high quality and everyone feels that they are getting my full attention and focus.
Take a break
Renicia | Alreadda writing services
I allow myself gaps between projects. Since I get so caught up in what I’m doing, I get up to stretch my legs every now and then.
These little breaks are used to run errands or complete any quick chores.
I find it’s so important to help keep my creative juices flowing and I manage to cover some of my mom duties at the same time.
Dawn | Wild Simple Joy
I find that it’s very easy to get overwhelmed with both a career and little ones who rely on me for everything. So when I find myself drowning, I like to brainstorm and prioritize.
Sometimes it means scaling back to barebones… pushing back project deadlines and saying no to social events or things that just don’t fit in with my life at the moment.
Things will never be perfectly 50/50, and that’s all right.
The time you spend on your career or with your kids will fluctuate depending on the season.
Don’t forget that your health and stress management can be a priority too.
It’s okay to not do it all! And it’s certainly okay to ask for help. You’re already superwoman for doing both, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!
Jen | Practical, By Default
Balance isn’t fitting everything in. It’s starting with what is important and letting the rest go.
As a working mom, it is vital for you to figure out what is important to you. It’s not about outdoing your neighbor, workmate or friends. It might look like they have it all together but the truth is, you are seeing the highlight reel, not the behind-the-scenes daily in and out struggles.
Remember, no one has it together all the time. Focus on your own family.
The key to being a balanced working mom is being selective in what you choose to do and using your time wisely.
Set your priorities.
Create a simple schedule and use a planner. Use tools to help you stay focused and get things done. Don’t forget to plan self care.
It is important to recharge. And make sure to connect with your kids every day. You can find balance as a working mom, it just might look a little different that what you had planned.
Strive for harmony
LaWann | LaWann Moses
My best step for balancing career and mom life is to stop trying to achieve balance.
Balance doesn’t exist and we drive ourselves crazy constantly running on the hamster wheel searching for balance. There will always be something that requires your attention more than others.
Instead of balance, strive for life harmony. Work towards getting the things in your life to work together in beautiful harmony.
Evaluate all you have on your plate. Establish healthy boundaries and start saying no to things that consume your time and drain your energy.
Spend time with the little ones
Jennifer | Coffee and Creativity
I find that I am able to get more work done when I feel my “kids’ bucket”. Spending time with them playing, reading, and talking fills up all their emotional needs.
This allows me to let them play independently without interruption and get quality work done as opposed to multi-tasking between work tasks and my kids.
Some days we go to the library or the park and then when we come back home my kids are fine playing in the living room while I talk to clients or write content.
Angela | Kinder Momma
Get rid of social media. For moms who are busy, this is a huge time suck. It is too addicting and interferes with the limited time we have with our children.
Turn your phone off when you come home for work to make your children your number one priority. I know it’s easier said than done, but very important.
Helen | I Spy a Simple Life
Introduce mindfulness and self-care into your daily routine. There are so many simple, short and easy practices which you can implement to bring a better work life balance and stronger bond within the family dynamics.
Those first five minutes when everyone is back from work or school can be one of the most challenging times. Put everything to one side for five minutes. The focus being on reuniting with each other. Hugs, kisses, I missed you’s. No opening the mail, rushing to make dinner, nagging, sighing or tidying up mess. There is time for all that later.
Just recconect with your loved ones for five minutes.
Mitchelle | Mama Buzz
I’m a first-time mom of a sweet little man and I’m learning along with my followers what it means to balance and career and mom life.
The goal is to stay in the moment and enjoy what each day brings while attending to the normal daily responsibilities that all households have.
Learning how to prepare for things ahead of time (ex. meal prepping) and using resources like an app to order groceries can make all the difference in the world.
Danielle | Snatched Words
Try to be present in the moment. If you’re at work then wear your work ‘hat’, and at home where your mum ‘hat’.
It can be hard to separate the two but if you can mentally switch off from work when you’re in mum mode (and vice versa) then it can help to take the pressure off yourself from trying to think about too much at once.
Use your commute to mentally switch between work and home life. Listening to music or an audiobook can help you to make that switch, as can planning out what you are going to do when you get to home/work.
Have scheduled family time
Lucia | Learning To Live Light
There are so many different ways that we can Intentionally love our children while we are pursuing our career. One of my top tips would be to have a weekly family night.
Our family sets every Thursday night aside to have dinner together followed by our family meeting where we talk about the past week and everyone shares their highs and lows.
We also look at our family calendar and discuss upcoming events and scheduled so that everyone is on the same page. After we’ve talked through all of our planning, questions, and concerns, we share a snack or dessert together while playing a board or card game to cap off the night. Our kids look forward to this night every week!
Irena | One Point of View
I think it’s good to be passionate about our job and committed to work – while we’re working. Taking it home is not a good idea.
Even if you’re an entrepreneur or if you’re working from home, it’s important to define working hours. Of course, you can share your struggles from work with your husband, but it shouldn’t affect your mood for the rest of the day (at least not most of the time).
If your kids are bigger, you can even listen to their opinion, it will make them feel important. I think a great way to balance everything is to create an evening routine with your family. It can be a TV show you’ll watch together, talking with your kids about how did their day go or simply playing a game with them, going out to dinner or meeting friends.
Give yourself grace
Tiffinie | Hey Pretty Girl
My best tip for balancing career and mom life is really two things: time blocking and give yourself some grace.
Plan how much time you’re going to spend on each task you have to do, and include family time in it. Put down your phone and play a game with your kids, spend time with your spouse, just devote your full attention to them.
Trying to multitask when it comes to work/life balance means everything gets a fraction of your attention. Give yourself grace if you don’t complete everything you hoped for, and do better the next day.
Allow your kids to help with chores
Theresa | Full Plate Nutrition
Encouraging self reliance in your kids. The more you can teach them to be responsible to get ready in the morning or for bed, the easier life will be for you and the more confident your kids will be.
Using chore charts and sticker reward charts helps motivate them.
And don’t underestimate the power of fun music while having a ‘clean up’ party. It might be slightly more work on the front end, but the outcome is well worth it.
Getting my kids in the kitchen to help prepare foods has not only encouraged them to try different foods, but they actually help me set up dinner.
Daniel | Healthy Life Extra
Have a point by point thought of what you have to accomplish and see it as an objective and not a problem.
Make a plan for the day for the week ahead consistently to avoid been occupied by unproductive activities.
The relationship with your hubby and with yourself should ought not to be dismissed. e.g romantic dinner, morning meals, setting off to the beautician or to the gym. etc.
A morning routine
Moriah | Moriah Riona Branding
Trying to balance motherhood while running my own business has definitely presented its challenges! At the end of the day it’s easy to feel frazzled, overwhelmed, and like you’ve never done “enough.”
One thing that I’ve implemented over the last year—that’s made a dramatic difference in my productivity as well as my attitude—has been creating (and really sticking to) a morning routine!
Now, I am by no means a morning person! But I’ve found that trading a couple extra hours of shut-eye for some dedicated “me time” before the rest of my household wakes—has been a serious game changer! I wake up at 5:00am every weekday morning to start my self care routine (including journaling and working out) so I can get in the right frame of mind before the day begins.
Giving myself this time truly makes me feel like I can handle anything that the rest of the day throws at me!
Amanda | Partying with Twins
I don’t think there’s one single tip that has been most beneficial when it comes to balancing career and mom life. For me, it really comes down to organization and developing a morning routine that allows you to start your morning off on the right foot.
My top organization tip I would recommend is definitely meal planning. For career moms, there is limited time once getting home to get dinner ready, spend a little bit of time with your family and then get things ready for the next day. Stressing about what to make for dinner shouldn’t be part of your evening!
Streamlining your morning is also key. I have a whole post on morning hacks to get you out the door stress free and on time each morning. It starts the night before, by organizing and laying out clothes, lunches and anything else that needs to go out the door with you in the morning.
Then, having a routine and set expectations for how your morning will flow is integral to a smooth morning that doesn’t leave you stressed and flustered.
Set up boundaries
Heather | I Love Your Laugh
My success in working outside the home and raising two extremely successful kids derived from our agreement to live with boundaries.
For me, I was fortunate to go into the workforce when our youngest was seven and I have an extremely supportive husband. My husband has always been a very active dad and jumped in there to make the transition of me going from working at home to working out of the home as smooth as possible.
It was that teamwork that allowed me to set boundaries. When I was working for my employer, the family was only able to contact me at work during times of need.
When I was a home with my family, I was home with my family. Opportunities for overtime were irrelevant. The boundaries I set were clearly communicated to my family and my employer.
My family knew their importance as I would not give up anymore of my time to earn a dollar and my employer respected that my family is my priority and they will only reach out to me in times of need.
Do what's best for you
Saranya | Stay at Home Habits
It’s a juggling act being a mom and handling a demanding career. But remember you are in control and you can choose how you run both.
Prioritise tasks, get help when you can, and most importantly take a break.
As a mom you don’t need to follow and abide by a set of rules. You make your rules and never compare yourself with other moms.
If you haven’t done laundry on a Monday or clean the floor on a Wednesday it doesn’t matter. Do what’s best for you and not stress yourself out. That’s the best way to create a healthy and balanced lifestyle.
Batching and time blocking
Amanda | I Heart Simplicity
My best tip for balancing career and mom life is to block/time schedule.
The first two weeks of the month I write, edit and schedule all of my blog posts until noon. Then in the afternoon I do social media, emails, ect. The last weeks of the month I use to learn something new and work on special projects for my blog.
After school until bedtime I block out the time for family only. This includes dinner, clean ups, one on one time with kids, bedtime routine and anything household related.
On the weekends I shop/meal prep for the week and work on any household related projects.
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I want to know. Which tip was the most helpful for you?
Fantastic ideas. Such an encouraging and inspiring post!