If you’ve read my blog a time or two, you will know that I love to talk about this (what I believe to be elusive) idea of balance. For my Today’s BusinessMom site I interview a lot of working mothers and mothers in business, and this one question is always on my list: Do you believe in the idea of balance?
If the answer is yes, I always ask the mothers to define the word balance. Some feel that it is being able to do everything all of the time, or at least most of the time. Some feel that it is being able to do some things some of the time. Some believe balance is spending time with the children when we are home and working when we are out, thereby not mixing the two.
Balance is really a personal idea; we each have our own definitions, and in order to achieve balance we must figure out what ours is and then strive for it. What I’ve found, though, is that we all expect too much. We all expect to be able to spend one hundred percent of time with our children when we are home and one hundred percent of time on work when it is job time. This is, of course, unrealistic, which is why I believe we are always beating ourselves up (and finding ourselves totally spent at the end of the day).
A few weeks ago I read an article about balance. The journalist had interviewed a few CEOs and asked them what they felt balancing work and children meant. One of the men said that he didn’t believe in total balance because there were times when life predicted that he would have to work more and spend less time with his children while there were other times that life predicted he would be able to spend more time with his kids and work less. He understood that this was okay, and that it might mean missing a ballgame or an important meeting. He chose what was most important for that particular moment and followed it.
If you are completely exhausted, could it be that you are having difficulty allowing the pendulum to swing back and forth, and instead you are trying to overcompensate? Are you trying to do too much all of the time?
This week, consider your definition of balance. Is it realistic for you and your situation? And if you would be willing to share your ideas with the readers, drop me a line. I’d love to hear what you think. I believe we can learn to take it easier on ourselves when it comes to work and family and home and laundry and cooking if we listen to others’ thoughts and ideas and incorporate some of what they say into our own.
Happy weekend, moms! Take some time for yourself today.