Let’s talk about mom guilt. It’s a real thing and chances are you’ve felt it. Whether you work full time, part time, outside the home, or from your home, everyone has their own version of guilt surrounding motherhood.
We don’t want to miss the first moments of our kids’ lives or the activities they’re involved in. We don’t want them to think that all we do is sit on our computers or phones all day working. And we definitely don’t want them to resent us for working.
But work is a part of life. So how do we balance work and life? How do we teach our kids to value good work ethic? How do we deal with our guilt?
Recognize what’s causing Guilt for you.
What is the guilt circling around?
Do you always have guilt around the fact that sometimes you miss your kid’s baseball games? If so, is it possible to find a way to make it to the game? Could you work out with your boss to get those nights off? If you work at home, could you structure your schedule to be finished working by then?
If that’s not a possibility then maybe you should just have an honest talk with your kid and say something like, “I want you to know that I love you. I care and I’m supportive of this activity of yours. I can make it to your Monday night practice, I just can’t make it to your Wednesday night games.”
Honestly, often we can find or create solutions for our mom guilt. We just don’t. We let it feel hopeless and we do nothing so it becomes this lifelong struggle.
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I think mom guilt is always going to be there in some amount. But if you chronically feel guilt about something then stop, step back and ask yourself what this guilt is circling around and be creative about a solution.
Decide what’s important to you (not anyone else) and prioritize it.
What would break your heart if you missed it? Don’t miss those things. Just remember that you can’t not miss everything.
That’s the only work/life balance you’re going to get because perfection doesn’t exist. It’s a total lie. It’s such a BS and it’s just fueling the working-mom guilt fire.
There will be seasons.
Sometimes work will be busier and you’ll be less present with your family. Sometimes your home and personal life will be busier and you need to dial down your efforts and hours at work.
It’s all give and take. And that’s ok.
Be grateful for your job and focus on feeling joy and satisfaction in your work.
Use positive words when you’re talking about your job. Have a positive vibe and energy around it. Because how you feel, how you react, how you treat you job, is going to be how your kids feel, react to, and treat your job.
Your kids aren’t going to see it as negative, stressful, or make you feel guilty about it if you don’t. And you shouldn’t!
You’re providing for your family. You should be so proud of that. Step into that awesome role and feel good about what you’re doing. It’s a big deal.
And if you love what you do, don’t you dare feel bad about that. That’s so amazing! Step into that and let yourself feel that completely.
What a freaking gift that is! You get to provide for your family while working a job you love. That’s incredible!
Maybe you’re not super passionate about your job but you like the environment at work and you’re making good money, let yourself feel that joy.
If you don’t love what you do, I would encourage you to look for a different job. Pray about it. Figure out a way to go a different route.
Girl, it’s OK to take breaks
If you work from home or bring work home from your office, it’s OK to take breaks from work and prioritize your kids for five minutes.
I think a lot of us tend to get into this “all or nothing mode” where we feel like we have to finish a task completely before we can spend time with our kids. Nothing has to be “all or nothing” unless you choose for it to be that way.
Don’t feel weird about working on your phone or using tech at home to work.
We live in an awesome time where work can be done from anywhere. So don’t feel guilty about that. Don’t feel weird about it.
Be grateful that you can work on your phone so easily and it’s something you can do anywhere.
It’s OK to bring in some help.
You absolutely cannot do it all. And if you are doing it all, you’ll see that you won’t be doing all of it very well.
So what does that look like for you? Child care — do you need some help with your kids? Housekeeping help — do you need to hire a housekeeper? A meal delivery service? Get creative and think it through.
If finances are a problem, just do what you can. Every time I’ve delegated something, I have more time and energy and I end up making more money because I feel better.
Stop comparing yourself to other people.
You’re making yourself emotionally unhealthy by comparing yourself to other people. You are not them and you are not supposed to be them. You are you.
You’re living your story right now, so focus on that and understand that work is a part of that. At least for now.
Just accepting that work is a part of your life can be so huge for letting go of the mom guilt. If you see an instagram picture of a mom baking cookies with her toddler and you’re at work sitting at your desk like, “Oh my gosh, i feel like the worst right now,” that’s so emotionally and mentally unhealthy.
Don’t let that lie sink in. Sure that mom is doing something awesome. But so are you!
And work at home moms, don’t ever let anyone make you feel “less than” for working from home. Or like it’s less legit than working outside of the house.
That’s total BS. Don’t you dare take that!
I realized that usually, when it comes to working mom guilt, most of the judgment actually comes from ourselves. It only freaks us out when we see a glimpse of it from other people because it’s solidifying what we feel about ourselves. And we need to deal with that.
Reflect on where it comes from—usually it’s our childhood—and just let it go. It doesn’t have to have power over you for one more day. So please deal with it.
Because the reality is that when our kids grow up, it’s very likely that they’re going to work. So it’s important that we model a healthy work/life relationship for them and not act super guilty, stressed, burdened and victimized by our role as a worker.
We’re their example, so let’s change the way we’re treating and talking about our work because that’s how our kids are going to view work in general. Especially if you have girls and they become mothers and they’re working.
Being a mom is such an empowering role and being a working mom is totally badass. And it’s not something you need to feel remotely bad about.
You’re taking care of your kids just as much as the mom who stays at home. So you get out there and you keep kicking butt, mama!
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