04 Apr Is it possible to balance work, family & exercise?
As a mother, wife, housekeeper and business owner I find it difficult to find the balance that comes with wearing so many hats. I feel the modern day pressure for women to “have it all”. We are supposed to look good, be healthy, have a perfectly kept house, earn a decent income, have perfectly accomplished children, oh and juggle the never ending Uber driving of after school sport and activities!
But can it actually happen? If you have the money to hire a nanny, cleaner, personal assistant and driver then yes it probably can all happen and still keep your sanity. Something has to give and often it is the calm, controlled demeanor we all strive to have as parents. I find when work gets too hectic and we are in full swing of sports and homework that it is often my ability to keep things in perspective that disappears first…I become less present when my kids are talking to me, I become short tempered and I overreact to absolutely everything.
I have three teenage children so life has become more independent but also more emotionally demanding. I read an article recently from Jessica Rowe announcing that she was stepping down from Studio 10 to be there for her girls and questioning the notion that children need their mothers most when they are babies and toddlers. But in fact, I think, as my children get older they need me to be present more than ever before. They, of course, need to be dropped off and picked up from multiple sports and parties but they also need emotional support to navigate friends, hormones and the increasing demands we seem to be placing on our teenage children to perform in every aspect of school life.
So I have learnt in my 40’s that to be the best mother, wife, housekeeper and business owner, that I need to look after myself first, something I put last when my children were young. I have realized that if I am happy and healthy then my children will also be the same. If I exercise regularly I am less stressed and am more pleasant to be around. If I take time out for myself, I am more focused on my business. If I eat healthily, I have more energy to make it through the day.
I don’t think there is a perfect life, perfect mother, perfect wife, perfect family, perfect kids….I think there is only the best but real version of each of these. I think the biggest lesson I can teach my children is the one I am teaching myself. Be happy and be kind. I also want them to know that life is not always easy and its ok not to be ok sometimes. That you cannot control the actions of others…only the way you react to those actions.
So take time to nurture and nourish yourself as a person, be kind to yourself first so that you have the capacity to find balance.
“We need to do a better job of putting ourselves higher on our to do list” – Michelle Obama.