In just under seven years my life roles have changed from a single, fun loving bachelorette with a side gig to an entrepreneur, wife, and mother. Figuring out my new job duties each came with its own challenges, and I assure you I am still learning on all accounts, but the main thing that I am focusing on right now is how as women (not superhuman robots) we can feel accomplished in all of the roles we identify with while remaining in a balance that is not only healthy but essential for our sanity.
I have found that we tend to build our identity by isolating our roles into silos. This siloed view of our lives creates a duality (or triality, etc.) in our identity that causes us to be less aware of the overall balance of our lives. What I mean is, if we are only focused on getting from point A to point B in our career all day, then we go home and try to be the model parent who attends all of their kids school events, puts dinner on the table, etc., we may quickly become burnt out and disappointed that we are unable to live up to our own standards.
Changing the script of our identity to represent ourselves as whole-women who have complex lives that often intertwine allows us to recognize why there are misalignments with our life-work balance and creates the platform for us to be able to take action towards a more balanced life.
Here are a few things that I have done that have helped me achieve greater balance in my life while also having success in my career and in motherhood.
Strategy 1: Be on a purposeful mission!
To guide the balance of roles in our lives, we need a guiding principle. What I have found works best is to dive deep and define a purpose and reason for being in the world. Meeting our children for the first time has a lot to do with the intensity of our desire to leave a legacy and many moms often find themselves far more in tune with things like sustainability, freedom, and flexibility. These desires make sense as they are all things that allow us to live happier and healthier lives. We also have a pressure, whether seen or unseen, to be examples for our children, and we want to be examples of a life that is possible.
This stage often includes exploring career paths that are outside of the societal norm. I personally found mompreneurship to be the right fit, but for each of us this is an inner journey that ultimately comes down to your vision for what type of life you want to live.
Strategy 2: Align your work with your purpose
Our work allows for an expression of one’s self that is very personalized and is very intimate. Because of the intimacy and close integration of identity with our home and work lives, there is an ever growing reason to ensure that your work or business is in complete alignment with your personal purpose. We hear a lot about having a “why” for your business. Why you exist, why people should buy from you, why your mission is what it is.
As a mompreneur, in order to find balance to create a life that leads to a purposeful legacy it is essential for us to align our own personal mission with the mission of our businesses.
When we do, our overall mission allows us to see things in a focused view, where there is no longer a duality of roles but rather a singular intention: your purposeful, mission-driven body of work which you will work towards in a journey that includes all of the parts of your life, including your kids.
Strategy 3: Set boundaries as balancers.
Within your purposeful life you are able to add in boundaries as balancers which can include things like “I want to work a certain amount of hours a week because I want the time freedom to spend with my children,” ” I want to make xx dollars because I want to be able to provide xx for my children,” and focus your time, energy, and resources on the balance that is right for you.
Understanding that all of these things are truly interconnected allows for one greater why, one greater purpose, and ultimately, one greater legacy. And it becomes a body of work that is focused by your boundaries instead of something that you do or a business that you have.
It becomes who you are and your identity becomes the identity that you create both through your expression of balance and through your work.
Strategy 4: Thank your children for helping you cultivate balance.
Your children are also balancers and are a huge part of your business because they are going to be the constraints that guide you toward greater balance in your life. They are also going to be your guides toward a core set of values that you have. When you have children, there are certain things that you teach them, for instance, to do good and not to do bad, but if your business is doing something bad or cheating customers or something like that then you are out of alignment with who you are and there is going to be lack of trust for you as a parent. That is why being a mompreneur has an increased amount of pressure on the parent to be in alignment, and also why these times of reflection are so important.
Without the times of reflection, it is very easy to become out of alignment, to work too much, or play too much, resulting in stress and burnout.
Strategy 5: Remember to care for the whole woman you are.
The last piece we need to talk about is the mother herself. While balancing the many roles we have, we often lose sight of self. We often identify with the titles shared within society: the entrepreneur, the mom. But a balanced life cannot be created without taking the time to balance the self. This balancing can come through self-care, it can come through providing opportunities for learning and growth, it can come through giving yourself space and time to rest so that you can be your most efficient and vibrant self.
So, I want to encourage you to look at your core purpose and your core reason for being. Look at the purpose of your business and its core reason for being. And, look at the purpose of your parenting and how it is that you want to use that to guide your life and the lives of your children.
All of this leads to a vibrant and balanced life that reflects the core of who you are and allows space for your work and for your family. Once you have an idea of what that life would ideally look like, continuously do check-ins and make assessments of where you are able to realign things to remain within your ideal balance.