Isn’t it fun to peek into other people’s lives? In this episode, we’re looking at the habits of working moms who are (mostly!) successful in balancing it all. There are five habits that almost all these working Moms have in common. Do you already do all five or do you need to work on a few of them?
Below is the podcast version of this article. The podcast explains things so much better than a blog post. I invite you to listen and also hear some examples and enjoy some laughs! Subscribe to the Podcast by opening your favorite podcast app and typing “Balanced Working Moms” into the search or click here for a link to the podcast on iTunes.
A Peek Into Their Life
I love peeking into other people’s lives. I think that’s why so many of us enjoy reading or TV. It’s a little peek into how other people do things.
In this article, we’re going to take a peek into the lives of working moms so we can see what habits they regularly do I’m sure you already do many of the things — and this article will help reinforce them and encourage you to keep at it.
If you work on making these 5 strong, it’ll help you with every area of your life.
Habits of Successful Working Moms
The first thing that all successful working moms do is Wake up at 5am to have time for themselves before the kids get up.
Just kidding. I tried reading the book The 5 am Miracle and I couldn’t get through it. I was cringing the whole time.
Although this is great if you can swing it, what most moms needs is more sleep, not less.
So let’s talk about the real first thing that successful working moms do.
Habit #1: They do (at least!) basic self-care.
You knew this would be #1 on the list, didn’t you?
Exercise, sleep, eating well. Many of us successful working moms aren’t perfect at this, but we’re doing at least the minimum to be healthy.
We know that we can’t give from an empty cup and even though we have NO TIME to take care of ourselves, we somehow find the time to take care of ourselves, anyway.
You can’t be balanced if you don’t at least do a little basic self-care.
To be successful, you don’t have to have impeccable self-care, but you can’t ignore it, either.
Habit #2: They’re somewhat organized.
I’m sure you noticed right away the word, “somewhat.” Most working Moms aren’t perfectly organized, but who is?
Most successful working moms use a use a planner, apps, shared google calendar, or even just a calendar hung up in their kitchen to keep track of everyone’s schedule.
They usually also have a do-list — written down.
I asked a question in our Facebook group that went wild.
The question was
TRUE or FALSE. Writing out my to-do list (rather than keeping it all in my head) makes me feel calmer.
The response was a resounding TRUE. For most of us, we have to write it down or it drives us nuts.
People felt really passionate about this. It’s so important to write down your to-dos and stay organized so you don’t get more stressed out than necessary.
Habit #3: They set boundaries.
Setting boundaries sure takes practice. For many of us working moms, this may be the hardest habit.
What are boundaries?
First, let’s talk about traditional boundaries, where you try not to let work creep into your home time.
But it’s more than that. It also means sometimes telling our kids no.
For example, my kids get their second wind at 8 or 9 pm. If they want me to hang out with them, sometimes even though I’d love to, I have to tell them no.
But this also plays out a lot at work.
Last week my child was off school for the afternoon and I’d planned to hang out with her as soon as my workday was done.
A meeting was scheduled for exactly the time I always get off work.
I said no. It wasn’t easy but I held my ground.
Later the same week when I was asked to work on the weekend, I did say yes.
This is because as working moms, we know that we can’t get away with always setting boundaries. We have to choose and know instinctively when we can set a boundary and when we have to give in sometimes to be a team player.
It’s more a dance than anything else.
Habit #4: They have systems and routines.
Systems and routines are so important for working Moms. My most downloaded episodes are usually where I talk about systems and routines.
We have too much in our head that’s taking up space.
The way we solve this problem and still get things done without curling into our bed from overwhelm is by creating systems and routines to automagically get things done.
And this takes lots of trial and error.
And to make things more complicated, schedules change and we’re forced to constantly shift things, sometimes as soon as it feels like we’ve just gotten a great routine.
For example, I had such a great cleaning routine where I was doing 5 minutes at a time and then the holidays came. And then the kids were off. And I about lost my mind and totally forgot about my wonderful routine.
Once everything went back to normal I had first remember that I even had a routine to begin with, and then get right back to it.
Other times summer happens (or something else) and you have to adjust your routine entirely.
But despite all the ups and downs and starts and restarts with our routines, we have to have them.
They are so important to getting things done without the stress.
Habit #5: They delegate.
This one is hard. To be honest, delegating is not one of my strengths.
But I also know that if I did this more often, my life would change.
Working moms who delegate regularly don’t struggle as much those of us who don’t do this.
If you also struggle with this, try dipping your toe in. That’s how I do it.
Maybe delegate your grocery shopping to Instacart or Target.
Delegate emptying the dishwasher to the kids.
Delegate the yard work to a landscaping company.
There are so many possibilities to delegate. And the more we do this, the more we’ll make more time and brain space for other things weighing on our mind.
Where will you start?
Of these 5 habits, which will you start focusing on first?
For me, I’m going to focus on delegating more. Letting go of some of that control and perfectionism.
What about you?
My suggestion is that if you’re not doing basic self-care, start there. Once you take care of your body and your sleep, everything else is so much easier.
I hope you enjoyed this episode/blog post and that it helped inspire you to develop some habits that’ll help make being a working mom a little easier.
Wishing you lots of balance.