As a working mother, it can be difficult to keep clear boundaries between work and home life. This is true for mothers who work outside the home as well as mother’s who work from home. It is important to learn to set these boundaries, though, because, overtime, you can become exhausted, stressed, and burned out from having roles that too often fall into other areas of life.
Here are some tips on how you can set clear boundaries between work and home as a working mother:
- Know what is important to you. If you want to make sure you spend quality time with your kids, make sure you aren’t carrying your phone and laptop everywhere you go. If you like to spend time on your hobbies, make sure you aren’t working 60 hours a week and that you have that free time and free energy to focus on your hobbies.
- Decide on the number of hours you will work per week and stick to it. It’s okay to work a bit over once in a great while to catch up on a project or help out, but just be really clear that it doesn’t become a regular event.
- It’s okay to set limits on what time you will be able to be contacted by people at work. These days it’s so easy to get caught up in responding to a work email at 9:00pm or texting (or getting a text) on the weekend about something work-related. Because technology makes it more difficult to set clear boundaries, you have to put in the effort to keep the time limits on when you will and won’t work.
- Try disconnecting from electronics. This can be for half a day a week or even one full day per week. As a working mom, it’s important to train ourselves to relax. Working mom or not, so many moms have gotten into the habit of being busy and on the go all the time. It’s important for our own and our family’s well-being that we truly relax and be in the moment without the distractions and stress of technology.
- Be clear with your explanations. When talking to your boss about setting boundaries, be clear with your reasoning. Don’t just say you are too stressed (even though it’s probably true), provide more rationale for why you are setting the boundary. Often times it comes back to time…If you spend your time doing this then you won’t have time to do this. (Schedules and planning when things will be done is a must for moms.)
I hope these tips are helpful to you. It may be a little uncomfortable at first to set better boundaries, but overtime, you will experience the benefits…and your kids will, too.