I am currently writing this blog on a Wednesday night around 11:00 pm. My babies are sound asleep, and this is the ideal time for me to finally work on my other baby, my nude shoe line. Nude footwear has been my passion for the past several years. Providing true nude pumps to all women have been a true obsession of mine. But, as many of you know, I recently went back to work after 3+ months of maternity leave. I currently have two sons, a 2-year-old and a 4-month-old. Before tucking them in, I bathed them and made sure the older one had his dinner (luckily the infant nurses on demand, very convenient). But way before that, I put in 8 hours at my day job as an attorney.
Any working mother would tell you that we wear many hats. On the working side, as full-time employees, we are expected to show up to work on time, make sure we are efficient and get the job done, all while focusing on the bottom line (rightfully so). On the mom side, we are caregivers, nurses, therapists, maids, cooks, etc., the list goes on.
We have been programmed to believe that we must balance all of the above roles in order to be successful. “Balance, balance, balance,” they say. Society expects us to work as if we do not have children, but mothers as if we do not work. How do we balance all of these roles, and be everything to everyone? The simple answer? We don’t!
I have always had my doubts about this mantra of balance, and my doubts were confirmed recently at a conference when another panelist said this—"focus on priorities and stop balancing your life." Cue “aha” moment and several light bulbs going off in my head! I always knew this concept but never actually thought about a phrase to explain it, until that day.
Genius, right?! Let me explain how I have mastered this (without knowing I was, indeed, mastering this concept). Every night I write down my “to-do” list for the following day in the order of importance. I place the “must do” items at the very top of the list, and go down from there. That way, I know which items must be done and if I do not get to everything in one day, at least I know that the important things are taken care of and the less important things can be placed on the “to do” list for the following day or delegated to my husband to complete.
That’s prioritizing, folks! Balance will dictate that you give each piece of item on the list the same amount of attention and energy or make everything equally important. That’ll be absurd and down-right exhausting! Let’s be honest, taking your child to a doctor’s appointment is not on the same wavelength as a day at the spa. True, the latter is much more enjoyable, but, hey, priorities! Priorities often shift, changes or cease to be…and that is just fine.
As a new mom (again), I am glad to be back at work, but I miss spending more time with my babies. My solution is to simply prioritize spending time with them by making sure that they have the #1 spot on my list.
Working mamas, consider your life…hacked! Now, go forth and prioritize.