Balancing Work + Life as a Single Mom

As mothers, we try to do it all: raise our children, maintain a household, earn an income. As single mothers, those burden fall directly onto our shoulders and our shoulders alone. But life doesn’t have to always feel like a struggle – it is possible to create balance and harmony.

We can change our mindset and accept who we are, and let go of mom-guilt, to find that balance between work life and home life. Here are some tips for finding that balance in your life:

Work-Life Integration

We are often told that the key to a happy and balanced life is to separate our work life from our home life. Basically, we are told to split our personalities in two.

This does not create balance, it creates dissonance. We have to learn how to turn off “work us” and switch to “mom us”.

Instead of creating a wall between work and home, you should be your whole and complete self in every aspect of your life. Spread your core strengths over your entire life.

Ask for Help

There is absolutely no reason why you should have to prove to anyone that you’re a Super Mom. Did you kids go to bed breathing? Did they wake up breathing? Congrats!

You are allowed to take shortcuts to make life for you and your little ones easier. Don’t feel bad about takeout meals. Don’t feel lazy if you order your groceries online. Don’t feel like a bad parent if you stick your kids in front of the television just to get moment to yourself. Hack the heck out of your life if it makes things easier.

Learn how to delegate. Outsource your tasks at work if you’re able. Get your kids to pitch in with chores and meal prep.

Go to family and friends. You need you time and there’s no shame in having friends and family look after your kids in order to do so. Let go of that mom guilt and get the self-care you need.

Reconnect with Yourself

You need to decompress from the demands of life. Take alone time whenever you can – kids are in bed, kids are in the bath, kids are in front of Netflix (it’s okay).

Do something you enjoy. Read a book or write in a journal. If it helps to calm your mind, it’s self care – even if it’s the chance to sip a cup of tea and catch up on your Instagram feed.

Maximize Your Time Off

When you work full-time as a single mother, there never seems to be enough hours in the day. Apart from working and taking care of your children, where is the extra time?

You’ll have to find it. Start by establishing a family calendar to track appointments and activities. You can also use this calendar to schedule chores and organize a meal plan.

Meal plans are such a time saver – once you figure out what you’re going to eat for the week, there’s no more humming and hawing about what to eat. Plus, you can do a lot of prep ahead of time, making the actual process of cooking supper less time consuming.

Make Time for Quality Time

It’s important not to forget the emotional needs of your children when trying to balance work and life.

Use your calendar to carve out some special time for your little ones – consider taking them on dates! Make sure this is special, out of routine, time.

Make sure suppertime and bedtime are family times. These are great opportunities to talk and connect.

Otherwise, try to include as much one-on-one time with kids as you can. Even if you’re trying to meal prep, decompress or take care of other responsibilities, there’s always a moment to play a game, hear a story or just cuddle.

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