Are you a working mom and are you suffering from the guilt of not spending quality time with your kids? Are you feeling that you aren’t around your kids whenever you feel like?
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This is something which is known as working mom’s guilt?
Just because you’ve chosen a career over family, doesn’t mean you have to suffer or stay with that thought. You are actually doing more good than harm.
What do you mean by working mom’s guilt? When does this situation creep in?
• You have to sit for work or take calls and not available to greet your kids when they are back from school.
• You ask your kids to play low while you are on your business calls
• You miss something your child told you about their day because you were thinking about work
• Let’s face it, if you work and have children, you feel guilty about it. We’re wired as moms to nurture and protect our children. When our time and attention is spent elsewhere, no matter why or how long, we feel like we fail our duty as a mother.
Tips for working moms to handle the guilt/depression:
Nobody is perfect and one doesn’t have to be. Please stop being fussy about your work and family. Every mom goes through this and it is ok if you don’t happen to match the pace.
Whether you are a single working mom or have a family to take care of, read out these working mom guilt tips, and squash you’re working mommy guilt.
1. Know some people will always make you feel guilty:
This is a common household scene with working moms. The family doesn’t cooperate hence the guilt trips in. Your mother-in-law keeps taunting you about “back in her days” stories and how smartly she handled the family.
Your neighbor is giving you tough competition in making you feel guilty continuously by asking you how can your daughter stay at daycare until 6 o’clock. Start avoiding these conversations is what we can suggest.
Wave at your neighbor when you are leaving your house. You can’t avoid but can choose to cut short the conversation which gives her a better idea.
2. Know that you’re lucky:
It may seem that everything is falling apart and you are not able to cope up with your work and kids. It happens to all but think the other way; you’re lucky to have a family.
Many women would love that kind of life you are living. Show some gratitude. Take a step back and appreciate the fact that you can experience this gift.
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3. Know that you have the right to choose your battles:
Spend an extra 15 minutes by staying at the daycare or put aside a work a bit after coming home when your kid is cranky especially combating ‘Monday Blues’.
But if you’re asked to attend a class party on the day that new clients are coming to the office, see if you can help out with another celebration in a few months.
4. Know you can spend more time with the kids:
Is the guilt eating you? Pull your kids out of daycare for the day, or if you can take a few days of vacation to spend the day together. Make sure to keep your phone away so you can enjoy each other's company. If you cannot take a day off, see if you can head out early to enjoy a few hours at the park together.
5. Set up reminders:
You have many responsibilities to take care of when your work is concerned. You have to take care of your children, your home, and your career. Because you’re so busy in managing all of these, you might not realize when the guilt being a working mom sneaks in and knocks you out.
So, it’s time to get organized. Find ways to set up reminders so you don’t let things slip through. A fun planner will help make it a habit to check your schedule every day. Or use an app, to keep track of to-do lists.
6. Be willing to change and go with the flow:
You will make mistakes and you have made many already. The key is to learn as much as you can from them and then change your ways if needed. When you go with the flow, instead of fighting reality, you feel like a winner.
You are going to have a bad day because your child refuses to eat on time or do homework and just wants to play. You may feel frustrated at times, but believe it you can get on with your day. It’s okay to not to fret and things are not normal with you.
7. Learn to deep breathe:
Working mom guilt can stress you out. It can trigger your fight or flight response, where you try to fight the feeling of guilt.
To help you break free and feel relaxed use a deep breathing exercise. The trick is remembering to actually take a deep breath. So to help you get into the habit of taking deep breaths practice this often. This way when the working mom guilt moment strikes you is equipped to handle it.
You’ll feel more relaxed if you practice deep breathing in peace. But when you’re in the moment of heightened guilt taking a few breaths can help put space between you and the situation.
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8. Know that this won’t last forever:
It’s hard to predict life. The choices you’ve made about work may seem like they will last forever but they won’t and your kids grow up. The struggle days will soon be gone.
You’ll stop feeling forgetful because you’ll start getting a full night sleep in a few years. So eventually you can remember the many promises you make to your children.
When you feel stuck remember that these are petty issues that will go away with time. Before you know it your child will be in pre-school, making friends.
You may get a different type of job with flexible hours so that you can spend more time with your kids. Stay hopeful that things will change and hopefully for the better.
Why does the ‘guilt’ in the working moms prevail?
Working mom guilt is a “feeling that creeps in every so often that you aren’t spending enough time with your children, and that by working, you’re somehow not doing what is best for your children. First, acknowledge that you can’t be everywhere. You will just be average at everything if you try to do too much.
Women are really good at feeling bad about saying no. But if you want to achieve a lot at work, and in the rest of your life, and maintain some semblance of sanity, you’re going to have to say no to various requests, from taking on extra work to appearances at your children’s school.
If you are working a job you love and you do it because you are passionate about your cause, you are providing the means to create a childhood where little girls grow up to achieve their dreams and little boys see their moms and sisters and aunts and future daughters as equals.
Working mom guilt will happen. Over time though you will bounce back quicker and it won’t hurt as much. You’ll feel like you’ve been there done that. With the above-mentioned tips, and reading working more articles you will be able to know how working moms across the world are coming up with the difficulties hence; this will give you strength and positivity to overcome guilt so you can be the best working mom you can be.
Also read: 6 Signs You Are Doing Better Than You Think