As a parent or a spouse, there can be a real juggling act happening keeping your work life and family life from tumbling to the ground. The struggle is real. Here are some tips to keep your work life and family life in balance.
Get your priorities straight.
Vince Lombardi famously said, “There are three things that are important to every man in this locker room. His God, his family, and the Green Bay Packers. In that order.” While your priorities may differ, it’s important to make the most important things most important. It’s easy to make work the reason you get up in the morning, and rush through to get there. But if your family is ahead in the pecking order, your family becomes the reason you go to work. Work for a living, don’t live to work.
Partners, Support Each Other
You can’t be the one who produces at work and consumes at home. You produce on the job, when you get home, you are still serving your family. Take part in the day to day workings of the household, and be sure to give credit where credit is due. If your partner stays at home with the kids, recognize and appreciate the hard work they put in to make that happen. You are a team, so work together to find balance.
Keep Your Eye on the Calendar
Communicate schedules with each other. Make sure you know when the soccer games are, and the band concerts and parent teacher conferences. Plan out chores, down-time, screen-less time, and fun times. Don’t over-clutter the calendar, but be mindful (remember, it’s about balance).
Be Present Wherever You Are
When you’re at work, work hard. When you are at home, put down the phone, don’t email that client… be present to your family. Have time for the family to play a board game. Sit down and talk to each other at the dinner table. Grow close to each other and love each other well.
Live Beneath Your Means
Ouch… This is starting to hurt, isn’t it? If you stretch and reach for stuff, stuff moves up the priority ladder. You may want to provide nicer things for your family, but it can quickly escalate and get you underwater fast. When you feel stretched, you work in a way that makes you a slave to the dollar, and you get in the “Living for Working” mode. Cherish the time you have with your family, and restrain from the need to have more stuff.
Love your family well. Don’t let the stress of having to perform tear your family apart. Use these tips and keep your life in balance.