I just got the BEST question in a Facebook forum:
I’d love to hear from you or others on HOW TO MAKE IT ALL WORK. #worklifebalance
My husband and I both have full time jobs, he works from home and is also a singer and collaborative pianist with weekly coaching gigs, I’m full time at a college with many freelance lessons outside that job. How do other folks balance all that gloriousness with KIDS?! Mine are 4 & 3. And meal prep?! And making sure they FEEL THE LOVE?!?!
I was pretty dang proud of my answer, so I wanted to post it here, so that someday I can remind myself what I said. It felt inspired, so I will go back and listen to myself when I need to.
Here you go:
How to make it all work. #Worklifebalance Tips from Michelle:
1. Don’t try to make it all work. Be willing to let things go and flow. Begin to believe that there is no such thing as balance – only priorities. Pick your priorities rather than trying to maintain balance.
2. Family meetings are ESSENTIAL. Pick a time every week that you and hubbs go over the schedules of your jobs’ “have to” moments. Involve the kids for short bursts, “what do you have in your plan this week?” “what would you like to work on this week?” “What would you like to see happen this week?” This information will be gold to you – because now you will be able to actually love them the way they want to be loved and they will be all filled up, without you making up in your head some overachiever nonsense that wastes time and doesn’t fill their cup.
3. Share a calendar on your and your hubbs devices that is specifically dedicated to “who is in charge of the children at this time” – even if you write “the TV or iPad” at least you know what is happening.
4. Meal prep: Weekly menu – same things every week.
Ours is this:
- Monday Mexican
- Tuesday Italian
- Wednesday Soup and/or Sandwiches
- Thursday Asian/Indian
- Friday Veggie Burgers
- Saturday Pizza/Take Out
- Sunday Leftovers or Breakfast for Dinner
5. Zero-Based Scheduling. Just as you schedule your work things, you must schedule your family things and all about you things: date night, kiddo time, family game/movie time, play, reading, rest, lessons, gigs, admin of school, admin of work, kids school, get the hell away from me time, etc. Just as you would budget every dollar, budget every minute – even if you’re crossing out a Saturday with “WHATEVER THE EFF I WANT” and farting around in your pjs – put it on the calendar and STICK TO IT. Read my article about Zero-Based Scheduling and time management here.
6. Release the myth that you’re not doing just fine. Kick that right on to hell. This need to feel the hustle is killing us all – it’s bullmalarkey. There is nothing saying this HAS to feel hard all the time. So, put it in your system and work it without survivors’ guilt. Capacity is about being amazing in the short time you have, not meh in the sixteen hours one insists upon hustling.
Capacity is about being amazing in the short time you have, not meh in the sixteen hours one insists upon hustling.
7. Cancel shit.
8. Watch your inner monologue – whose voice do you hear? If it ain’t yours, tell it to eff right off to hell.
9. Chocolate, water, delicious & nutritious food, only good wine. No cheap wine – you won’t savour it and it will become a habit of self-comfort instead of a lovely reward. When it’s cheap we guzzle, When it’s $$ we savour.
10. Take your sleep seriously. Very seriously.
And those are my tips for when you want to know how to make it all work. and achieve #worklifebalance.
Bonus: What to do when Things get Difficult to Manage
My bonus tip is to read this article I wrote about when things get difficult to manage. Hint: you’ll get two lists:
Hope this helps, XoXo Love you!