There is a balancing act of work and family, you know it and I know it! I work at home, I’m the first person to get called when something unexpected happens and help is needed. When your work is at home the lines become very blurred! Trying to convey to others that you really are working can turn into a sticky situation.
When I started working from home everyone knew it. It was easy to get caught up in helping others “anytime” during the day. Of course I wanted to be there for my children, grandchildren and other family members. Watching the grandchildren is a lot of fun! I get to play Old Maid and use Color Crayons without being made fun of. ?
My mother who has congestive heart failure also needs extra help. There are Dr. appointments, eye appointments and cardiologist appointments that she needs driven too. My son and I also make it a point to biweekly help her, because she still lives on property. She compiles a list for us and we make it happen.
Working from home adds a new aspect when it comes to balancing work and family. I’ll be honest, I really struggle with this. It’s not easy to tell my friends and family “no, I can’t help you today.” Getting everyone to understand that because I don’t leave home to work, doesn’t mean I’m not busy every day.
The last few years I’ve learned how to balance work and family better. The last thing I want is for others to feel they are not important to me. Finding the balance is still an ongoing mission, but I do feel like I’m making progress. It has taken some planning, let me share my thoughts.
Parents need us:
Yes, parents need us but we need them too. My mom is a riot! Old people can be really funny; I would not want to miss out on this. She attends all our family functions and has been a pillar influence in my children and grandchildren’s lives.
My mother’s appointments are always scheduled. They are added to my calendar and do not cause an interruption to my work schedule. Also scheduled is the biweekly “help grandma day” and I can easily do my work around it.
Our children need us:
I have four children. Two of the older girls are married, and each of them has two children. When I was a young married with children, my husband and I lived away from family. Maybe I was too picky, but I was not comfortable with any of my sitter options, so we rarely went anywhere.
It’s important to me to be available to my adult children when they need a break from the little ones. And the truth is… it makes us take a break from work! We are such workaholics, not good. I get out my calendar and we schedule, because honestly, Les and I really are not last minute people.
The wedding venue needs us:
The wedding venue is my job, and I do it from home. There are phone calls to answer, emails to return, contracts to mail out and update, files to keep up and all that office stuff, lol. There are venue showings, and venue cleaning. Yard work is a big portion of the venue work. Oh, and keeping up with the entire social media menagerie!
I love every bit of my venue duties (minus the bookkeeping, ugh) but it takes time to get everything done. Now I set specific hours for some things, make appointments for others and some things just happen when they happen. I have learned to be flexible.
My marriage is important:
I’ll be honest, this is a hard one. As I mentioned before my husband and I are workaholics. In my book if you are not doing something purposeful you are probably being lazy. I know it’s important to have down time but what is that, lol!
Les and I start a date night regime and it works for about two weeks and then we are back to our old habits. I did mention that marriage is important to me. This is an area that we must be very purposeful in. It’s an ongoing battle that we will win!
I need to rest and recharge:
Les and I have found that to rest and recharge we have to leave home! If we stay home there is “always” work calling our names. The whole point of having the venue is to make life easier for us. Take off some of the financial pressures and to be able to enjoy life a little.
This last year we took a trip to Mexico and it was so fun! It was just the two of us and we did some crazy things while there, like take an ATV ride we will never forget. Schedule a vacation; get it on your calendar. Will we do Mexico every year? No, but we need to go somewhere away from HOME.
Balancing work and family is an issue that most of us will need to address. Life changes quickly. Focus on what needs to change and tweak them. There will be bumps in this “Balancing Act of Work and Family” but we must never give up trying.
I wrote this post a few years ago and my mother has now passed away. Guys, I’m so glad I made time for her needs and wants!