This post is a guest submission. Please see our Disclaimer, Disclosures, & Affiliate Notice for details.
Finding a balance that works for both your family situation and career type can be very difficult. This is why internal conflict between career and family life is a very common source of stress in the lives of many working adults. In the competitive society we live in and the daily life of survival of the fittest, there is no doubt that you have to work to feed your family. But the question is; how do you balance work and family life so that neither your family nor work is neglected?
The following are are 4 tips to help you find a balance between your family and career life.
Create a Boundary Between Your Work Life and Home Life
Sometimes, there may be unexpected circumstances to interfere with your work-family balance. One of the best ways to balance your family and work is to create a boundary between them.
Remember that when you’re at work, you most likely won’t be picking calls from home. In fact, your family members know better than to call you except there is an emergency. The same should go for your work life.
Depending on your job, you may be unable to go without picking calls from work and this may require a discussion with your employer. You should still attempt to minimize the at-home disruptions that come with work.
You should also avoid taking work back home with you. Of course, the nature of some careers requires that you take paperwork or documents home, it doesn’t mean work should interfere with family time.
Don’t allow your work to restrict you to your study when you’re at home. Allow your children and spouse to have access to you when you’re at home.
Create a Routine
Even though you spend only three to four hours with your family every day, apart from or including weekend days, there is a way to make the most of those few hours.
If you create a routine with your family, regardless of how much you’re away from your family, they will enjoy a very strong connection with you if they know when they can expect your attention.
As an example, let’s say you leave work at 5 pm and need about thirty minutes to get home. You can insist that dinner is timed at 6 pm so you can eat with your family. This way, when you get home, you have time to take a shower, change your clothes and discard the stress, irritation, or frustration of work so it doesn’t interfere with your family time. Then you can join your children wherever they gather before dinner.
If you time yourself well, you should be able to spend 5-10 minutes exchanging pleasantries with them before its time for dinner. Dinner time is also a great bonding time, especially when family members move together like a cohesive group setting the table for dinner, which is why you shouldn’t miss this time. If you happen to come home late much after your family has eaten dinner, you can still bond with them outside dinner time.
You can get snacks or fruits or something healthy that you can all share and eat together while relaxing. You can also have a bedtime routine when you go to the rooms of each of your children to sit with them and interact with them. That is the best time to ask them about their day and their friends, if they need anything and to give them a verbal reminder of your love for them. You can also help your children out by reading their essays and pointing out mistakes or important points they missed. Your younger children can also enjoy bedtime stories with you.
Carve Out Time to be Together
Even if you’re extremely busy, you should carve out some time for your family. The best way to bond with your family is to plan special activities with them such as sports, movie nights, going to dinner, game time, providing assignment and essay help, etc. and spend time with them based on your hobbies or theirs. Camping is also a great chance to grab your trekking poles and have some of the best hiking opportunities to bond with your family.
It can be easy to allow work to become the priority in your life, but essentially, this is all about shifting the priority to your family to maintain balance.
Accept that Imbalances are Unavoidable
There are times when you may not be able to balance your family and career. Such times include moments when you have a deadline to meet or a member of your family is sick. You should be able to accept that life is unpredictable and these imbalances are unavoidable and roll with the punches.
In these times, it helps to explain to your family that you will be busy, why, and for how long before you can return to your routine of spending time with them. If you’ve been committed to spending time with your family whenever you can, your family will be able to cope with the times when you have to be working.
To be able to balance your family and career, you need to realize that finding a balance is unpredictable and uncontrollable and there is no single solution. So, you can’t just use someone else’s balance system. You have to find your own balance with your family and career and ensure that you spend time for yourself as well.