Striking family and career balance -between caring for family and your home while having a career too- is something all women struggle with.
Growing up in a Puerto Rican household it was no secret that family ALWAYS came first. I watched my mom dedicate her entire life to raising my twin brother and I and caring for her 13 plus brothers and sisters! It wasn’t until I was in high school that she started a part-time job. You could see how proud she was to contribute to our household while also still taking care of all the cooking, cleaning and keeping up with our activities and school obligations.
Honestly, now that I am a mom and running my own business, I do not know how she did it! Within the Latino culture the mindset surrounding your family obligations runs very deep and spans many generations. Many Latinas are caring for their grandparents and siblings in addition to their own family.
So how can you balance caring for your family and your career? Here are some tips I have discovered to help me create my own balance. It is important to find what works for you and trust me every day is a work in progress!
1) Create a weekly game plan and prioritize it daily…This has been a game changer for me because the reality is that your TO DO list can be never ending..it can feel like you are not getting much done when that list keeps growing. Set 3 “must get done” tasks daily and reevaluate at the end of the week your progress.
2) Learn to say “no.” This was a big one for me. I am a people pleaser and always wanting to help! But we must learn to minimize activities that zap too much of our time and energy and are not really helping us achieve our goals.
3) Check email, messages, social media at designated times if possible. Being plugged in all the time can be a time zapper and takes away from getting other things done. Unless it is a dire emergency or a project that requires being on call all the time, those messages will still be there!
4) Work smarter, not harder…if you have a job filled with a million little tasks break them into chunks, set a timer and complete as many of the tasks as you can within that time.
5) Schedule time for fun and exercise. It is so easy to get into a routine of just work, work, work, or one family obligation after another. We all need to have fun and we need to take care of our bodies. Doing so positively impacts our mind so we overall are happier!
6) Prioritize sleep! This is a tough one…we all are guilty of staying up late either working, binging on NetFlix or cleaning the house! Do your best to get 7-8 hours of sleep. This will keep you healthier in so many ways including muscle recovery and repair, strengthening your immune system and sharpening your focus and attention the next day.
7) Get your family involved in household chores and tasks. Your family is your team and we can tackle more together! On Sundays my family and I work on meal prep. It helps us all stay on track during the week with less stress and meals are pulled together quickly!
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