Burnout is a feeling based on a reality that life is too hard to cope with or we just don’t know how to handle it. With so much to do and with little time to do it, stress will slowly eat up your energy and cause burnout.
As moms, we’re so resourceful in helping others. Now it’s time to turn the focus onto ourselves – because we’re the ones who really need it!
Taking specific action when you feel overwhelmed and burnout won’t magically make life easier. But doing one action at a time will ease the pressure and make life feel more manageable.
Working Mom Burnout: 6 Coping Advice to Lessen the Stress
Dealing with everyday life can be tiring especially if you’re a mom. There are so many things that you have to accomplish in a day. Add the stress and pressure, and you’ll surely burn out and would just want to sleep all day.
Luckily, there are practices that you can try. Here are 6 ways you cope with stress to avoid being burned out.
1. Ditch Perfection, Welcome Creativity!
Throw perfection off the K2 Mountain. Honestly, it’s getting you nowhere, and it’s a big action blocker.
Expecting perfection, especially when you have so many demands on your day, will stop good things from getting done. Committing to ongoing improvement doesn’t mean striving for perfection every moment.
Creativity, on the other hand, makes you think and act on better ways to survive and thrive as a working mother. It’s as they say, don’t work hard, work smart!
But how do you get more creative? It often comes from enjoyment.
- How long has it been since you enjoyed a playful moment with your children?
- How long since you enjoyed and were fully present at work without thinking about your responsibilities?
When you open your heart to enjoyment, you address your responsibilities in a more self-preserving way. This starts with the smallest things. Even the idea of looking for enjoyment can lower stressful feelings at the moment and allow you to think creatively.
2. Learn to Trust Your Kids
This one can be so hard! During the pandemic, a working mom can easily feel burnout. But we have to trust our kids out there and we can start by giving them the right tools.
Drowning in responsibility can make you forget to trust your kids and their ability to solve problems and enjoy themselves positively.
As parents, we are constantly trying to set up an environment where our children can thrive. But trying your best to set up ways where your kids can develop themselves responsibly might not always end up as you had envisioned. That doesn’t mean it’s wrong! Parent the way that’s right for you.
Remember to do that for yourself too – to do what’s right for you. Set up moments where you can flourish daily both when you’re with your kids and when you’re alone.
What do you need to include in your own environment to thrive? A song, a caress. Small moments can be powerful if you let them!
3. Thank Your Supporters and Recognize When You Have Support
Luckily, the world is becoming a place where people start to understand more of everybody’s everyday lives. We are becoming more open to what others are experiencing thus creating countless support groups for every life aspect that we can think of.
Most of us dream of a space where women, especially exhausted working moms, feel safe to show up – no matter what life moments they’re experiencing.
A space in which a working mom has no fear of saying:
- I didn’t sleep last night because my child was sick or
- Can I go to my daughter’s recital and leave at 2 pm?
The World Cares for You
Support for working moms is becoming more accepted. There are increasing numbers of advocates for working moms even coming people from different walks of life. This helps ease the burden and can even influence HR policies. On the other side, if you’re in management asks
- Will I recognize the signs of struggle when I am dealing with a working parent/ caretaker?
- If I see a mom struggling at work, what am I doing as a manager or as an organization to help?
From the answers that unfold, we can build a safe space where working moms and parents can feel safe at their workplace in every condition or situation.
By showing moms you care about their needs, you can help empower them to continue juggling their work and home lives in a way that works best for them. Empowerment in the workplace is critical for a company’s success. By helping moms feel empowered in the workplace, the entire organization can benefit.
After all, moms are caring, forgiving, understanding, and loving people. Wouldn’t you want them to have the same affection in the workplace as well?
Where Changes Can Matter
For instance, before the pandemic taking a sick leave was considered an emergency. Now, as we try to be careful especially with our children, taking sick leaves becomes a part of our everyday lives.
If one student appears sick, the whole class might be asked to stay at home. This is already seen in some kindergarten school policies. This can affect the working mom’s working schedule as the child now needs someone to take care of him or her at home.
HR policies can follow the trend by having more relaxed leave crediting policies or allowing parents to earn more leave credits for those with children.
One example is the company, Salesforce. They have recently extended their existing benefits and created new programs to help address today’s challenges.
- Parents are eligible for six weeks of paid time off.
- All full and part-time employees are eligible for reimbursement of up to an equivalent of $100/day for a maximum of five days per month for dependents up to 18 years of age.
Aside from this, maternity/parental leave is another one that could do with some revision. Should that leave be extended or adapted when you welcome multiple children like twins or triplets? Current benefits are designed to welcome only one child. This becomes different when you’re expecting more!
Jan Murtagh, the co-founder of Maturn, believes that companies and leaders need to step up because the multilateral benefits of supporting mothers at work are undisputed.
4. Be Aware of What Gives You Energy
As a working mom, burnout is inevitable as you juggle work and chores the whole day. So we’ll need to recharge our energies and fill back your cup. It can be:
- Your kid’s hug
- A laugh with a co-worker
- Things that go right
- Good ideas for the job
- Nice and appreciated activities with your family
Those moments can do wonders when you’re depleted. Try to find satisfaction and thankfulness for your job and your co-workers or people who support you in your job.
If what gives you energy is to scramble for more flexible measures, then do it!
Change Is Good
When navigating jobs, motherhood, and life, we need flexibility in how to do it, and we need companies and the world to provide it. This pandemic has taught many leaders that being open to change and new ways of doing things benefit everyone – including the bottom line.
As working moms, we are the most likely group to create new ways of doing things, especially now that we know which ‘old’ ways don’t serve us well. Effective workplace flexibility measures include:
- Where we work
- How we work
- How many days do we work
- Health and wellness practices and
- Management of unexpected events
5. Know When to Rest and Take Care of Yourself
This one is the hardest, both emotionally and practically. You can’t pour from an empty cup, and you know that. But at the same time, you might not know how to refill or step into a more balanced way of being a working mother.
There are many ways to take care of yourself:
- Take moments for yourself
- Work out
- Empty your mind for some time
- Give yourself pampering sessions
- Doing what you love and prioritizing them.
Always Remember That It’s Ok to Preserve Your Energy!
You don’t need to stress about being a working mom by doing everything.
Give in to your “job” as a mother and acknowledge the permission to care for yourself, too. That is something that, as mothers and corporate workers, we may struggle to know how to prioritize.
The secret is to let your body care for you and, in return, take care of your body. Don’t wait until you’re exhausted to rest. Give yourself some grace and feed your body with some extra rest to fill up.
6. Use the Skills You Already Have That Are Transferable
Successfully dealing with multiple priorities is a skill you learned being a tired working mom. It has been useful in both motherhood and even in the workplace but it’s not the only one you have! You also possess:
- Problem-solving mastery
These are skills you can use for parenting and working as well as for creating meaningful relationships with others.
You Have More Skills Than Most
And let’s not forget some soft and hard skills that are trendy in companies today! Things like:
- Time management
- People management
You have them all in great amounts!
This is a huge emotional lifesaver you can use when you feel overwhelmed and exhausted! Remembering everything you’re capable of is an important mental safety net. Remind yourself,
“Hey, I am enough, and I can do it because I have these transferable skills.”
Working Mom Burnout: 6 Coping Advice to Lessen the Stress
Taking care of yourself, recharging, and giving yourself a moment of grace and self-rest is a huge ‘breathe in and breathe out’ reminder when you are feeling burnout. Being aware and connected to enjoyment in every moment pushes your creativity forward.
Being a mom is hard. Being a working mom is even harder. But being a working mom during and post-pandemic is near impossible. The world is changing fast, puts more demands, but also opens new doors and creates more resources.
The employer mindset regarding working mothers is slowly changing, and different services are been created to support mothers and help them to adapt to new circumstances, from meditation apps to online scheduling solutions.
Allow the way you juggle work and motherhood to evolve as the world evolves. Using these simple techniques will help you to get a piece of mind and enjoy the most important and the most incredible job ever – being a mom of course!
Featured photo credit: Omar Lopez via unsplash.com
|||^||Better Up: How to recover from burnout and love your life again|
|||^||Comparably: 9 Companies Prioritizing Work-Life Balance for Working Moms|
|||^||Helpguide.org: Burnout Prevention and Treatment|
|||^||Washington University of Saint Louis: Thrive tip: Tips to Care for Yourself When You’re Experiencing Burnout|
|||^||Seek: 5 killer work skills you’ve honed as a mother|