Rediscovering the work life balance with a growing family

It's about 5 AM on a Saturday morning. The day is still dark, indistinguishable from the middle of the night. I've just put the baby back to sleep, and I shuffle over to the kitchen and pour myself some coffee. Mug in hand, I head to my office and start up the computer. It's time to work.

As my eyes adjust to the light of the room, I take note of the bright moon that accompanies me on this weekend morning. I appreciate the stillness and quiet that seems so rare these days (even though I love the typical crazy of our bustling life and home). Only the click of my mouse and the tap of my fingers on the keyboard break the silence.

The work life balance can be a struggle for anyone, and a growing family definitely creates the need to redefine or restructure this balance. As a work-at-home parent who sets my own schedule, this meant I had to rediscover what worked. This led to some trial and error (the mistakes being much to my chagrin, but no doubt necessary), a few sacrifices, and heaping dose of hustle. 

I discovered that I needed to work at a different time of day. I used to be a night owl, but the day would wear me out leaving me with little give by the time the sun went down. So that meant I needed to work before the sun came up. I thought I had no time for exercise, but I learned that taking away exercise also zapped away my energy so I had to find time for a little exercise even if it was simply a family walk. I thought I needed to move faster than usual, to insure that things would get done on time. I found out that I needed to move efficiently, but methodically to do things well.

When my daughter makes an honest mistake, I remind her that it's okay to make mistakes, but that we should try to learn from them and do better next time. Now, when I make a mistake, she reminds me, "it's okay to make mistake." If you are struggling to figure out your work life balance (or even simply life balance), I encourage you to give yourself a little grace too. Take some time to re-learn what works for you when things inevitably change.