A Mom’s Work/Life: Balance vs. Integration
Work/life balance has always seemed like a strange phrase to me. Perhaps it’s because it’s often felt so unattainable. When I say that, I don’t mean to say my work is so demanding that I don’t have time for my family (not the case) but that in nearly three and a half years as a parent I feel like I’ve yet to achieve what I thought of as true balance in my life.
I’ve found that in the life of a working parent, something always feels out of balance. And ultimately, I seem to always feel a little guilty for whatever part of my life is out of balance. Guilty when, for example, things are crazy at work and I arrive at the daycare center at the end of the day stressed and just wanting to get home rather than stay to play for awhile. Guilty when home and family commitments keep me from accomplishing things I want and need to do for work. Guilty when trying to balance work and family means I haven’t seen friends, gone out on a date night or made it to an exercise class in far too long. And when I go through what I now call my “Supermom phase” and decide that I CAN fit everything in my life, what suffers is my sleep which Arianna Huffington tells me makes me less productive – yet another thing to feel guilty for. Over time, I’ve learned to control the guilt, but even still, true balance seems to remain illusive.
If you’re looking for harmony and integration in your own work/life, check out this recent Bright Horizons parent webinar: Integrating Work & Life. Speaker, Stew Friedman, brings up some interesting points about how work and life should be “integrated” vs. “balanced” – do you agree?
- Bright Horizons Online Community: A social network for parents and educators to connect on all-things work, life and parenting.
- Family & Parenting Webinars: Learn parenting skills through our informational parenting video series designed for growing families.
- Read more posts about working parents and posts about Bright Horizons webinars from the Family Room bloggers