Meetings, conference calls, presentations, deadlines.....
Cooking, feeding the children, supervising home-work, entertaining, taking care of in-laws, laundering husband's shirts.....
Today's woman somehow manages to juggle it all, but at what cost?
Most women who work outside the home hold down not just one, but two full-time jobs. After a full day's work they get home and begin the "second shift". Regardless of how many hours a woman may work outside the home, she is still usually expected to take primary responsibility for taking care of the home and family.
While every woman has probably often wished for "more hours in my day", the fact is that she is just one person trying to do it all. And something has to suffer... perhaps she lowers her career aspirations, or the family may get neglected or (most often) she does it all at the cost of her own health. The woman struggles to do many things at a time; she cuts down on sleep, relaxation and even meals. She "copes" but research has shown that when we cope with a stressor, especially one that is incessant or difficult to control, our ability to cope with subsequent environmental demands is impaired. Small wonder then, if the woman ends up tired, irritable and hypersensitive. She might blow her top over a comparatively small issue and leave everyone wondering what on earth is wrong.
If you are a working woman (or married to one), then it's time to acknowledge that change is necessary. It's not just a matter of adding new expectations to our traditional roles. The tough part is that most of us do not have role models, so we need to work out new ways to find a balance in our lives.
Unfortunately, many women today are labouring under the "Superwoman Syndrome". We think that we have to be perfect wives and mothers, excel at work, have a beautiful home and look great as well. Perfection is an impossible ideal and as long as we are aiming at this we are doomed to fail. Anyway, a perfect person would be hard to live with (ask any husband!).
There are only 24 hours in a day, and you can't do everything. So work out what's really important to you, and then discipline yourself to drop the rest, or at least spend less time on the things that matter less in the long run. The story "Rocks, Pebbles and Sand" might help you. When you're feeling overwhelmed tell yourself "I can't do it all, but I can do what's important"
Often we do things just the way our parents did. But they probably lived a far more leisurely lifestyle. We need to find quicker, simpler ways of carrying out our daily routines. Find recipes that are easier to make, have "bring a dish" parties instead of taking on the whole burden of entertaining, buy clothes and shoes for the children that they can put on by themselves, have less artifacts so that there is less to dust. A little time spent on planning will pay off.
Ask for and Accept Help
For some reason women often find it hard to take help. We feel that we should do it all ourselves, or at least we would like our family to notice that we're struggling and offer help. Well, that may not happen - but ask and you may be pleasantly surprised. Just remember to be appreciative and don't be too picky about how the work is done.
Take Care of Yourself
One thing you must give priority to is your own well-being. Eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, finding some time for relaxation- these are not luxuries. You cannot handle all this stress if you are not physically and mentally healthy. Include yourself in the list of people for whom you care so well.