Photo Courtesy: Scott
So youâ€™ve been granted the â€œMost Productive Employeeâ€ plaque at your job…7 months in a row. Great, right? Not if burning the midnight oil meant having to neglect your family in the process. Yes, itâ€™s awesome that your paycheck has been completely incredible over the past 7 months, but little Johnny has started calling the babysitter â€œmamaâ€ and your husband has considered searching for an alternate wife.
Before you go crazy, quit your job, and start searching Google for â€˜Where to sell my diamond ringâ€™ in order to produce some sort of income, take a deep breath. Relax. Itâ€™s time to prioritize- without going insane. There is a way to do so, and no, you donâ€™t have to be Superwoman (although you may feel like her). Letâ€™s take a look at 5 tips to help you juggle your lifestyle while maintaining your sanity, your paycheck, and most importantly- your family time.
1. Secure a position youâ€™re comfortable with:
If youâ€™re looking for a job, this beginning step is crucial. Interviews can sometimes tell a lot about a job – and sometimes canâ€™t. Look for any and all signs; be a detective. Were you warmly greeted? Does the interviewer seem to be organized? Ask for a tour of the company, request to speak with an actual worker about the job, brainstorm any and all questions you may have about the available position.
If the company has a website, read up on their â€œAboutâ€ section; you can develop an overall feeling by reading how they started and what their goals are. From there, you should be able to make a decision on whether or not the company is a comfortable fit for your lifestyle.
2. Assess your abilities, goals, and family needs:
Society has molded women to think that they need to work twenty times harder in order to keep in pace with men. While that may not be necessarily true (women are actually becoming more dominant in certain fields), it can be stressful giving 110% when all thatâ€™s necessary is 100%.
To put it plainly, many women have left the corporate zoo for a â€œlowerâ€ level position, which produces a better quality of life while still maintaining satisfaction within the position. This doesnâ€™t mean to go and quit your $120,000 a year job for a $40,000; take the time to sit down and figure out your job goals and how they may conflict with your family goals. Donâ€™t shortchange yourself, but donâ€™t bite off more than you can chew. Backing off on a few projects here and there doesnâ€™t make you weak; it will let you breathe more easily and remind you that you do have a life outside of work.
3. Talk it out with your spouse and family:
Communication is the key to any successful venture. If thereâ€™s room to move up in the company youâ€™re at, are you willing to accept the overtime offered? Is your spouse available to help out with the kids on those nights? Take into consideration if your job may require a move in a few months or years. It may seem silly to discuss everything, but itâ€™s really not. Itâ€™s better to be prepared and covered in all aspects, than to be taken by surprise when you least expect it.
4. Talk it out with your employer or supervisor:
Sometimes talking to your spouse and family isnâ€™t enough. It will help to burn off some steam over things that are bothering you at work, but in order to change something, youâ€™re going to need to express your concern to someone at work who is authorized to make those changes.
Keep in mind that there is a HUGE difference in being assertive and being a bi**h. The latter is what we donâ€™t want. Stand your ground, but do so in a way that is clear and well-thought out, not condescending. You donâ€™t want to sound like a hot-headed idiot, after all. Write your concerns down and go over it point-by-point with your boss.
5. Donâ€™t be afraid to explore other options:
If there simply isnâ€™t enough wiggle room within your current job, get out there and find somewhere that can accommodate you. While income is certainly necessary in order to survive, your well-being and your family should come first. If the job isnâ€™t a good fit, know that there are others out there where you can thrive- happily. No amount of negative stress is good, so work on finding a place that suits you; in the end, youâ€™ll realize it was worth it.
Kristy Kravitsky is a writer and traveler who hopes to combine those together for a satisfying career.