I struggle with being a working mom. Striking the work-life balance isn’t easy. It often feels as though one are of life has to be sacrificed for the other area to work as it should. It leaves me stuck in a cycle of perpetual guilt, and I know that is not a healthy place to be.
About a year I was at the office seeing clients. I love what I do; I love the fact that my work requires my 100% presence. Distractions aren’t an option and there is a freedom that comes with that. But that day I was finding being present difficult – I had an ongoing nagging thought that followed me around all day.
Imagine, if just once a week, I gave my children and husband the same attention and presence to the moment that I give my clients. Imagine if I wasn’t always rushing through my time with them so that I could accomplish some other “to-do” item off my work list. Or if I wasn’t rushing them to bed so that I could answer emails or check my phone…or if we sat and talked without the distraction of phones, computers and TV. What if we all spent some time being present with each other?
It was getting hard to ignore the impact starting a new business had had on my family, I missed them. I needed them and they needed me, the whole me, not the one the phone or texting me…And I’m not one to stay in a guilty place anymore – especially when I see a resolution.
So our family implemented “Wacky Wednesdays”. It is a small start, but for one day a week we go dark. Once the kids are home the phones, TV, computers and work are put away. We have dinner together, read together, play games and sometimes go for a fun adventure. It’s not perfect – sometimes the old habits creep back in once the kids are asleep – but it works.
Our family has come to look forward to “Wacky Wednesdays”. It is such a reprieve in the middle of the hectic week – we can decompress from Monday and Tuesday and refuel for Thursday and Friday. It is quiet, we talk, we relax, we have fun….and guess what? We have not missed out on anything. Nothing falls apart on Wednesday – work is there on Thursday, along with the texts, facebook notifications, emails ect.
I hope you will consider implementing your own version of “Wacky Wednesdays” during Project Be Free – maybe you will even make it a lasting tradition!
Alyson Ryan is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and co-founder of South Bay Wellness. She is passionate about assisting individuals on their journey to live a more fulfilling, peaceful and rewarding life. She can be reached at Alyson@southbaywellness.com