Written by contributing blogger, Daniela Forte.
Are you married? Do you have kids? Those are the two most asked questions a woman in her 30s and younger are asked these days. All the time. There aren’t any questions about whether we love our careers or are we even happy with our lives. Those questions are hardly if ever asked.
Why? Well, because we still live in a society however forward thinking it has become, still defines a woman by whether she is married and with children. It is almost as if without those two things, she isn’t a whole person, or there is some kind of dis-function about her simply because she has not fulfilled her “duties” as a woman.
I am not trying to knock the married with children women, I too would love to be married right now. But I will not be defined by it or controlled by it. I am a whole woman without the Mrs. before my name or being called “mommy” every single moment of the day.
I was recently listening to something where the person speaking was talking about having a work-life balance and geared it towards working moms with children. While I enjoyed the video a lot, I didn’t find I could totally relate to it, because I wasn’t in that place myself. In fact, I almost turned the video off, but I was hoping it would change as the video went on. It didn’t really.
I became bored with the video, I felt it didn’t speak to everyone and that frustrated me. Because single women with no children also have a hard time finding a work-life balance, you don’t need to be a parent or married to have this struggle.
Here are a few ways to find a work-life balance with or without being married with children:
Dedicate a few hours a day to yourself. Doing whatever you want to do. Whether it is catching up on your Netflix shows, reading, sleeping, meeting a friend for dinner or coffee. Whatever your heart desires.
When work stops, you stop: Yes. Easier said than done for a lot of people, but in order to create a true work-life balance, you need to stop working when you leave work and live your life outside of your job. My grandfather and I have this argument from time to time because he comes from a generation where working was all you did, working was survival, working was necessary. Sleeping on a Saturday, nope you better find better things to do.
Get up earlier: I have found that on the days where I have managed to have the strength to get up earlier (which doesn’t happen often) I can get more done. Getting up earlier also means going to bed earlier too. Don’t stay up late and expect to wake up early feeling refreshed, you won’t.
Don’t always be available to EVERYONE: This isn’t just about creating a work-life balance, it is about creating boundaries in your life with other people and circumstances. When we are always available for others we aren’t available to ourselves. Be available to yourself too.
Shut the phone off: Whether it’s for an entire day or just a few hours, shut it off and enjoy life outside of your smartphone. Being connected will keep you disconnected from all of the good happening in front of you.
If you are single girl like me with no children, please know your identity isn’t defined by being married with children. You are much more than that.
image source – pixabay