A mother works on her laptop while her daughter sleeps in the background.

Celebrate Working Moms All Year Long

Motherhood comes in all different shapes and sizes – and there is no one-size-fits-all solution to being a mom. What works best for some, may not work well for others – that’s just part of the adventure. As we celebrate all moms this time of year, I wanted to write a post specifically for my fellow working moms.

According to Working Mother, the average working mom works 98 hours per week. Ninety-eight hours. Let that sink in for a moment.

Rather than recap all of the work that you do – and congratulate you for it (you are a supermom and don’t let anyone tell you any different) – I want to encourage you to take a step back from your normal routine. Mother’s Day is meant to be about you, and while getting a pat on the back at least once per year is nice, my goal is a little bit more long-term.

You see, as a working mom, I got into a dangerous cycle of pushing myself too hard and doing too much. As a result, my health suffered – and eventually, I got a wake-up call when I ended up with pneumonia for four months. I was on prednisone, a nebulizer, and antibiotics all winter. And even then, I only let myself miss one day of work — seventeen weeks of illness, one day of rest.

Suddenly, the little bit of energy I had went to work – and even then, my best self wasn’t showing up. After work, I was so exhausted, I became a no-show for the majority of family events. I couldn’t work AND do anything else. Sound familiar? If it does, mama, something has to change.

Start by answering a few easy questions:

· How often do you practice self-care? Workouts, meditation, sleep, etc.

· How many commitments do you currently have to extracurriculars? The committees, nonprofits, snack duty or costume duty, etc.

· What could you delegate? Tasks at work, chores at home, etc.

As working moms, we get stuck in a dangerous cycle – and until you take a few steps back and look at the big picture, it’s not going to stop. These questions can help you identify extracurriculars you could say “no” to (yes, I know it’s not easy, trust me!), delegate tasks that someone else could take on at work or home, and make sure you’re budgeting enough time to sleep a consistent amount of time and make time for exercise and/or meditation.

Do yourself – and your kids – a favor and start a Mother’s Day celebration that lasts all year long.