6 Keys to Unlocking Happiness as a Working Mom

1. Plan Ahead

Mama, you’re scrambling to get out the door in the morning. You rushed through your makeup and threw your hair into a bun. I’ll bet you have no idea what you’re making for dinner- you’re thinking pizza for the second time this week, am I right?

This cycle is never-ending- unless you put your foot down and say “Nope. Nada. No more of this horseshit!”. All it takes is a little planning and prep work and you will have peace of mind throughout the workday.

Plan everything out in advance. Lay your outfits out the night before for easy grab-and-go access. Plan simple meals like crockpot recipes, sheet pan dinners, and one-pot meals. Plan your kid's outfits at the beginning of the week and pack their lunches each night. It's all about saving you some time in the mornings!

If all you can manage to do is make a to-do list the night before, that’s okay! Studies show that lists can increase your productivity by 25%!

The more you plan ahead of time the easier those early work mornings are going to be.

2. Delegate Tasks to Avoid Burnout

You’re trying to do it all, but you have got to learn when to ask for help. It’s so hard for us mamas to ask for someone to help us- I mean come on, we are superwomen, right?

Yes, you are a superwoman, but even the best superheroes need help sometimes.

Avoid burnout as a working mom and delegate tasks to another family member. Did you cook an awesome dinner? See if your husband will wash the dishes while you go start the kid’s baths.

Are your kids old enough to learn how to pick up after themselves? If you answered no, your kids better be under age two, mama! Children, age 2-3, can start to learn the most basic aspects of tidying up after oneself. Teach them to put their clothes in the hamper, dishes in the sink, or wipe up spills and crumbs.

Use your little helpers and your spouse- they want to help, but they need a little direction!

3. Leave Work At Work

You know what I’m talking about...It’s been a long day and you get home and work is still fresh on your mind. That 10 am meeting tomorrow is weighing on you. Your boss seemed to be in a bad mood today and you’re wondering if it is something you did. You’re hoping you didn’t forget to respond to any emails, and you think I should check my email and be sure”.

Don’t do it!

After you clock out for the day, make a mental image of the lights shutting off at that building.

Tomorrow, when you clock back in, those lights can turn back on. There are some days you have to pretend that place doesn’t exist while you’re at home.

When you bring work stress to your home, you bring a bad mood to the place of rest that you share with your loved ones. Leaving work behind for the night is hard to do, and will require discipline, but will benefit your wellbeing and your family.

4. Strive for Quality Time

In today's society, where cell phones and social media are the thieves of our time, it can be difficult to put your phone down and be present. Make an effort to be in the moment with your family.

If you need to, designate some time in the day for your social media scrolling. Perfect time to scroll? While you’re going #2.

You’ll feel more accomplished at the end of the day if you spend those precious after-work hours engaging with your family. Play some board games together, read to your kids, play hide-and-seek, or pack up some sandwiches and have a picnic dinner at a local park.

Shift your focus off of the unimportant things and on to creating lasting memories with your kids.

5. Simplify Your Life

You know what they say, “More clutter, more problems.” I’m talking about all types of clutter- mental clutter, physical clutter, you-name-it clutter!

When your mind isn’t clear it’s going to be difficult to get through the days without having a nervous breakdown. Find ways to sort through the junk that is taking space up in your brain.

Do you have an ever-growing mental to-do list that haunts you each morning? Wake up, write that shit down, and knock it out! Are there relationships in your life that need mending? Write them down, swallow your pride, and reach out and offer peace.

Your home functions in the same way your mind does- when there is clutter, there is chaos. Go through your closet and throw out the clothes you keep skipping over. We’ve all been there and trust me, that sequin top won’t look any better when you’ve finally lost that last bit of baby weight. If it’s not comfy or functional, and it doesn't make you feel fabulous, get rid of it!

Are there toys scattered everywhere? Is there a lego field waiting for you to step on it? Do you have a junk drawer exploding full of extra things? Is your ‘medicine cabinet' now a ‘medicine closet’- filled with expired cold medicine, unfinished antibiotics, and loads of cough drops “just in case”?

Mama, get rid of all those extra things! They’re taking up your space and your time! If it’s no longer serving a purpose then clear that space. According to the National Soap and Detergent Association, eliminating clutter can reduce housework by up to 40%- that’s more time for you to relax with your family and not stress about cleaning!

6. Stop Trying to Be Perfect

With the “mommy influencers” that the modern-day mom is exposed to- it's no wonder that she feels the need to have the biggest, best, and prettiest lifestyle.

You have to start by realizing that the lifestyle portrayed by social media is not real. That said, most of what they show is not even practical.

A perfectly tidy home 24/7, is not realistic. Your kids are going to make messes. Drinks are going to spill. Crumbs are going to get on the freshly vacuumed floor. Your husband is going to leave his socks on the ground again, despite your plea for him to “put them in the damn laundry basket!”.

The bathtubs will not remain sparkling white. The floors will get mud on them. The minute you load the dishwasher and scrub the kitchen sink to perfection, it will fill back up with dishes. Styled outfits for your entire family, are not going to happen all the time. You cannot always have a blissful morning trip to Target, with a coffee in hand, and your hair and makeup looking flawless.

None of this is shown on social media, because who would put that out there? Followers would much rather see a posed photo of someone smiling next to their brand new washer and dryer than a picture of the heaps of laundry shoved out of the way for the photo.

Stop letting society influence your idea of what a perfect mom is because there is no such thing as a perfect mom. You can try all day to be a perfect parent, a perfect wife, a perfect human being, but in the end, you will fail. Instead, put your effort into being a fun and caring mom, the smokin’ hot wife, and the kind human being that you know you are.

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