Leisl L. Cording, CFP®, CDFA®
Senior Vice President & Financial Advisor
Having a career while raising a family is no easy feat. That’s particularly true for professional women, who often feel pressure to “do it all” and do it perfectly.
As mothers, women want to do all they can for their children – and parenting can be a full-time job all on its own. As professionals, women can also face challenges to building a career and climbing the corporate ladder that their male counterparts don’t experience, as well as real or perceived stigmas about taking time off work to care for or spend extra time with their children.
Balancing these competing priorities can become quite the juggling act, and oftentimes women sacrifice their own self-care to get it all done. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here’s how to help make your day-to-day more manageable and enjoyable.
Tip #1: Determine Your Priorities
Make a list of your priorities in order of importance and stick to them. Determine what tasks need to be accomplished and when, both at home and at work, and put them all on one calendar. Are there times when you’re supposed to be in two places at once? Reach out to a colleague to cover the work commitment, or ask your partner, a friend or family member if they can take care of your child’s needs.
The key here is to notice if you seem to be reaching out for coverage more frequently at work or at home – if you are, and the more frequent choice doesn’t align with your priorities, you’ll know you need to make some changes.
Tip #2: Stagger Schedules with Your Partner
Perhaps one of you can adjust your work schedule to go in earlier so you can leave in time to pick up the kids from school, while the other can go into work later and take care of the morning routine and getting the kids off to school. It’s not ideal, but it allows you and your partner to put in a full day’s work while also catering to the needs of your children.
Tip #3: Don’t Try to “Do It All” – Instead, Delegate Like a Boss
If you’re part of the leadership team or you’re a manager at work, consider whether there might be some things you can take off your plate and delegate to others. While it can be difficult to let things go, doing so is important for the sake of balance – and effective delegation is actually a sign of strong leadership.
As a businesswoman, I know how difficult this can sometimes be. But delegating less important or less complicated tasks frees you up to focus on accomplishing more important work without putting in extra hours, and it will also make your team that much stronger. And incidentally, this tactic can also be used with your partner at home.
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Tip #4: Learn to Say “No”
You can’t do it all, and delegation isn’t always an available or appropriate option. So while it can be hard to say no, there are times when you just have to. Rushing to meet a deadline or saying yes to every volunteer opportunity for your kids’ PTO or sports team won’t do anybody any favors. So choose your commitments wisely, and refer back to that priorities list in tip number one when you’re trying to decide whether to say “yes” or “no.”
Tip #5: Say Goodbye to Perfection (Where You Can)
If you’re spending a lot of time working, you may feel as though you’re not giving enough to your family. If your children need extra attention, then you may feel that your job is starting to suffer. Understand that now is not the time to be perfect, and that in fact no one is or ever will be perfect. So it’s okay to cut yourself some slack and focus on quality rather than quantity. If you burn the candle at both ends for too long, the long-term damage could be even greater.
Tip #6: You Have a Support Team at Work – Create One For Your Personal Life, Too
Just like delegating at work can be a game-changer for both your focus and your free time, delegating at home can do wonders in optimizing your work-life balance, and even your finances. If your career affords you the ability to hire someone to clean your house and do the laundry once a week, for example, then do it! Outsource the chores and tasks that don’t impact your priorities in life, and lean on experts to help you manage the important “big picture” necessities like finances.
I’m proud to count many female business owners and professional women among my clients, and our entire team here at WHZ is focused on meeting clients where they are, including understanding and meeting the needs of professional women.
We can help you manage and optimize your finances for today while also creating a solid plan to help you achieve the financial goals you have for the future using our strategic Plan Well, Invest Well, Live Well™process. Contact us at (860) 928-2341 or schedule a complimentary consultation any time on our website.
Presented by Senior Vice President, Financial Advisor, Leisl L. Cording CFP®, CDFA®. Securities and advisory services offered through Commonwealth Financial Network®, Member FINRA/SIPC, a Registered Investment Adviser. These materials are general in nature and do not address your specific situation. For your specific investment needs, please discuss your individual circumstances with your financial advisor. Weiss, Hale & Zahansky Strategic Wealth Advisors does not provide tax or legal advice, and nothing in the accompanying pages should be construed as specific tax or legal advice. 697 Pomfret Street, Pomfret Center, CT 06259, 860.928.2341. http://www.whzwealth.com