There’s a common misconception that homemaking requires all your time to be donated to your family, friends, chores, making and keeping doctor’s appointments, school schedules, etc. But for most of us, this isn’t a reality when we have full-time jobs. As much as we want to, we simply aren’t able to do it all.
Not to mention those of us who actually like working. I enjoy what I do because I’m good at it, it doesn’t drain me, and I have a passion for it. So, until we get our debt paid off and I no longer need to work, I may fizzle it out. Until then, I need and want to work, so this is what my reality is.
Working while homemaking, or vice versa, may seem stressful, but it most certainly doesn’t have to be. I remember before I got married, homemaking sounded like a nightmare because I had no idea what I was doing and wasn’t good at it. I was also working less than ten hours a week so I had the time to consider what homemaking entailed. If I had imagined the task of homemaking and working my now forty hours a week, I’m not sure I would have agreed to it. Luckily, I eased into it slowly enough that I wasn’t blindsided by the pressures, and I found a system that worked and have stayed with it.
Here’s how you can maintain your role as a housekeeper while still working a full-time job.
Create a Priority List
Every homemaker, no doubt, has their favorite method of homemaking. Where homemaking is concerned, we’ve got it covered. We know what we must do to keep a tight ship, and we know what we like to do, even if it’s not necessary. For instance, do you like making all your children’s lunches and cutting their sandwiches into special shapes? Perhaps, while it’s sweet and most certainly imprints sweet memories into your children’s hearts, cutting shapes into the sandwiches may be cutting into the time you don’t have now that you’re working. Consider using a cookie cutter!
If you’re working full-time and homemaking, you may need to create a list of tasks and place them in an appropriate order of priority. When you’ve placed your list together, take out the items that are not necessary. Your family will love you just the same!
Share Responsibilities with Your Spouse if Possible
You’re Superwoman, no doubt. But there are still only 24 hours in a day. That means that even though you’d do it if you could, you simply don’t have the time. When you find yourself out of time to complete the tasks that you need to complete, follow these short instructions:
- Make a list of top-priority chores.
- Sit your spouse down to present them this list and to discuss possible solutions.
- Decide what percentage of the list you need to hand over. Realistically, if you’re able to do most but not all, you’re looking to only hand over a portion – perhaps twenty percent or less of the tasks to your willing spouse.
- Once you’ve agreed on what tasks you will hand over to your spouse, you both need to come to a general understanding that the expectations are still that these tasks will be completed within a timely manner. The last thing you need is for a spouse to agree to help you and not complete them for whatever reason.
Additionally, not every marriage has the perfect combination of spouses who are willing or who have the ability to share responsibilities. It’s important to know your partner’s level of willingness in order to establish sharing responsibilities and trusting that things can still operate seamlessly.
Still Find Time for You
As a homemaker, you most certainly know at this point that burnout is real. If you’re homemaking, burnout can still happen if you’re not careful! Throw in a full-time job and your homemaker-work-life balance was just thrown a major wrench.
The best way to avoid burnout and to still be a homemaker and work full-time is to make time for you. I’ve heard so many times, “Just leave the kids with your husband for a couple of hours a week and take some ‘you’ time.” First, a couple of hours? I wish! With our littles at their age, it seems as if every minute of every day is jam-packed with activity after activity. However, I have found that even a drive through wine country for forty-five minutes is exactly what I need. For even a short time, I can blare my music if I want, scream, cry, or simply drive in utter silence. I can play my emo music from the olden Warped Tour days. Whatever the short time, you can bet your butt I’m making the most of it.
Don’t Be Afraid to Lean on Your Support System
Lastly, you’re going to need to ask for help. For most of us, this sounds like an utter nightmare because we have pride that gets in the way. However, it’s so important to know when to ask for help. This includes asking your husband or wife, friends, co-workers, church support, or any other “tight-nit” member of your circle that you can trust to unconditionally help you while you rest.
Traditionally, homemaking is a full-time gig by itself. But today, sometimes we just don’t have a choice but to work. And that’s OK! Happy homemaking!