As we have been quarantined for the past week, it has taken a few days to get into a new rhythm. Prior to COVID-19, I tried to keep Work Life and Home Life separated. I did my job, then when I got home I focused on the needs of my family. Now that I am working from home, my two worlds have crashed into each other. This has forced me to reevaluate how I see my work life and my home life.
I always knew that I wanted to work in a helping profession. I have been the one in the grocery store that gets told someone’s life story. Because my career focuses on helping people, I have learned how to set boundaries. Too many times I have seen those in the helping profession spend so much time helping others that they lose themselves or their families. I refuse to care more about improving your life than you do. I refuse to care more about other people’s children than I care about my own.
I also have begun to live by the mantra, “You can have it all… just not all at the same time.” As a result, I have had to recalibrate my expectations. I recognize my workaholic tendencies because I have a vocation that I truly enjoy. I love seeing people improve their relationships AND I love caring for my family. Working from home has created tensions between these two loves that I have to navigate carefully, and ideally, guilt-free.
As a mom, I cherish seeing my sons grow and mature, being their sounding board for life decisions, talking with my husband about what’s going on in his life, and cooking their favorite meals. What I now understand is that there are seasons during which I have to shift quickly between home and work.
There was a time where I needed some extra money and joined a Direct-Sales company. The company’s founder had a hierarchy for their life that resonated with me. It was Faith, Family, Work. My family has always been my priority. However, I recognize my need to assist individuals on their journey to healthy relationships. Fortunately, my job provides a dual opportunity to support my family financially and to help others.
In order to be the best you either at work or at home, it is necessary to take care of your self. It is important to realize that you cannot give what you don’t have. Learning to say no or not right now is a great way to conserve your energy (mental and physical).
Learn how to ask for help, then let the person help—even if it is different than how you would do it. It may be difficult to let go of control especially now when other situations and circumstances are so out of control. Find some quiet time for you—whether you read, crochet, meditate or walk.
I am giving myself grace and patience during this time of self-quarantine AND working from home, AND homeschooling. I take each day as it comes, enjoying the moments with my family, knowing when to cease the challenges of work.