Did you know that there are a bunch of metaphorical balls we are given when we become mothers?
You can't see them. You can't touch them. They have to be held continually in the air and EVERYONE knows that it is our responsibility to keep those flipping things in the air. Not fathers though. No. No balls there (see what we did there haha). They just have to show up, provide financially for their family and look stoic and manly.
One of the balls we are given enables the corporate world to shout to collective society that we have all but achieved gender equality (note we wrote equality... not equity. There is a difference.) Yes there has been an increase in the number of women in the workforce and hey, our pay is getting better too (still only $0.85 per $1 that a man earns) but the majority of child rearing and home responsibilities still fall to the female in the home. So now, you are not only working and have to take into account those responsibilities; you're still doing almost everything at home, with the kids all whilst trying to keep those fucking balls in the air.
In 2017 the Australian Institute of Family Studies reported that 38% of women worked part-time, 1 in 5 worked from home and 2 in 5 used flexible working arrangements. This sounds great right? Options? Choice? No, this is what they WANT us to think. That we SHOULD be grateful. The trade off is that part-time working Mum's are a cohort of the most stressed out humans on the planet. We tend not to strive for what we are worthy of in terms of pay and responsibility. We tend to be more grateful that we even have a job, let alone that it is flexible but the trade off is that you get paid 1/3 less than your our male counterparts with the same level of education. This is sometimes referred to as the Motherhood Penalty.
A survey conducted by Welch with 2000 American stay-at-home-mums showed the "average" working week was 98 hours. That's the equivalent of two-and-a-half full-time jobs. The average day started at 6:23am and went through to 8:23pm, these women were mothers of 5 - 12 year olds. Salary.com put a dollar figure on this in 2018 which valued a stay-at-home-mums income at approximately $225,000 AUD.
Think about that for a second. Mothers are already doing the work of two and a half people at home and this is assuming we are talking about mothers neuro-typical children. Throw in a couple of curveballs like kids with complex medical needs and you can add nurse, doctor and therapist to your repertoire. Now we add the burden of "paid" employment without hardly ANY additional support in the home, still responsible for the running of the household, trying to coordinate kids, care, afterschool activities, all whilst keeping those fucking balls from hitting the ground. It's a recipe for disaster.
Now to stop these balls from hitting the ground which we are made to believe would be the END of the world; you must have perfectly behaved kids who are academically gifted; have homecooked and organic meals on the table every night, shag your partner most evening's to keep THEM happy, make sure you are bringing in an income so you can "contribute" to the household and you somewhat contort yourself to look how society expects women to look like... slim, tall and polished.
Enough is enough.
It's time to save ourselves.
It's time to save each other.
How do we do this? We get to know ourselves, our worth so we can throw those fucking balls away for good.
1) Know who you are and if you don't know... get a solid of idea of who you want to be. Our FREE "The Woman Outside of Mum" download can get you on your way.
2) Know your values. Are you currently living in alignment with your values? Do you even know what they are? You need to know what your values are so they can act as your anchor. When life feels overwhelming/icky it's because you are not living within your values.
3) What can you outsource? Cleaning? Cooking? Ironing? Have a look at air tasker, you'll be amazed at what people are willing to do!
4) Make a list of your non-negotiables. What matters to YOU and do them. Does how clean your floors are really reflect your worth as an amazing human? Absolutely not. Stop thinking about what you THINK you should be getting done and start to think about what matters to YOU.
4) Have you asked for help? Now before you roll your eyes and give us all your regular responses to this. Stop and think. Have you asked for help? Have you given the people in your life an opportunity to step up?
Now sometimes as Mum's we can be a little... particular... on how