Working moms: strike home and work life balance by managing your stress

Working moms: strike home and work life balance by managing your stress

Lansing : MI : USA | Jun 04, 2010 at 12:20 PM PDT
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Working moms have many titles and wear many hats. Regardless of your profession, striking the work-life balance and "having it all" is probably on your list of constant challenges. Given that the average person works 45-50 hours per week and spends approximately one hour per day with their children, work has become a major stressor.

Stress is unavoidable - it is simply the body's reaction to change - and our world is constantly changing. When you experience change, it affects your total person: emotionally, behaviorally and physically. Managing that stress is key to remaining healthy and being the best "you" that you can be.

In a recent article, What Really Matters, published by The State News, Suzy Merchant, head coach of the MSU women's' basketball team shares candidly the combined challenges of working and parenting. "With the dynamics of everything, I don't think 'balance' is the right word. I don't think there is balance," Merchant said. "I think it's just literally about being in the moment of 'mom mode' or 'work mode, coach mode.' You have to separate them, and when you can blend it, it's great."

Here are some ways to rebuild and maintain energy to manage your stress:

Take a nap
A quick 10-20 minute "power nap" is all it takes to shut down and rebuild some energy.

Eat healthy
Decrease the amount of sugar and fats in your diet; increase whole grains and proteins. A common sense approach to eating healthy may work best.

Exercise helps your body manage stress by relieving muscle tension, increasing energy levels and strengthening the immune system. Sneaking exercise in by parking at the far end of the parking lot and taking the stairs instead of an elevator is a great start. Want to take it a step further? Try taking a walk, hiking, cycling, yoga classes, fitness classes, swimming - anything that gets your heart pumping!

Prayer and/or Spirituality
Studies show that people who pray or use some form of spirituality live longer and healthier than people who do not. Prayerful meditation, attending church and other spiritual activity is good for your health.

Have Fun and Laugh!
Your body releases a stress busting hormone when you laugh. Play, have a big adventure, have a girls night out, wrestle with your kids, goto a comedy club - whatever makes you let loose and have real fun.

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Working mom with child and baby
Working moms have many job descriptions! Learning to lead a balanced life and care for yourself, too, is key.
WriteAway is based in Michigan, Michigan, United States of America, and is a Stringer on Allvoices.
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