Working and having an active family life at the same time isn’t always easy. In today’s wold, there is still a long way to go before we achieve a good work-life balance.
Let’s see the current global picture, and where this complex but crucial issue is heading.
Is it possible to achieve a good work-life balance?
Although both adults and children are entitled to an adequate work-life balance, there is a lot to improve in this regard. Some people work remotely or have flexible working hours. However, this isn’t so in most cases.
The truth is there is still a lot of work to do. One solution would be to redistribute working hours, but that isn’t easy to achieve.
Parents usually spend the better part of the day outside the home. Children, for their part, usually have breakfast, lunch and a snack at school or spend their time doing extracurricular activities. This means that once everyone is home, there’s barely any time left.
Many parents have no time to spend with their children, nor can they cover all their children’s affective and social needs. But we must be mindful of the negative consequences of this. These consequences not only impact our homes, but also our children’s development.
We must be aware that children need to spend time with their families, so they can grow up in a happy and healthy environment. It’s been proven that children are happier when they have a strong, healthy relationship with their parents. It’s essential for a child’s development to have stable role-models throughout life.
What can be done?
The truth is that if we don’t have enough resources or time to spend with our children, we won’t be able to maintain constant interaction that guarantees our children’s well-being.
However, there are several aspects that might be possible solutions.
1. Maternity and paternity leave
Firstly, we could use longer maternity and paternity leaves. Many countries around Europe already offer them.
2. The advantages of working remotely
Along the same lines, there is the possibility of working remotely, as well as flexible working hours.
It’s important to understand that we need to consider achieving a good work-life balance as a necessity. For this reason, governments must see it as a tool to protect families – especially for children, who are a genuine investment for society as a whole.
Still a long way to go
It’s essential to encourage a series of measures with work-life balance in mind. That’s how families could have a true leading role in their children’s upbringing. This is key, particularly during the first years of their lives.
Among these measures, we could also include establishing public assistance for parents. This assistance would entail subsidies for kindergarden or daycare facilities.
While waiting for measures and assistance, if they ever come, parents need to find extra time. To that end, you’ll have to distinguish between what’s a must and what’s not. This means figuring out your true priorities and obligations.
This also means figuring out what is unnecessary on your to-do list so that you can spend more time with your family.
Don’t forget you can also delegate certain tasks to achieve a better work-life balance. We can’t stress this enough: delegating, asking and giving help is a great step. More often than not, we want to do it all – an impossible task.
Asking for help will be a relief because you’ll gain more precious time with your family. Additionally, it will help soothe that feeling of guilt and bring you happiness, reducing stress and anxiety.