Let me start this out by stating the obvious- "Every mom is a working mom." This in no way feeds into the working mom vs. stay at home mom age old battle. As a mother who works outside of the home, I know what it's like to feel like a chicken running around with its head cut off most of the time. Our time is extremely valuable, because it feels like there is never enough.
Between getting the kids (and ourselves) ready for work, working for "the man" 8 hours a day, supper time and housework, there is no time in there to slow down and enjoy it a little. I have found a pretty good balance finally after 2 years, without feeling like I am missing out on time with my son. The key is figuring out a routine, and find something that helps you stay sane. For me, it's writing. I like to write after my son has gone to bed because it helps me unwind and get some much needed "me" time. There are a few simple adjustments you can make to try manage through the crazy work week.
Use Your Time Wisely
Doesn't it seem like people have been telling us this forever? It's true, when you are pregnant you are bombarded by thoughtful speculators with genuine advice to survive the newborn stage. The first thing they will say is to use your time wisely, and nap while the baby naps (it was a nice thought, anyways). This stays true throughout motherhood, I have learned. I will be the first to tell you that I am awful at time management, seriously. I am constantly late and I overestimate my ability to be efficient. Oh well.
The best thing you can do for yourself is to use every free second you get. This means wake up a half an hour early, and stay up a little later. If you don't have to, kudos to you, but I have learned that I can still survive on 6 hours of sleep a night. I don't like to be "busy" with chores or work when I am with my son, so I do all of that stuff before he wakes up, or after he goes to bed. If I am not busy running errands on my lunch break I will go home and get some work done then, too. It's all about using what time you can, so that you can relax a little bit more later on.
Outsource Where You Can
Outsourcing is one of the smartest things that a business can do, and the same goes for moms. Know what is and isn't worth your time, and when you should outsource. By outsource I mean hire the neighbor kid to mow your yard or hire a cleaning service to clean your home. These may not be a viable option for you, or it may be something you can afford to do here and there to save time. There is always someone willing to do something for you that you might not want to, if the price is right. You just have to decide what your time is worth, and if outsourcing would be valuable to you.
Cherish The Time That You Have
It can get really easy to get bitter and feel overwhelmed. There are times where I feel like I am being spread way too thin, but somehow I make it. Evenings and weekends are the times that I set aside for my family, and they will always come first. It's good to keep your priorities straight, and know that family is the most important thing. It's ok if you let the dishes or the laundry slip a time or two. You don't have to be on top of everything all the time, so you should just let that idea go. No one can have it all together all of the time.
The best part is that your kids aren't going to remember if your sink was full of dirty dishes, or if you didn't have it all together. They are only going to remember how much you loved them, and the good memories you shared together. Raising tiny humans is hard, but it is completely worth it. The best thing to remember is that if you are worried whether you are a good mom or not, you are a good mom. You are trying your hardest and you are doing awesome.