Working mothers are tough cookies and it's not easy to bring them down. They are resilient and used to multitasking, but at the end of the day, they too are just as human as anyone else. Even though they make the daily grind of their life seem like an effortless dance move, the truth is that it is anything but effortless. Whether they are trying to “do it all” for the sake of their own ambitions or they really want to make life perfect for their families, such unforgiving schedules can take a toll on moms and cause mothering burnouts.
This is why it is important that a working mom at home learn to accept a lending hand from her teenagers. Delegating duties to older children in the family will not only give working moms a much needed time out from their exhausting daily routines, but also foster a sense of responsibility in the teenagers as well.
But before working moms dump half of their day's load on their teenagers, remember that you need an attitude overhaul; if not for yourself, then for your teens' benefit. So, before delegating house chores for kids, take stock of these suggestions to make this transition of responsibilities as smooth as possible.
Remind your teen that bearing responsibility is no child's play. Since you have been doing it successfully for so long, put yourself up as an example. However, don’t expect the same level of perfection from your teen as you do from yourself. None the less, you are a role model and your teen is bound to follow your example in applying themselves to each task. With time they may even catch up to your level of perfection!
Have reasonable expectations
Once you have delegated duties to your teens, don’t expect “too much-too soon”. Let them get the hang of their responsibilities and understand what you are expecting them to do. Believe in the capabilities of your teenager, but don’t expect miracles in the first round. If you enter this phase with unreasonable expectations from your teen, you might be setting up everyone to fail. So relax and let nature take its course.
Be realistic for the both of you
All their lives your teen has seen you being diligent and responsible, this might make them ask too much of themselves. So help them set realistic goals and a feasible plan for achieving these goals. Otherwise they might burn out faster than you can possibly imagine.
Let them learn
Hogging a teen's privacy is not the only parental sin. Not allowing them to stumble, fall, pick themselves up and learn from it is the biggest sin of all. Allow your teen the freedom to experiment, fail and them some. Remember, that failure and mistakes are life’s best teachers. So let them do it wrong the first, second, third and even fourth time, as long as you see that each trial is yielding better results than the last. This will also teach them how to own up to their mistakes and take responsibility for what they have done.
Respect their choices
By doing so you are proving to them that you do have confidence in their abilities and know they are responsible enough to see a task through. Offer advice if you must, but don’t be shattered if they refuse to take it. Let them do things the way they feel comfortable and if that way turns out to be wrong, remind them to learn from it. If you end up micromanaging everything you will do two things: stress yourself out, and stress your teen out.
Once you have groomed your teen into being another responsible adult (besides you) in the house, it's time to take a much needed and hard earned break from your routine as a working mom. Let your hair down, kick off your heels, make a spa appointment and rejuvenate your body and soul. Remember a happy and relaxed woman makes a happy and fun mom. So if not for yourself, then for the sake of your kids, take a break.