1 ANY TIPS ON MAINTAINING A SOCIAL LIFE DESPITE A HECTIC SCHEDULE?
J: We tend to forget another precious role that we hold: the ‘me’ role. It’s as important as the other roles, with days off as vital as work and family tasks. Set regular girls’ sessions with friends and vow to stick to the plan, even if the time needs to be shortened. You can also expand your social life with those who are in the same proverbial boat, for example, by attending kids’ events – this could create new platforms and a support system amongst the parents.
P: Firstly, expect changes to happen. Your social life is going to change – what you can control is if it changes for the worse. Plan in advance so you manage your time and coordinate with your partner. Most importantly, don’t let the anxiety of being away from your child consume you. Be realistic in your expectations. Is your husband going to harm your child? If your child is in safe hands, what is there to be worried about? Not every anxiety-provoking thought needs a response.
2 WHY IS IT SO IMPORTANT TO HAVE ‘ME’ TIME?
J: The lack of personal time causes more harm than good. Forgetting about your personal needs will eventually leave you drained and stressed. When emotions are negatively affected, it may be reflected in the behaviour and attitude towards other members in the family. Also, if the role of the mother is so crucial, do consider what could happen if you were to fall ill and require a long time to recuperate.
P: Taking time off is not something to feel guilty about. Only when you are mentally and physically fit, can you be the best version of yourself. If you think you can’t do it for yourself, do it for your children then. An overworked, tired and stressed out mother may project these emotions onto her children – and they can sense that. It can also cause you to lose your temper.