Pay Day!Sep 06, 2022
As a working Mom, one of my favorite things to do is open an email that reads, “You are getting paid today!”
It is nice to be compensated for the time, energy, and effort that I put into maintaining, managing, and growing a business. It is reassuring to log into my bank account and be able to visually see the results displayed on the screen.
I began to think about my role as a mom. I put a lot of energy and effort into my family as do so many other moms. What does that pay day look like for Moms? Moms need to feel a sense of validation for the hard work they put in day in and day out. They want to feel like there is growth and results. They want to feel like they are parenting with purpose; whether that’s to get the child to age 18, or establish a long term healthy relationship with their children. But it is a little more challenging to assess the results, its not like we can log into a bank account and immediately see what has been deposited or withdrawn… or is it?
One of the simplest ways to measure your impact as a working mom is to create a parenting bank account. This is not complicated and does not require any bookkeeping skills. It simply consists of making a list and becoming aware of what fills you up. What are the things that bring you joy and excitement? What interactions brings a smile to your face or warm your heart? What daily little nuggets contribute to your physical, emotional, and mental well-being? When do you intentionally choose to turn toward your family and give them the best of you?
After you have your list, now it's time to act. Be intentional around measuring how many deposits are being made to your parenting bank account. When you feel yourself stressed and wanting to slide back into overwhelm, pull out your deposit list.
This becomes very helpful when you are faced with a problem or conflict. Imagine a huge concrete wall in front of you. For each and every deposit you have made, that elevates you higher and makes it easier for you to get up and over the wall. But for each withdraw, you get lower and lower and the wall seems insurmountable.
I lived this firsthand this past weekend. My husband had been traveling for work often. We had a weekend where our girls didn’t have any sports and he was home. That’s like a perfect storm in our house. We took advantage of the unique opportunity and went to the lake for 3 days. Things started off great. On the second day the entire family was starving, and we decided to eat at a little pub across from the beach. They were severely understaffed like many restaurants today and seemed to be moving rather slow. My youngest daughter had just broken a special necklace and was extremely hungry, so you can guess her mood at the time. My husband tried to joke with her, she snapped at him, and he snapped back. They both threw mini temper tantrums. Needless to say, we left the place without eating and everyone was emotional.
This could have caused a huge set back. Luckily, we had been making deposits that helped raise us up and we worked through. We got up and over that wall in no time at all and were able to enjoy the getaway. We had created a culture that accepts everyone’s differences, extends grace and forgiveness, and understands that there are behavioral boundaries in place. My two older girls helped the youngest daughter work through her frustration. My husband and I sorted out our differences in strengths when it comes to parenting. That evening we sat outside on the dock looking up at millions of stars and laughing about what we had learned from that day. As I went to sleep that night I thought, “That was a Mama payday!”
- Kelly McGinnis, President
Working Parent Institute
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