Is Balance the Unicorn of Motherhood?


Is Balance a Unicorn in Motherhood?

We all want balance…

Is balance in motherhood a unicorn? We’re all trying to find and create balance to deal with our crazy demanding lives, and it seems like we’re trying to find a unicorn. Are we searching for an idea that’s wonderful in a perfect world but in reality is really nothing more than a fantasy?

I remember listening to a mom entrepreneur (whom I absolutely admire) give a TED talk. She said that moms should give up the idea of achieving balance. Somehow it was wrong for us to think that balance is a real thing in motherhood, and we should instead embrace each moment for what it is. It shook me and provoked me to think about this idea of balance from a different perspective. I asked myself, “Can we really have balance in our lives, especially with this beautiful, overwhelming challenge of motherhood?”

Balance is not something we find but something we create.

If we are in fact searching for a unicorn and balance doesn’t really exist in motherhood, what then are we supposed to do? Are we supposed to keep frantically juggling all of our roles and responsibilities and just cope with overwhelm, or are we supposed to simply let all of the balls fall and only focus on the one we’re holding at the moment? That doesn’t feel right to me at all. I believe that balance is not only a real thing in motherhood, but that it’s also possible for you and me.

I wear many hats. My roles as a wife, homeschool mom of four, and entrepreneur are the most demanding of all of my hats and are my priority. Add to that ministry, friendships, and self-care; taking care of me is a hat all by itself! With all of these hats, balance is not something I would like to have, it’s something I must create in order to live well.

There will always be someone or something pulling on us and needing our attention. There is no way around the many different things we must address in one given day. How we manage to give everyone and everything what is needed from us at the right time is balance.

Simply put, balance is how we distribute the weight of our roles and responsibilities so we can stay steady on our journey.

Only you know your weight load and how to distribute it throughout your day, week, year, and your life. To say we should stop trying to pursue balance, I think, is a dangerous thing. I think when we understand that balance is proportionate and not necessarily even, then we can create the space we need to wear all of our many hats well.

Here are a few tips to help you start creating balance and finding that unicorn:

  1. Assess your weight load. What are the many hats you’re wearing right now? Are they all your hats, or do some of them belong to someone else? Taking a look at your roles and responsibilities and honestly asking yourself why each hat matters is important for purposeful and intentional living.
  2. Prioritize your roles. Every season of life is different. In this season of your life, which roles require more active attention and time? Refocus a larger part of your energy and efforts on your priorities. Set clear intentions, and focus on progress for the rest. Remember: balance is proportionate and not evenly distributed.
  3. Lighten your load by removing excess. Nothing overwhelms moms faster than taking on projects, problems, or even people unnecessarily. Every job doesn’t belong to us. We can’t fix everyone’s problems, and for the love of all humanity, we can’t help everyone! It is much easier to achieve balance when we remove the excess and focus only on what is actually ours.