How do you go from entertaining toddlers to addressing distinguished physicians? How do you go from looking at babyfood recipes to wiping spit up off your suit? How many times do you use the word “potty” at work?
I think one of the things that helps me stay centered at work is to seek out other moms. Some of the best conversations I have had are with coworkers that can really identify with being a working mom. I’ve talked to doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physical therapists, teachers, dieticians. Nothing brings women together like sleep deprivation and potty training.
Another thing I aim to do is to stay well-rested. Add tiredness on to multitasking and you are just asking to leave your favorite coffee cup on top of your car. I have no idea how mommy brain occurs but it is a phenomenon like no other. I thought pregnancy brain was bad. Mommy brain is a cruel and heartless joke. Sometimes it’s amazing I remember my way home. Exhaustion just makes it 10 times worse.
I think setting limits and goals also helps. For instance, I make a concerted effort to leave on time and the majority of evenings I never discuss work again except for a few minutes if my husband and I mention how our days went. I avoid taking work home 95% of the time. I realize that’s not always feasible but if I work 5 days a week I strive to accomplish everything while I am there. I also refuse to clean for hours after the kids go to bed. I usually limit it to 30 min. No, that’s not enough to do a deep cleaning, but it then gives me some much needed personal time before getting some rest for tomorrow.
Do you feel like you are constantly switching your brain back and forth between work and kids and home and spouse? How do you stay focused?