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Balancing Work/Family Life

June 20, 2018


When working from home, it can be very difficult to switch off and disassociate yourself from work when there are still outstanding jobs on your ‘to-do’ list. The temptation to continue to work, or the ability to submerge yourself in work when you’re in the zone, is easy, particularly if you love what you do. And on the flip side of that, sometimes it can be very difficult to kick yourself into gear and focus on your work when you've lost motivation or feeling very short on time. Either way, it is extremely important for your sanity and your personal and work life, to be able to dedicate time evenly between your work and yourself and family.


First of all, it is really beneficial if you can determine what motivates you, what your priorities are and what causes you the most amount of stress. Are you a person who is stressed easily when things aren’t running as perfectly as you would like, or are you a person who ‘flies by the seat of their pants’. You may be a person who gains great satisfaction from putting their undivided attention into work and moving in leaps and in bounds, with nothing stopping you. Or you may be a very structured, home-proud person who doesn’t want to miss out on much family time. Everything needs to be accordingly balanced, and compromises will have to be made along the way. When working from home, or running your own business, you will need to get your mind in the right place and be prepared to make sacrifices to the things that keep you balanced. Change is exciting and we all need to take a step out our comfort zones to progress. 


Once you have decided what motives you, what your priorities are and what causes you stress, it will be super beneficial to write a schedule. Personally, I am a very house-proud person, am all about spending time with my kids, and it causes me a great amount of stress when I am not able to live up to my own expectations of family and home life. On top of this, I also have out-of-home commitments and my social life to uphold. Once my house is organised, my house-hold chores are some-what up to date, and I have spent quality time with my children, is when my mind is most at rest and more open to start dedicating my attention to my work. My schedule is quite rigid, but again, this is the type of person I am. I like to have a schedule which keeps me balanced and feeling like I am in control of everything. 


When working for yourself, or from home, the basic foundation is that you must be ready to ‘let your house go’ and focus most of your energy and attention to your career while you establish yourself. And although this is true, you don’t have to take it to a level which causes you stress, anxiety or makes you feel unhappy with how your persona life is. Your career shouldn’t cost you your happiness on other aspects of your life. By understanding the type of person I am, and creating a schedule that works for me, makes my work/family life balance incredibly easier. I feel like nothing misses out; my children,  my husband, my house-proud mentality, my businesses, my students, my clients or my sanity.



Shereen Nielsen


Shereen is a Director and Lecturer at the Institute of Parenting Support Services and Director and Senior Educator at Early Childhood Parenting. She practices in Adelaide, South Australia. She is the mother of two beautiful children. You can reach her at 0419820474 or

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