The Myth of Work-Life Balance (And Why It’s Self-Destructive)
I posted about this on my Instagram yesterday but felt like I needed to share (and elaborate!) here on my blog.
Mommas, let’s talk about the myth of work-life balance.
For the last 10 years in business for myself I believed this lie.
Well, it’s more of a myth. A legend.
I used to get jealous of people who didn’t have kids. It’s true!! I totally did!! 😬
I’d see these amazing photographers who could fly off to Rome at the drop of a hat or have the opportunity to go to conferences or workshops, or have a 3 day turnaround for weddings anytime of the year + I’d get jealous because of my responsibilities as a mother and wife.
Sure, I traveled and went to workshops and while I haven’t made it to Rome yet, I have gotten to see some incredible places around the US as a professional photographer.
It wasn’t until my then-7 year old (Noah) called me absolutely hysterical, because his team had lost the playoffs and I was busy serving a couple for their wedding 1,100 miles away. Before the phone rang, I felt so much pride that someone had deemed me important enough to pay me thousands of dollars to be with them on the biggest day of their lives.
I sobbed. 😭 I got the call in between the hotel + the church and I bawled my eyes out. There was snot and everything.
Y’all, my priorities were MESSED UP. 💔
After the wedding, I didn’t feel good anymore about being a traveling wedding photographer. That phone call changed my life.
It’s been about 18 months since that happened + I’ve been trying to figure out this work-life balance thing ever since. And I’ve come to realize it’s just not real.
Since announcing my retirement as a wedding photographer, I can’t tell you the pure joy I’ve felt. The freedom, the peace, even my heart rate is lower. My migraines are not so frequent. I’m even sleeping better.
I always have time for a career. I’ve only got 9 years left of time with children living under my roof.
I’m not saying you need to stop working to find balance – that’s not a luxury most people have.
BUT if I learned anything: it’s that it’s okay to say “no” more often to things that don’t bring you joy. 👏🙅🏻I didn’t learn that lesson and it’s caused me so much heartache over the years that it led to me eventually retiring. I spread myself too thin filling others and never bothered to refill my own cup.
The truth is – there’s no such thing as a constant balance. It’s never going to be the same day to day – there are some days where work (like me sitting here blogging and creating that hand lettering quote about work-life balance) takes my time and there’s some days where I am going to spend the day playing catch with the kids and taking the dogs on long walks or maybe, just maybe, taking a bubble bath and watching a cheesy rom-com on Netflix.
Some days I’m going to be super mom and some days I’m going to be super wife, and every once in a while I’m going to be super entrepreneur. But, I can’t be all the things all the time – it’s just not something I can do and I know some of y’all can probably relate to that.
So if you’re struggling with the work-life balance myth, I feel you sister – I really do. But don’t be so hard on yourself – you’re doing the best you can and you should be proud of yourself!