Women have never found it easy to thrive in a male dominated world. All the things that a man can do become more challenging for women due to the patriarchal mindset of our society. One such field is the working women balance life.
While the Working women balance life, they keep the equilibrium between personal life and career work. It is essential that a person looks after both. Many people find it difficult to balance both and end up giving more time to work.
It is even more difficult for women because our society believes that a woman should stay at home and a man should earn. Even for working women, it is expected that they work as well as do the household work. As a result, it becomes doubly difficult for them to manage everything.
For every working women who balance life is like juggling a hundred things at once. It has never been easy for women to juggle a thriving career and a happy family life.
What does balance mean?
The first thing that comes to our mind when we hear balance is scale. On one end there is work and on the other there is life. However, this does not make sense in real life. The definition of balance may differ from person to person.
Some women may want to work more and have less of life because for them, their work is their life. So, for such women, balance is more work time and less home time. On the other hand, some women might want some ‘me’ time or some time with their family and friends. Hence, they might want less work time as compared to workaholics.
We see that it’s not possible to define balance in one way. It depends on perspectives.
What is expected of a woman?
Today, women from all walks of life are choosing to have it all — a blissful family, a rewarding career and some solitude to find some time for themselves. A woman has to be the perfect professional which means being on time, contributing extra hours when needed, managing tough situations at work creatively, etc. At home, she has to play the roles of a daughter, wife and a mother depending on what stage of life she is in.
As compared to a man, they face additional responsibilities. With time, a woman’s role has increased from being a caregiver to becoming a provider as well. Men, however, don’t find any such expectation being made for them. As a result, in most of the families, men only play the role of a provider.
Why is work-life balance important?
To quote Heather Schuck, “You will never feel truly satisfied by work until you are satisfied by life.” This simple but powerful quote tells us the importance of having a balance in life. Work-life balance is essential because it helps us avoid stress.
Consequently, this leads to better mental health. It helps to better understand our feelings, know our thoughts, and actually deal with them. In addition, it also helps us to stay fit physically. Maintaining a balance also helps to improve our relations with people. This is important since we live in a society.
The lives of men and women are very different. This is purely because of the established stereotypes in our society about gender. Men and women have set roles to play. That is why even though women have left their marks in every field they are still expected to strive for work-life balance. This makes life very monotonous since the same thing is being done everyday.
The life of a working woman is very different from that of a working man. She has to play multiple roles. Moreover, the work which is done by is at times deemed lesser in value than a man’s work.
A woman who works but doesn’t do household chores is looked down upon by the society. In addition, she also has to provide time for her family and close ones whilst doing the job of a caregiver.
The situation for married women is even worse. If they fail to give time at home or to their spouse, it is said that her work is not as important as that of her spouse. Like this, there are numerous problems that a woman faces which we aren’t aware of.
The difference between working women and men
As we have discussed earlier, working women go through a rather difficult life than a working man. Due to age-old societal expectations, a woman has to do two jobs– one is the work that she does for a living and the other being the one done at home.
Men, on the other hand, are not expected to do any such thing. The problem with this is that if women are not able to give enough time at home, it is said that she needs to spend more time at home and her job is not that important.
At the same time, if a man does the same, it is said that a man’s job is to earn money and hence it is okay if he does not spare time for other things since he is busy trying to make money. This bifurcation is really unfair and may demotivate a woman to work.
The problem for a working mother is even greater since it is difficult for her to take up a job that is at a higher level. This is because working mothers are expected to balance their time equally between work and family. As higher positions require more time and effort, it might be a problem for them.
What is the solution to the problem?
Better time management is not the only solution to the problem. This is because the problem lies in our thinking. It is essential that we break the biases that are in our minds related to gender roles.
If a woman wishes to work more, it is fine. If she decides otherwise, that is fine too. It is necessary to understand that we as a society have no right to tell a woman how she must spend her time. She might want to spend it on herself, her work, family, friends, etc and we are no one to pass judgements.
It’s about time that we understand this and change our rigid mindset towards women. Work-life balance is entirely subjective since there are no rules on how much time should be spent on work and life. Keeping this in mind, we need to become aware that the same applies to women too. This should be inculcated in the minds of the people thereby sensitizing them to the issues faced by them.