Dear Parents: It’s Time to Stop Putting Your Future on Hold

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Before you were a parent, you were your own person who had dreams and goals in life. There’s no reason why you should stop dreaming just because you now have a child or two. Of course, you’ll need to adjust to your new circumstances, but that doesn’t mean you should postpone your own life to focus on theirs.

If you continue to fall into the habit of postponing your goals so that you can do them at a more comfortable time, you will never be able to achieve anything. This is because the reasons holding you back today will just be replaced by a new set of reasons that will hold you back in the future.

Rather than choosing to put your life and future on hold because you’re still busy raising your children, you should make it so that you can do both witout sacrificing anything. Understandably, this is easier said than done, but you have to at least try for your sake because you deserve to realize those dreams.

Don’t misunderstand. As a parent, it is your duty and responsibility to provide everything that your children need to grow, such as the food in their stomachs, a roof over their heads, and clothes on their backs. It’s also your job to make sure that they can practice their right to education and healthcare.

But once you’ve done your job in raising your children and watching them grow into beautiful adults with kind hearts, what’s next for you? If you put your entire life on hold to focus on theirs, you may lose your purpose when they start living their own lives. So, here’s how you can stop postponing your future and start living in the moment:

Create a Feasible Timeline

You don’t need to let your children get in the way of building your future or achieving your goals in life because they’re not just passing by. They’re going to be present for the rest of your life, which means that you need to include them in your plans because your children won’t be leaving anytime soon.

And you can’t wait for the day they leave for college before you start focusing on yourself, especially if you have more than one kid. Instead of counting the days until you become an empty-nester, you can create a feasible timeline of events that will allow you to be a parent and pursue your passions at the same time.

Undeniably, you’ll have to put your life on hold for a bit when you have a baby because taking care of a newborn is exhausting enough, and you don’t need other responsibilities during that time. But once your kids enter nursery or preschool, you shouldn’t be afraid to restart your own career and reignite your passions.

Allowing yourself to pursue your own goals can also give you less time to hover over your kids. Nobody likes a helicopter or bulldozer parent because they don’t give their children the space to fail and learn from their own experiences. Therefore, pursuing your own goals is a win-win because it will also stop you from being too laser-focused on your children’s lives.

Find the Balance for Your Workload

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Once you decide to start pursuing your own goals again, you will have to rearrange your priorities as well. You can’t just wing this part as you go because you may end up being too focused on building your career that you start neglecting to take care of your children. That’s why finding the balance is crucial.

For instance, you want to take a postgraduate course to help you advance your career and increase your earning potential. Instead of doing that full-time, your alternative is to earn a master’s degree online through remote study. This way, you’ll have much better control over your time and still be able to pursue your career while taking care of your kids.

Being the head of the household also comes with many responsibilities, which means adding more to your plate. But rather than try to do everything on your own, what you can do is pass off some easier household chores to your school-aged kids, so they can also learn the value of responsibility at the same time. It would be like hitting two birds with one stone.

Make Enough Time for Your Kids

Most traditional parents argue that those who choose to pursue their careers instead of being full-time parents fail to make strong emotional bonds. It’s as if choosing a career means not choosing their children, but this is not mutually exclusive. You can be a parent and have a professional career without compromising one or the other.

However, this is all just a matter of good time management and setting your priorities straight. If you can do both without making your children feel sad or neglected, then it means that you were able to raise them right simply because they understand why you need to be someone other than a parent.

If you can pull this off, you can hopefully pass this kind of progressive thinking onto your children. So that if they ever become parents themselves, they won’t get stuck in the traditional mindset that parents can’t have careers or their own lives apart from caring for their children.

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