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5 Effective Ways For Women To Deal With The ‘Double Burden Syndrome’

Posted: June 30, 2020

Working women often face the ‘double-burden syndrome’ where they are the only ones responsible for the housework. Here are five ways to deal with it.

The traditional view asks for a division of responsibility between the hunter-gatherer-man and the caregiver-nurturer-woman. An economic dependence that this framework builds has come with several personal and social outcomes. But women have moved beyond these traditional frames, and have chosen to work for themselves as well as for their families.

The term “double burden” is often used to characterise the challenges a woman faces when balancing employment and household responsibilities. As any working woman will testify, the responsibilities towards the home and children disproportionately fall on the woman. Women around the world shoulder greater responsibilities for caregiving and housework in general, giving rise to the “double burden syndrome.

What are the challenges women face?

This involves a lot of adjustments, struggles and compromises which are not as easy as thought of. A complete circle of all these can be termed as challenges. Some of which are as mentioned below:

Compartmentalisation

Keeping personal and professional lives apart during working hours is, perhaps, the biggest challenge. Lack of proper categorisation between household hustle and professional/entrepreneurial work, results into a setback.

Resources

Identification and consolidation of all the necessary resources required to manage are resilient and tough. Focusing on “maximum utilisation with minimum availability” is quite imperative.

Work life balance

A woman’s life can be segregated into different buckets i.e. work, family, chores and fun. Working around the clock causes stress, poor health and burnout. A continuous stressful situation crops up if an equilibrium is not maintained between the various tasks.

Desperation for perfection

A life full of impeccable family, friends, food and fun is indeed a figment of imagination. Seeking total perfection in any area of life, takes the time away from other things, leading to greater imbalance and unevenness. It may even leave you feeling dejected.

Societal expectations

Society sets unrealistic targets for us and despite being aware, we still strive to fulfil those expectations. Many times, before initiating something we might feel perturbed as the fear of non-fulfilment captures us. Secondly, it is likely to happen that we dip ourselves in such issues to such an extent, thereby causing us unnecessary stress.

But this is how you deal with the challenges

These challenges should not be a hurdle, rather we should find paths to overcome them. Some of the possible ways are:

Planning and discipline

Meticulous planning and discipline are subtle approach in curbing these challenges. Being organised and structured is essential to one’s development. This can dramatically reduce stress and improve outcomes at work and in our personal life.

Create timelines

Creating timeline for our activities is a must do job. Setting working hours for ourselves and sticking to them is a lesson to be learnt in the early stages.

Differentiate between urgent and important

Learning to differentiate between urgent and important is yet another way you can help yourself. Urgent tasks have to be taken care of on an immediate basis. However, important chores are not always immediate but need our attention time and again. Likewise, we need to distinguish between social conditioning and our priorities.

Make a to-do list

Define the parameters of success in each area you choose and consciously distribute time among multiple goals. Maintaining a to-do list is one of the ways of befittingly doing it as it will help us to become efficient and doing work more quickly.

Have some Me time!

Having some ‘Me Time’ will definitely serve as a medicine in such a situation. Me time means making time for your personal life, including your family and health. Physical and mental well-being plays a pivotal role in maintaining a work life balance. Having some daily down time will help recharge and restore balance.

Challenges are an opportunity to test us and rise to the next level. Take up the challenges and explore further new avenues.

Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations!

Picture credits: Pexels

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How To Combine Career With Motherhood

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