How to Balance Family, Work and School

Nowadays, a mere bachelor’s degree is not enough. We all know that in order to go the ranks, we have to pursue and earn a master’s degree or more. Making the decision to work and at the same time return to school is a big decision. If you are a working parent, it makes more challenging as you have to balance work, family and school. However, you must remember why you are considering a master’s or post graduate course – for better career opportunities which will in turn, greatly benefit your family.

  • To succeed in balancing work, family and school, make sure that your goals are attainable and realistic. Do not go for big and unrealistic goals that you know you can’t achieve. This will only lead to frustration.
  • Keep a schedule. Sit down and try writing down your schedule. You can live a fuller, fulfilling and more manageable life if you spend some time planning. 
  • Take breaks. We all need to take a break every once in a while. When you feel overwhelmed, take a break. Take small breaks if you are reading or writing papers with expository essay topics.
  • Remember to keep your eyes on the prize. Balancing everything in your life can be challenging so keep in mind why you are doing what you are doing. Juggling so many things can be discouraging but have home, there is light at the end of the tunnel.
  • Find help. You can’t do everything yourself. If you find it tough to manage your household, ask your spouse for help. Or if you are on a tight deadline at work and school, see if you can find assistance with your school requirements from
  • Manage your expectations. You might have planned and tried everything that you can in order to accomplish your to-do tasks. However, life has a way of changing our plans for us and not everything that we want goes as planned.

Four Work-From-Home Ideas for Moms

work from home

More and more moms these days opt to work at home in order to care for the family and at the same time earn. This is a good setup for those who seek more time with their kids while having a work that allows them to accommodate family time and household management. For those who are wondering, here are some work options if you wish to work become a work from home mom:

Open an Online Store. Find stuff that you can sell from your closet, garage or bookshelf. Things you do not need anymore, of course. Or you can buy wholesale jewelry at bajulimports and sell them. Alternatively, you can create your own products and sell them: candles, fashion accessories, trinkets and many more. You might also want to sell your own cupcakes, cakes or even handmade invitations.

Virtual Assistant. Virtual assistant is an independent contractor who helps a client with his daily activities. Most often a virtual assistant or VA is tasked to do administrative jobs and other specialized business services.

Blogging. To start a blog, find a specific topic or niche that interests you and think of a domain name to name your blog. And then, you have to buy a domain name, pay for your web hosting and set up your very own blog. Join networks of bloggers that share your interests in order to be updated. Read a lot so you can find good topics to share on your blog. As a blogger, you can write posts at times convenient for you.

Online Tutoring. You can open a class at home or conduct an online tutoring to foreign students. Many non-English speakers prefer learning the language, thus, online English tutorial services are in demand.

There are many other options for moms who prefer to work from home with a schedule that fit their families’ regular schedule. When choosing, it is important to consider a mom’s schedule and interest for her to be fulfilled in what she does.

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Reconcile If You Can

I have been subscribing to OMF Literature’s Weekly Devotional Reading. Every week, I receive in my inbox excerpts of devotions from varied original titles published by OMF Lit. I want to share with you what I received this week. I hope you will have time to read, reflect and ponder with me.

Reconcile If You Can

All this is from God who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation

2 Corinthians 5:18

Reconciliation with someone who has become estranged from you is not always possible. There are times when you desperately want to be reconciled, yet in spite of your prayers, tears and pleas, the other person still walks away from you, leaving you with feelings of guilt.

So what do you do when you have tried to reconcile and it hasn’t happened? Do you live with the burden of guilt or find God’s grace to move on?

First, you need to make sure your relationship with God is right, that you are reconciled with Him. As Isaiah puts it, “We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way” (Isaiah 53:6). Sometimes difficulty forces you to look in the mirror and re-align yourself with God’s will for your life. This means saying, “Lord, forgive me. I ask for Your help and forgiveness.”

Then, get up off your knees and know that you are free of your burden. No, your situation hasn’t changed. You have. No longer will you feel guilt and you can now find God’s grace to move on. There is tremendous freedom in putting something you cannot change in God’s hands. He is the only one who can turn hearts back to Himself and back to you.

At this point, do you give up on ever being reconciled? No, not for a moment. You wait, expecting God to honor your prayers and trust Him. How long do you wait? As long as necessary for God to change the heart of the person who walked away from you.

Reconcile if you can. But if you can’t, trust God for His grace to help you do the right thing and wait for Him to act.

This devotion is taken from Today Counts by Harold Sala, an original title from OMF Literature.

Tips on How to Love Yourself

We all have spouses, friends and family members who love us but it is important and necessary that we also love ourselves. For many of us, this poses as a challenge but we all know that a good amount of self-love greatly make us more loving of others. Here are some simple yet effective tips on how to cultivate a more loving relationship with your self:

  • Affirm Yourself Verbally. Experts say that we believe what we hear ourselves say. Everyday, find an affirmative phrase and say it to yourself like “I am beautiful.” or “I am a success.”. Doing this in front of the mirror is helpful too.
  • Make a List of Your Good Attributes. Remind yourself of your good traits. Making a list out of them is a good way of affirming yourself.
  • Do Not Focus on the Negative. We all have our negative traits and we also have the power to change them. Focusing on them will just only magnify those negative attributes. Moreover, stop saying negative things about yourself. Consciously change a negative statement into a positive one when you catch yourself saying anything negative about yourself.
  • Change WHO You Can. You can’t control others and there are circumstances that you can’t change. But your attitude, your self – you can control and change. Need to lose weight, it is really you who can help yourself.
  • Take Time for Your Self. Everybody needs a day off regularly, whether you are an employed mom, a work-from home-mom or a full-time mom. Take time to do things you enjoy like reading, exercise or a little shopping! These will make you feel recharged and feel good about yourself.

The Happiness Project

I do not anyone who does not desire of being happy. In fact, almost everything that we do, we hope will lead us to happiness. And it is not surprising that we find many books, tips and websites dedicated to helping us find happiness. Here is one entitled The Happiness Project that gives us a list of commandments on how to be happy. Read on.

Twelve Personal Commandments (Gretchen Rubin)

1. Be Gretchen.
2. Let it go.
3. Act as I want to feel.
4. Do it now.
5. Be polite and be fair.
6. Enjoy the process.
7. Spend out.
8. Identify the problem.
9. Lighten up.
10. Do what ought to be done.
11. No calculation.
12. There is only love.


Letting Go of Attachment, Zen-Style

I just saw this post and I thought I should share. This means a lot to me because of the new life that I am about to live. Read on.


“Most of our troubles are due to our passionate desire for and attachment to things that we misapprehend as enduring entities.” ~Dalai Lama

If there’s one thing we all have in common it’s that we want to feel happy; and on the other side of that coin, we want to avoid hurting. Yet we consistently put ourselves in situations that set us up for pain.

We pin our happiness to people, circumstances, and things and hold onto them for dear life. We stress about the possibility of losing them when something seems amiss. Then we melt into grief when something changes—a lay off, a break up, a transfer.

We attach to feelings as if they define us, and ironically, not just positive ones.

If you’ve wallowed in regret or disappointment for years, it can seem safe and even comforting to suffer.

In trying to hold on to what’s familiar, we limit our ability to experience joy in the present.  A moment can’t possibly radiate fully when you’re suffocating it in fear.

When you stop trying to grasp, own, and control the world around you, you give it the freedom to fulfill you without the power to destroy you.

That’s why letting go is so important: letting go is letting happiness in.

It’s no simple undertaking to let go of attachment—not a one-time decision, like pulling off a band-aid. Instead, it’s a day-to-day, moment-to-moment commitment that involves changing the way you experience and interact with everything you instinctively want to grasp.


The best approach is to start simple, at the beginning, and work your way to Zen.


Experiencing Without Attachment

Accept the moment for what it is. Don’t try to turn it into yesterday; that moment’s gone. Don’t plot about how you can make the moment last forever. Just seep into the moment and enjoy it because it will eventually pass. Nothing is permanent. Fighting that reality will only cause you pain.


Believe now is enough. It’s true—tomorrow may not look the same as today, no matter how much you try to control it. A relationship might end. You might have to move. You’ll deal with those moments when they come. All you need right now is to appreciate and enjoy what you have. It’s enough.


Call yourself out. Learn what it looks like to grasp at people, things, or circumstances so you can redirect your thoughts when they veer toward attachment. When you dwell on keeping, controlling, manipulating, or losing something instead of simply experiencing it.


Define yourself in fluid terms. We are all constantly evolving and growing. Define yourself in terms that can withstand change. Defining yourself by possessions, roles, and relationships breeds attachment because loss entails losing not just what you have, but also who you are.


Enjoy now fully. No matter how much time you have in an experience or with someone you love, it will never feel like enough. So don’t think about it in terms of quantity—aim for quality, instead. Attach to the idea of living well moment-to-moment. That’s an attachment that can do you no harm.


Letting Go of Attachment to People

Friend yourself. It will be harder to let people go when necessary if you depend on them for your sense of worth. Believe you’re worthy whether someone else tells you or not. This way, you relate to people—not just how they make you feel about yourself.


Go it alone sometimes. Take time to foster your own interests, ones that nothing and no one can take away. Don’t let them hinge on anyone or anything other than your values and passion.


Hold lightly. This one isn’t just about releasing attachments—it’s also about maintaining healthy relationships. Contrary to romantic notions, you are not someone’s other half. You’re separate and whole. You can still hold someone to close to your heart; just remember, if you squeeze too tightly, you’ll both be suffocated.


Interact with lots of people. If you limit yourself to one or two relationships they will seem like your lifelines. Everyone needs people, and there are billions on the planet. Stay open to new connections. Accept the possibility your future involves a lot of love whether you cling to a select few people or not.


Justify less. I can’t let him go—I’ll be miserable without him. I’d die if I lost her—she’s all that I have. These thoughts reinforce beliefs that are not fact, even if they feel like it. The only way to let go and feel less pain is to believe you’re strong enough to carry on if and when things change.


Letting Go of Attachment to the Past

Know you can’t change the past. Even if you think about over and over again. Even if you punish yourself. Even if you refuse to accept it. It’s done. The only way to relieve your pain about what happened is to give yourself relief. No one and nothing else can create peace in your head for you.


Love instead of fearing. When you hold onto the past, it often has to do with fear: fear you messed up your chance at happiness, or fear you’ll never know such happiness again. Focus on what you love and you’ll create happiness instead of worrying about it.  


Make now count. Instead of thinking of what you did or didn’t do, the type of person you were or weren’t, do something worthwhile now. Be someone worthwhile now. Take a class. Join a group. Help someone who needs it. Make today so full and meaningful there’s no room to dwell on yesterday.


Narrate calmly. How we experience the world is largely a result of how we internalize it. Instead of telling yourself dramatic stories about the past—how hurt you were or how hard it was—challenge your emotions and focus on lessons learned.  That’s all you really need from yesterday.


Open your mind. We often cling to things, situations or people because we’re comfortable with them. We know how they’ll make us feel, whether it’s happy or safe. Consider that new things, situations and people may affect you the same. The only way to find out is to let go of what’s come and gone.


Letting Go of Attachment to Outcomes

Practice letting things be. That doesn’t mean you can’t actively work to create a different tomorrow. It just means you make peace with the moment as it is, without worrying that something’s wrong with you or your life, and then operate from a place of acceptance.


Question your attachment. If you’re attached to a specific outcome—a dream job, the perfect relationship—you may be indulging an illusion about some day when everything will be lined up for happiness. No moment will ever be worthier of your joy than now because that’s all there ever is.


Release the need to know. Life entails uncertainty, no matter how strong your intention. Obsessing about tomorrow wastes your life because there will always be a tomorrow on the horizon. There are no guarantees about how it will play out. Just know it hinges on how well you live today.


Serve your purpose now. You don’t need to have x-amount of money in the bank to live a meaningful life right now. Figure out what matters to you, and fill pockets of time indulging it. Audition for community theater. Volunteer with animals. Whatever you love, do it. Don’t wait—do it now.


Teach others. It’s human nature to hope for things in the future. Even the most enlightened people fall into the habit from time to time. Remind yourself to stay open to possibilities by sharing the idea with other people. Blog about it. Talk about it. Tweet about it. Opening up helps keep you open.

Letting Go of Attachment to Feelings


Understand that pain is unavoidable. No matter how well you do everything on this list, or on your own short list for peace, you will lose things that matter and feel some level of pain. But it doesn’t have to be as bad as you think. As the saying goes, pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.


Vocalize your feelings. Feel them, acknowledge them, express them, and then let them naturally transform. Even if you want to dwell in anger, sadness or frustration—especially if you feel like dwelling—save yourself the pain and commit to working through them.


Write it down. Then toss it out. You won’t always have the opportunity to express your feelings to the people who inspired them. That doesn’t mean you need to swallow them. Write in a journal. Write a letter and burn it. Anything that helps you let go.


Xie Xie. It means thank you in Chinese. Fully embrace your happy moments—love with abandon; be so passionate it’s contagious. If a darker moment follows, remember: it will teach you something, and soon enough you’ll be in another happy moment to appreciate. Everything is cyclical.


Yield to peace. The ultimate desire is to feel happy and peaceful. Even if you think you want to stay angry, what you really want is to be at peace with what happened or will happen. It takes a conscious choice. Make it.

Zen your now. Experience, appreciate, enjoy, and let go to welcome another experience.

It won’t always be easy. Sometimes you’ll feel compelled to attach yourself physically and mentally to people and ideas—as if it gives you some sense of control or security. You may even strongly believe you’ll be happy if you struggle to hold onto what you have. That’s OK. It’s human nature.

Just know you have the power to choose from moment to moment how you experience things you enjoy: with a sense of ownership, anxiety, and fear, or with a sense of freedom, peace and love.


The most important question: what do you choose right now?

Written by Lori Deschene of Tiny Buddha. Posted at Zen Habits.