Multitasking is an art which many successful men failed to conquer.
Going by the words of management experts- due to the insufficient attention span, multitaskers are prone to fail in their undertakings. So, the best way to handle a job is to avoid multitasking.
But do the housemakers have the same option? Can they get rid of multiple tasks?
Homemakers, default multitaskers, form the largest unpaid workforce in the world. The stay-at-home moms juggle between tasks and manage to accomplish their daily routine without any hiccups. Oh right, hiccups do arise in their mundane routine, but they have a special instinct to battle it with a smile.
The question of the hour is; after the insane sweat & toil housewives put in running a healthy and hearty family, why aren’t they recognized? Why don’t they receive media coverage for their job? And the most disturbing one- when will the tasks of a homemaker get classified under a full-time job instead of a mere responsibility?
Job Description of a Housewife
Corporates proudly role out job descriptions and attach a clear list of incentives to lure the candidate. Sadly, the role of a homemaker is yet to get outlined under a job description, and do you know why? Because the tasks are not fixed.
Unconditional role of a housewife cannot be listed down in few bullet points. If today, you find them preparing dinner for 10 guests, tomorrow they may be filling in for the maid who did not turn up.
Noticeably, here are a few unrecognized tasks accomplished by the proficient housewife without the demand for a reward:
- She is required to work 24*7 endlessly, without any leaves. And, guess what, they don’t have the option to look forward to weekends.
- Without saying, they are the supervisors of the health & education department of the family.
- They manage and track domestic help and their unreasonable tantrums. Often replacing them on their leaves.
- Besides monitoring the current market rate of domestic help, they track commodity rates and make purchases accordingly.
- They are expected to socialize with friends, relatives, and be responsible for another family member (in a joint family). And, all this with a SMILE on the face, even if they dislike an individual.
- Also, if she suffers a long, tiring, and irritating day, she is expected to be the reason for others happiness. Not to mention, sacrifice is her biggest asset.
- Last but not least, a housewife never retires!
The Invisible Pain of a Housewife
Life for a housewife is not dull; it becomes meaningless. Her duties are uncountable but rarely get rewarded. No news channel or celebrity talks about the unrewarding life of a housewife.
Let’s shed some light to learn the unseen pain of a housewife and mothers or wives of some of the readers:
- They barely get recognition or appreciation for a job well done. Any accomplishment is just another day for a homemaker.
- Every human looks out for new challenges and avenues to learn. But if you step into the shoe of a homemaker, the exposure to new possibilities is reduced, or nil in most cases.
- Not only kids, very often the adult members of the family take her for granted.
- Skilled or unskilled, trained or untrained, household chores need to be accomplished flawlessly.
- Low involvement in intellectual subjects often leads to self-pity and several episodes of embarrassment.
- And it goes without saying, the word compromise is a synonym for the housewife.
Housewives Unknowingly Impact the Economy
While economists and government, are still working on methods to compute the worth of a homemaker and contribution in country’s GDP, we came up with a rough assertion of areas where skills of a housewife have no match.
A housewife is a financial and economic pillar of the family in many ways:
- If decently educated, she is a valuable asset in kid’s upbringing, and education, the requirement of tuitions and extra coaching are unnecessary.
- Blessed with a surprising art of managing budgets and expenses smartly. Always pounce on an item when the price is optimum.
- Stay up-to-date with discounts and sale.
- Job productivity of other members depends on the household chores performed at the right time and the right way by the housewife.
- Showcase excellent negotiating and bargaining power. Definitely, something to envy!
- Undeniably, bankers of the family. They have been saving cash since a lifetime. And, utilizing it only during a family emergency.
While we wait for the government to put an economic value to homemakers, we would like to grab your attention to a remarkable point made by economist Paul Krugman, “I don’t mean to imply that there’s something wrong with more women working, but gain in family income that occurs because a spouse goes to work isn’t the same thing as a wage increase. In particular, it may carry hidden costs that offset some of the gains in money income, such as reduced time to spend on housework, greater dependence on prepared food, day-care expenses, and so on.”
Not to discourage a homemaker (male or female), but we are sure many of you will agree and relate to this statement.
Homemakers may not be economically independent, but they indirectly contribute to the economy. There cost avoidance mechanisms are far better and pragmatic than an MBA finance graduate. No?
What Can Modern Day Housewives Do Differently?
Housewives never need to fall behind. Only our emphasis needs to shift on empowering them by engaging in more intellectual and motivating activities.
Here are 5 things ALL stay-at-home woman can do differently to bring out the best “Mother or Wife” in them:
1. Never Lose The Zeal To Learn
Learning is a limitless and never-ending process. Right from a CEO to a grocery shop vendor, they all acquire knowledge. And there is no specific definition of knowledge. Information and skill set in any form are useful.
Before anyone comes up with any silly excuses, browse the INTERNET for content. It hosts extensive information, easily accessible and affordable in all languages.
2. Practice Yoga
Speaking with experience, my yoga teacher is a housewife, but the source of her smile has nothing to do with the family or successful household chores. It only appears after practicing Yoga for the last 4 years and now, sharing the wisdom with more women like her.
The reason we are emphasizing on Yoga is that the ancient practice blesses us with multiple hidden benefits- mental peace being one of the significant benefits.
Improvement in a woman’s lifestyle starts with taking care of the body. Practicing yoga improves body structure, rejuvenates the mind, and most importantly energizes the body for everyday tasks.
A healthy mother is the first step to a healthy family!
3. Join A Hobby Without Fail
Joining a hobby does not make you inefficient; it encourages inner creativity and gives you an identity. Even if you can spare one hour in your busy schedule, it is more than sufficient to juggle between all the household tasks.
Learning any skill, at any age, is motivating!
4. Search for Work from Home Jobs
Unarguably, stay-at-home moms are already full-time professionals. However, this voluntary role is devalued and unpaid since ages. But the good news is, the internet and telecommunication advancement has made work from home jobs a reality.
Writing, stock market investment, website development, designing, tiffin services, snacks preparation, art classes, language instructor, and many such occupations permit an individual to operate from the four walls of the house. And, plenty of freelancing opportunities are also waiting for real talent.
Even a nominal salary is suitable for beginners, and who knows who turns into a budding entrepreneur. Not to mention, the inspiring story of Lijjat Papad started by 7 women in Mumbai, who knew nothing but the art of cooking.
5. READ, READ, and READ!
One straightforward technique to stay intellectually and globally sound is through reading. We are deliberately stressing on this point because any form of reading in any language is worthwhile. You should not be ashamed even if it’s the Tinkle digest or Grihshobha, as long as you are reading, your brain is alive. Also, the habit of newspaper reading once in a while is an excellent practice to indulge in.
If you have not yet read it, one book I strongly recommend to start with is Start With Why by Simon Sinek.
From A Forced Position to A Voluntarily Undertaken Role
It is time to willingly undertake the role of a manager and supervisor of the house. Taking up this job is not a joke and demands education and significant skill sets.
However, today’s homemakers need to remove the tag of A SACRIFICING WOMAN, unless they are forced to stay-at-home and get stuck with unreasonable expectations.
A housewife running the show at home gets privileged hours of dedicated time for family. She has spare time on her side to learn and create a new “idea” every single day. And, the onus of financial pressure is never put on the housewife, at least not forcefully, which ensures peace of mind and liberty to earn when the time is right.
If a woman willingly decides to turn into a homemaker (after completing her higher education and leaving a high paying corporate job), treat her like a soldier for accepting a thankless task for the happiness and well-being of others. She is the perfect example of real sacrifice!
A small message to every woman who decided or accepted the duty of a housewife- “Be a housewife by choice not by societies voice. And, pat yourself every single day because you are no less than a CEO.”