Managing Your Business

female breadwinner with child

How to Balance Work and Life When You’re the Female Breadwinner

October 21, 2015 : Carrie Smith - Guest Contributor

Ed note: More and more women are not only active in the workforce – they are the financial engines of their families. But the stress of being a spouse, mom and businesswoman can be a lot to handle. Carrie Smith has advice for how to manage it, from her firsthand perspective. 

As women in the workplace we try to do it all: run our own businesses, be an attentive parent and provide for our families.

According to a Pew Center Research analysis, more than 40% of American households with children under 18 include a mother who’s the primary earner. How do you balance work, life and being a female breadwinner without getting overwhelmed?

Here are three ways to successfully balance your work and life as a female breadwinner.

1. Educate Yourself

When you take on the role of breadwinner you’re responsible to not only earn a living but to fully understand the best ways to manage your money. This is a never-ending process, so you’re constantly learning and improving.

In my opinion, here are some of the best classes and financial courses to help you continually educate yourself and maintain control over your money:

  • Money Essentials 101 – CNN Money (free). This casual course is offered by CNN Money as a free resource for understanding the basics of all things money.
  • H&R Block Income Tax Course – H&R Block (cost varies on location). This class is taught in-person at your local H&R Block office two nights a week and teaches you how to prepare tax returns.
  • Ally Wallet Wise Courses – Ally Bank (free). With four courses to choose from, you’ll learn the basics of credit, budgeting, auto finance and banking and investing.

2. Investing in Personal Relationships

There are numerous drawbacks to being a female breadwinner, such as spending time away from family. You can address that challenge by investing time into personal relationships. Spending money on a babysitter may take money out of your bank account, but the positive return it will have on your relationship is important.

Similarly, looking for companies with on-site daycare is a great way to keep your little ones close while you’re working. Michelle Schroeder’s recent Block Talk article has even more ideas for services that save you time and open up opportunities for play.

3. Find a Supportive Network

As a female breadwinner it’s vital that you communicate your feelings with your partner, your family and your friends. By expressing your frustrations, needs or excitement, you allow your close network to support you, celebrate you and help you balance work and life.

Additionally, it’s ideal to connect with like-minded women who can offer support when you need it. Explore attending a women’s business networking event on or even start one in your area. With 40% of us leading our families economically, you should never feel alone!

Carrie Smith - Guest Contributor

Carrie Smith - Guest Contributor

Careful Cents

Carrie is a financial strategist, digital marketer and social media lover who enjoys traveling. She is the founder of Careful Cents, a blog designed to help freelancers, solopreneurs and go-getters how to get out of debt and organize their life, so they can create their dream business.

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