Why Mom’s Business Travel is Good for the Family - Baby Steps in High Heels

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Why Mom’s Business Travel is Good for the Family

As I gear up for my next sales season that requires weekly travel for several months, I am going over a million check lists in my head. Although everything is pretty routine for us at this point, we still try to plan for every detail in order to stay organized.

I make a calendar with personal events listed first, then plan work trips around those dates.

I do some light meal planning, including stocking the pantry with staples so we do not unexpectedly run out of necessities.

And, the true key to survival is doing as much prep work each Sunday as we can. We pack lunches and do laundry and make sure we are aware of any appointments or meetings.

This is how we survive and maintain some semblance of sanity, but it can be incredibly hectic, too. It often has me questioning if my heavy travel schedule is too much of a burden for our family. Although I’m sure the time will come when we have to truly weigh the advantages and disadvantages, for now, it mostly works well for us.

And there are also some really nice benefits to my being a working, traveling mom …


Recharge time. If you can move past the guilt of being gone (which is tough, but necessary), business travel is a great time for moms to recharge themselves. I mentioned last week that I was able to read an entire book and didn’t have to do any dishes for several days in a row. Embrace this! Enjoy it! Even if you don’t have a lot of down time during your travels, which I rarely do, it’s amazing how much you can accomplish in an hour here or an hour there when you’re not accountable to anyone else. Oh, and there’s this little thing called uninterrupted sleep. Need I say more?

Bonding time. I have said it before, and I will say it again … Husband is an amazing father to our kids. He has changed as many, if not more, diapers than I have over the years. He feeds, bathes, rocks, and does nighttime duty as much as any mother I know. He’s 100% involved, and his strong relationship with the kids really shows this well. But something different happens when I travel. They bond even more. I think it has something to do with how kids perceive fully relying on a parent. They find a deeper level of comfort and safety in this dependence. I love coming home to see their strengthened bond.

Planning makes perfect. Okay, maybe not perfect, but all that planning and preparing we do really pays off. Things run like clockwork, especially if I’m smart enough to prep for the whole week, not just the days when I will be away. We tend to slack off on the planning when I am not traveling, and it really shows. We’re less organized, more chaotic, and sometimes even a little grumpy because of it. Planning ahead really makes the week run more smoothly.

Communication is key. Husband and I are constantly talking about any number of things, whether it is appointments and meeting schedules or really checking in with how the kids are doing on a given day. We have to talk to each other, because we’re not there to let a raised eyebrow or shoulder shrug communicate for us. Nonverbal cues are nice, and can be a great indicator of a good relationship, but we’re still in the little years with our kids. We can occasionally become so overwhelmed with routines that we collapse on the couch at 9 pm without ever really having had a conversation. When we are not in the same place at the same time, we make greater efforts to communicate.

Absence really does make the heart grow fonder. It may be cliché, but I have found it to be true. Especially, as I mentioned, when you are smack in the middle of raising small children, it is easy to get stuck in a rut. We rely on routine and consistency, because we know this is best for our children. But this can be hard on adults. When I return from a trip, hugs are tighter, laughs are louder, story time is longer. After the kids are in bed, Husband and I spend more time talking. We turn the TV on a little later. We aren’t so ready to zone out the second we have the chance. We’ve all missed each other, and we enjoy catching up.

Traveling is not for everyone; I get it. Heck, there are times when I don’t even think it is right for me, but it is our reality. And, over the years, I have come to appreciate some of the benefits of being a working mom who travels. I encourage you to do the same … appreciate the good in your situation. If you need to be away for work or even a fun getaway, enjoy it.


Trust me, I was doing dishes eleven minutes after I returned home last week. Your family will miss you, but you will not miss a beat returning to normal either. 

18 comments:

  1. I mean I totally don't travel for work especially, but I love these reasons. Esp letting the kids and dad bond. That was decently hard for me to let my husband just do his thing and figure it out on his own. The recharge time doesn't sound too shabby either.

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  2. Trust me, I have had to talk myself into believing these reasons! It's hard, but these are good things to keep in mind even for a night out or weekend away, even if you're not traveling for work.

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  3. It sounds like you guys have a good routine down! And I love that your husband is 100% involved. Mine is too and it makes my heart so happy!

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    1. Thanks! It sounds like y'all have a good routine too!

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  4. I nanny for a family where the mom has had to travel overnight a few times. I know it was hard for her, but it was a great time for the little guy and dad to bond. Plus it is nice to get a little me time away, we all need that sometimes (even a non-mom like me haha).

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  5. Sounds like you have found something that really works for you! I am expecting my first right now, and I don't knowif I will need to do much traveling, but this is all really good to know.

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    1. Definitely keep these points in mind when that first opportunity rolls around to have a moms night out or date night. Enjoy it!

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  6. One of the reasons my little sister has put off having children is because she has to travel so much for work and I think she is starting to regret it now that 35 is fast approaching. There are some great tips in here and I think she would benefit from reading them. Sending her a link right now. =)

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    1. Thanks for sharing. Embracing your situation is the first step to making it work.

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  7. Thank you for posting this. I am looking at a job change soon and it will require travel which is something my family has never dealt with before. This has helped me tremendously!

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    1. Hi Rachel - I will be honest ... it's not for the faint of heart. It can be tough, but there are also lots of advantages if you just embrace your situation. Good luck to you!

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  8. I love this! It seems like you guys have a great routine going on!

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  9. This sounds extremely tough, but sounds like you have a good handle on the situation. Good routines are definitely key.

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  10. Wow! That's a lot. However, these tips are great. They resonate with me too. No kids and very little travel for work, but this is definitely how we try to make life easier - especially planning and communication.

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  11. The recharge time is great! I used to travel for work and I really enjoyed it!

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