Being a working parent and juggling your job, kids and every task in between can be a challenge. How do you keep on top of the housework when you’re not there 8 hours of a day, sleeping for 8 and running around after the kids the other 8? Guilt plays heavily on working mums, they may not be picking their kids up from school or using a childminder from before a year. They feel sneered at on one hand for not being with their child every waking minute and ridiculed on the other for not going to work and bringing in an income. Not an easy line to tread. It leaves working mums feeling torn, guilty and resentful. It doesn’t have to be this way though, We have 21 ways to rock being a working mum, whether you work 5 or 50 hours a week.
1. Planning ahead can help you to make sure there are no nasty surprises lurking, leaving you time starved and stressed. Keep a diary and put everything in it in advance, from your cars MOT to Auntie Dot’s birthday. Put notes a week ahead of time as a reminder for really important things.
2. Check your diary daily. There is no point being fastidious in keeping a diary if you don’t refer to it daily and see things before they happen.
3. Meal planning can help you make the most of your time. F you know what your are doing in advance you will be able to block out times for other things.
4. Do an online shop once a week, you can choose your regular items easily, and choose a delivery slot that suits you. Making even food shopping a breeze.
5. Outsource jobs like gardening, cleaning or ironing to a specialist if you can afford too.
6. Rope the kids in to household tasks by creating a rota where everyone has a job to do. That way you can spend more time with them and not cleaning up after them.
7. Schedule special time with each child daily. This not only helps to relieve you of guilt, but also helps to keep them happy. It doesn’t matter what you do and doesn’t need to be long. 15 minutes can be long enough to play a shirt game, have a cuddle or catch up chat.
8. Keep a few days holiday each year for emergencies. Life is full of surprises and it can be stressful taking time off especially if you have no holiday left. So, keep back a couple of days as ‘just in case days’. This will cover sickness or school closures.
9. Use your lunchtimes to do shopping. Need to get something urgently? Lunchtimes can be a great time to dash off and get last minutes gifts for birthdays or something for tea.
10. Make sure you have quick meals in the freezer for busy days. Batch cooking meals in advance that can be defrosted fast if needed will not only save you spending on a take out. It will also ensure you get a good tasty and healthy home cooked meal in minutes.
11. Lean on friends and family. When struggling ask friends or family to pitch in and help. Most are only too pleased to lend a hand when you are struggling.
12. Divide tasks fairly between couples. A relationship should be 50/50 and if you both work, household and child rearing tasks should be undertaken together, with you both sharing the load. Try to assign tasks according to your strengths.
13. Put down your phone. Social media is the devil of a time suck so step away from it till you have everything sorted.
14. Your kids do not need to do after school activities daily! Working and having a family is tough enough without the added strain of making sure your kids have a club to go to everyday of the week. If they must do something choose one that doesn’t mean you are trapping everywhere several times a week.
15. Declutter your house. Too much stuff makes things like cleaning a nightmare. Keep things simple by limiting the build-up of junk. Limit the toys you buy at Christmas instead use the money to spend time with the kids going to panto or other activities. Kids remember the time spent together not money spent. Having less also means less cleaning up. Kids also play more when they have less.
16. Simplify your morning routine. Once you have decluttered it will make simplifying your routine easier. Have a set wardrobe of timeless pieces that can be simply placed together to look great, fast. Get up before the kids to shower and put a simple routine in place that everyone can follow to maximum effect.
17. Get stuff ready the night before, if everything is assembled the night before it will save time scrambling around in the morning. Get out all outfits. Line up shoes by the door. Pack lunches and place in fridge. Make sure school bags, PE kits coats are ready to grab on the way out the door.
18. Shop online instead of spending hours shopping on foot, buy in advance on the internet. Most retailers allow you to send goods to a different delivery address so items can be delivered to your work place.
19. Iron once a week (usually a Sunday) so all clothing for the week is ready to grab and go and you all look well turned out.
20. Have some you time. All work and no play takes its toll, so do something nice for you occasionally. Everyone will feel happier all round if you are all rested.
21. Don’t put yourself down. Working and being a parent isn’t easy. You are rocking it, even if you don’t feel like you are.
Are you a working parent? Tell us about it in the comments below?
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