I have always worked full time. When I got pregnant I said I wasn’t going to go back after my maternity leave full time, but maternity showed me that being at home is just not for me.
I have never said being a parent and working full time is easy, because believe me it really isn’t. Its a very precious balancing act that can fall apart with the slightest wobble and wobbles come thick and fast.
Nearly 4 years in I think I’ve worked out a way to juggle it all pretty well, although I usually still manage to forget something!
Here are my top tips for balancing work and parenting.
1. Organisation – You need to know whats going on pretty much every moment of every day. For me, this comes down to knowing who is where, and especially who is picking up or dropping Harry off that day. I use a family calendar to map all of this out, including Sam’s shifts, Harry’s hospital appointments and any other things that may jump up at us!
2. Backups – While you can be the most organised person, at any one time something could happen to throw all of that out of the window, so make sure you have backups, and backups of backups, because honestly you never know what is going to come up.
3. Use your free time wisely – It can be very easy to ‘waste’ your days off work doing very little, not that this would be a waste, you work hard you deserve a break, but you may often find that doing little means you are behind on everything and its then usually the time you have with your child that suffers. I try to do all my ‘chores’ and writing blog posts and anything else that is clogging up my to-do list (there is a lot) when Harry is in bed and then make the most of the time we get together by doing something together, like crafts or baking or even just snuggling and watching a movie.
4. Take advantage of help – Someone is offering to cook you a meal? or do your ironing? or even clean your bathroom? Say yes! One job off your long list means that you may at the end of the day have time to sit down with a hot cup of tea (or coffee) and have half an hour (or more if you are really lucky) to yourself.
WRITTEN BY KAT HUGGINS FOR HER BLOG, RAISING HARRY.