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Blog: Five Crucial Things to Consider Before Going Back to Work

5-min read: Mums out there here are five crucial things to consider before going back to work.

You stopped working to focus on raising your children and now, all your time and energy is devoted to them. Your children mean the world to you but you’re also feeling the pull back into the working world. Before doing that, here are 5 important things to do before becoming a working mum:

Sort out your priorities

The first thing you need to do is to sort out your priorities and to determine your goals in terms of balancing between work and raising your children. There can be many reasons for a mum to go back to work. It could be a financial need or simply because you want to do it for yourself. 

Access to education and opportunities means that a lot of women are able to invest in themselves and pursue a career in their chosen field. Taking a break to have and raise children does not mean that they want to let go of their career in the long run. However, you need to be prepared mentally about the reality of raising a child and working at the same time, especially about the pressure to excel at both.

Evaluate your working options

After you have established what you hope to achieve, it is time to evaluate your working options. Some mothers may be dismayed that they lost all of their accumulated experience and expertise after taking a break, leaving them completely unprepared to enter the workplace again. If you have been out of the workforce for quite a while, perhaps it would be a good idea to read up about industry trends and you might also want to consider going back to school or taking up training if the industry you left has gone through many changes.

 Since it can be a struggle to balance long work hours and taking care of children, you may also want to consider alternative career arrangements apart from a full-time job such as working part-time, flexible hours, or even working remotely from home. 

Share the load

Despite the shift from traditional values when women were expected to be the head of the households, women still do seven more hours of housework per week compared to men

As a working mother, there is pressure to be able to do it all but you only have a limited set of time and energy. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it. Create a schedule and a to-do-list so that everyone is aware of their own responsibilities and delegate, delegate, delegate. Once the children are old enough, include them and assign basic chores that they can complete such as picking up after themselves and setting up the dining table. This will foster a sense of independence and teach them skills that will benefit them throughout their lives.

Set clear boundaries

The right mindset is important as you will need to be present in both roles: as a mother and as an employee. Instead of stressing out about how you might be failing the expectations set upon you, focus on doing the best you can. 

At work, close all of your internet browsers and put your cell phone away unless you need it for something work-related. Similarly, put your phone away when you are with your children in order to give them your utmost attention. To be fully present, set clear boundaries so that you can focus on your task at hand instead of having to multi-task inefficiently.

Let go of guilt 

You may be feeling guilty at having to leave your children behind while you pursue a career but holding on to that is not healthy in the long run. Rather than dwelling on how you’re not there for them full-time, think about how working can help benefit your family. More money means that you can afford additional enrichment or educational opportunities for your children and even put aside some savings for college. You will also be setting up a good example for your children when they see how you can contribute meaningfully both to society and as a parent.

At the end of the day, being a working mum will certainly mean that there will be compromise involved. Be prepared to let go and don't sweat the small stuff! 

Trust yourself and the fact that you are doing your best even when there are some bad days and most importantly, set some time aside every day to take care of your own needs before dealing with your responsibilities for somebody else.

And if you need more face to face encouragement, don't forget to check out upcoming events for women right here.

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