Combining career and home life, just how do we do it? It’s a mammoth task, requiring the ultimate and dexterity and organisation. Most of us, quite simply, just have to get on with it.
You can make things a little easier on yourself however, by laying down some definitions, getting your ducks in a row, and thinking about things in a different way.
Think of yourself as being in two jobs – you are whatever you work at and you are a mum. Therefore, your time must be divided amongst both, so being supermum is out of the question. There are a certain amount of hours in the day to split between the entire job, and that is it.
Be prepared to say no sometimes. You can’t keep everyone happy all of the time, there is only so much of you. By not overloading yourself you set yourself up to do things properly too, reducing stress further.
Organise your whole life – not only for work, but house too. Get all items ready to go for the morning, make life easier by removing the frantic fury that comes from rushing around or searching for things.
Plan and have backups. Get everything down in a calendar, and should someone get sick or something else happen, have your backup plan ready to go.
Find the tricks and short cuts. It makes more sense to shop when the supermarket is not busy than to stand in a queue during peak hours. Maybe shop online in the evening when the kids have gone to bed. Find the ways to take the strain out of things, and don’t be afraid to cheat a little, you have a lot on your plate.
Block off work and home time – this is important for the kids, so when you are with them you are truly with them. If work interferes in family life from time to time, try to get the kids involved, perhaps they can paste expenses receipts onto a page for you, or draw their own designs.
It’s not easy, and it probably never will be, but with a little clever manoeuvring, you can take the edge off combining career and home life.