Time management is a difficult skill to master for almost everybody. And when you’re a working mother, you have double the responsibilities, which means that you have to do the impossible to find enough time for everything. Many working mums struggle with finding the right balance, and this causes them stress, which leads to nothing good. Moreover, with the holidays coming and the kids being out of school, you really need to up your game to pull this off and stay sane. Here are a few tips, which will help you manage your time more effectively.
Set your priorities. Having small children at home and working full time doesn’t always mix, but this doesn’t mean that you can’t make it work with some extra planning and by setting your priorities straight from the beginning. You need to show your kids from an early age that you working will bring more benefits to the family and will make your lives essentially better. This will also teach them to be more independent and they will learn to manage their own time more quickly. Not every day will go as planned in the beginning, but with practice comes perfection.
Draw a line between work and family. Many working mothers make the mistake of mixing their work hours with their family responsibilities, like for instance taking too many lengthy personal phone calls while in work, and this makes them essentially lose their balance. This is why you need to separate your work and parental responsibilities. When you’re at work, be the responsible adult and work on your projects, and when you’re at home, forget about work and be a mummy and a wife. This way you will be able to enjoy your time with your family more, and you will be considered a professional at work. Your work productivity will also increase, since you’ll be focusing only on your job.
Define your working conditions. One method to manage your time efficiently is to look at your working hours and conditions, and make them work for you. Luckily, we are in the 21st century, and there are many options you can consider. Nowadays most of the office work can be done by using only a computer with access to the internet, which means that you can work from everywhere. Lately working from home is a very popular option, as well as working flexible hours. Many jobs don’t even require for you to be in the office all the time, you can create a custom schedule where all you have to do is work enough hours, you can organise meetings online, and you can even work from a café or a park. Just consider what works best for you and talk to your management or employees.
Avoid time wasters. With work, family and all other kids of responsibilities, you are already short on time, so you don’t need to waste any on pointless activities, which don’t bring you any benefits. Cutting down on those tempting time wasters is not always easy, but it will make your day more productive as an outcome. Things, which most often waste our time, are browsing on social media, long small talk phone calls, nagging your kids to do their homework or chores, looking for things you need among the clutter, daydreaming and waiting for someone else to finish a task connected to your work. You should make a list with all the things, which waste your time in your everyday routine, and work on solving them one by one.
Organise the housework. As a working mum, you have to worry not only about the work and the kids, but also about the condition of your home, because the cleanliness of the home is pivotal to the state of mind and efficiency of your family members. Since the cleaning of the house compiles of many different tasks, you need to make a detailed schedule with all of them and fit it to the daily routine of your family. For instance, daily tasks include making the beds, cooking, taking out the trash and doing the dishes. Weekly tasks involve vacuuming, dusting, changing bed sheets, disinfecting surfaces and doing groceries. Monthly tasks involve cleaning the oven, the fridge, cleaning the windows, organising wardrobes and closets, and other similar tasks. By keeping a list of all those tasks and making sure they get done in time, you will prevent the layering of the dirt in your house, which would lead to more time spent on cleaning.
Get everyone involved. The most important thing working mums often forget is that they are not alone. Your whole family is there to support you. So get them on board and allow them to help you with some of the tasks. Share the most important responsibilities evenly between you and your husband, and get the kids to help with the housework. Younger children can’t scrub the bathroom tiles properly, but are the perfect candidates to throw away the trash, help with the cooking, and do the laundry or the dishes. Therefore, by delegating, you will not only gain more free time, but you will also work as a team more, which is good for morale.
Set some time for yourself. Even the bravest working momma needs some time to take care of herself. Whether it’s half an hour in the morning before the kids get up, or a few minutes after bedtime, find some time to do the things you love or pamper yourself with a new haircut or manicure. You work hard and you deserve it.
Spend quality time together. Last, but most important, don’t let the work overrun your life; remember to spend quality time with your family doing fun things and exploring the world. These moments we share together won’t last forever, the kids will grow up and things always change, so we should enjoy our time NOW.