Top Time Management Tips for Working Mums
Top Time Management tips for Working Mums
As a working mother, it can be very exhausting and overwhelming to manage a career, household, and children all at the same time. The slightest shake up to the routine or a last-minute emergency is bound to make your stress and panic go into overdrive. How can a working mum stay on top of things to ensure that each day goes as smoothly and calmly as possible?
- Write it down- Whatever your preferred method of scheduling is, be it on your mobile phone, diary, or family calendar, always ensure you write down tasks, events, deadlines, appointments straight away in a centralized tool, as they come up, rather than having multiple appointment cards or letters laying around. This will ensure you have plenty of time to prepare and can have a good idea of your family’s weekly schedule in advance.
- Try and break down your tasks and allocate a set time limit for each task, rather than trying to take on everything at once. For example, assisting your child with their homework, while also folding laundry. For a mum pressed for time, this may seem like an ideal “kill two birds with one stone” scenario. However, giving your child all your attention for those ten minutes would not only help your connection and bond, it could also be used as an opportunity to get the children involved in the chores by asking them to help you fold laundry afterwards.
- Don’t overschedule- It may be tempting to sign your children in every activity or sport out there so that they grow up to be educated, multi-talented, and well-rounded individuals, however practicality and logistics need to prevail. By the time you have arrived from work or have collected the children from school, how many days would it really be possible to shuttle the children to after school activities? Try and simplify their clubs. For example, one sport and one learning activity a week. If the school has after school clubs or sports, try putting the children in those. This will not only give you an extra hour to work, it also reduces the children’s stress that they would have to come home and quickly change and have a snack in 15 minutes, and then go back out again. Also, if you have children close in age, try to find clubs that both can attend simultaneously, rather than having to stay for 2 consecutive sessions. If that is not possible, then always plan some work you can get done while you wait.
- Meal Prep- If you are pressed for time after school and after work, it may be a good idea to meal prep the weekend before and plan the meals for the week. Some people like to cook in bulk and freeze. Others swear by the slow cookers as their saviour. Find what works best for you and suits your family’s tastes.
- Simplify your Shopping- If you like to do your shopping online, then keep a running basket on your grocer’s app throughout the week whenever you remember what you need or find you are running low on something in the fridge. This will make your online checkout must faster.
- Use the time off wisely – Whatever your work schedule is, whether you have weekends free, or 2 days off during the week when kids are at school, use that time wisely. It’s important you have time for yourself as well as getting a headstart on the household chores and errands.
- Give Yourself a Break, You Deserve It- If the budget allows, it is okay to have an off day. Hire a cleaner for a couple hours one week while you catch up on work, play with the children, or just sit back and relax. On other days, treat yourself to takeaway for dinner when you had a long day at work or need extra time helping your child with their school project.
- Ask family and friends for help beforehand- If you are fortunate to have family members close to you, or even other parents from your child’s class, they can be a great source of help. Have an emergency plan set up with them in case they are needed.
- Ensure you are getting enough sleep every night. Some mothers prefer to stay up after the children sleep to unwind and get organised for the next day. Some prefer to get an early night and wake up an hour or two before the children when they are well rested and better focused. Have the children be involved in getting their school bags and items needed for clubs ready. This will save the stress of last minute scrambling looking all over the house for missing items.
- Quality Family Time- Ensure you are setting time every evening to connect with your children. Communicate during meal times and limit screen times. You can fit some extra quality time in the bedtime routine by reading a story, talking about any difficulties or challenges they are facing, but above all, letting them know how much you love them.