For working mums with a toddler, returning to work can be fraught with anxiety. Here are some tips to help you cope.
1.How many hours a week should you work is a question that only you can answer. The debate raging in the media is tiresome and irrelevant for 3
reasons: it centers on working full time or not at all (so many mums work part time), it assumes that all children are the same, and presumes that every mum has a choice about the hours they work.
2. Combat guilt at leaving your child with the knowledge that as a working mum, you are a great role model for your toddler. If you have a little boy, he will see women as equal with men in the workplace when he is older.
3. Most women these days have had to earn their own living from the time they left full-time education. Ask yourself if you can really be fulfilled staying at home all day with no other projects or profession. There is no right or wrong answer to this: many women welcome the break from a job they don’t really like – others need their career as much as they wanted to have children.
4. If you have to work full time, you have to work full time. Don’t waste time fretting over leaving your toddler in childcare – instead redirect this energy into planning quality time activities with your little one on your days off.
5. Toddlers are very adaptable and although they might make a fuss when you leave them at nursery or the childminder, they will soon come to enjoy the stimulation, variety and social opportunities that daycare offers.
6. Nursery or childminder? It depends on the childcare provider and your toddler. Many boys especially need the bigger space that a nursery provides.
On the other hand, some nurseries are too big to cater for your child’s individual needs.
7. Want to reduce your working hours but can’t afford to? Maybe you can after all. Look at new ways you can cut back. Organisation is hugely important in saving on day-to-day expenses. For example, cooking in bulk and freezing saves a lot of money. It also saves you time – instead of cooking when you get home from work, put a frozen shepherd’s pie in the oven and sit down for some quality time with your toddler.