SafeMotherhood
safe motherhood

OVER ONE YEAR

Balancing work and home

Whether you are working outside the home from choice or obligation, you'll probably find that combining the two roles stretches organisational skills to the limit.

In order not to feel overwhelmed, try the following:

Prioritise

What is more important - your job or your children? Well, your children won't always be with you, whereas work goes on forever. Fathers often see going out and earning money as their way of caring for the children. But kids need to have parents they can spend 'relaxed time' with, and get to know.

Prioritise work tasks too. When you're faced with 101 jobs that need doing, it can help to write them down in order of importance, cross off the unimportant tasks and forget them, and put a timescale next to the ones that have to be done. Pin the list on the wall and try to keep to it!

Keep clear boundaries

Try to avoid bringing work home and keep family phone calls to a minimum when you are at work. Keep office hours regular and try not to work late. If you have made a promise to be home at a certain time, try to keep to that promise.

Keeping these boundaries is even more important (and harder) if you work from home.

Fix a timetable

For children, who need order and predictability to make sense of the adult world, a structured routine can help a lot.

You don't have to be rigid, but consider:

• Fixing meals at the same times each day;
• Keeping to a regular bedtime;
• Supermarket shopping once a week on the same day;
• Doing certain things on the same day/same time each week, for example, washing the car, cleaning the fridge, hiring a video, visiting the library.
• Visiting grandparents at regular intervals - every month, every six months, whatever's right for your family.

On the other hand, you may hate routines, which is fine. The only thing that really matters is that you consider the needs of your child as well as your own needs.

Topics In This Article: