It’s that moment girl when you start thinking about going back to work after having your beautiful baby. On the one hand, you are so excited to get out of the house, have lots of adult conversations, work on something meaningful. On the other hand, you feel guilty and scared to leave your baby with a babysitter, at a daycare, or if you’re lucky with grandparents. You can always try to take turns with hubby, but not every job or schedule allows it. So, I decided to create a short list of top 10 tips every mom should know before returning back to work from the maternity leave:
Make sure to update your professional skills
It doesn’t matter if you’ve been on a leave for 6 weeks or 3 years there is always work stuff to catch up on. Read professional articles/blogs, do some additional training. Basically, get yourself in professional shape. You might want to go to some professional meetings (Meetup is a great app to find ones in your area) or apply for additional certifications. Don’t you want to rock upon your return?
Find a babysitter/daycare for your child
I recommend checking all the reviews, asking for other moms’ feedback in local mommy groups on Facebook and do all that research far in advance since good places get booked months if not years in advance. Later, you’ll have so little time for anything and desperately looking for a new place won’t be in your agenda, right?
Meal plan and create a menu for at least one or better two weeks
You can use bookmarks in your favorite cookbook, hand-written recipe book, any cooking app or even Microsoft Office. I personally prefer to type my favorite recipes in Microsoft Word with grocery list on top of each recipe and just print them out. When I go to the grocery store, I just take the recipe with a list with me. For saving time on actual cooking I highly recommend Instant Pot Duo pressure cooker. The reviews are great and I love that you can just put everything in and it sautes, cooks, slow cooks, steams, pressure cooks.
Bulk shop at places like Costco or Sam’s Club
I personally don’t like frozen food, but you need to sacrifice something in order to survive being a working mom. Saves you some cash and lots of time, so you don’t have to stop at the grocery store every other day. Canned pantry items like beans, tuna and diced tomatoes can save any dinner. I love to have frozen ravioli and lots of vegetables/fruits in my freezer.
Pamper yourself with some new work clothes, makeup, shoes, planner, haircut etc.
First, it’s a great motivation to finally get out of the sweatpants and look all nice and professional again. Second, our body changes a lot after having kids, so it’s just nice to have clothes and shoes that fit you perfectly and make you feel like a million-dollar girl.
Plan your wardrobe
Get a couple of dresses for every season or 2-3 pairs of pants and blouses that match perfectly with each other. If you wear a uniform, make sure you have a couple of pairs and good quality and comfortable work shoes.
Create the dream board and envision the changes in life you work so hard for
I personally believe that we should always have a target in life to go for. Anything from saving money for the down payment or going on a vacation, do saving for the repairs around the house.
Plan your budget
Probably it’s not a new thing for you, but with all the expenses for childcare it’s important to keep track of all finances and have extra money at least for emergencies. Carefully plan every purchase and don’t do impulsive buying especially to make your kids feel better for not being with them. Save for bigger dreams.
Do something fun with your kids on a weekend or your day off
There is no doubt kids will miss you on the days you work, therefore it’s very important to get them enough attention on your days off. Amusement parks, field trips, picnics will bring the whole family together and your kids will look forward to spending time with you every week.
Have a serious conversation with your husband or partner about splitting chores around the house
Women are powerful, but they can’t do it all. He’s probably gotten used to you being home and taking care of most of the stuff around the house, but now everything will change. Just when you both learned how to survive with a toddler, it’s time for another big change. You both will be working, so it’s time you split the chores and discuss everything ahead.
To sum up, take a deep breath, stay positive and do in life what you like. Only you can make it happen and combine being a mom and building a career. Everything is possible. Just takes a pinch of effort and a little bit of time management skills. After all, moms can do it all.