Oh, how the times have changed. Forty years ago, it was almost a foregone conclusion that the women would stay at home and raise the children. Today, women make up about 50 percent of the workforce, a clear sign that the role of the woman in the household – as well as how women in the workforce are perceived – has changed. And while additional income likely means that you’re able to give your children more than you would if you lived in a single-income household, there’s also a price that working moms pay. Notably, it’s this irreplaceable time away from their children that they sacrifice by choosing to stay in the workforce, which can lead to guilt.
But working moms shouldn’t fret. Studies show that children born into households with two working parents don’t lag behind developmentally. But working moms still often feel the guilt of dropping their children off at day care or at a babysitter before they head into the office. It’s tough managing family with a career, but here are some ways that that working moms can stay on top of their schedule while doing what’s best for their family:
Go Mobile: Smart phones have changed the way people work. They allow people to check e-mail and Internet on the go, as well as set reminders for appointments. A smart phone can be a great way to balance both family and work as you can input your child’s doctor appointment as well as the big seminar so that you have your schedule at your disposal all the time.
Work From Home: Piggybacking off of going mobile, more employers are allowing their employees to work remotely from their homes as a means of increasing worker morale as well as saving money on utilities around the office. What’s more is that some companies are initiating plans that allow workers to set their own schedules so that they can better balance family time with business time. An opportunity such as this could be a terrific way to make sure you, the working mom, get the best of both worlds.
Get Dad Involved: Between caring for a family and getting your job done, it’s often all work and no play for the working mother. That’s why it’s important to get your husband on board with your decision to stay in the workforce and have him realize that he’s going to need to pitch in here and there. Come up with a list of household chores that each of you will do and, if you can, plan both of your work schedules so that your children only have to spend minimal time with a caretaker while you’re at your jobs.
Plan Family Days: When you’re not at work, get out of work mode and into family mode. On the weekends and in the evenings, plan activities that you all can do as a family so you can ensure any quality time you missed with your kids during the day is more than made up for.