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Multitasking Tips For Working Moms

Multitasking Tips For Working Moms

Rana Peters | Divine Caroline

Working mothers face numerous hurdles, from finding the right childcare to managing their work schedules and learning to accept help. By following a few simple guidelines, you can juggle what seems to be the conflicting demands of your life with the sense of balance you crave.

Finding a Trustworthy Babysitter

The right babysitter or daycare provider for your child depends on a number of factors, including the child’s age. You may feel better leaving young infants with a family member or close friend, graduating to a nanny or daycare facility only when the child is older. You will want to make sure that the person who looks after your child is:

• Qualified and has experience with children.
• Comes well recommended with references.
• Reacts well in a crisis, should the child be injured.
• Has a personality to which your child responds.

If you’re enlisting the aid of a family member or friend, the process is easier. If you’re hiring an in-home professional, you will want to work with a nanny agency and fully investigate the candidate. The same is true for an actual daycare facility, which should be licensed and subject to your personal inspection and observation prior to placing your child.

Work on Your Work Schedule

Many working mothers would prefer a part-time job to full-time work, but economic reality often makes that impossible. It is often possible, however, to work with both your employer and your colleagues to make your current schedule more flexible to allow for greater family time. Some ideas include:

• Working a compressed week. Go in earlier and stay later for four days so your Fridays are short, half days or free entirely.
• Split the workday by working until school is out, then returning later in the evening after the kids are in bed.
• Sharing your position with another person as an alternative to part-time work. It may mean a lower salary, but far greater time options.
• Telecommuting one or two days a week. With a high-speed Internet connection and access to your company network, you can perform many tasks just as efficiently from home.
• By being up-front with your employer, flexible, and creative, it’s often possible to achieve the long-dreamed of-goal: more hours in the day for everything you want to do.

Make the Time That You Do Have Count

For now, forgo lazy days off. Children are smarter than we realize. They will be much less upset about Mommy having to work every day if her day “off” means something special is going to happen. Make the most of the free time you do have with your child to make memories:

• Plan an outing to a favorite location like the zoo or a park with a play area for the kids.
• Come up with a home project that gets something off your list, but is also fun for your child. Getting the front flower beds in order is a great excuse to make mud pies at the same time.
• Combine errands with going to a movie or visiting the mall. You know your child needs school clothes. They just know they’re out with Mom having fun.
• And don’t forget to take pictures. Digital cameras make it easy to snap instant memories. Put the pictures up on the refrigerator or some place clearly visible. It reinforces the idea that when mom isn’t working, we’re doing something fun.

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