Mom’s Going Back to Work: 6 Things to Think About

working mom
Image via Flickr/Andrew Abogado

Certainly, you have those days when you are so overwhelmed with motherhood that you consider (or dream about) going back to work; because not only would it be easier, but you would also get paid.  Right?  (Please say RIGHT, so I don't feel all alone!)  Or, you start looking forward to the days when you will have all of your kids within the brick and mortar walls of education with the hopefulness that you may reenter the workforce.

The reality is that working and raising a family is difficult. I have so much admiration for all the women in this world who are able to raise their family and keep laundry up-to-date and tackle the grocery list each week.  Heck, some days I can barely fit in a shower, let alone managing the schedules of four kids and housework.  

The reality is that working and raising a family is difficult. I have so much admiration for all the women in this world who are able to raise their family and keep laundry up-to-date and tackle the grocery list each week. 

With all that in mind,  there are six things that you should consider when giving thought to going back to the workforce. 

1. Be realistic about your finances. 

Many of us with only one parent working are strapped financially.  If you are returning to work for money alone, you might do better finding other ways to cut back, rather than try to go to an actual “job.”  Between cellphones, satellite service, and even groceries, there are many ways to save money.  And, it costs money to go back to work because you will add fuel costs, childcare expenses, and likely will need new clothes, etc. Creative financing, rather than simply earning more money, can actually be more fiscally responsible.  

2. Be realistic about your spouse's role in the back-to-work plan.

If your partner in parenting is great at helping out around the house, will not mind added duties, is great with watching the kiddos, and chips in, even now, chances are he or she will be just as helpful when you go to work.  However, if your partner is not domestic in the least – and trying to get him or her to share household duties will only lead you to resentment and cause strife – it might just be best to stay put.  If you are pretty sure that adding a job to your duties will only put more of a load on your back, reconsider.  You have to take care of YOU too. This is no knock on your partner either. It's just smart to be realistic about how things are going to be, once you fly the coop, by looking at the whole picture. 

3. Consider if your career pre-kids works with your life now. 

If you had a blossoming, professional career before having kids and miss the days of jet setting around the country for business meetings, sit down and ask yourself  if it is still feasible?  Consider the help you will need and the times you will miss at home and decide if that works for you.   This doesn't mean that you cannot set goals, or have career aspirations; but if you have the option to choose whether you work or not, also consider that the grass is not always greener on the other side.

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4. Consider telecommuting and/or part-time work.  

There are a variety of part-time or work-from-home jobs available today.  If you are interviewing with a perspective employee, don't be afraid to ask about flexible time schedules, or working from home.  Employers today are often very flexible with employees; and if you don't need health benefits or vacation time, you may be surprised what a good employer is willing to offer.

5. Clean up your resume!  

Having a big gap in your resume can feel like a big, black hole in your life.  Don't be afraid to put down that you have been a stay-at-home mother. Truth be told, being a stay-at-home mom takes a lot of skills that are coveted in the workplace.  Also, rework your old resume to give it something special that will pull at a prospective employer's attention .  Remember, today's workforce is jam packed with highly skilled folks; and you have to provide a professional and polished resume to get your foot in the door.

6. Put out the word, locally.

Talk to other moms in your area, check with your child's preschool, school,  or daycare and see what kind of job opportunities they have available. Additionally, look into substitute teaching.  Working in the community with your child is a win-win situation because it enables you to have the same “off” times as your child, which saves a lot of time and money on childcare. 

Mostly, be patient!  Some days motherhood can feel redundant, and you may miss the paycheck; but your time is coming back, if you want it. And before you know it, you will be back working at your professional goals. 

 

 

 

What do you think?

Mom’s Going Back to Work: 6 Things to Think About

Stef Daniel is the 40ish year old, experienced (meaning crazy already) mother of count ‘em…4 daughters (yes, she takes prayers) who have taught her nearly E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G she needs to know about raising kids and staying sane. She hails from a small town in Georgia where she lives with her family in a red tin roofed house (with just ONE bathroom mind you) on a farm - with tons of animals of course. One day, due to her sheer aversion to shoes and her immense lov ... More

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4 comments

  1. StrongMom says:

    I haven’t worked in over a year. Or since I been pregnant and want to work after my baby, If you need the extra money you wont mind about going to work, at least part time. I’ve been a stay at home mom for a long time and I want to experience what its like to work.

  2. Tina says:

    It stinks because I don’t want to put my son in daycare at such a young age but I know I will have to return to work. I’ve already been out of work for 6months and the baby isn’t due for another 3. We’ve been struggling but making it. I know I will try to do some work from home while I’m on maternity leave. Since the place I will be working at will be brand new and doesn’t offer maternaty pay or vacation yet.

  3. KMM2425 says:

    It sucks because my job doesn’t offer Part time; however, I’m just glad my son loves his babysitter!

  4. Phammom says:

    As of right now as long as we stay in the house we are in, I can take my kid to work and I get at least 20 hours I will keep working. Other wise it wouldn’t be worth it financially.

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