Learning from Others

I cannot pretend to know what I am doing or to know all there is to know about my baby and motherhood. In fact I am learning everyday and discovering new things about her almost every minute. Some of the greatest lessons I have learnt since becoming a mother is by listening to the advice of others and choosing what I want to take on board and what I want to discard. 

Before becoming a mum I sat down with my husband and we talked about the type of parents we wanted to be. In our minds we wanted our baby to fit into our world rather than turn it upside down. This mindset then helped me to quickly decide what advice would work and what wouldn't work for us. 

They say it takes a whole village to raise a child and so here are some great productivity suggestions from "my village" of wonderful working mothers. I asked them for their #1 productivity tip for juggling being a mum and working. I think they are great, Enjoy! 

Me Time - Mother of 2, part time worker

Not sure this is really a productivity tip, more a sanity tip haha, but I have recently realised just how important 'me time' is when you're a busy working mum - there are always 101 things that need to be done, and you feel like you never manage to tick anything off your list, and when the baby's asleep and you finally have half an hour with two free hands its so tempting to rush around doing as much as you possibly can (which is what I used to do) but actually if you invest a little bit of time in yourself in those moments, it does wonders for your wellbeing and you feel a lot less frazzled!

Preparation is key - Mother of 3, manager

Prepare as much as you can the night before lunches, bags, uniforms etc. I have a daily task list which I use. This reduces stress when you only have a limited time to get out in the morning.

Get yourself a whiteboard & shared calendar - Single mother of 2, teacher

1) I love my whiteboard. Everything goes on it. Quick notes for the family to share, dates to remember, letters, shopping lists. An easy tool to make communication flow in a busy household. 

2) merge calendars. I have a shared calendar with my child’s dad and we update it with birthdays and events so we can organise  visitations and holidays. 

Make the most of the evenings - Mother of 2, part time worker and small business owner

Use childrens’ sleep times to get ahead for the evening and use the evening to prepare for the following day and week ahead. Most importantly make sure you set a time to switch off in the evenings and never feel guilty for going to work. Remember you are going to work for your family as well as yourself, to contribute financially but at the same time to teach them so many things about society and the world. 

Prioritise - Mother of 1, full time worker

No. 1 tip - you can’t do it all, prioritise. Since going back to work I struggle to get all ‘life admin’ complete in the days I have left, and want to spend as much of that time with my son as well! Therefore I prioritise my must dos and my ‘if there’s time’ so I don’t feel like I’ve failed at the end of the day. If I’ve spent the whole day with my son, neglected the house work, cleaning, food shop - but he’s happy then it’s been a good day! 

Oh and get a cleaner!! (that’s probably my actual no. 1 tip!)

Accept organised chaos - Full time Mother of 5, part-time employee 

I have learnt to accept that organised chaos is part of life. Having everything perfect all the time is not realistic. That way the chaos can be embraced and enjoyed rather than a recipient for guilt and stress. Organisation and planning ahead is the key to everything.

Make lists - Mother of 4 first and small home run business owner

Tip #1 SURVIVE the day… Just kidding! I have a note pad next to me with lists of everything I need to do/know for orders and just go through that each morning as well as the orders on the shop. So my #1 tip I guess would be to write everything down so you don't have to remember it all whilst juggling children and house