The day has arrived… the anxiety is at an ultimate high… you are going back to work after having a baby!
If you caught our post last week sharing ideas for Five Part Time Jobs For Mom’s then you are ready to get back to you.
For a lot of mothers, especially first time mothers, this can be a very challenging time. Going back to work after having a baby will bring about soo many emotions. Many of you will feel riddled with guilt and remorse. Some of you may experience an overwhelming amount of grief about leaving your baby. And some may even worry that baby will be unhappy and you are a bad mother for going back to work.
While I could sit here and tell you not to worry and baby will be fine that is not very helpful. As a mother who went back to work when her son was 6 months old I wanted to offer some tangible and digestible advice. Going back is full of emotions but it does not need to be negative. The first thing to do is recognize each and every emotion and know that you are a good mother. You are going to do what is best for your family.
Before we dive in make sure to remember that these are suggestions that worked for a lot of mother BUT please share any tips you have so everyone can see!! The more ideas the better- we are in this together- let’s support and help each other as we return to work. Also, I focused on ways for YOU to get prepared. There are plenty of resources available on how to prepare baby but this one focuses on YOU.
TIP #1 BEGIN A JOURNAL
Journaling has become a major trend and for good reason. Capturing your emotions in writing and allowing yourself to feel what you feel can really help prepare you. For going back to work and for life. Write it down. Write what you are feeling free of judgement. It is an exercise in acceptance and expression. Too often we are taught to keep all our emotions in and just deal with them but journaling what we feel can help us clear out minds and be more mentally prepared.
TIP #2 BEGIN YOUR NEW SCHEDULE A WEEK EARLY
Essentially this is to help everyone adjust to new times and new schedules. But allowing yourself a week to adjust will ensure you are not thrown into going back to work unprepared and frantic. If you have to start getting up early then start a week in advance- even if you don’t actually leave the house. If you need to go to bed earlier to get plenty of rest start that a week earlier. Maybe even try a full blown test run of what a typical morning may look once you go back to work.
TIP #3 BE PATIENT WITH YOURSELF
This is likely going to be the hardest one. If you are like me, type A, you will want everything to run smoothly and perfectly. Chances are they won’t. Be patient with yourself during this transitional time back to work. There will be hiccups, bumps in the road and mishaps. But with a little patience and forgiveness for yourself you can overcome them. Additionally, be patient with yourself when it comes to your emotions. Remember tip #1- and write it all down!
TIP #4 LEARN TO SAY NO
An unlikely tip, I know. But a crucially important one. This is not only a tip for going back to work this is tip for life. You are trying to navigate a new life for yourself and your family and there will be time where you can not do it all.. just say no. It is okay to decline an invitation for another birthday party or a Friday HH with the ladies. Sometimes saying NO is the best thing you can do for both yourself and your family. Give yourself some down time, give yourself the freedom to do what you want, say no when needed.
TIP #5 BUILD A SUPPORT SYSTEM
Again, this is a great idea for you as a mother and an even better idea for when you go back to work. There will be days that you need to depend on someone and knowing who those people are know is important. Build that mama tribe now. Sometimes you may need a favor or a help with pick up and sometimes you will just need a friendly voice on the other end of the line. Building your support system should also include you spouse! Going back to work does not need to be lonely.
As you transition to work, whether it be returning or the first time, after baby can evoke a lot of emotions. But with these five easy tips the transition will be smoother- not to be confused with stress free or perfect. Being realistic is important. Change is hard for everyone so adding these tips to your tool box can really facilitate a more positive experience. Especially for you.
Get out there mama! Happy Working.
Until Next Time,