Skilful Time Management by Working Parents
Yes, parenting is one of the most beautiful experiences and an immensely rewarding job. The rewards come in the guise of sticky hugs, warped drawings, and shrieking giggles. It’s bliss all the way!
However, for the working parents, life sometimes goes to a whole new level of insanity. You often find yourself juggling between the demands of your profession and the needs of your family. Actually, ‘juggling’ may not be the right vocabulary because it suggests keeping many balls in the air; whereas in real circumstances, something always drops. You find yourself always feeling a bit guilty and confused. The question, “Why am I doing all this?” keeps nagging you constantly.
There are days when things don't go right despite your best efforts. To begin with, accept that you can't get it all right all the time. Accept that there will be follies like you may shout when you could do with a whisper, or you may scold when you were required to comfort your child. It happens, and it's all right!
If you are strapped for time and find it tedious to manage home and work efficiently, fret no more! Here are some incredible tips to sort your life.
Use a Planner
We all know the importance of making a list to carry out chores. It's completing the list, is what is tricky. The key is to plan to finish the to-do list.
Every time you plan your list, take into account the energy required to accomplish the task. Ask yourself will the task exhaust you? You need to chalk out a to-do list that is realistic concerning your time and energy. This strategy will help you avoid frustration and lead to finer results.
Set Priorities and Stay Focussed
One of the most common mistakes that a working parent makes is getting distracted, losing focus, and procrastinating. So you need to accomplish the skill of staying focused even when there is a lot to do.
If the task in hand is preparing for tomorrow's business presentation, avoid getting distracted thinking what to cook for dinner. Don't let your mind wander. Maintain concentration until the task is complete. If you cannot avoid the stress of dinner, take a five-minute break and plan your meal. Then get back to your professional task.
Multitasking is indeed a good thing, but it has its own set of drawbacks. Never attempt multitasking with two physical tasks at hand. For instance, don't try to iron your suit while helping your children paste pictures for a project. The chances of something or someone getting burnt are high.
However, you can multitask effectively if you choose one physical task at a time. For example, you could make that long pending phone call to your mother while ironing your clothes.
Separate Profession from Parenthood
It is highly crucial to be present physically and mentally in the role. You need to leave all your parental responsibilities at home once you step into your office. Similarly, when you walk into your home, ensure you carry no office burdens into the threshold.
If you work from home, demarcate an end to your working day. If you do need to work, complete the same once the kids are off to bed.
Spend Quality Time
The challenges of a dual income family are manifold. We live together yet we are alone. We hardly find time to sit together and chat. Next time you are at home, switch off your mobile phone for a while and let the kids do the same with their electronic gadgets. Sit down together and find out what's happening in each other's life.
Time management is not easy to master. Even the most organised parents find themselves stressed because of the shortage of time. You have a family to take care of, a home to keep clean, homework schedules to attend to, and of course, a career you are proud of - all this requires the best time management strategies.
Since you can't get the 25th hour of the day, it's time you implemented these strategies on a regular basis and get your sanity and life back on track.