Finding time to work and be a single parent is not the easiest thing in the world, but when there are bills to pay and food to put on the table then finding a way is the only way. Being an involved parent is tough enough, but doing it on your own is harder still. Especially when you have to go to work everyday.


You can do it all and there is no need for you to feel overwhelmed at any stage, although we all know it can’t always be easy at the best of times. One thing you need to remember is that everything goes more smoothly when organised. The point of this is to make the most of the time that you have in the week, so that everything gets done and you still get time to be the parent that you know you can be.


We don’t need an extra hour in the day, we just need to better organise the time that we do have.


Get organised


With that in mind take a breath, sit down and make a list. What you need to do is make a list of your commitments.


Put everything on there:


  • Your working hours (including the commute)
  • Laundry
  • Grocery shopping
  • Appointments
  • Out of hours meetings
  • Washing the dishes


Everything that takes time out of your day, make sure it is on there. The next thing that you need to do, is figure what you can do yourself and what you can delegate or do together. For example, can you spread the grocery shopping over the week and do it piecemeal on your journey home or on your way back from appointments?


Buy a calendar that has a weekly view and pin it up where you can see it


Write out your commitments list again, making changes as required. Write this down on a calendar. Starting with work days and hours should make it easier. Place everything else down, that you are doing personally, in the relevant spaces/days.


The next thing you are going to have to do is organise child care. YMCA Childcare is a good option, as are known babysitters such as family members. Schedule this during your work hours only, and aim to pick up your child at the first available opportunity to maximise your time together.


When writing up your schedule into your calendar, try and plan as far ahead into the future as you can to avoid surprises and update the calendar frequently. This means taking things off that don’t need to be there, as well as adding things on as they crop up.


Taking these steps, you may well find that you have more time than you originally thought and you can still do fun things with your little one. If you can keep a whole day free of any kind of distraction, you can use this as a fun day. Just one day of doing nothing but spend time with your child can make the world of difference to you both, and make that make that grey hair stay back just a little while longer.
Image from: Flickr

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