Going back to pursue your studies as a parent is a critical life decision that moms make. However, it is never easy, especially with the kids involved. Every family member will be affected by your decision in some way or the other. To help you in your adjustment period, here are some tips on how to combine being a good mom and being a productive student. They are not exhaustive by any means. But you might find some of them to be practical solutions in your situation.
Plan your studies in advance
According to the Public Research and Policy, 17% of mothers complete their education after having kids. This rising trend can be attributed to the ease of pursuing an education online as a working student mother and being present with the kids to look after them. Plan your studies before the start of the semester. Get all the tools before the classes start.
To be successful as a working mom, you must have good organizational skills. Rent, borrow, or buy all your books as soon as your syllabus is out. This exercise can get pricey if not planned properly. To save money, you can reserve a copy of your textbooks at your local library and extend it later. Check out how often and how long you can extend it. There is no need to start studying right away but make a note of the big assignment projects and their due dates. To avoid last-minute date clashes, put them on your calendar. Pick a spot either in your home or at a local community center where you can concentrate on your studies.
Study online to save time
As a mom who is pursuing an academic education, the most important skill you need to possess is time management. You can save a lot of time if you opt for online studying. You can ask for professional online help from teachers who can edit your research papers and provide suggestions for improvements. Whether it is going back to school or studying to get a university degree, the edit my paper site EduBirdie can help you with your college assignments. When you opt to study online, everything must be timed and planned with precision, such as the amount of time you need to sleep, get ready, eat, and run errands.
It is easy to get distracted by household chores when you study from home. But you cannot afford to waste or lose any time because every hour counts. So, set reminders.
Speaking of errands, it would be prudent to do your grocery shopping during the weekends and buy everything you need for the week. Commuting to the grocery store or supermarket takes time. So, if you can buy the non-perishable items in bulk at the start of the semester, that would be even better.
Develop the necessary survival skills
Most student moms feel like circus performers and that they are alone in their struggle because they are constantly juggling the balls in the air. But there are millions of moms out there who are managing with less stress than you. And this is because they have developed the necessary skills to perfect their balancing act.
The study skills for moms in college involve:
- Acknowledge that there are going to be good and bad days
- Occasionally use your friends who have agreed to babysit your kids
- Stay connected with your children even when you are not together
- Spend a few minutes alone every day
- Have a weekly conversation with your partner about the father’s responsibilities
Involve your partner or spouse
Motherhood and college study are juggling responsibilities that are not easy because they can create unnecessary stress, which you do not need at this phase of your life. It involves effective preparation and negotiations. That is where your partner or spouse can come in. Get them involved in your planning and preparation process.
Decide who among you would drop the children off to school or childcare and the timings. Sometimes this may involve choosing the days of the week and taking turns to do it depending on your schedule. If done properly and effectively, it is possible to achieve a smooth operation.
Share the accomplishment of household tasks among you and establish a routine for washing, cleaning, and cooking. Use the weekends to prepare the cooking items so your daily meals will be ready on time. It is also important to spend good times together as a couple by taking some time off your usual schedule.
Spend time with your family
The juggling responsibilities may be overwhelming for you as a parent-student. That is why you must find some time to be with your parents, siblings, or other close relatives. Spending relaxed time with your extended family members can make you feel less stressed and will help you rejuvenate.
- There are several creative ways you can choose to spend family time
- Take a weekend off for a family picnic
- Plan to spend the school holidays with your parents
- Interact with your children by doing silly things with them
- If you are a religious person, find a festival or feast to go to as a family
- Choose a restaurant and have a family meal together
- Travel to a nearby tourist spot together as a family
Take the kids to the nearest playground
Mapping out family time is extremely important and should be given equal priority. Also, when you are with your family, try to avoid thinking about your studies completely. The change will clear your mind and will undoubtedly invigorate you. You will then find yourself less frustrated when you come back to your study time.
There are no best ways to balance motherhood and education because each person’s life situation is different. Some of the suggestions given here may work for you, while some may not. Find what works for you and implement them immediately. If not, it can get complicated as your studies progress. But be flexible as things may change, and you may have to restructure your planning.