As I write this post, all across the land there are mums….frustrated mums….who have between them so many fantastic skills they could rule the world, yet somehow for so many of them….getting back to work…and work that is flexible seems to be such a challenge.
So if you’re a mum whose time of maternity leave is coming to a close, or perhaps you chose to be a stay at home mum for those formative years but now are getting itchy and thinking about returning to work, what are your options?
Go back to your old job
For some mums, maternity leave leads naturally into resuming your old job. That works for some mums, and not for others. You might decide that the reality of this is all too much and in fact perhaps you might need a more flexible way of working like job sharing. If you’re planning on going back to your old job make sure you keep in touch with your colleagues throughout, and keep up to speed on what is happening in the industry by staying in touch with your industry press.
Find a new job
This can be a huge step change as a mum, as it can feel hugely daunting coming from what feels like a very different place, to dancing with the prospect of a new employer again. But Rome wasn’t built in a day. Start working on your CV first and remember all the things you were great at before your life was taken over my nappies and puke. Because yes! you were once great and still are. There are some really great networks out there that advertise jobs specifically for mums like 2to3days and you can also check out Mumsnet Jobs too.
Become self employed
In this day and age, there was never an easier time to be self employed and quite frankly mums EVERYWHERE are doing it. Whether you decide to finally pursue your dream of setting up your own online shop, party planning business or perhaps join an already existing direct sales or franchise network, the choice is yours. Whilst being self employed does take a huge amount of discipline, the flexibility it brings in my view….if it’s the right thing….can be worth its weight in gold. If you’re thinking of setting up your own venture it’s always worth talking to a business consultant of the likes of Trevor McClintock who can help set you in the right direction.
Go off piste
Apart from the obvious above, a return to work doesn’t have to be vanilla. I was quite clear about the fact that I didn’t want to return to work as I knew it, and that I didn’t want to work for someone else. Although I started my blog two years ago on a whim, I did have the tiniest inkling it could turn into something….and over two years on it provides me with a sustainable part-time income and all the benefits of flexible working that I quite frankly feel eternally blessed for. Of course…it doesn’t have to be a blog. It could be something entirely different which doesn’t conform to the usual “back to work” train of thought. I have mum friends who have become child minders, have retrained as beauticians, taken the Digital Mums Social Media course and become social media managers or have become dog walkers and they are all phenomenally happy with their new way of bringing in income.
Go back to the books
Going back to work doesn’t have to be immediate and if you’re looking to take a longer term view and do something new, then this crossroads can be the perfect opportunity to do just that. Today there are so many ways to retrain in a flexible manner which can sit more practically alongside mum life. Deciding to retrain however is a big step but if it’s something you’re considering Netmums has a handy guide on getting back to education here which is well worth a read.
Are you a mum who is at a crossroads and thinking about going back to work? Which of the above are you considering? Do leave a comment and share.
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*This is a collaborative post
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