Getting back into a work routine after maternity leave can be challenging and overwhelming. With new priorities and responsibilities, you come back as a new person, especially being out of practice for months. Balancing the relationships in your workplace (with your boss or co-workers) depends on how well you manage your responsibility at work, and most importantly, parenting. During the transition, it’s essential to stay motivated and emotionally strong, and here are a few tips to help you manage the new change.
Consider Your Schedule
As hard as the transition can be, there are a few plans you can put in place to help you manage your schedule better. In the beginning, maybe consider easing into work gradually, working a few days a week, instead of going back to work as usual, on a full-time basis. Taking things easy allows you to relearn the work you mastered before leaving for maternity leave without putting too much pressure on yourself.
Remember, when you are in the transition of going back to a work routine, your newborn is still a priority, and as part of your schedule, his/her daily routine must be in your program. As your baby grows, many things change, from eating diets like introducing solids, to house proofing as they start to crawl. So, managing your schedule has to consider everything before going back to work full time.
Take Your Time
The first few weeks of returning to work will probably be the hardest and conflicting in many ways. You will experience fatigue like you’ve never before; you may be emotional, stressed, and worried this period would last forever. Many new parents prematurely conclude quitting their jobs and forget that it may be too early to draw such conclusions. It’s essential to take your time and allow yourself to feel and acknowledge every emotion, bearing in mind that this too shall pass, just like the growth stages of a newborn.
Try a Few Practice Runs
Running a few sets of complicated logistics is part of the process of returning from parental leave. Be clever about your return to work, and run a few practices before you start, get ahead of the game. The first day back at work doesn’t have to shock your system and have a few dry runs and not just your job.
Maybe a week before the rush, have the nanny come by to give her and the baby time to get used to each other. This process will prove beneficial to you, helping you get accustomed to waking early and have a realistic preview of how things will run, saving you the shock of jumping into it all on day one.
Be Intentional About Prioritizing Your Baby
When you get back into the swing of things and your work schedule is getting busier, how you spend your time with your baby becomes critical and needs to be intentional. You will probably spend time with them in the mornings, evenings, and a lot more on weekends, especially when you work long hours and commute a long distance to work and back.
Having a strict plan to spend time with your baby should be a priority and never interrupted, not even for work. Whether the baby has a nanny, going to day-care, or staying with a family member, they must be in the loop as critical links to the puzzle. Most importantly, the bond you have with your baby always comes first and should be deliberate.