We blog about parenting issues, and we work with all parents, but yesterday at our Thriveinthework2017 event we were asked about any 'extra' advice for single parents - so here are some thoughts.
Did you know that there are currently 1.9 million single parents in the UK? So if you feel that you are travelling this journey alone - you are actually part of a very large community experiencing the same thing. Details of support groups and websites to access more information are below.
A few pointers to think about as you navigate this journey:-
- Find a work schedule that works for your situation. Don't be afraid to ask for flexitime or to adjust your working schedule. Companies are often able to accommodate this.
- Schedule and stick to 'kid-free' time. Your choice! Going out, seeing a movie, just reading a book - but you must allocate time for you!
- Don't stress about what you can't control. If your partner is late to fetch your child, there is very little you can do about it. Try to focus on what is within your power to control (ie your reaction to their lateness!)
- Make sure your children have good role models for both men and women in their lives
- Use 'count to 10' whenever you need to. It's hard to be 'on' ALL the time. You're allowed a few minutes to pull yourself towards yourself to stay calm!
- You're not competing against anyone - honestly. Stop trying to 'be better' than anyone!
- Prioritise. Remember the 80/20 rule. 80% of what is really important can be done with 20% of the things on 'your list'.
- Point out good qualities in men as a single mother, and women as a single dad.
- Praise and congratulate yourself - you are doing a hard and fantastic job.
- Multi-task eg test your child on his times-tables while cooking dinner
Above all - be kind to yourself and allow yourself down time to just enjoy your children. The time passes so quickly....
Some useful links below