While fulfilling the role of a parent is certainly a blessing, for many working parents who wish to advance their career, studying further is a challenging option. Providing for your family’s needs, both emotional and financial, takes its toll and can leave little time for your personal growth.
Being a working mother is demanding, as you often need to balance family responsibilities, and work commitments. If you’re ambitious, this includes studying. However, many working professionals are managing all three roles very successfully! More and more institutions offer online studies that are flexible and adapted to the modern fast-paced way of life. There are many reasons parents may wish to go back to school themselves, to complete the education or degree they weren’t able to previously, to get that step up the career ladder or possibly to shift their career entirely!
Whatever their reasons might be, many parents find themselves looking into obtaining their tertiary qualifications well into adult life.
These are some considerations and tips from IIE MSA for studying as a working mother:
Make sure that you are ready and have evaluated whether you can balance both working and studying before you register, as that greatly impacts your ability to successfully complete the chosen qualification or course.
Have a discussion with your employer regarding your study plans, so that they can factor your study leave in and ensure that you work smart, in order to complete all your tasks before going on study leave.
Meet and engage with your lecturers to better understand your course requirements and expectations so you can plan for family time without overlapping exam time
Have a plan of action and create a timetable that you will follow. Plan ahead and stick to your plan, as this will help ensure that you stay on top of all your course materials and workload.
Take a break from studying for your own sanity and have some fun spending time with your children, this will ensure you don’t feel as if you’re missing out on their routines.
Try to involve family and friends to help out with your children and babysit, especially when you need to study.
Cook and freeze food in advance to avoid preparing dinner every day, and have your study snacks safely hidden away from curious family members.
Consider using public transport such as the Gautrain, as that will allow you to study during the commute.
Remaining goal-driven, thinking positive and having an ‘I can do’ attitude will drive you to even work harder to reach your goals, for both you, and your family.