Jul 082010

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The old saying tells us that the best laid plans of mice and men will fail. Not sure how complicated a life a mouse might lead when we’re not watching, but it appears well nigh impossible to plan our busy lives around work and family, without any of those additional “days off” devoted to teacher training, weather or illness!

It would be really nice if everything and everyone were flexible, including schedules and you could just drop everything without notice to care for your ill child.

1. If you can – plan. It’s true that some of these days are unpredictable, but others may be scheduled ahead of time. The weather is always unpredictable of course, but snow days will only be expected during certain months of the year and inset days are almost always planned in advance, so with a bit of work, they can be placed in a schedule.

Sick days present the biggest problem of all, of course. Prepare and plan as best you can, as you know that these days will surely come! If you are struggling with your planning, consider some professional coaching to help you get back on track.

2. Hoard your personal days. If both parents or adults in the household have regular work commitments, it’s important to try and reserve some personal days for the inevitable sick calling. Talk to your human resources department at work and see if your employer will grant you a certain amount of personal days, allowing you to anticipate the scenarios as best you can.

You may well not have any advance notice, so you will need to look at this from every angle to make sure that you are being fair to all concerned.

It would definitely be an advantage if you and your partner have a sympathetic employer who could understand your position. Never use these personal/sick standby days for anything other than the reason they were intended.

3. Set up some favours. If you have several children to take care of, you should come up with a backup plan as well. See if you can get some additional emergency care-giving help lined up among good neighbours or friends. These favours should be repaid in any way you can think of. With a number of emergency backup plans in place, you’ll be able to cope when a sick child or three comes to you.

4. Stock up on vitamins. While on the subject of coping with sick children, remember that any amount of prevention is better than a cure. Teach your children good personal hygiene, that they should eat well, should rest well and be in good health at all times, as they will be less likely to fall victim to those annoying, smaller viruses.

5. Be a good weather forecaster. Always keep a watchful eye on the forecasts during the winter months. These days they are generally much more reliable and if you can see the threat of a blizzard a couple of days ahead, start making contingency plans accordingly. When a school district is closed, you may well not be able to get to your work either, but if the office is open try and set-up a personal day or plan to work from home if allowed.

You might think you have to wear so many different hats, that you never know which one to put on.

These days, online life coaching is available to really help you understand this part of your “wardrobe selection!” If you’re in need of guidance, coaching for women can help you to manage and not panic!

Amanda Alexander, Director of Coaching Mums, helps pressure-cooked, stressed working mums who long for more hours in the day. Through her coaching programmes and online life coaching courses, Amanda shows mums how to create fulfilling and successful lives. For your simple 5 step guide to balance as a working mum, download our free eBook today!

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 Posted by at 2:00 pm