Research has shown that the average stay-at-home mom actually works 2.5 full-time jobs based on everything she does in a day. If you’ve been a stay-at-home mom for any length of time, you fully understand how true that is!
The unfortunate part of that statistic? You’re not making any money from your hard work.
While being able to take care of your children and spend time with them each day is greater than any paycheck, you might think it’s time to get back to the workforce. Whether you want to bring in extra income or you just want to find your identity again (outside of the word “mama”), there are plenty of positive reasons to rejoin the working world.
However, you can face a number of challenges along the way. It can take a little planning and preparation to rejoin the workforce. You’ll likely have to deal with changes in your previous career field to gaps in your resume.
Thankfully, it’s not impossible. Let’s cover a few tips that can help you get back into a career you loved or to find something new as you enter the next chapter of your life.
Consider Your Wants and Needs
Just because you want to get back to work doesn’t mean you have to jump into a full-time career right away. Before you start working, there are things to consider, including the type of industry you want to join, the benefits you’re looking for, and whether you want to work full-time or part-time.
When you’re working outside the home, you have to take childcare into consideration. That’s something you probably haven’t had to think about for a long time since you’ve been taking care of your kids, yourself. However, unless you have a close family member who is willing to step up, sending your kids to daycare or hiring a private nanny are your best options for keeping them safe and cared for throughout the day.
If you don’t have the money for daycare or you want your kids to remain in the home, consider looking for remote, work-from-home jobs. It’s not always easy to work remotely when you have little ones running around. However, by setting designated work hours for yourself, creating an office space, and taking breaks throughout the day, you can establish a healthy work-life balance that will allow you to enjoy the best of both worlds. You can even save money in your work-from-home efforts by investing in eco-friendly upgrades, using natural light in your office, and improving your home’s resale value by transforming a room into an office space.
The bottom line? Find an employer and a schedule that fits your needs. You don’t want to go back to work just to feel burnt out and guilty. Find what works for you.
Update Your Resume
If you’ve been out of the working world for a while, your resume might be outdated. In some cases, you might need to go back to school or specific training courses if you have expired licenses or certifications.
Most often, though, a few simple updates will do the trick.
Employers don’t typically like to see huge gaps in work, and the average resume only gets looked at for 6-7 seconds. You need to find a way to capture their attention so you’ll later have time to explain why there are gaps or why you might not have the updated skills a particular job is looking for. Some of the best tips and tricks for an eye-catching resume include
- Correct formatting
- Inspiring design
- Easy-to-read fonts
- Personal branding
- Intentional details
If you end up getting called for an interview, you’ll likely have to explain any gaps in employment. Offer simple and honest explanations without oversharing. Be confident in your answer, and don’t feel ashamed for taking the time to stay at home with your children. You should really focus on and emphasize to a potential employer why now is the time for you to re-enter the workforce and what you can offer.
Consider Your Transferrable Skills
You might not have been working for a business or attending school over the last few years, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have valuable skills. There are plenty of skills you use as a stay-at-home-mom that can transfer to just about any job, including
You can even get creative on your resume and create “job titles” for the parenting tasks you’ve done over the years, linking them to the skills a particular position is looking for.
However, if you don’t think your skills will transfer well to an industry you once belonged to, now is a perfect time to try something new. Whether you stopped working during the pandemic or you’ve been a SAHM for years, it’s never a bad idea to try something new. You can find the right industry for your next career move by considering your values, thinking about your strengths, and leaning on your network of professionals, friends, and family members to guide and support you along the way.
Rejoining the workforce when you’ve been a stay-at-home mom can come with obstacles. However, you can take pride in knowing you’re doing something good for yourself, and your kids. They’ll look up to you for your motivation and dedication, and that’s a life lesson they’ll carry with them into adulthood.
About the Author
Charlie Fletcher is a freelance writer from the lovely “city of trees”- Boise, Idaho. Her love of writing pairs with her passion for social activism and the search for the truth. You can find more of her writing on her Contently.