Whether you should be investing in childcare is a question most work-from-home mums have mixed feelings about. Juggling the roles of mother and business woman can be both a stressful and pressure-driven one, before you’ve even begun to look at the financial implications of whether or not to hire childcare.
However, whether you’re already a work-from-home mum or considering becoming one, there are some questions you need to ask yourself, before you make that final decision over your childcare arrangements.
Is it currently working for you?
Whether you currently work for yourself or someone else, are your childcare arrangements working for you? Are your children happy with the existing arrangement and are you more productive with your choice?
If you made the decision to work for yourself in order to spend more time with the children, is this happening – or do you need to look at your downtime/family time and the hours you work – rather than your actual childcare arrangements?
Will saving money limit your earning potential?
Often the choice over childcare is based largely on saving money – but will you be able to productively work the hours you want to, if the children are at home with you?
If you really do need to shave some money off your childcare, is there a way you can either cut down on the paid childcare hours or pay a slightly lower rate to a family member or friend?
Are you able to take your business seriously – and are others doing the same?
If you decide to have the children at home, will you take your business seriously and will others? Do you need to get stricter with yourself? Maybe you have to get strict with the other mothers you know, so they don’t keep popping round for impromptu coffee and baby and toddler mornings? Could you change your hours, so you work in the evenings or when your partner is home or the children are at school?
Are you able to clearly separate work and home?
Being in a 9 – 5 job can program us to get into work mode the minute the children have been dropped off at nursery or with the childminder. If this didn’t happen, could you easily adapt to working with the children at home? Are you able to easily separate your working day from your downtime, if the children were always there?
Look at the facts, not fiction
Often if you’re used to not having the children home, it’s our own worries and guilt that drive us to cancel the childcare. We worry we’re not being a good mother or that we’re putting our business before our kids – but what are the facts around this? Are you working in order to give your family a better lifestyle? And what are you willing to give up or alter, in order to make that happen?
Don’t make a decision based on other people’s opinions
Hiring in a childminder or sending your children to a day nursery or other childcare is a personal decision, one between just you and your partner. Other people will have an opinion – but your decision needs to be based on your financial and emotional opinions. After all, you want your business and your family to flourish – so you need to be in a position to give 100% focus to each.
How do you feel about hiring childcare when you work from home? Is it something you have worked around? How did you find the perfect solution to you and your family? Why not share your thoughts in the comments section below.
Images (c) Boggy, Maksym Yemelyanov & pathdoc/Dollar Photo Club