The hype is true as becoming a mom (or a dad or any type of parent) is a blessing. Equally true though, is that becoming a mom is hard work. It may not go as expected and adjusting to the new responsibilities and never-ending commitments can be tough. There are a lot of pictures of beautiful babies but there aren’t many pictures of stressed-out moms with spit-up in their hair and poo on their hands as they change a diaper at 2 am.
Have you ever wondered how much you’d earn if you were paid for being a mom? If you are a mom, it feels like a lot so let’s start with the average number of hours worked per week. According to a 2017 study conducted by Market Research OnePoll in partnership with Welch’s nutrition program*, moms work an average of 98 hours a week. That may surprise some, but moms routinely get up at 6:30 am and don’t finish their day until after 8:30 pm.
According to Salary.com**, moms would earn a base salary of $37,022 with an overtime salary of $75,941 totaling $112,962 per year. Let’s review some of the tasks done in an average week:
- Childcare, 30.2 hours. Caring for our children involves an everchanging list of tasks that includes feeding, bathing, getting them ready for school, helping them through temper tantrums, playtime, getting them ready for bed, and holding them when they wake up from a bad dream.
- Teaching and Coaching, 7.9 hours. Moms do a lot of teaching and coaching to help their children grow and develop. Moms teach children the alphabet, help with homework, and read to their children every night. Additional activities include sports practice, after-school events, and community clubs such as the Scouts.
- Household Management, 45.9 hours. Running a household encompasses a lot of activities including laundry, cleaning, cooking, sewing, ironing, repairs, lawn care, and managing finances.
- Errands, 10.7 hours. Moms also run a lot of errands including going to the grocery store, shopping for household goods, and buying clothes and shoes.
If you are a mom who feels you are balancing 2.5 full-time jobs, then you are not alone. Four in every 10 of the 2,000 American mothers asked, feel each week is a never-ending series of tasks that need to be completed. It’s not surprising that a lot of moms feel stressed every day.
What are some tips to help mom with all this work?
- Get help. Whether it is your partner, a family member or hiring a Nanny or Family Assistant, getting help and support will ease the burden. Identify the most stressful times of days or activities that you struggle to get completed and seek help. For new moms, this might be hiring an overnight Nanny to help you get some sleep. For working moms, it may be a Family Assistant to pick up the kids, cook dinner, and help with homework. If you can’t stand the thought of cleaning, create a chore list for the family and split up the work or look into hiring a weekly housekeeper.
- Involve the kids. From toddlers to teens, kids can help out. Toddlers can put away their plastic dishes in a low cabinet while elementary school kids can help fold laundry and pick up items that need to be put away. Middle school kids can start learning to cook. Teaching children how to complete these tasks are important life lessons. Sharing chores helps ease the burden on mom with the additional advantage that it’s important children understand their role and contribute to helping the family.
- Intentionally Manage Your Time. Plan ahead to use your time wisely. For example, plan weekly meals and include a few slow cooker meals that save time in the kitchen. Sneak in errands during lunch or bundle them together to reduce the number of trips required. Instead of leaving all the chores to the weekend, do a little bit each day so that it’s not so overwhelming. Prepare in advance, when possible, and plan time for sleep and exercise so you can stay healthy.
- Don’t Do Everything. You can’t do it all. Let the children pick 1 or 2 extra-curricular activities but don’t feel they have to participate in everything or have an activity for each day of the week. Try to cook healthy meals but don’t fret if you order pizza one night.
It will take trial and error but find what works for you and your family. Each family is unique, so what works for you will look different from what works for other families and that’s okay. Being a mom is tough work so surround yourself with those who love you and are willing to help.
To learn more about hiring a certified Nanny or Family Assistant, visit AmsleeInstitute.com/hire-graduates.
* Moms Wok 98 Hours A Week, Study Finds. SWNS, 27 July 2017. https://uk.news.yahoo.com/moms-98-hours-week-study-155300906.html?guccounter=1 and http://abc7chicago.com/family/moms-work-the-equivalent-of-25-full-time-jobs-study-shows/3238565/
**Salary.com. What is a Stay-at-Home Mom Worth. https://www.salary.com/stay-at-home-mom-infographic/
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