Most mums have very mixed feelings at this time, from relief at returning to some kind of ‘normality’ to resentment at having to do so, or upset at leaving your baby. Whatever you're feeling, it’s perfectly natural. Nobody ever said that swapping the bassinet for a desktop would be an easy task, but hopefully, these tips can help you work your way through the transition of going back to work after maternity leave. It is, after all, a massive transition to make; so, read on for some helpful hints for how to deal with this change.
Return to Work Timing
Go back midweek. The first week will be an absolute killer, so try to have your first day back as a Thursday to ease you in gently.
Phased return. If your workplace allows it, try a gradual return to work whereby you build up the number of hours you are there for, rather than having full days straight away. Alternatively, use some annual leave to give you a couple of days off during the first few weeks, so that starting back at work isn’t as full-on.
Passwords. Before you start your maternity leave, write down your passwords for work and keep them safe. You won’t remember them when it’s time to go back, so having them to hand can relieve some stress.
Bring your baby in. Before you start back, take your baby into work with you for a couple of hours. This will help you to blend you're worlds a little, and it will show your coworkers what your new reality is like. Plus, you’ll be able to explain to your baby what your work is like and where you’ll be; they won’t understand any of this, but you will, which is what matters.
Trial run. When you’ve determined a new morning routine, practice it before you go back to work. That’ll give you an opportunity to see what it’s like to take your baby to a babysitter or nursery, and it’ll help you to work out timings. From that, you can amend if necessary, and you won’t be so stressed out on your first day back.
Colleague support. Yes, some of your coworkers may not understand what it’s like to have a baby, but many will. Many other mums will be at your workplace, so get in touch with them to share stories and provide mutual support.
Career enhancement. See your return to work as a career opportunity. It’ll take a few weeks to get settled but, once you’ve managed that, you’re likely to be much more efficient than you were before because of skills you've picked up being a parent.
For further information and help please reach out to one of our partners WoMo.
"The WoMo Platform supports employee relations, Diversity & Inclusion, reducing the Gender Pay Gap, and improvements to employee wellbeing. The key ingredient is the unbroken dialogue channel between a working mother and her workplace"
WoMo is revolutionising maternity. The WoMo Platform is an all-inclusive Diversity and Inclusion solution run by HR, which supercharges Maternity Leave Management. It enhances the maternity offering of any sized company, providing a full service product.
How WoMo is helping?
We want to transform the broken system of maternity leave for HR, working mothers and their line managers.