Although it’s not an absolute rule, many new parents, especially mothers, prefer to take time off their careers when having their first child. Don’t feel guilty if you are considering resigning from your job.
It’s not just the sense of duty as a mother, but it’s for practical reasons as well. For example, it’s uncomfortable to be lactating while in the middle of a presentation. And the weeks when the baby would still wake up in the middle of the night mean the parents’ lack of proper sleep. In short, it’s draining to take care of a newborn baby and at the same time working. Trying to do both would only result in mediocre results in both office and family affairs.
Unfortunately, not all companies provide adequate support for new mothers despite labor laws. So if your company doesn’t give you benefits, don’t hesitate to leave it. But for economic reasons, it’s also best if you don’t stop earning. Working at an office might be ruled out for now, but there are various ways to keep making money at home. If you have the aptitude for it, try freelancing.
People think freelancing is limited to writers and graphic designers. But right now, there are so many jobs open to remote staff. Individuals sometimes hire online assistants. Online tutors are also becoming popular. Different online opportunities have expanded, especially during the pandemic.
Freelancing could sustain you for years to come, giving you the time to attend all the Parents–Teachers meetings at your child’s school or accompany her to a pediatric dentist. You will have the time to be with your family as it grows.
But before you finally decide to enter the freelancing world, here a few pros and cons you should anticipate and prepare for.
Managing Your Own Time
Not being forced into a strict daily schedule, and together with it not having to wrestle with the rush hour traffic, would feel too good to be true. However, it would be best if you were responsible for your freedom. Many people have difficulty handling their time on their own because we’ve been so used to enforced routines. From the moment we started going to school to when we started earning, we had schedules to follow.
You don’t have to break routines that you’re comfortable with, as it’s even recommended for your mental health. What is different now is that you will be making your schedule. So if you’re used to waking up even before the sun rises because you like the peace and quiet of the early morning, freelancing should not change that.
Don’t take on a lot of projects at once. Although it’s tempting to accept all offers that come your way, focus on key projects you either really like or pay well. It’s also a great time to do skills building. If you’re good at managing your time, you could take an hour or two every day to attend online sessions to improve your skills.
Companies usually provide a large counterpart for their employees’ insurance plans. You have to set aside insurance payments from your earnings because you don’t have an employer looking into it. If you’re planning to continue an insurance policy that was started with your company, check if you could do a brief premium holiday so that you could prepare adequately.
It would also be best to look at your policy if it covers your child. It wouldn’t be a problem if your partner’s coverage includes your baby, but you have to check to be sure. Different policies have different inclusions. You can also check what public coverage is offered by the government.
Need for a Support Team
Your family is the best support you’re going to get even when you’re a regular employee. You may have a team at work, but it’s not the same when your life partner is the one cheering you on or helping you cope with an avalanche of tasks.
But at the same time, you might feel that your world shrunk if all your activities would be around your family. There are several online communities you could take part in. If you’re into arts and freelancing in this field, it would serve you to join an artists’ community. There’s bound to be one in your locality. Not only will you find camaraderie among people who are in the same field as you, but you will also get to network. Linking with new people is necessary when you are still starting freelance work. Your personal network would be your starting point in getting projects.
Any decision we make in life always has a set of pros and cons accompanying it. What is important is that you’re willing to face the consequences of your choice. You know the burden that accompanies it, so you could assess if you’re willing and ready to handle it together with its perks and advantages.