Juggling the housework alongside the children and a job is not an easy feat for working mums. Follow these five great tips to make sure you ditch the Cinderella rags and put on your glass slippers (well, at least once in a while)!
1. Communicate cause and effect. In order to really see a discernible shift in your partner’s attitude to household chores, you need to express to them clearly why things need to change. Instead of waiting until you are fed up and frustrated with the lack of support resulting in a row, have a sensible conversation about how the unfair chore assignation affects you. However it makes you feel, whatever sacrifices you are making currently, talk these things through calmly. Your partner will appreciate the ability to see the issue in context and will be encouraged, rather coerced, to step up to the plate.
2. Assign roles. Make it clear from the start, which of you are responsible for which tasks. This can be switched regularly if necessary as long as everyone is clear of where the buck stops each week.
3. Assign time frames. Your perception of when a certain chore needs to be completed by may be entirely different from your other half’s. What you may see as a stinking pile of plates in the sink, they may see as a sculpture reminding them of their cookery prowess. Resist the urge to dive on in there and do it yourself. Not only will you resent having to do it, they will resent you for it too, or worse, smile inwardly and leave the washing up for increasing longer periods to ensure never to have to do it themselves again! If you do feel strongly that certain chores need to be done by certain deadlines, for example washing the clothes before the kids have nothing left to wear for school, agree those timescales up front.
4. Praise. Although you may feel that your partner ought to be doing their share of the chores and that it is most certainly not a ‘favour’ to you that they are being done, make sure that when a good job has been accomplished, you tell them that.
5. Get the kids involved. If one of the jobs that you agree is your other half’s responsibility is bin management (which let’s face it, it’s bound to be!) then enlist the kids support. Whether they sort the recycling or gather the bins from each room in readiness of the approaching black bag, this will make the domestic chores seem a little more fun for your partner. It also encourages responsibility in your children.
Let’s face it, chores are not much fun and few people would choose to make them a large part of their day’s activities. Any good relationship has to be built on balance and sharing, and that goes for the boring, mundane and downright tedious as well as the fun bits. Expressed in this way, you can ensure as a working mum, you get the balance exactly right.
How do you manage splitting your domestic chores? Do share your tips below and don’t forget to visit Coaching Mums to view our latest FREE resources for helping you achieve more balance in your life. If you’d like a little inspiration and support delivered free to your inbox, click here to sign up for my free ezine; Inspire.