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While being a single parent comes with a set of challenges, it is most certainly possible to raise a child on your own. No matter if you’re currently expecting and trying to prepare the best you can or struggling with staying on top of everything and looking for some help, here are some tips for being a successful single mother.

Find a schedule that works for you

You need to come up with a schedule that will work for you. For example, it would be best to talk to your employer and devise a plan that would allow you to spend time with your child but still earn enough money. In case they are not forthcoming, you can ask your co-workers whether any of them are willing to swap shifts so that you can be there with your kids in the morning or evening. If you’re your own boss or work from home, organizing everything should be a bit easier.

Make sure you have a stable routine

Regardless of where you work, you need to establish a stable routine that your kid will also be aware of. For instance, go over everything you both need to do during the day as that can help soothe kids that get nervous when spending a lot of time away from their parent. It doesn’t matter how hectic your schedule is, you should try to have some sort of routine during the week. You can go out for ice cream every Saturday or read a bedtime story every night.

Ask for help and accept it

There is no shame in asking for help. The sooner you accept this, the better. Some days, you will simply not be able to do it all on your own. Create a support system for yourself and rely on people you know will be there for you no matter what. Whether it’s your parents, friends, or other single parents you’ve met through your kid’s school, you can always have someone else jump in when it comes to picking up your child from practice or taking them for the night. Of course, don’t expect them to be available 24/7 but accept help when they offer it. What is more, if your child is a bit older, they can also take care of some household chores.

Look for the best childcare method

As a single mother, you will probably not be able to tend to your child at all times. This is why it’s vital that you find the best childcare method. Who will be taking care of the little one while you are at work? Will your parents be able to step in or will you have to hire a babysitter? On the other hand, you can opt for daycare services that also provide early childhood education. For instance, if you live in the Land Down Under, you should look up childcare centres in Australia and pick the one that suits you the most. Depending on your obligations, you might have to combine several approaches.

Keep track of your budget

In order to be able to afford everything you and your child need, you have to keep track of your budget. You can use an app or spreadsheet to note down every expense and income. Add up the housing costs, utilities, bills, childcare, transportation, groceries, insurance, and all other costs and compare them to what you are making. That way, you will see what you can afford and what costs you can cut.

Be on the lookout for ways to spend less

If you conclude that you are not earning enough to support your current lifestyle, you need to look for ways to spend less. For example, you can downsize your mobile plan or collect coupons before you make a purchase. Then, you can consider selling some items you no longer need in order to earn some extra money.

Establish rules with your kids

You want to establish a healthy home environment, which is why introducing some rules would be good. Talk to your kid and explain how they are expected to behave and what will happen if they don’t follow the rules. You can offer a reward if they do well or take away some privileges if they act out. However, it’s also important that your kids understand that they will not get a reward for everything they do.

Spend quality time with your kid

While working hard to provide for your little one might be your priority, you should also set some time aside for bonding. Ask your kid how their day was, what they learned at school, praise them for how they’re doing, and remember to show support for their interests. Encourage them to open up and share their feelings. Maybe they’d like more time with you, so think of some activities you can do together like exercising or painting.

Set time aside for yourself

However, in order to avoid burnout, you have to take care of yourself as well. So, schedule some alone time every week. Take a nice bath, watch your favourite TV show, go out with your friends, or just do an activity that relaxes you and makes you happy. You can even include your child – they can play next to you while you’re reading a book or read their own book if they’re old enough.

Stay positive

Finally, it’s important to stay positive even if things seem grim. If your kid starts performing poorly in school, talk to their teachers to see what can be done. Perhaps getting a tutor might help. If you are overwhelmed with obligations, see whether any of your friends or family members can step in and take something off your hands. When you notice an issue, try to reflect and find a solution without panicking. Remember that you are doing your best and that you have a support system in place that will help you get through it.

Parenting can be hard, even when you are not a single mother. However, with the tips listed above, you should have an easier time staying on top of everything and providing your child with a loving home.