Education Doesn’t Stop at Motherhood: 4 Tricks to Help You Stay in School

No doubt about it. Getting a degree makes a difference in your finances over the course of a lifetime. Most people who get degrees are expected to earn a couple million throughout their lifetimes. However, getting a degree can be challenging for moms-to-be and for single mothers. They already juggle a great deal and scheduling time for class plus work and child-related responsibilities is challenging to say the least. If you are a mom-to-be who’s thinking about quitting school (or if you’ve quit and want to go back), here are four tips to follow to keep you motivated and in school:

1. Get Organized Ahead of Time

Oftentimes, the people who get the best grades are also the busiest. These people need to stay organized to get things done. If you’re heading back to school take the time to get organized ahead of time. Start with the big clean up. Go through your stuff and throw or give away items you no longer use. Part of your organizational challenge lies in the fact that you have items you no longer use and don’t know what to do with. Get rid of them. You’ll clean less in the long run.

Additionally, take the time to set up a calendar. Put important dates on it for you and your kids. (Be sure to include dates for homework and assignments.) If your kids are old enough to manage a calendar teach them to do the same. Tools like Google Calendar, which allows you to share a calendar if you have a Google account can help. Have each person color coded. This gives you an at-a-glance look at what’s coming up. This helps you avoid over scheduling.

2. Check Out Online Schools

If you’re a working mom, you know how difficult it is to break away from work and family activities to do anything “extra,” especially during the day when you’re scheduled for work. If you’ve never thought about getting your degree online, you should. It can mean the difference between getting a degree or not.

Single mom Melissa Murphy, who wrote an Independence University review, explained why she chose an online degree. Her challenges were the challenges that all moms face – full-time work, kid-related responsibilities, etc. However, she attributes her ability to get a degree to choosing to study online. Murphy now has a degree, thanks to being able to “attend” class when it was convenient for her.

3. Check Out the Studies

Many moms-to-be and single mothers feel guilty for deciding to/ needing to work while their kids are young. Because of this, many of them put off their dreams, thinking that pursuing their goals will negatively affect their kids. However, an article on the Harvard Business School website suggests otherwise.

Girls who grew up with a working mom tended to do better in the workplace, including making a higher income. Many of them hold management positions. Working mothers affected how boys felt about gender roles as well. The boys growing up in these households spent more time contributing to housework and caring for their families. Both girls and boys, it seems, benefit from having moms who provide positive role models.

A mom who betters herself just may inspire her kids to do the same. Keeping this thought in mind may help motivate you as you face the inevitable challenges of going through school.

4. Taking Mini-Breaks

Juggling school, work, and kids can be stressful. Although it may seem like you have no time to take a break, it will be imperative that you do as you go through school. The breaks don’t have to be long ones. Take a walk through a museum to look at some art during lunch or take a stroll through a park near your office. A yoga class or an afternoon hiking in the woods may be all you need to recharge your batteries.

Make sure you have some go-to activities like these lined up before school starts. It’ll be easier to forgo taking care of yourself if you don’t have a plan for it.

Moms who go to school often feel pressured to quit or to take up their studies when a better time comes around. However, it seems like a better time really doesn’t exist for many of these moms. That being the case, they might be better off making a plan for success so that they can go to school.