How to Plan for Returning from Maternity Leave
If you find yourself in the position of making a plan for returning from maternity leave, one cannot stress enough the need for critical reflection. Being honest with yourself and your life goals can provide a great starting point for resuming your professional career.
Here are some things you should consider:
- How have your personal and career personalities shifted since becoming a mother?
- Do you want/ are you able to commit to your old schedule right upon your return to work? You could consider transitioning gradually from a part-time workload until eventually sustaining a full-time schedule, or you could commit to your original schedule from the very beginning.
- How has your morning and evening routine shifted since you have taken parental leave? A formal plan to return to work will benefit from having reviewed as many of the details of your new morning routine, such as finding solutions for the daily commute, morning preparation, childcare, pumping etc.
- How has your workplace evolved during your leave? Has your role changed in any way? Staying up to date about the company, its evolution and the team will provide you with a good understanding of whether or not your job role has shifted in any way, if any adaptations will be required upon returning to work, including additional training.
- Is working from home a feasible option for your company/ work role? Some jobs that are largely digital can be done remotely – you can consider whether a hybrid, or fully remote work arrangement would help you better transition into the regular work routine.
Once you have found the answers to these questions, you can consider drafting a return to work after maternity leave letter, informing your company about your intentions and availability to start a formal plan for returning from maternity leave. It could be a good idea to mention right away if you would like a transition with reducing hours after maternity leave.
Tips for Easing the Pressure of Being Back to Work after Maternity Leave
We have made for you a list of tips meant to ease the pressure of being back to work after maternity leave:
- Engage in return from maternity leave email communication with your team and manager prior to being physically back to work after maternity leave, so as to reestablish the personal connection and feel up to speed.
- If you ever feel overwhelmed and mentally drained, do not hold it all to yourself, as it could result in you quitting your job after maternity leave. Ask for support when needed both at home and at work.
- Be reflective and critical, but don’t be too hard on yourself, even when nothing seems to be going right and self-doubt is creeping around!
- If a while after being back to work after maternity leave things just don’t feel right, don’t be afraid to take a step back and reassess what brings happiness and fulfilment in your life. Be vocal about your needs and be open to collaborating with your team for finding solutions.
- Find a support system so as not to feel isolated and overwhelmed.
Resuming a career after a maternity leave can be a hard process, but if there is one piece of advice and concluding remark that you can take with you from this article is to always do what feels right for you and your family, rather than what others expect you to do.
According to the MMB Magazine, fewer than one in five women feel confident returning to work after maternity leave. So don’t be afraid to ask for a thorough return-to-work program! A well-structured reboarding process will help you feel confident when returning and gain productivity as soon as possible.