The midlife crisis, especially in men, has become an easy way to explain away any changes...read more
It’s the time of year to think about change as 2020 begins. Let workingdads.co.uk help you make the right change
Happy New Year.
Two things are nailed on at this time of year. Firstly folk aren’t sure when to stop saying Happy New Year. Personally I favour the ‘as soon as possible’ approach. The festive season is at an end. Get the tree down today. Wish your colleagues the best on Monday if you’re lucky enough to avoid the office till next week. Then forget it for 11 months.
Secondly, it’s the time of year to take stock, look ahead at 2020 and start thinking about what you want to change before 2021 rings in.
If you’re visiting workingdads.co.uk it may be because those big changes are going to come at work.
Time to apply for flexible working? Why not. The new government says it’ll make flexible working the default in its new Employment Bill. That means flexible working could become the new normal. Get ahead of the curve now.
Maybe it’s time to reduce your hours. Trade income for something more valuable – time with your family and contentedness with your work life balance.
Often the way to achieve one or other of those changes is to switch job.
Or go self employed and become your own boss. Speaking as someone who is freelance I can tell you it’s not the easiest path. But you can’t put a price on not having to answer to a boss.
But before taking the leap, it’s worth pondering why you want to seek change.
It happens to everyone. Though January isn’t always the best time to achieve the necessary perspective. Everyone’s got back to work blues. But if you felt fed up in December too and you’re sure this is a long term feeling then using the new year to put a jolt through your career and bring your ambitions to life is an excellent plan.
About to start a family in 2020? Or perhaps started one last year and coming to terms with what that really means? Or perhaps your kids are school age and now parenting is a bit less full on you’ve precious space to consider your own needs and wants.
In an ideal world a fulfilling job is part of, but not the entirety of, a fulfilling life. It’s OK to barrel along your career path only to find that when a baby enters the picture an abrupt change of direction is calling you. That change can be a completely different career, or just a different way of continuing one you already enjoy.
Being a working dad brings with it all sorts of skills. New levels of patience, an ability to speak absolute guff to small people for hours on end, managing a team, creative thinking to make up games and stories.
Some of these might really grab you. Perhaps a new career in childcare beckons? Heaven knows more men are needed in nurseries and classrooms.
Sometimes becoming a dad drives men to be more ambitious. To achieve great things that their offspring can be proud of. Build a company that they can hand on perhaps? Sometimes it goes the other way, men want to downsize their work life to make room for a new ambition – to be a present dad. Where you draw the line is up to you but it is inevitable that parenthood opens up new vistas. Why not pursue on of them in 2020?
Being a working dad is a drag on your mental health. It’s a constant juggling act. Parenting is another word for guilt. Changing job or career is unlikely to address the fundamental causes of mental health concerns. But it can certainly alleviate a big contributing factor. There’s no shame in pursuing happiness. Not least because happy dads are good dads. Don’t underestimate the corrosive impact of stress. Work and family bring with them an inevitable level of stress. Achieving the work life balance you want, putting you in control of your hours, your place of work, your contribution to family life can be a real help.
2020 will be workingdads.co.uk’s first full year in existence. Our resolution is to help as many men as possible to be the working dads they want to be.
But just like we didn’t set this site up on a whim it’s worth taking the time to think things through. What do you want to change? How can you do it? And how can we help?