How to make the most of paternity leave

It’s vital that all new fathers know exactly how to make the most of these precious few weeks spent with their newborn.

dads take less paternity leave


Although it might seem like an initial waste of time to plan for the weeks away from work, there’s nothing more important than having even the roughest idea of a plan once a new baby arrives.

Here are some top tips on how to make the most of paternal leave, and what you should do with that time.

Actually take your paternity leave

If you’re offered paternity leave, take it. Make sure to check your contract and double check with your company, and the chances are that you’ll have paternity leave offered to you even if it’s never been spoken out loud.

Use this time to take a break from work, and focus all of this time on your family. A good workplace will understand this importance and leave you to it to enjoy your time.

Make memories with your family

Not only is paternity leave a time for spending with your newborn, but it’s also the perfect time to spend with the rest of your family, whether that’s your spouse, partner or other children.

Make sure to schedule a family day out, and plan an evening with your partner for some quality time as just the two of you. Pregnancy, birth and new babies can all take a toll on any relationship, so making sure it’s nurtured is vital in ensuring happiness throughout your family.

Make sure everything is in place for your baby

Despite there being a lot of planning pre-baby arrival, it’s true that sometimes you only fully realise what you and your family needs once the baby has been born.

For example, have you forgotten about a moses basket? Have you got clothing that your baby will actually fit into? What type of nappy has been the most comfortable and convenient? Paternity leave is a great time to tidy up any loose ends that may have been forgotten about before the birth and focus all your attention on the months up ahead and preparing for the future.

Learn how to care for your baby

It might sound obvious, but paternity leave is the best time to get to grips with all the important skills that every father needs to know. From changing a nappy to learning how to install a car seat and put up the pram, these are all vital skills that allow you to properly take care of your baby and your family.

Many skills can only be learned once the baby’s born, which is why paternity leave is so important for taking the time to learn everything you need to.

Give Mum a break from baby duties

New mums have a lot on their hands, so using your paternity leave to give them a break is a great way to show your appreciation for everything she’s done for you and your baby over the past year.

Whether it’s getting up during the night for feeding or taking your baby out for the day, giving a new mum some time for herself and a break from her responsibilities will do wonders for her mental health and allow her to feel herself again.

Similarly, paternity leave is a good time to give Mum a break from the responsibility of family and friend visits. When a baby is born, the buzz around them is huge and everyone you love will be interested in coming round to see them. For a new Mum, it can be hard to feel motivated and energised enough for all these visits, so taking this responsibility away from her is another great way to give her a break and let her get some rest.

Read more:

How enhanced paternity leave at FSCS helps its employees

Five tips for transitioning back to work after paternity leave

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