Work-Life Balance

Working, Motherhood & Without a Helper

Working, motherhood and without a helper – the days can easily fly by in a flurry of rushed meals, daily routines and chasing project deadlines. It is crucial to use every free moment to get everything done and make the most of the time before and after work.

It’s official that The Hubby and I have decided not to hire a live-in helper for the time being. I shall tell you the reasons in a separate post. I’m prepared for it, physically and mentally. It’s not going to be a walk in the park but I really don’t want to go through the hassle of finding, training and managing a new helper.

For the first month after my helper left, I was so drained at night after I tucked Little Edison to sleep and that all I wanted was to crash into bed, close my eyes and rest. Friends kept telling me that I should get some help by hiring a new maid or part-time maid but that was easier said than done.

During the second month, I’ve finally adapted to life without a helper. I’ve to admit that for the first time in my life, I trained myself to shower in less than ten minutes and complete my meal in less than five. It’s challenging but it’s definitely not mission impossible.

Here are some of my survival tips:

1. Prepare the night before

It’s important for me to get everything ready the night before – from laying out the next day’s clothes, to packing his school bag and other essentials to be sent over to my parents-in-law’s house. If there are too much to carry, I would load them into my car boot the night before so that morning can be less frazzled.

2. Develop a routine for house chores

This is how we manage the house chores without a helper – weekdays are dedicated for laundry and ironing only. General cleaning is carried out on weekends. The Hubby and I will split the duties and we’ll complete them within two hours in the morning before we go for outings.

3. Learn to accept mess

I constantly remind myself not to be a perfectionist anymore. Our house isn’t going to make the cover of a magazine anyway. It’s better to spend my spare time on weekends to chill out, relax and recharge my batteries.

4. Shop online

From daily essentials to food, I never have to fret about running out of essentials or finding time to make a trip to the store. All thanks to Fairprice Online and McDelivery. They make my life so much easier.

5. Keep valuable & important things aside

This is simple but practical. I always put my house keys, wallet and car key into my bag after using them. This will avoid wasting valuable minutes searching for them in the morning.

Think positively, no one is indispensable – including the helper, that’s for sure!

Do you have any tips to share too? I love to hear from you.


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Jennie May 31, 2011 at 12:36 AM

Yes, you’re right! No one is indispensable … without a helper, no doubt we get busier than before and house not as clean since we don’t clean the house EVERYDAY, I guess there are more to value – FREEDOM and CLOSER BONDING within the family. =)

Emily June 1, 2011 at 1:28 PM

Hi Jennie,
You have a really good point here – CLOSER BONDING. Without a maid, Little Edison is more disciplined and I’ve less feeding problem too. Another aspect is the PRIVACY. It’s priceless!

mico May 31, 2011 at 9:03 AM

Way to go ! i wish i can do away with in-house helper. but still cannot. still have to depend on them until at least 2 more years ! envy u. think about it, last time, we don’t have maid at home, we are ok, a bit of mess at home feel more like home actually.

Emily June 1, 2011 at 1:30 PM

Hi Mico,
Perhaps, you can consider switching from live-in maid to part-time maid when your children grow older. Now that your #2 is still young, it’s just too difficult not to have a maid. But at least, you don’t have to worry about the house chores. There are pros and cons of it. Cheers!

mico June 2, 2011 at 8:25 AM

Thanks for the suggestion. will have to see how it goes..


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