Balancing Being a Mom and Going Back to College


Being a mom is a full-time job on its own. When you add going back to school into the mix, things can get really hectic. Still, it’s important to prioritize your own goals while ensuring that your children are happy and healthy. 

If those goals include going back to school, you don’t necessarily have to wait until your kids are older to enroll. Getting a college degree can help you reach your dreams, but to make it happen, you’ll need to develop strategies for balancing being a mom while going back to school. Here are some tips for success!

Go (Really) Part Time Online 

These days, you don’t have to attend school full-time to get a degree. You don’t even have to set foot in a classroom if you don’t want to. Many online programs offer flexible options that are perfect for busy parents. You can attend school on your schedule while avoiding the commute! 

Depending on each individual program’s requirements, you can probably take just one or two classes at a time if you’re busy caring for young children. It will take you longer to finish your degree overall, but you’ll be less stressed and more successful in your classes. This can also make the cost of school more manageable, as it will be spread out over time. 

Prioritize Your Tasks 

When you first became a mom, you probably prioritized without even realizing it. Keeping the baby fed, clean, and safe was your top priority. Even if dishes sat in the sink, the important things were taken care of. 

It’s the same with balancing motherhood and going to school. Some sacrifices will need to be made, whether that means eliminating an extracurricular activity or two or letting the laundry go a little longer than it should. Prioritizing is a skill that takes practice, but it’s critical for balancing schoolwork and childcare. 

Schedule Study Time 

Kids of different ages have different schedules and needs. Young children need daily naps, while older children will typically be at school for a large part of the day. Plan ahead and use those blocks of time to your advantage—do your homework and study during times when you won’t be interrupted, and you can give schoolwork your full attention. 

You might also choose to put in some study time before or after the kids are in bed. It’s important to optimize your schedule so that you’re setting yourself and your kids up for success. Sticking to your schedule is important — if you fall behind, it can be tough to catch up later as a busy parent. 

Don’t Sacrifice Sleep 

When you’re busy with schoolwork and childcare, it’s all too easy to let your sleep habits suffer. After all, if you go from seven hours of sleep to five, you can get a lot more done, right? 

Wrong. Chronic sleep deprivation will make it more difficult to focus and operate at peak levels. Making sure you get enough sleep is important for being the best student and mom you can be. You should also take regular breaks when studying, even if you have a lot to do. 

Think Ahead 

To get healthy meals on the table and the kids ready for school in the morning, you might have to do some prep ahead of time so you can manage all your tasks. For instance, you might start batch cooking or prepping meals in advance once a week and lean on your slow cooker or multicooker to reduce the hands-on cooking time required during the week. You can put together outfits for your kids the night before so you’re not rushing in the morning. Thinking ahead takes some practice and extra motivation, but it’s worth it. 

Hire Some Help (If You Can) 

If it’s in the budget, consider hiring some help while you attend school so that you have less to worry about. Getting someone to come in and clean for you once a week or to help with the kids will free up some time to study and make going back to school more manageable. 

Don’t Give Up 

Learning to balance schoolwork and parenthood is tough. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you find it challenging, and don’t give up on your dream of getting a degree. If something isn’t working, see if there are adjustments you can make and regroup. 

Getting a degree as a mother will mean giving up most of your free time for a while. However, you’ll not only make progress toward your own career goals, but you’ll also serve as a great role model for your kids. They’ll see you working hard and figuring things out and carry that lesson forward into their own lives!

About Author

LaDonna Dennis

LaDonna Dennis is the founder and creator of Mom Blog Society. She wears many hats. She is a Homemaker*Blogger*Crafter*Reader*Pinner*Friend*Animal Lover* Former writer of Frost Illustrated and, Cancer...SURVIVOR! LaDonna is happily married to the love of her life, the mother of 3 grown children and "Grams" to 3 grandchildren. She adores animals and has four furbabies: Makia ( a German Shepherd, whose mission in life is to be her attached to her hip) and Hachie, (an OCD Alaskan Malamute, and Akia (An Alaskan Malamute) who is just sweet as can be. And Sassy, a four-month-old German Shepherd who has quickly stolen her heart and become the most precious fur baby of all times. Aside from the humans in her life, LaDonna's fur babies are her world.

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Kenneth Wore
Kenneth Wore
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