Parenting is hard as it is, but when you have to manage both family and professional life, it becomes the challenge with a capital C.
Not anyone is lucky enough to have an option of a part-time job or to find a great nanny to look after the kids. It seems that guilt and stress are inevitable, because of the divided attention and all the pressure.
Though there is no such thing as perfect balance, the situation is still manageable. Technology offers you a helping hand and once again makes your life easier with these practical apps.
To Allot Your Time
As a working parent, you sure do know that the time is the most precious resource you have in this game. To manage it more efficiently you should create and organize both your family and business calendar, where you can put color-coded important events, activities, chores, and bills’ due dates.
To arrange that, employ task-managing apps, like Remember the Milk. Despite the name, its purpose isn’t limited to grocery lists. This app helps to range all sorts of tasks by priority or deadline, so you will get first the alert about things to do in the morning, and only after the reminders of important business lunch (it sends alerts by email or text.)
Todoist also is great at sorting task. However, its best feature is the possibility to share and delegate, so the entire family works together, like a team of professionals. You might as well use it with your friends and colleagues to organize all sorts of projects and activities.
The Cloze app saves your time by gathering all social media in one application. No more scrolling endless feeds in countless applications. Now you only need a couple of minutes a day to stay in touch with the most important people in your life (it puts on top of the list the people you talk to the most, not those to whom you talked last.)
There are also apps like Intuition+ Mom’s Personal Assistant and Google Keep, which combine listing and calendaring with geo-references so that you no longer have to crisscross the town to make things done: your lists are now organized by category and location.
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To Keep Your Children Busy and Buy You Some Downtime
No one appreciates moments of peace and quiet like parents of babies and toddlers. The easiest way to occupy them is fun and play. There is an enormous number of games out there, and anyone can find something to their (that is to say to their child’s) liking.
These are for starters: The Playmatic is a free Apple-only app that will engage the youngest without producing annoying noises. One tap on the screen and bursts of color and popping bubbles will do the trick. BubbleFree is simple as everything congenial virtual bubble wrap will keep your bustling tot busy (and most certainly will help you to calm your nerves).
NameGames: By uploading photos of family members and other people important in your child’s life together with their names, you create a recognizing game to entertain and get familiar.
To Always Be There
If you work full-time you probably worry about the terrifyingly small amount of quality time you spend with your children, especially when they are still babies and toddlers. Use Skype and other video chats to stay connected to your family even while you are away. To be present in lives of your children whenever they may need you, record voice messages (with lullabies or words of comfort) or videos of you reading a storybook.
If you cannot visit the important event (such as school play), you may ask someone to record it, or broadcast it to you live in Periscope. To have a possibility to keep an eye on your kids while they stay at home with someone else, you may consider using apps for webcam video streaming, like iCam.
To Keep Your Children Safe
The most powerful parental instinct we have is to protect our children from any harm. To prevent something unspeakable and help you find your missing child as soon as possible, there are tools like Lassy Project (for all platforms) or FBI Child ID (for iPhone). They will keep a photo of your child and their identification (height, weight, hair and eye color, age) ready to send and it will only take seconds to alert the relevant people around you.
The important thing is that you only share this information in case of emergency. Lassy Project’s main feature is the possibility to build a network of trusted people, whereas FBI Child ID (created by the Federal Bureau of Investigations) includes safety tips, checklists for what to do if something happens, and shortcuts to inform authorities.
Even if you are not near, you may keep an eye on your child with monitoring apps that usually have both iOS and Android compatible versions. Among them, there are extremely flexible and versatile, such as Pumpic, which combines the possibility of tracking whereabouts of your child with tools for creating a safe digital environment free from inappropriate content and other hazards.
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To Make Shopping Quicker
Shopping is a major time expenditure item. There is a bunch of apps to optimize the process, however, most of them focus on bargains, coupons, and brand sales. Here are the ones to buy you some extra time instead: Out of milk helps to simplify your grocery shopping and organize lists.
Buy me a pie is a similar app, which has a handy option of saving items from previous lists (therefore, saving more time!). There are a number of applications for online shopping with delivery systems: GoogleExpress, AmazonFresh, TaskRabbit, and Wal-Mart (with a brick-and-mortar option to pick up your purchase in the actual store).
To Eat Healthily
If you are on a road trip with your family, it is important to know where to get healthy food. Good Food Near You is an app created specifically to find places where your family can enjoy wholesome meals. If one of your little ones has a food allergy, take note of the Food Additives 2 application, which contains information about nasty food additives sorted by name, risk level, and symptoms. It also proposes diet (e.g. low-sugar or gluten-free).
To Optimize Parenting Routine
If your head is in a whirl and you keep forgetting when you fed your baby and when it’s time for her to take the next nap, Baby Connect will help you to track all the usual routines of early months – it has logs for feedings, diapers, sleep, medicines, progress, activities and many more. For toddler’s potty training there is Huggies Pull-Ups Big Kid App.
To help you with preschoolers and schoolchildren, install the ChoreMonster app that will accrue points for each chore your child does. Your little helper can then spend points on rewards, such as extra TV time or anything else on what you have agreed together.
On weekends, when you are out with your family, you can use Mom Maps to help you find things to do with your kids, or SitOrSquat to find the nearest bathroom. Children never know they need one until it’s already an emergency.
To Manage Your Stress Level
The biggest trick of juggling work and family is a timely relax. With of Breathe2Relax you can take a deep breath when it needed the most. There are also other relaxing apps like Happify, a library of de-stress games and motivation quotes, or MindMeister with mind mapping that helps to unclutter your thoughts. Stay calm and take your pick.
Related Article: Stop Stressing: Time-Saving Tools to Help You Become More Productive
To Have a Good Night Sleep
In our hectic world sleep is often a luxury we can hardly afford to enjoy to its fullest, especially when we combine full-time work and parenting. We daydream about going to bed, yet often when we finally do, there is just too much tension and we cannot let our troubles go and fall asleep.
White noise and ambient sounds generators will be of help: SimplyNoise, White Noise, RelaxMelodies are just a few apps created to solve the problem. There is also White Noise Baby for infants, with lullabies and soothing sounds to help them to relax, stop crying and peacefully go to sleep. Hopefully, some of these apps will make your life easier. Extreme multitasking like parenting and successful career is always a difficult task, but thanks to technology we can cheat a bit.