‘Ditch the mummy guilt, it’s not serving any purpose.’ That’s the advice of Chloe Houston, CRM Manager at Spark. We’re discussing the balancing act of parenting and work, which Chloe has been practicing for half a decade since her son Ollie was born, with daughter Bridie arriving two years ago.
For Chloe, work is important, not least so that her children see that their parents share the load. ‘Ross and I are 50-50,’ she explains, ‘we’re very egalitarian.’
With both of them working, Ross and Chloe have worked to find ways to ease the load. For them this means an au pair, who can fill in the gap between the end of the kindy and work days. Both parents also try and get away from work for drop-offs and pick-ups when they can.
Chloe also works a four-day week. With professional part-time jobs often in short supply, how hard did she find it to secure her current role? ‘My advice is to apply for five-day positions, then negotiate your hours. For me, working four days is a non-negotiable.’
Between a full-on job and motherhood, does Chloe have any time for herself? ‘I make time for it,’ she explains, ‘I cycle to work, which gives me thinking time, and do a thirty-minute online yoga class some evenings.’ Chloe also ensures she fuels her creative outlet, by baking, running her own website, or doing crafts at home. ‘You have to find ways to take the pressure off.’