I recently received a press release from Well Pharmacy with the relatable (although a tad long) title, "Mums are struggling to find the time to plough their way through a string of 'life admin' tasks". Well, Well Pharmacy, this ain't exactly news.
I am only writing this post today because my (non)mother-in-law* is here to watch the kids. Under normal circumstances, blogging would come about 1,365th on my to-do list, well behind all the other tasks that I still haven't done (including paying my credit card bill, which is due today...). This release referred to a Onepoll.com survey of 2,000 mothers with children aged 16 and under and found the average mum had 20 things on her to do list. It found 43 per cent hadn't had time to visit the doctor due to life 'getting in the way', and a further one in four hadn't managed to book a smear test because they'd been too busy. When it comes to their own health, more than 80 per cent had chosen to carry on as normal when they were unwell because they felt they 'didn't have time' to be ill. This certainly rings true in our house.
Tan Kaur, digital pharmacist at Well Pharmacy, comments, "Even the simplest tasks can prove difficult when you have children. Especially those with babies or toddlers, who can sometimes find hours mysteriously vanish when trying to do something like leave the house. Our survey results found that lots of important tasks are unfortunately left on the back burner as parents have so much going on, and their kids come first before looking at their own problems."
Other stand-out revelations from the survey include the fact that one in four haven't had time to to switch to a cheaper energy provider, and 43 per cent are still trying to find the time to book in for a haircut. I get it. I recently went 10 months between hair appointments, which - considering I used to get them routinely as part of my job, was something of a shocker, and I'm only able to go now because I've found a brilliant local hairdresser (Gunel at Harness and Mane - FYI) and can walk to the salon in five minutes. The study also found that 27 per cent hadn't had time to pay off a bill and a third are still waiting to go to the dentist.
This will not come as a surprise to any parents. The struggle to juggle is real, but at least these findings shows that it's perfectly normal. We can switch to Bulb and find cheaper car insurance once the kids are 16. There, that's something to look forward to.
THE TOP 25 PIECES OF LIFE ADMIN MUMS ARE PUTTING OFF, according to the research...
1. Fixing something in the house
2. Going to the doctors
3. Having a hair cut
4. Booking an eye test
5. Tending to the garden
6. Doing the ironing
7. Going to the dentist
8. Posting a letter / thank you cards
9. Booking a smear test
10. Paying a bill
11. Switching to a cheaper energy provider
12. Picking up a prescription
13. Shopping for a birthday gift
14. Paying money / cheques into the bank
15. Writing a will
16. Remembering to take medicine
17. Cancelling subscriptions
18. Shopping around for cheaper car insurance
19. Dropping a prescription off at the pharmacy
20. Transferring money
21. Arranging life insurance
22. Booking a holiday
23. Joining the gym
24. Arranging travel insurance for an upcoming holiday
25. Cancelling a gym membership
*as in my boyfriend's mother. Is there a better term for this? 'Mother-of-the-other' or something?