Reclaiming your career post-baby can be challenging, a complicated balancing act of filling two distinct roles, but between setting boundaries and recognising your transferable skills, you can re-enter the work place feeling more confident than ever. We spoke to professionals and fellow mums about the lessons they've learnt over the years...

Acknowledge your new transferable skills

"Believing in yourself is the first step to getting back into the workplace; don't underestimate how much you've gained during your time out as well as what you achieved pre-parenthood. Make a list of your new skills, the times you've been pushed out of your comfort zone, ways in which you've built your resilience and how this can be transferred into the workplace. Remember: your DNA has not changed, the skills and attributes you had before parenthood are still there, now enhanced.
- Louise Karim, managing director of recruitment company Mums@Work

Do things you used to do

"Don't wait too long to start getting back out into the real world again, but do take each day at a time initially. Make yourself a priority at least once a week. Don't be embarrassed to ask for help. Don't be afraid to hand over the baby to someone else - they will survive! Don't lose touch with your friends. Get your hair/nails done. Get moving. Keep your mind active by reading, listening to podcasts, or researching new developments in your field of work."
- Anna Yates, psychotherapist at Mind Solutions (mindsolutions.ae)

Read more: 'Sometimes I stay late at work to avoid seeing my kids. Am I a bad mother?'

Turn lows into highs

"You might not be back to your pre-baby weight when you return to work and that's OK. Buy yourself a few key pieces that will give you a lift and carry you through your transition to work. Also, be kind to yourself and use words that are positive and carry good energy. The language you used can change the path of your entire day."
- Kelly Lundberg, stylist and entrepreneur

Remember your priorities

"Ignore any negative comments from others and remember that you were taking care of a helpless baby who needed your support. As a community we should support one another - especially mothers returning to work - and keep an open dialogue."
-May Buhaisi, category lead, Health & Wellness, Philips Middle East

Become your children's inspiration

"Remember that for children it's inspirational to see your parent do something that they enjoy and excel at. As they say, 'Life is not a dress rehearsal', so it's important to make the most of the opportunities that we are given."
- Kelly Lundberg, stylist and entrepreneur

Read more: 6 things to consider when returning to work post-baby

Ditch the guilt

"Being a working parent is all about balance and that balance is very different for everyone. I also learnt early on that when it comes to being a working mum, you can't please everyone and it is not your job to try. Parents. Teachers. Colleagues. Friends. Family. It will be impossible to please them all. Your job is to do what makes you happy and healthy and go after your passions."
- Sarah Jones, CEO of parenting and lifestyle e-commerce site Sprii.ae

Try to be present for your kids when not at work

To deal with my guilt I remind myself of why I work, and this is not just from a financial point of view; it's the right thing for me to do. Also I believe that I am setting a good example to my boys by helping people through my work. I also try to be present when I am home with the kids (which is not always easy when you're running a business). Finally: step away from social media - believe me not everything on social media is reality!"
- Louise Karim, managing director of recruitment company Mums@Work

Read more from Baby & Child

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Your ultimate guide to childcare options in the UAE

Ex UAE school teacher on why she gave it all up to become a stay-at-home mum

Photos from Unsplash