Transitioning from full-time to part-time work is a big decision for many working moms. It’s a choice that can bring numerous benefits but also comes with its own set of challenges. 

In our fast-paced world, balancing the demands of work and family life can feel like a juggling act. However, more and more moms are discovering that part-time work can be a great way to find that balance.

Did you know that the number of part-time workers has been steadily increasing? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 20% of employed women in the United States were working part-time as of 2022. 

This trend is particularly common among moms with young children who want to spend more time with their families while still contributing to the household income and maintaining their careers. The flexibility of part-time work can be a game-changer for managing the many responsibilities of parenting.

When I had my first child, Kelly, back in 1992, part-time positions were rare, especially in a big firm like Deloitte.  But from the day I found out I was pregnant, I knew I didn’t want to work full-time.

I didn’t want to miss out on important moments with her, but I also didn’t want to give up the career that I had worked so hard to achieve. Passing the CPA exam and landing a job at Deloitte right out of college was no small feat.

Thankfully, the Tax Partner recognized my value and created the first part-time position in the office for me.  This allowed me to be more present with my daughter, reduce my stress, and still keep my career on track. 

Even as my kids got older, I never went back to working full-time.  I have been able to make a part-time plan work for me for over 30 years and I continue to work 30 hours a week even today.

Of course, transitioning to part-time work isn’t without its challenges. Financial adjustments, changes in job responsibilities, and concerns about career progression are common issues we face when considering this move. 

But with careful planning and a proactive approach, these challenges can be managed. 

It’s crucial to have open and honest conversations with your employer about your needs and expectations and to explore all available options to make the transition as smooth as possible.

One important aspect of navigating this transition is understanding how your brain deals with change. Change can be stressful, but it’s also an opportunity for growth. 

Our brains are incredibly adaptable, and by fostering a positive mindset and using effective coping strategies, you can manage the stress that comes with change and embrace new opportunities.

Whether you’re considering transitioning from full-time to part-time for better work-life balance, to spend more time with your family, or to reduce stress, I plan on offering you some valuable insights and strategies.

Remember, you’re not alone. Many moms have successfully made the transition and found that part-time work offers the best of both worlds – the ability to nurture their families while also pursuing their professional goals. 

This week I’m going to discuss issues that could come up, practical solutions if you are an employee, and solutions for self-employed moms. 


Issues that could come up


When transitioning from full-time to part-time work, several issues might come up that you’ll want to consider. It’s important to be aware of these potential challenges so you can plan accordingly and make the transition as smooth as possible. 

First is the issue of financial adjustments.  One of the most immediate concerns when shifting to part-time work is the reduction in income. 

This can require significant budget adjustments. You’ll need to reassess your spending, identify areas where you can cut costs, and possibly find new ways to save. 

This change can also impact your savings goals, retirement plans, and other long-term financial objectives. It’s essential to plan ahead and maybe even consult a financial advisor to help manage this transition effectively.

Another important consideration is how part-time work might affect your career progression. You might worry about missing out on promotions or being seen as less committed to your job. 

It’s also possible that your job role and responsibilities will change. It’s important to have a candid conversation with your employer about your career goals and how they can support you in your new part-time role. 

This can help ensure that you still have opportunities for growth and advancement.

The next issue is workload management.  The truth is that managing your workload in fewer hours is a common challenge. 

You’ll need to be more efficient with your time and prioritize tasks effectively. It can also be difficult to manage expectations from employers and colleagues who might still expect you to perform at the same level as a full-time employee. 

Setting clear boundaries and communicating openly about your availability and workload can help manage these expectations and ensure a more manageable workload.

The next issue is work-life balance challenges.  While the goal of transitioning to part-time work is often to improve work-life balance, this doesn’t always happen automatically. 

Striking the right balance between professional commitments and personal life can still be challenging. Ensuring that you spend quality time with your family while meeting work obligations requires careful planning and time management. 

It’s important to set realistic expectations for yourself and to be proactive in managing both work and family responsibilities.

Lastly, the transition to part-time work can also have an emotional and psychological impact. You might experience feelings of guilt or inadequacy for not being a full-time employee. 

There can also be anxiety about job security and performance, especially if you’re worried about how your employer and colleagues perceive your commitment to your job. I’ll never forget the sarcastic comments co-workers made when I switched to a part-time schedule.

It’s important to acknowledge any feelings you’re having and find ways to address them.  For me, that meant talking to the Tax Partner and making sure that he saw how I got more done working 3 days a week than anyone else did 5 days a week.

Having his support made the transition much more manageable.

The bottom line is that being aware of these potential issues and planning ahead can help you navigate the transition from full-time to part-time work more effectively. It’s all about finding the right balance and making sure that both your professional and personal needs are met.


Practical solutions if you are an employee


Transitioning from full-time to part-time work can be challenging, but with the right strategies, you can make the shift smoother and more successful. Now I want to offer some practical solutions to help you manage this change effectively.

One of the first steps in transitioning to part-time work is adjusting your finances.  This includes creating a detailed budget and possibly exploring additional income sources.

To create a detailed budget, take a close look at your current income and expenses. Identify areas where you can cut costs and reallocate funds to accommodate your reduced income. 

Make sure to include all essential expenses and consider any potential emergencies.

To explore additional income sources, look for ways to supplement your income. This could be through freelance work, a part-time business, or even selling items you no longer need. 

Also, explore savings strategies such as setting up an automatic savings plan or investing in low-risk options to grow your money over time.  For me, I began doing bookkeeping work for my church and doing personal tax returns for friends and family.

The second step is having open and honest communication with your employer by scheduling a meeting to discuss your desire to switch to part-time work. Highlight your value to the company and propose a feasible plan that outlines how you can continue to contribute effectively in a part-time capacity.

Next, be clear about your new working hours, responsibilities, and performance expectations. Ensure that both you and your employer have a mutual understanding to avoid any misunderstandings and ensure a smooth transition.

One of the keys to making it work if you want to succeed in a part-time role is effective time management.  You might think it will be easier to manage your time, but I promise you, you’re going to need even better time management than you’ve had before.

First, learn how to focus on high-impact activities that contribute the most value to your job. Create a to-do list and rank tasks by priority to ensure that you are working on the most important tasks first.

Next, make use of productivity tools and techniques to maximize your efficiency. Tools like time trackers, project management software, and calendar apps can help you stay organized and on top of your tasks.

I also know firsthand that having a strong support system can make the transition easier. 

Start by leveraging support from family and friends.  Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your loved ones. 

Whether it’s assistance with childcare, household chores, or just a listening ear, their support can be invaluable.

You could also connect with other working moms who have made similar transitions. Joining support groups or networks can provide you with valuable advice, encouragement, and a sense of community.

The last thing you need to understand is how your brain responds to change.  This is essential in helping you manage the transition more effectively. 

First, your brain often perceives change as a threat, triggering stress responses. Understanding this can help you be more compassionate with yourself during the transition.

The truth is that your brain is adaptable and can form new neural connections in response to new experiences. This concept, known as neuroplasticity, means that your brain can learn to adjust to new routines and environments over time.

I suggest you use positive thinking and affirmations to reframe challenges as opportunities. This can help reduce stress and build a more optimistic outlook.

It’s also important to understand that building resilience is key to navigating any transition. 

You can do that by setting realistic goals for yourself.  Break down your goals into manageable steps and celebrate small victories along the way. This can help you stay motivated and feel a sense of accomplishment.

And, if you find the transition particularly challenging, don’t hesitate to seek professional support. Therapists or career coaches can provide guidance and strategies to help you cope with the changes.

Just know that by implementing these strategies, you can make the transition from full-time to part-time work a successful and rewarding experience. Remember, it’s all about finding the right balance and making sure both your professional and personal needs are met.


Solutions for self-employed moms


Transitioning from full-time to part-time work can be particularly challenging for self-employed moms. However, with careful planning and the right strategies, you can make this transition smoother and more manageable. 

First, I suggest streamlining your business operations.  As a self-employed mom, managing your business efficiently is crucial when reducing your work hours. 

You could start by automating tasks.  Use automation tools to handle routine tasks such as invoicing, scheduling, and email marketing. This can free up valuable time and allow you to focus on more critical aspects of your business.

Next, consider outsourcing tasks that are time-consuming or outside your expertise. Hiring freelancers or virtual assistants for administrative tasks, bookkeeping, or marketing can help lighten your workload.

The next thing to consider is financial planning and budgeting.  Managing your finances as a self-employed individual requires a slightly different approach. 

First, keep your personal and business finances separate to have a clear picture of your income and expenses. This helps in budgeting and managing cash flow more effectively.

Next, review your pricing structure and services to ensure they align with your new working hours. You might need to increase your rates or focus on higher-value services to maintain your income.

The next thing to consider is effective time management, specifically for entrepreneurs.  Time management is not a one-size-fits-all kind of thing, especially when transitioning to part-time.

First, I suggest creating a flexible schedule by designing a work schedule that accommodates your new part-time hours. Allocate specific blocks of time for client work, marketing, and administrative tasks.

Next, you need to set boundaries with clients.  Communicate your new working hours clearly to your clients. Set expectations regarding response times and availability to ensure smooth communication and avoid misunderstandings.

Lastly, I suggest building a support network.  The truth is that having a support network can make a significant difference.

First, join entrepreneurial networks.  Connect with other entrepreneurs and business owners through networking events, online forums, or local business groups. These networks can provide valuable advice, support, and potential collaboration opportunities.

Next, find a mentor or coach who has experience in transitioning from full-time to part-time.  They can offer guidance, share insights, and help you navigate the challenges of being a self-employed mom.

Whether you’re making the transition from full-time to part-time as an employee or an entrepreneur,  implementing the strategies I’ve shared will make the transition much smoother.  Remember, the key is to find what works best for you and your unique situation.




Transitioning from full-time to part-time work can be challenging, but with the right strategies, you can make the shift smoother and more successful.

Many moms have successfully made the transition and found that part-time work offers the best of both worlds – the ability to nurture their families while also pursuing their professional goals.