09/05/2014 07:15 BST | Updated 08/07/2014 06:59 BST

Time - Friend or Foe?

As a parent, life seems to be an endless round of "beat the clock". This morning, having sorted out the family's laundry requests ("Mum, where's my red jumper?" "Mum, I don't have any socks!") I thought I'd chance a quick walk with the dog before we set off for the school run. That way, I reasoned, I could get on with everything else on my To Do list as soon as I'd dropped the kids off. I even jogged part of the way, so that we wouldn't be late. Time was against me, however, as we came up against road works en route to school. So my gamble didn't pay off and we arrived one minute after Registration time. I drove away feeling guilty and resolving (not for the first time) to be more realistic about what I can cram in to my day and beyond that, how long everything actually takes, as opposed to how long it would ideally take!

For the single mums who contributed to my book, as well as my clients and readers, time can seem like the enemy. When you are single-handedly running a house and bringing up children alone there never seems enough time. We all know that spending quality time with your children is crucial to their well-being and development. However quality time becomes difficult when: as well as hearing about your child's day you have legal documents to sign, laundry to do, meals to cook, appliances to mend, appointments to book, work to do in order to pay for the roof over your family's head. And what about a bit of precious "Me Time"? When does the harassed single mother get time to rest and recharge her batteries?

However, let's not forget that time can also be your friend. You need time to get over the hurt and betrayal of a broken relationship. You need time to assess what went wrong and how it could be different next time round. You need time to plan where this adventure of life could take you next - this time, YOU get to choose exactly how and where and with whom you'll journey. They say that time is a wonderful healer; I know for sure that even if it does not heal all wounds, through time we learn to live with them and only when some time has passed can we learn from them.

"THE SINGLE MUM'S SURVIVAL GUIDE - How To Pick Up The Pieces and Build a Happy New Life" is available to order on Amazon.

Visit my website:

Check out my daily blog on