Working from home is a pretty challenging task, especially if your kids are around. If the coronavirus outbreak has made swap your office for your living room for the first time, you may have found it a bit problematic. Namely, people presume that working from home is pretty simple and even desirable. However, they disregard a lot of factors that make this a lot harder. To start, you don’t get out as much which can be bad for mental health. If that’s not a problem enough, you should think about having kids and working from home. Luckily, there is a way to stay productive, sane, and a good parent, and here are the tips that will help you do so.
Create a schedule and stick to it
When it comes to most things in life, being organized can make anything easier. The same applies to working from home with your kids around. Discipline and well-created schedules can make your life much easier within days. If you’ve struggled with hungry kids running around, low focus levels, and incapability to stay productive, worry not – there is a solution for your problems.
The first thing you need to do is set office hours. If you have flexible work time, make sure to limit it somehow. If you work best in the morning, adjust your schedule to it and you’ll have no issues. Explaining to your kids that office hours are important and that you’ll be unavailable during them is essential. They need to know that they shouldn’t interrupt you unless there is an emergency.
This way, you’ll gain enough time to deal with your tasks and you’ll also be able to do them properly. You could accomplish anything and you could work harder and smarter than before. Another important thing you should do is talk to your employer and explain what the situation is. You should be able to reach the best possible agreement working hours-wise once you tell the employer what the issues and concerns are.
Take advantage of naptime
If your kids aren’t that old, they probably need a lot of your attention. That is why it’s important never to neglect them due to the work. However, you are responsible for your work too, so you really need to balance things out and be a good mom and a good employee. Being creative and practical will come in handy here and make you a true superhero.
Depending on your kid’s nap schedule, you should be able to squeeze in some more time of productivity. Namely, your kid could be used to sleeping for an hour a day or for three hours a day. If the latter is the case, you’ve hit a jackpot! That’s three hours of uninterrupted work you can afford.
If the kid doesn’t like to sleep much, don’t worry. You don’t need to leave the hardest tasks for the time when he or she is asleep. Instead, you can focus on lighter tasks for that time. For instance, you could make some work-related phone calls during nap time or send some emails you were postponing. Each way, this will help you stay organized.
Don’t do it all by yourself
There is nothing wrong with seeking extra help, especially if you need it. Working from home may sound like it’ll make it easier for you to take care of the kids, but that simply isn’t true. What happens is that you’re suddenly cluttered in all of your tasks and you can’t keep track of what is business-related and what is being-a-mom-related.
That is why help is essential. Whenever you feel like you can’t do it all, take your kid to the childcare. A simple Google search – childcare centre near me will get you to some pretty cool results. You could leave your kid with professionals that will take care of it perfectly. You won’t have to worry whether your kid has slept enough or whether it has eaten in the last hour.
Seeking help will be beneficial for you and for the kid as well. Even the work you do will benefit from this. You won’t experience burn out and you’ll be a good mother. Your child will see you smiling and it will be content, and your employer will see the results of your hard work.
Separate your roles
Another thing that will make you succeed as both mother and an employee is separating these two. Some boundaries need to exist in your behaviour depending on the role you’re in. Unless you do this, things could get pretty tough for you and your family.
The best way to achieve this is by setting a home office. This doesn’t have to be a fully equipped office but it should be a space dedicated to work only. There should be no dirty rompers in there, for instance. Seeing things like these can help you lose focus and work slower than usual.
To make sure that your home office is a kid-free zone, make sure to find some way to keep the kids entertained. Giving them something fun and interesting to do can buy you a couple of uninterrupted hours of work. Keeping the kids busy while you’re working can be rather easy. You could have them make an art project or play outside, depending on their age.
Plan for interruptions
Nothing ever goes as we plan it to go. That is why you need to remember that no matter what you do, unexpected things will always happen. Even though working with interruptions seems like a possible reality, the truth is often different.
Your kid could fall over and hit his knee while you’re attending a conference call and it isn’t much you could do to prevent it. However, prevention isn’t the key thing here. Not losing your cool and acting properly is what’s important.
Make sure to always know what your priorities are. That will make the whole decision-making process a lot easier and you’ll be able to be a mom of the year as well as an employer of the year.
Being productive isn’t always easy. However, with some organization skills, determination, and discipline in your home, you’ll be able to achieve anything, even to work from home successfully with your kids around.