Working From Home With Kids!! These words sound like magic, isn’t it. Not. That is if you have kids at home.
When I tell people I work from home, I immediately get a, “Oh, lucky you.” It is almost like I have plenty of free time and just laze around. That is the general impression I get from people.
Tell them that blogging is your job, then the replies are pretty amusing. They get so nonsensical at times. “Oh, that sounds so easy” to “What a waste of your talent”!!!!!!! Honestly I have heard this from a lot of people I know.
I guess they assume I get paid while surfing mindlessly on the internet.
I have totally given up trying to explain that it takes lot of hard work to run a successful blog. Let alone if you have few blogs to manage, studying your Masters all while hubby doesn’t stay with you due to work. Parenting is hard enough, but solo parenting gets very difficult at times.
Though working from home with kids sounds like a perfect recipe for life, it can be daunting if you do not organize it well. Just when you had an amazing idea for the project, your kid wants snack. By the time, you have attended to your child, your great idea would have evaporated in thin air. Does it sound familiar to you? It has happened a lot of times to me.
Don’t get me wrong. I am definitely not complaining about being a work at home mom. I am so grateful to the Almighty for putting me in this place. While lot of parents would love to trade places with me. I have made this conscious decision to be able to work from home for the sake of our kids.
But, trust me, working from home with kids is no less hard work either. It is not like we are lazily whipping up excellent posts in our pajamas while still taking 100% care of the family.
It doesn’t work that way. For working from home with kids is lot more complicated than that. If we are not organized in our lives, then chances are we will end up having a mental breakdown.
For getting on top of the game will require meticulous planning from your end. It is so easy to get distracted and procrastinate when you are working from home with kids.
So here are my few tips of working from home with kids.
Make a schedule for everything. If you do not plan ahead of your schedule, chances are you will not be as productive as you can be. You can check out Time Management Tips For Work At Home Mom for more tips.
I make my schedules a day ahead right from waking up in the morning to the time I go to bed. And I try to make a schedule that is achievable. I do not set very lofty goals that I cannot achieve.
2. Work Space
Have a work space at home. Whether it is a spare room or even just a table. You need a place where all your work related things would be kept. It is never a good idea to keep running from room to room searching your important documents.
Even worse, you do not want your toddler scribbling on them as “they were just lying on the dining table”. Set a work space that is off limits for everyone else.
3. Peaceful Time
Find a time that is most peaceful without any distractions. That could be when your child naps or while at school. Now that I have all my kids going to school, I find it easier to find time to work while they are at school. But when they were younger, I used to work at night after they were in bed. That was the time that I used to do most of my creative work.
I know of other working from home with kids moms who work early morning. But that doesn’t work for me. I like to start my day with prayer.
Work that does not require much of creativity and that can be done even with little bit of distraction can be scheduled when you child is playing quietly. You would need to get creative and find your time. I used to allocate sharing my posts to social media while my toddler would be playing by herself.
One of the major drawback with working from home with kids is never getting out of the house. At times, my setting foot out of the house would be school drop offs and pick ups. Apart from that, I wouldn’t even step out of the house or even talk to anyone.
In the long run, this could eventually take a toll. Go for walks, coffee, meet up with friends every now and then. While you might feel that you are losing precious time, you will actually get back rejuvenated and be more productive.
Exercise and self care should be part of your regular schedule and shouldn’t be an option.
5. Distraction Free
Keep yourself free from distractions when you are working. Keeping the TV on, looking up the WhatsApp every now and then are simply a no-no. When you are working, you work. Working doesn’t mean you are looking up what your friends up to on facebook. That is not social media marketing. It is easy to be distracted and keeping anything that wastes your time should be strictly away from you while you work.
I switch off my WiFi, when I am writing on a post. My phone calls go to voice mail. You will not get your maximum productivity when the TV is blaring at you. So be distraction free when you set out to work except for emergency situations.
6. Plan B
Always have a back up plan in case of emergencies. With kids at home, there is always going to be doctor visits, practice sessions, school projects. Have a plan B for all situations. Can you take the help of someone when you really have a very important assignment on hand? Ask for help whenever you need it. Hire a babysitter to look after your child when necessary. You can prep your meals in advance to save time when there is no way you are whipping up an elaborate dinner.
But when all else fails, just realize that life will have it’s way. Take it in your stride. Do not let one incident demotivate you and lead you to a domino effect of failure.
Pick yourself up the next day and start again.
So these were my simple strategies to working from home with kids.
Do you work from home? Do you have kids? If yes, how do you work from home with kids. Let me know through comments.
Until Next Time,