Working from the comfort of your home offers many advantages, but it can also present a challenge if you are simultaneously caring for your young children. You must figure out the best way to divide your time and focus to achieve a balance that allows you to succeed on both fronts. Consider these steps from Babyology to boost your job performance while ensuring your young ones receive the time and attention they need.
Use Scheduling to Your Advantage
Having a predictable schedule makes your life easier by allowing you to plan for your day. Your employer expects you to be productive, and while working from home provides extra flexibility, it's still helpful to dedicate specific times of the day to job duties. A consistent routine also works well for young children because they feel more secure when they know what to expect each day.
Begin by setting a sleep schedule for your babies and toddlers. With a predictable sleep routine, you can wake up before your kids to begin your day and settle into a natural rhythm. These quiet times provide an excellent opportunity to complete assignments that require your complete focus. Similarly, try to plan work calls and other job tasks during nap times. Along with scheduling apps, many other tech tools are available to help busy parents juggle their responsibilities.
Scheduling an outside break in the middle of the day is also beneficial for you and your children. Being outdoors gives everyone a chance to unwind and reenergize, and it also provides you and your kids with an opportunity to bond and create memories. Additionally, research shows that getting out in nature improves focus, memory, and cognition, putting you in a more productive state when you return to your home office.
When you feel pulled in too many directions at the same time, caring for yourself may feel like a luxury you can't afford. However, this is precisely the time when self-care is most needed. When you take care of yourself, you improve your physical well-being, boost your mental health, and, as Thrive Global explains, increase your productivity at work.
Self-care priorities should include:
- Ensuring your body has everything it needs, including hydration, regular exercise, a healthy diet, and quality sleep
- Giving your mental health a boost by taking regular breaks, connecting with nature, or allowing yourself to simply do nothing
- Socializing with your friends and family
- Connecting with yourself on a deeper level through gratitude journaling, breathing exercises, or a meditation practice
- Following through on goals and dreams, such as pursuing that elusive bachelor’s degree, which can be done affordably and with a ton of flexibility
Delegate Administrative Tasks
To make time for yourself, Harvard Business Review says to consider delegating administrative chores. For example, you can hire virtual assistant services through an online job board or freelance website. These professionals can answer your calls, schedule appointments, and even respond to emails. By considering pertinent factors, such as cost, availability, and reviews, you can quickly find the best fit for the job.
Ask for Help
Similarly, delegate at home to lighten your child care responsibilities. Keep a list of relatives and friends who would be happy to watch your young ones for short periods. Then, if you have an upcoming deadline or a mandatory video call, reach out and ask for help.
Juggling remote work with full-time child care may feel challenging, but proper planning and strategy help you achieve the necessary balance. By carving out the time and structure you need for your job, you can find success at work while also enjoying these precious years at home with your children.
Guest Author: Janice Russell