Tips for Working at Home When Your Kids Are Home Too
How to get work done and keep your sanity.
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Best At-Home Tactics
Parents are pros at multitasking, but with long-term school and office closures, the usual workday is looking very different for most right now. So, how are we supposed to get our work done while managing the chaos of our everyday lives under one roof? Read on for some essential tips.
Start with a Schedule
Take a tip from your kid’s teacher and create a schedule for the day, and make sure everyone knows the schedule. This will help everyone know what to expect and allow you to balance your children’s needs with your workflow. Make sure everyone knows the times you cannot be interrupted—if you have a conference call or need to wrap up some important work. With younger kids, try to schedule this around nap times or "quiet time" -- more on that later.
Divide and Conquer
If you are balancing kids and work duties with your partner, try dividing up the day so each of you has dedicated time to work uninterrupted. This schedule may have to change daily but sorting out the details every morning with your partner will help ensure you have enough time to get work done.
Make the Most of Sleeping on the Job
When your young co-workers are sleeping or napping, try to plan to get work done. If your kids don’t nap and you find yourself crawling into bed the same time as them every night, plan for "quiet time" during the day. They can play in their rooms while you work -- or this can be their coveted screen time.
Have Age-Appropriate Activities on Hand
Depending on your children’s ages, have activities, games or schoolwork ready for when you have to work. This way you aren’t racing through your house trying to find things to keep your kids entertained when your hours start. Need some boredom buster inspiration? Try putting these busy bags together with things you already have at home.
Give Yourself and Your Kids Some Grace
Some days will be successful, and some days will not. This is a chaotic and stressful time for everyone. So, when your schedule has fallen apart and it feels like you can’t get anything done, offer yourself some grace. Set realistic expectations and remember that you are doing the best you can. Same goes for your kids—things are crazy for them, too. Take a break, try to find some joy in the togetherness, and try again tomorrow.