02 Jun Work from home Mums: How to Make the Crazy More Manageable
Trying to juggle the duties as work from home mums, can feel like jogging on a treadmill – you are trying hard but don’t really seem to be getting anywhere. When you work from home, taking care of your child, managing chores and being available for that vital conference call is not always easy. The pursuit of achieving the ‘perfect’ work life balance can leave you feeling overstretched, guilty-conscious, and, eventually, a little bit crazy! However, if you are working from home or are planning to, here are a few strategies that you can employ to make the ‘crazy’ more manageable.
Know your non-negotiable
For all work from home mums, your typical day is marked with the regular chores– paying bills, feeding your child, cleaning and sprucing up the house, etc. So, how can you do all of this at the same time as managing your work? Identify your negotiable and non-negotiable. Yes, your child’s laundry needs to be done, but is it a priority over your child’s meal or that report that needs to be written?
Compile your to-do list and pick one or two non-negotiables for each week. Try to differentiate which tasks need to be attended to and which ones can wait. Prioritise your tasks so that you don’t feel as if you are being held hostage by the dust on the mantelpiece or those dirty footprints on your rug.
Consider in-house nannies
While day care can be a good option, hiring an in-house nanny can be a flexible arrangement that can work in your favour while you are working from home. While your child gets the one-on-one care they deserve, you get the opportunity to concentrate on your work whilst still being close enough to monitor them. You could either hire someone for just a few hours or full-time.
Nevertheless, to implement this strategy successfully, you need to have a separate workplace where you can switch off from parenting mode during work hours. After all, “I WANT MY MUM!!” meltdowns are the last thing you need when on an important client call.
How about an opposite shift arrangement?
Following on the previous point, have you considered planning schedules with your partner? Depending on your schedule and your partner’s flexibility, you could swap child care responsibilities at certain times during the week. This could help both of you to spend time with your child and get your work done at the same time. If your work from home job grants you the liberty to work evenings, you could take care of your child during the day while your partner takes over the dinner-bath-bedtime routine.
While this arrangement can be helpful in shifting the weight of responsibilities, it is better to only put this into practice occasionally, otherwise you may find yourself missing out on precious family time when you should all be together.
Indulge in self-care
Yes, you are a mum and a working professional. But, before that, you are yourself. When was the last time you enjoyed your glass of wine while watching your favourite movie? Or read a book that was not a fairy-tale? Being a successful work from home involves making sacrifices, but that doesn’t mean you should let go of the things that you enjoy doing.
Try to find activities which help you unwind –practising yoga, going for a walk, or having your cuppa with some peace and quiet. You are the sole boss of your well-being so make it count. After all, you do need diversions to keep you sane and make your crazy days a bit more manageable!
The bottom line is…
Working from home can be great if you are looking forward to spending more time with your child. But, unless you want your sanity to be challenged, implement these easy ways to keep your peace of mind intact. And if you are a stay-at-home mum looking for work-from-home opportunities, you might want to get in touch with Arise – where we provide a virtual platform to connect work at home professionals to large companies.