If you’re working from home with a toddler, it is going to be challenging! Any parent knows that getting anything done with a toddler around can be almost impossible.
However, there are some great tips you can follow to make it much easier. It can take some time to find the right balance. Here are some of the best ways you can effectively work from home even with kids in the house.
1. Create a routine early on.
If you used to go to the office everyday and are now working from home, this is a new experience for both you and them. You will need to adjust your routine to reflect this. Kids thrive with a routine so make sure you all have set wake up, meal and bedtimes. Try and schedule time you can spend together on your breaks too. That way, they are still getting one to one attention from you.
2. Prepare your workspace.
You will need a quiet workspace. Having an area purely dedicated to working will help you to separate work from leisure. It should be away from all distractions and ideally, you shouldn’t be disturbed while youíre there. This can be tricky, but if it is part of your routine and you ask for help in implementing it, it can be done. That said, don’t feel guilty if you need to take a break from work to attend to your toddler.
3. Eliminate unnecessary distractions.
Let’s make it clear. Your toddler is NOT a distraction. True, having your family around can distract you. But that’s not the distraction that I’m talking about here.
I’m referring to unnecessary distractions. Whether it’s the phone ringing, the temptation to check social media, or the television – it’s easy to procrastinate with so many distractions around you.
4. Prepare for the day ahead.
When you go out to work, you know there are things you need to do to get ready for the day. You have a routine that prepares you for work. However, when you start working from home you may not really have that. Make the effort to get dressed. Create a morning routine that sets you up for work.
5. Use independent play time.
When you need to get on with an important project, it can help to get your toddler immersed in an engaging activity. Check out our article on stress free toddler activities.
6. Take breaks to connect with your child.
If you can take this outdoors, that’s a great bonus! Suddenly being cooped up in the house all day can be detrimental to productivity. It can cause issues with low mood and leave you feeling less motivated to get through your workload.
By taking regular breaks, connecting with your child, and making time to get out into the yard, it can really boost those productivity levels. Spend just 10-15 minutes on activities such as gardening or reading a book outdoors to help refresh productivity levels.
7. Take advantage of nap times.
If your kids are still quite young, make sure you take advantage of nap times. These are the perfect opportunity for you to get a bulk of your work done without having to worry about the kids.
8. Single task as much as you can.
It’s common to try and multitask when youíre working at home. Whether it’s trying to work on two different projects at the same time, or trying to work and take care of the kids, multi-tasking may be more stressful and take up more time than single tasking.
Instead, try to focus on just one task at a time. When you focus on just one thing, it makes you far more productive. You can group similar tasks together can help you to complete them much quicker. There may be times you’ll still need to multitask, but hopefully this tip reduces your stress and overwhelm.
9. Set realistic deadlines.
A good time management tip when youíre working from home is to set realistic deadlines. Youíll want to compile a list of the most important tasks you need to complete that day. Then, work on them in order.
Set a specific amount of time for each task. This helps to keep you focused on the job at hand. When you work to deadlines, it helps you to get more work done in a shorter time. You’ll be less likely to check things such as social media when you know you only have a set amount of time to complete what you’re working on.
This is why it’s really important to work in a quiet space away from distractions. You can also use noise cancelling headphones to ensure you donít get distracted by surrounding noise while youíre trying to work.
Have your own experience or tip to share? Let me know in the comments below!