Wondering how you will manage to work from home with kids around? Are the kids affecting your productivity?
Disruption from kids is one of the biggest setbacks for any parent who works or wants to work from home. Interruption from kids can affect your productivity and work schedule.
From the noise, running up and down, and wanting to get involved in what you are doing – you may even think of quitting the work from home lifestyle. With their constant disruptions, you may find it challenging to beat your deadlines.
If kids are your biggest worries when it comes to working from home, I got your back. You have nothing more to worry about.
I have compiled these tips to help you work from home with kids and give them the attention and affection they deserve, while still remaining productive.
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Key Tips To Work From Home With Kids
1. Have a dedicated home office space
A home office is a great way to reduce destructions. It is most ideal if you have older kids that can have some playtime on their own. You can have your kids watch cartoons on TV, while you work.
If you have no home office yet, do not stress about it. You can always improvise. You can create space in your bedroom, walk-in closet, or basement. As long as the space has good lighting and a stable internet connection, you can use it to minimize destruction.
If your kids are too young, say less than eight years, locking yourself in the office for long would never work. You will have to give them the constant attention they require. The best way to hack this is by having a desk for them or a play space that is within your reach.
2. Avoid Procrastination
I know a lot of people become more productive when they are in the last-minute rush. The racing keeps you focused because you know you have to beat your deadlines. You should completely forget about this notion if you have kids.
Start working on your orders as soon as you can. If you have an order that needs to be submitted within a week, do not wait for the last day to start working on it.
Start working on it on day one. You do not want to experience the adrenaline rush that comes with the last minutes rush and the kids craving your attention or acting up at the same time.
To succeed in this, you will have to set up your internal deadlines.
3. Change Your Sleep Pattern
Do not get me wrong. By changing your sleep pattern, I mean you should have enough sleep, but during different hours. Sleeping for fewer hours is one sure way to reduce your productivity.
One of the best ways to hack this is working very early in the morning. Becoming an early riser is a sure way to increase your productivity. At this time, the kids are usually asleep.
The environment is usually quiet and serene. Be sure to take advantage of the 4 or 3 hours early in the morning before your babies wake up.
Working late into the night is another alternative. After you have put your kids to sleep, you sure can complete a few orders before heading to sleep. Whatever the change, be sure to have enough sleep. You can compensate for the wee hours by having some naps with your babies.
4. Take Advantage Of Nap Time
If your kids are younger, they will give have a nap of say an hour or two during the day. As soon as you put your baby to nap, do not sit to catch up with the latest episode of your favorite show. Get to work.
The best thing is that as your kids grow older, they will get into a schedule. You will know their nap hours. Of course, you cannot depend on nap time to work on something urgent. Naptime will work suitably for flexible orders and gigs.
Helpful Tips To Work From Home With Kids
5. Invest Time With Your Kids
Before you sit to work, be sure to have some quality time with your kids. Spend at least 20-30 minutes before you get to work. This way, you can hope for 2-3 hours of uninterrupted work.
If the kids are old enough, talk to them. Let them know that mommy or daddy is about to get to work, and they need to give you some interrupted hours.
There are lots of activities that can keep your kids and you busy before work time. My favorites include reading stories, watching cartoons, coloring with crayons, drawing, cuddling, and playing video games. You can use this time to feed them too.
Alternatively, you can take 10 minutes break after 30 or 40 minutes of work. Do not go for long hours without checking on the babies. This is a sure way to have minimal interruptions from your kids.
6. Practice with your kids
You are probably wondering what exactly you should practice. I know this may seem weird, but kids learn with practice. Find time and practice and teach them how to act up whenever you are having calls or working on orders.
Teach them that they should give you ample time, and can get back as soon as the work time is over. Let them know that work time is not time to burst into the office and let you know how amazing Tom’s birthday party was. Talk to the kids and let them know they will have all the attention and affection they need after work.
It may take time, but practicing helps you set boundaries whenever you are working.
7. Reward Good Behavior
Giving your babies incentives whenever they behave well is a sure way to have them repeat, and later adopt the god behavior. Always reward good behavior, and motivate them to keep up with the behavior.
A reward does not to be an expensive day out. A simple treat and even compliments are a sure way to get to your kid’s brain.
A good way to encourage good behaviors is to promise the babies what they love. For instance, if they love dinner outs, promise to have one night on, let’s say Sundays, only if they give you ample work time all through the week.
8. Make Use Of What Keeps Your Kids Busy
If your kids enjoy painting, let them do it. If they would spend the entire day watching Disney Junior, give it to them. If they love their toys, get them a bunch more toys to keep them busy. As long as it does not harm your baby, take advantage of it.
The key issue here is to let kids be kids. Let them do what they enjoy. This will work well for you because you will uninterrupted, and the kids will have what they love.
It would also be ideal if you planned for activities that do not need close supervision. These include playing video games, listening to music, reading, writing stories, drawing, napping, and playing with toys. The activities will, of course, depend on the age of your kids.
9. Use Some Help
You can always find part-time or full-time help with your babies. For part-time help, you can always ask trusted friends and relatives if they can spend some few hours with your kids on weekends. You never know, such hours could turn out to be your most productive hours.
Alternatively, if your spouse works from home too, you can create a schedule that suits you both. You can alternate work hours. When your spouse is working, you can look after the babies and vice versa.
If you are planning to work full-time, or your workload is overwhelming, hiring a nanny is the best way to go. You need to take into consideration the salary, and the extra costs that come with hiring a nanny, before getting one. To save on costs, you can hire a part-time nanny.
10. Be Realistic
Working from home with kids can be hectic. They will always show up in your designated workspace for some chat. They will always want to “help out” in your work.
They will pop in and want some cuddling when you are chasing a fast-approaching deadline. You should always expect anything with kids. Them being around will affect your productivity.
If you manage to beat most of your deadlines, you need to pat yourself on the back; because it is not easy.
Take in work you can manage before you and your kids get into a schedule. You can increase your workload when you consider fit.
I also recommend that you let your boss know whenever you will have an order delayed. Being realistic with yourself will allow you to be more organized.
Do You Work From Home With Kids?
I always had a difficult time balancing my work and kids when I started working from home. I found myself neglecting one for another on different days. But all that gradually vanished when I decided to create a balanced environment for both.
The tips above have been useful in boosting my productivity. Incorporate the above tips for increased productivity while still giving your kids your attention and affection.
What are some of the challenges you face when working from home? What advice would you give to someone who aspires to work from home? I would love to hear all about it in the comment section below.
Also, don’t forget to share these awesome work from home with kids tips. Share with your family, friends, and followers.
Yes to the practice! People thought I was crazy when we ‘practiced’ in chunks of 20 mins but it’s paid off and I get at least a few hours at a time now. Love the idea to spend good quality time first too…and outside is great to burn off some energy!
Wonderful tips! I am currently trying to WFH with 3 young kids and a working spouse!
Love this! I JUST set up a home office. It’s right next to their play room. I dont know if that was a good or bad decision yet!
I love this list. The other thing I have found is starting earlier than normal if you can. When I worked from home, I would get up around 4:30 and start work by 5:00 so that I had a few hours before my kids woke up. Then I spent time with my kids, breakfast, school, play, then they would have quiet time or nap time that I would use like you suggested! I don’t know why I never thought to practice with them tho! That’s a great idea!
Working from home has definitely been a challenge, I will say have a dedicated office and writing more things down at have been helpful. I’ll have to give a couple of these others a shot, thanks for the great list!
I love these tips. I am not working from home, so I have more time to work on my blog. It is not challenging for me but sometimes I can feel less productive. These are great tips.
This has me wanting to get my babies back on a schedule. Nap time has been all over the place!
Thanks for a very detailed and practical blog post. I agree with all the tips mentioned especially the tip around having a dedicated home office space. It helps with productivity as well.
These are wonderful tips. I will need these this summer. My husband and I both work from home and we have 3 kids.