Having a job that allows a woman to work from home can seem like a dream for many moms, but it can also present some challenges. It can be tricky for a work-from-home mom to juggle mom time and work time, so how can you make it work? We have some great tips to help ensure your success.
Be creative with work time
While a standard nine-to-five workday can be hard to achieve when you are a work-at-home mom, it’s still possible to carve out productive work hours each day. Establish a schedule that allows you to work when you feel the most productive and have the least amount of distractions, such as early in the morning, late in the evening or while younger children are napping. Use a laptop as a mobile office to sneak in extra work time in unexpected places, like at the park when the kids are playing or in the car while waiting for the kids to be let out of school.
Eliminate time wasters
Over the course of a day, there are many tasks that can eat up your precious time, so try to reduce or eliminate the time wasters. A few changes can make a big difference, such as keeping your home and work space organized so you won’t waste time searching through piles of clutter for what you need, planning meals ahead of time to avoid extra trips to the grocery store, and watching the amount of time spent checking personal email and social media accounts, as it can add up quickly.
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Consider outside help
Having someone help out even for a few hours a week can help keep your work/home life balance on track. If you find you need some uninterrupted work time, hire a babysitter, or ask a neighbour or friend to watch your kids for a while. Another option is to join a babysitting co-op, and to free up even more time, hire a housecleaning service, or outsource some of your business tasks.
Make time for the kids
Your children are at least part of the reason you’re a work-from-home mom, so make sure you give them lots of attention. This means taking regular work breaks to spend quality time together. The work will still be there after the break, but the kids will be happy to have had “mom” time. For more “mom” time, set up a quiet-time play centre in your home office or nearby, with books, crayons, puzzles and other items that will entertain your child as you work.
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Take time for yourself
Don’t let yourself get so caught up in your day-to-day responsibilities of work, home and kids that you forget to make time for yourself. Reward yourself for all your hard work by having a spa day, going for lunch with a friend or doing whatever else makes you happy.
Don’t get stressed if you can’t do it all. Instead, set yourself up for success by having reasonable expectations of what you can accomplish on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, while keeping your short- and long-term personal and career goals in check.