Working from home has been a dream for me. It allows me to stay home and take care of the kids while also making a living. It’s the best choice I could have made.
However, there are many times during the day in which I wonder how I am supposed to complete anything when I have a million other things calling my attention away from work.
The kids want a snack, the chores are calling me when I can’t focus on work, the TV looks appetizing when a deadline is looming. It takes real dedication to turn my attention away from distractions when I have a long to do list.
How Do I Work From Home With Kids
It takes some practice (and a LOT of patience) but working from home can be done!
Here are some simple tips if you are wondering how to stay focused when you work from home while the kids are at home.
Adjust your schedule when you work from home
Decide how you will want your day to go by. I like to work in the early morning hours, especially when the kids are still asleep. This allows me time to focus entirely on what needs to be done.
Set clear expectations for what needs to be done
Let your kids know what will happen during the day. I don’t work at my best when I have a set schedule that doesn’t allow for breaks. That’s why I time block my day by project and not by half hour or hourly blocks. It’s how I operate and it allows me to function better.
I also set up times for meals and I will usually have snacks set up throughout the day. If it’s been a good, well planned out day, then I won’t even complete the majority of my work when the kids are awake. I choose to lose some extra sleep in favor of kid-free work time in the mornings or evenings.
This can take some loosening up a few house rules, but let your kids make a mess in their rooms while you complete a few projects (this is happening as I write this). Give your kids access to things they can play with such as books to read, movies, toys.
While I do believe in cleaning up after toys that have been broken or used too thoroughly, I do know (from experience) that throwing away the kids’ toys hinders my ability to have some free time and I try not to do it too often.
Have a stash of crafts for emergency use when you really need a few minutes of quiet time that the kids don’t always have access to. This way, the crafts are “new” and the kids can enjoy some quiet creative time while you work.
Plan outside activities
My kids go CRAZY when they are stuck inside all day, every day. We live in an apartment but we do have a porch that leads out to a play area for kids. I try to give the kids some free time to play outside. I usually use this time to catch up on chores that I ignored earlier in the day.
It also wears the kids out which is a huge plus!
Pay for some help
Sometimes it can be too much to try to fit everything into your schedule on your own. Find some extra money to hire a babysitter once or twice a week to help out. It can be a life saver! Summer camp or daycare might also be options if you really need the kids out of the house.
Some other ideas to keep kids entertained while you are busy:
Set up a safe and blocked off backyard for careful play time.
Find another parent that also needs help/wants some free time and switch days where you take all the kids one day and they take the kids another day.
I hope these ideas for working and getting things done while the kids are at home during the summer months have been helpful.