Joe and I have been running the business from home while caring for our 20-month-old Della. I know many parents are in this same situation, so here are some tips on how we're optimizing the situation:
- Make a schedule. Determine who is working and who is on childcare and schedule important meetings and tasks to fit around that.
- Say “Goodbye”. We found we had to treat the transition from doing care to working in the same way we leave the house. I started saying goodbye and explaining that I am now going to work in the other room, and she got the hang of it really quickly.
- Create a private workspace. We added a small desk in our guest bedroom so we could shut the door and be away from Della while working. We found Artist's Loft sit-stand roll-away desk from Michael's online and highly recommend it.
- Get an ergonomic chair and workspace. Trying to work on a computer while sitting on a couch is terrible for posture and may lead to back pain!
- Bring everything you need at the beginning. Every parent knows what happens when baby sees mommy - you have to go through the full separation ritual all over again! I'm careful to gather everything I need for work and have it ready before saying goodbye.
- Cancel the noise. I use Avantree Noise Cancelling Headphones and it is well worth it.
- If taking a call while with baby:
- If both caretakers need to work at the same time:
- Manage expectations. I’ve had to accept that I'm going to be less productive with work and prioritize the most important things. I'm allowing my house to be a little messier than usual, who's going to see it anyway!? And while we usually cook most of our food, we've relied more on packaged and prepared foods and takeout.
- Don't start anything hard. We decided to start potty training since we were stuck at home which made things WAY HARDER. Go easy on yourself and remember how big a change this already is and there’s no need to make it worse by starting new major projects.
- Remember it gets easier… or at least you get used to it. We got into a groove about a week and half in and now it's almost normal, so hang in there!
- Find the silver lining. We've discovered new ways to connect with each other and have fun as a family - going on picnics, playing games, and having dance parties.
We hope this helps some. Let us know what is working for you!