WORDS: Kristin Louis
When you work from home, it’s almost impossible to keep your career and family life from bleeding into one another. Separating work and life is important for everyone, but it’s a topic that deserves even more attention for parents who work remotely. If your kids are in school, you might also be dealing with the added stress of managing your children’s remote learning on top of everything else. It’s a lot for anyone to handle, but the tips below may help provide the guidance you’ve been looking for.
With the COVID-19 pandemic going on, many parents have found themselves in the same situation. If you feel overwhelmed, it’s important to remember that other parents in your community probably feel the same way you do. Reading the NEXTGEN Magazine is a great way to learn about what’s going on in your community while also feeling connected to other parents in similar situations.
Fortunately, there are also role models to look up to. Many parents homeschool their children on top of having a job, and have been doing it successfully well before the pandemic started. Homeschooling might be a little different than remote learning, but following informative blogs can provide guidance from parents who have been doing it for years.
Working from home is hard enough on its own, but with classes starting up, you’ll need to be even more on top of your family’s schedule to get everything done. Having a solid morning routine is a good way to start the day off right. However, the rest of the day will depend on your family’s specific needs.
If your children need help with certain school subjects at the same time each day, try moving your work tasks so that you can give them your undivided attention during those times. Likewise, if you have important things on your to-do list, try to schedule them during times that your children can do school work independently.
Keep in mind that the reality of working from home doesn’t always line up with your expectations. As Doist points out, changing your mindset about remote work can help you set more realistic expectations and stop being so hard on yourself when things don’t go exactly as planned.
As a working parent, you might already feel like you’ve got too much on your plate without distance learning thrown into the mix. If you find yourself completely overwhelmed, it might be time to get more comfortable delegating tasks to others on your team.
Depending on what you do for work, you might find it’s more beneficial to hire someone to provide admin support on a freelance basis. A virtual administrative assistant can do tasks such as handling emails, fielding phone calls, scheduling appointments or managing your to-do list. By hiring a freelancer, you get help when you need it and you don’t have to worry about things like employee taxes. Freelancers can be a great asset if you’re self employed or run your own business.
It takes time to find a healthy balance between your own work and your children’s school work. However, it’s important not to let your personal needs take the backseat as you’re juggling all these responsibilities. When you don’t devote time to your mental and physical health, it’s hard to put your best self forward at work and as a parent.
As you’re figuring out what schedules work best for you and your children, be sure to block in some alone time just for yourself. Susan Cain notes that having a few minutes of uninterrupted “me time” is important no matter your personality type, but it’s even more crucial if you’re an introvert.
Finding the perfect balance between work, school, and family life will take a lot of trial and error, but don’t give up. Carving out time for self-care, sticking to a schedule, and outsourcing tasks you can’t do alone are just a few methods for managing everything you’ve got on your plate right now.