Managing the Work-from-Home, School-from-Home Balance
Almost all of us are trying to navigate this new world where we’re all at home, all the time but work has to go on and we’re also attempting to home school too. Whether you’ve got one child or a huge household, balancing the requirements of your job, your children and managing your house as usual is a huge commitment. It’s easily to get overwhelmed but there are ways to manage it and with a little organisation, it will soon seem a lot less daunting and a lot more manageable.
Running a busy household, keeping the kids happy and keeping your boss happy is possible, with just some of these tips.
1. Ground Rules Essential
Making a success of working from home and keeping the family happy does require some ground rules. If you have older children, then you can get them involved in the process of setting the rules for the family. Set it out on paper, pin it on the fridge and then everyone has some basics to stick to.
2. Be Fair and Realistic
Nothing is going to be as straightforward as you would like. Even if you are the queen or king of organisation, these are tricky times and our kids are going to test us. Finding more patience than you knew you had is essential as these are hard times for all of us, including children. Employers and colleagues are ready for things to be a little different and run a little less to order. If you have realistic expectations, it is much easier to keep on top of any feeling of worry or anxiety.
3. Embrace the Amazing Resources Available
So many people are going out of their way to provide amazing resources for our kids. From Joe Wicks’ infamous PE lessons to French and Spanish lessons available every day, there are resources for kids of all ages and interests. Thousands of resources are out there and they’ve been further topped up by BBC Bitesize in the last week or so, ensuring the kids can be kept busy at their own pace.
4. Schedule Breaks and Family Time
Scheduled breaks are part of the regular school and work day, so make sure they’re part of your new home/work/school life! Overworking doesn’t lead to productivity and can make it harder to get going and hit any of your goals. 10 minutes or so running around or having fun together is much needed every couple of hours.
5. Be Firm when it Comes to Work
While you need a little time out every now and again, you do still need dedicated work time to keep your employer and bosses happy. One to two intensive work sessions a day allow you to be more productive than sitting for hours in front of your screen achieving very little. Your kids will soon learn the routine and you can be firm to ensure you still keep on top of your work.
6. Bed Means Bed
This is a point for you not the kids! Working after the kids are in bed can quickly become a bad habit and not one when you get into. Bed means bed for the kids and bed means time to stop, switch off and relax for the parents. Keeping to a regular work schedule is essential for managing your mental health and allowing yourself time to fully unwind.
7. Healthy Meals and Snacks
Getting into good habits is essential for all parts of your daily life – including meal times. Making your way through a packet of biscuits or two may feel comforting at the time but it does nothing for your motivation and keeping your health in check. Eating healthily is beneficial for the whole family and can even boost your productivity. Of course, no one expects you to forgo all snacks and treats but making sure you enjoy healthy, whole meals will be beneficial for all.
8. Kindness Matters
These truly are unprecedented times and we need to take time to recognise the impact this may be having on all of us. Children process things differently to adults so it is important to take things at their pace and not put too much pressure on them, or yourself. Be as kind as possible as often as possible, to yourself as well as everyone else.