This week the internet blew up over this interview on BBC News. Not only is it utterly hilarious, it also highlighted the struggle many work from home mums (and dads!) have when juggling work with children!
Let’s face it, being a work from home mum is no walk in the park. Whether your little darlings are covering your important client notes with their latest masterpieces, flinging porridge at your only clean and ironed outfit just before you head out the door, or photo-bombing that important video call they can add extra stress to an already carefully balanced work/life/stress level.
I’ll take a guess that your kids had something to do with you choosing the entrepreneur life? Perhaps to get more flexible working hours, spend more time at home, or to show them that hard work and passion pay off?
I may not be a mum, but I do balance my working life with part-time caring for my partners two young girls. A task which is equally daunting, exhausting and rewarding! I didn’t have a year’s maternity leave to try and figure it all out, I came straight in at the deep end. I’ve had to learn quickly, and I certainly don’t always get it right! But if you’re a work from home mum feeling like you haven’t got quite got the balance right (and are still fending off curious kids from your client Skype’s!) then here are a few things that might help:
CREATE A DESIGNATED WORKSPACE
Being a work from home mum is great because it means you can flex your hours around nap-times and school pick ups without the commute. But it can also mean juggling inquisitive and attention-seeking children! If they’re not enough of a distraction, there’s also the toy-strewn living room floor, overflowing laundry basket and dishwasher to contend with. And and if you’re trying to work in the middle of it all you’re just not going to be very productive.
Banish the distraction by creating yourself a designated workspace. A garden office, spare room or hidey-hole under the stairs! If you can, work away from home one day a week too! (Pssst, have you heard about HiveMondays?)
SCHEDULE YOUR TIME
One of the biggest killers of productivity is not knowing what to do when. You’re busy replying to emails when a Facebook message pops up, or you suddenly remember you have an important blog post to write. Scheduling your time will help combat that, by blocking out your time a week ahead by task.
If you know Monday morning is for tackling the inbox, but you’ve got some time in your diary later to respond to Facebook or schedule this week’s blog posts later, then you can relax and mind will stay more focused on the task at hand. Every wedding pro should have a planner, and we rather love the Life Styled Planners available in our shop.
We’ve all done it; checked our phone at the dinner table, taken a call during date night, tapped away at the laptop while the kids are begging you to join them on the floor to play Lego. I get it, work pays the bills and you can’t afford to let a sale slip (or you really did need to immerse yourself in Pinterest/Instagram/Facebook for 5 minutes!). But both your business and your family deserve 100% of your attention when you can – they’ll both thank you for it!
If you’re scheduling your time properly, you’ll be able to turn your phone and laptop notifications off during family time without needing to worry. Likewise, when the kids are asleep / at school / otherwise occupied, you’ll be able to give your business your full attention. And I promise you’ll get more done!