How to Get the Job Done When You Are at Home With Your Child
I will not sugarcoat this. Trying to work while caring for a child usually leads to confusion. Are you tired. It is impossible to formulate coherent thoughts. You feel guilty all the time because you think about your child while you work and about your work while you are a parent. You rely on this Almighty dream, but it is unpredictable, and even when it does, you have a hundred household chores to complete. You feel like you have two different bosses in two different worlds and one of them is constantly asking for milk.
Order lunch, fire up Slack, and schedule an afternoon shower. It’s Work from Home of the Week ! From our sofas and local coffee shops, Lifehacker gives you tips to keep you productive, balanced, and sane, whether you work from home all day or your entire career.
However, sometimes you need to work. And sometimes you get nervous and want to work. I was here. You can work if you have low expectations and a plan. Here’s how to do it.
To get into writing mode, I went through a 10-part ritual that included walking around the house a few times, finding the perfect snacks to write, checking Facebook, tying my hair to make me feel like a writer, reading some inspirational quotes on how write, check email, check Twitter and get some more snacks. There is no more time for this. The sleeping baby is a ticking time bomb and you need to work fast. Try to know exactly what task you will be doing before your child sits down so that you are not paralyzed by indecision at the moment when your period of freedom finally comes.
Do big things first
It’s easy to get into a rut thinking, “Oh, I only have about 15 minutes, so I’ll just answer a few emails right now,” and never dig into your larger projects. While it might seem like a good idea to work on your most important tasks after bedtime, that’s when you are likely to run out of mental fuel (and who can blame you – you’ve just been caring for a helpless person all day?). Instead, try to tackle difficult, important things first , even if you can’t get it all done at once. You can catch up later. Ask yourself: Do you want to be known with your work or quick email responses?
“Drunken work” on large-scale projects
Cheryl Strade wrote “The Wild” when her two children were very young. She said she was a “binge writer” – instead of writing every day, she did most of the work, hiding in a hotel room while her husband watched the children. Scheduling periods of time for overeating – even if it is rare – allows you to fully focus without interruption.
The fact is that babies cry when the person holding them sits down . (It always upset me endlessly: ” Why do you hate gravity, child?”). If you want to squeeze into a job while your baby is awake (no shrill soundtrack), try carrying the baby in a carrier. and use a standing table or kitchen counter. Or take a walk and work with a rig like this onecreated by artist Lenka Clayton .
Recognize voice notes
Hands are always tied to the baby. Use voice memos or a recording app to capture the ideas that come to you throughout the day – a new slogan for your client, a plot twist for your novel, quantum gravity theory. You can also record notes using Apple Watch. Bonus: Either way, your child needs to hear tons of words every day .
Customize your work
When you become a father, you can temporarily change your career to better suit your new lifestyle, especially if you are creative. It might be overwhelming for an illustrator with a baby to pull out a full set of ink every day, but you can create amazing things with a stylus and iPad. For writers who find it difficult to come up with new ideas in a state of sleep deprivation, you may be able to edit a project that you have worked on in the past but have been delayed for some reason.
Some days let survival be victory
Of course, there will be times when your baby is teething, or growing up, or just an infant, and you won’t be doing your job. That’s when you close your laptop, hug your child and let the victory survive in it. When my daughter was a baby, I took myself very seriously, thinking that I wasn’t working enough, not producing enough, enough. I had to keep repeating to myself that it – scrape oatmeal with a stool and watch as the child tries to grab the tag on the toy for 20 minutes – it’s work. It gets better, it gets worse, and then it gets better again. This is education. Accept this sweet mess stage for what it is. Pretty soon, your child will turn into a mobile toddler – and good luck with any job.