Working from home can seem perfect because you can spend time with your kids while still earning money. It also means no stressful commute to work.
Well, as great as that sounds when kids are involved, it’s a completely different ball game and can be very challenging.
They don’t care if you have deadlines when they want and need your constant attention.
I have had to work from home since I gave birth to my son, up until his toddler years, and if there is something I’ve learned, its some days are good, some days are bad, and some days are very bad.
Working from home with kids is great but it is also a lot of hard work.
I know this may seem terrifying and tough in the beginning but don’t worry. I’ve been there & done that, so know a few things that can help you overcome this hurdle.
These are my best tips and recommendations that have worked for me.
Feel free to tailor them to suit your family’s needs to be more productive working from home while keeping your family happy.
This post may contain affiliate links. This means I may receive a commission if clicked at no extra cost to you. Though the opinions remain my own.
Tips to Work From Home with Kids
I’ve been working from home for a few years now, and I must say it has been a serious learning curve.
There has been a lot of trials and errors to be able to figure out what works and what doesn’t.
However, every family is different. From this list, you’ll be able to identify which works better for your family.
These tips for working from home with kids will be sure to make working from home a breeze. (ish)
*Create a Schedule
It’s important to have a plan for how many hours each day you intend to work.
If possible schedule set times for important calls and high priority items.
If you have these planned out, it will help you decide how to occupy your kids during these times, to enable you to achieve set goals.
Plan out your kid’s activities around your schedule, its easier if you make a list of activities to occupy them and allocate the amount of time you’ll want them to spend on each activity.
So when they get bored or tired of one activity, you will already be ahead of them with the next planned out list.
This will be no walk in the park because our littles and plans don’t always get together. However, it will be a lot easier if you have playtime and activities structured out.
Here are some activities ideas you can implement to keep your kids occupied at home.
- They could create and play with Play-Doh
- You can never go wrong with coloring books for kids.
- Gain extra time by giving your kids a fun puzzle to put together
- Depending on the ages of your little one, you can also consider Kids crafts.
- You could pick out some books for your kids to read.
- Screen/ Tv time should also be allocated.
- Indoor games and toys
- outdoor games and Toys
Creating a schedule will be a huge help to keep you productive while working from home with kids
*Have Your Kids Help with Chores.
You’ll be amazed by what your kids can do around the house to help you with chores.
Encourage your little ones to pick after themselves; this will save you from a lot of cleaning, freeing up time for you to get some work done.
You could make a list of age-appropriate chores and have them help out.
Having kids at home means the house will be a lot messier, so having them help out with chores will save you some time to focus on work.
It will also allow them to handle some responsibility.
A win-win for everyone.
*Have a Dedicated Work Space
Having a dedicated space to work, whether it’s a home office or a space in the house you carve out to work every day, will help you focus and manage distractions.
If you want to work and still be in the middle of what your family is up to during the day, you can carve out some space around for a play area where your kids can carry out different activities while you work.
While working at home and watching my son, I put together a box for different crafts.
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Examples of what you can put in the box are glue, Construction paper, Pom poms, Scissors, Glitter, Straws, Pipe cleaners, Popsicle sticks, A stamp set, Googly eyes, Foam circles, Watercolor paints, Plastic cups, Buttons, Stickers, Bubble wrap, Beads, Paper towel rolls, Yarn, Masking tape, Balloons, Feathers, Tissue paper, A hole punch, Paper plates, coloring books, tape, envelopes, and stickers.
I also came up with a list of activities to accomplish using the items in the box, like building an animal.
This kept my son busy for at least an hour.
I think he liked the feeling of working with me and being able to see me.
*Plan Meals in Advance
This is an essential tips for working from home with kids because having your kids at home with you while you work means constant trips to the kitchen for food and snacks.
Planning in advance will save you an insane amount of time.
It’s best to have meals and snacks ready because we all know that they will certainly come looking for some.
Preferably, you could have a scheduled time for snacks and meals, and be sure to let your kids know about the meal schedule.
This way, you can have some work done uninterrupted for a couple of hours.
I know it can get really busy sometimes working from home, so on weeks or days like that you could try a kid’s meal delivery service.
This kid’s meal delivery service has been a total life saver for me on very busy days.
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*Use What Works
It is important that you make use of what works for you, completely guilt-free.
If you have an important conference call coming up and your kids won’t settle down, you can turn on their favorite show, and they can play games on your tablet for an hour or two to give you some time to focus.
It is hard already as it is working and watching over kids, so you’ll need to balance the things that work.
Occasionally you will have to let your kids have lots of screen time so you can meet your obligations.
Sometimes survival mode will need to be activated.
Don’t feel guilty.
*Let Your Kids Know Before You Take A Call
When I first started working remotely from home, I’ve had many scenarios when my son would run to me screaming or requesting different thongs while I was on the phone.
So I took out the time to always let him know that mommy is about to make some important phone calls, so if you need anything, just let me know as soon as I am done.
It took a couple of trials , but i am happy to say we have perfected this rule.
I still have a few interrupted meetings here and there, but overall he stays quieter when I tell him I am about to get on a call.
As with all this tips, practice makes perfect.
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*Spend Your Lunch or Snack Breaks With Them.
When I have a few minutes during a workday or just want to grab a bite, I spend the time with my little ones.
I catch up with them, answer thier numerous questions (hahaha), or give a few tickles and kisses as a little reminder I haven’t forgotten about him.
Kids LOVE and WANT attention, always. Especially from us WHEN WE’RE BUSY! My son craves attention and wants to spend the whole day clinging to me.
So I always ensure that he feels the love and attention a few times a day while still maintaining the schedule and rules when I need to get back to work.
So next time you’re working at home with kids, remember to take a few breaks throughout the day to be with them.
You will both feel better afterward.
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* Take Advantage of Nap Time
Naptime can easily give you one to three hours of uninterrupted time to achieve a lot.
if your kid still takes naps, be sure to save this time for tasks that require full uninterrupted attention.
Schedule meetings and challenging projects for this time and save less challenging work for when they are up and about.
If your kids are too old for naps, then make them have “quiet play time” every day at the same time.
I save a box of toys and books for my son, which comes out only during certain hours during the day when I need to have uninterrupted time to work.
This keeps him busy; they seem fresh and interesting, which takes his attention away from me.
Despite your best efforts, there will be days when things don’t go as planned. This is where flexibility is essential.
Don’t sweat it, it’s a marathon and not a sprint.
You’ve got this mama…
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Try as much as you can to maintain a work-life balance; it can be very easy to work longer hours when working from home,
However, it would be best if you worked towards ensuring that you carve out the required time for your workday and try not to work after those hours.
Please work with your kids to make them understand these hours. Not only will this keep you in check, but it will also give them a sense of when they can have your full attention.
Practice makes perfect.
You can do this mama, Yes it may seem challenging at first but as with anything in life, practice makes perfect.
Make it a habit to explain to your kids the importance of staying away when you are in your workspace.
Explain to them that you are having an important meeting or doing something really important and you need them to play somewhere else or occupy themselves so you can finish your task.
As hard as this may seem, it is possible to teach your kids this, and all it takes is some practice.
I hope these tips for working from home with kids help you be more productive and work effectively from home.
How has working at home with kids been? What tips and tricks do you use to get more done during the day? Let me know in the comment below, ill love to hear from you.