By: Guest Contributor
A few years ago, more parents went out to work each day, and working from home was often not a possibility. Fast forward to today and you have more parents embracing the flexibility of work-from-home arrangements which, in theory, should help to balance out the work and home life. But does it? The truth is, when you work from home, the balance can be just as difficult to achieve. This is because the lines between working and home life are blurred. Some parents can never feel off the clock with work and in some cases switching from parent to employee is hard to do in the home environment.
Working from home has so many benefits, and when you can strike the balance right, it can be advantageous to both parents, children, and employers. So if you are struggling to find the balance between work and family when you work from home here are some tips to help even the scales.
Make time for your children
It might sound obvious, but when you work from home it can be tempting to work outside of your hours. It is too easy to check those emails, submit that document, and print off some papers. So make a conscious effort to make time for your children. The easiest way is to do an activity together. Things like baking, going out for a walk or enjoying a hobby together.
Focus on special events
Sometimes it is good to have a focus and organizing events like parties or gatherings with your friends and family can be a great way to make special memories. It also gives you the opportunity to focus on planning so whether it is finding the right caramel apple recipe for your fall party, a spooktacular gathering for Halloween, the Thanksgiving dinner, or an annual Christmas party, focus on those special events.
Stick to working hours and time block
We have already discussed how tempting it can be to work longer than is needed, so be strict with your schedule. Stick to working hours. This is especially important if you don’t have set times to work. Figure out the times of the day you can dedicate to your job and then don’t exceed them. Time blocking can also help structure your day. Make time for work, but also for the things you want and need to do. Too often we can feel torn between answering an email or doing some laundry. Having a schedule and routine will help you balance everything out.
Self-care is key
Last of all, self-care is vitally important. Just because you don’t have the stress of the commute or juggling things like school pick-ups like you might if you went to an office every day, doesn’t mean it isn’t tough to be a working parent. Self-care might include exercise, a hot bath, time on your own, or even some space to clear your head. It is important to ensure that you take the time to look after yourself so that you can look after your family and your job. Avoiding this can lead to burnout.
Hopefully, these tips will help you to find the balance between work and home life.