Our 3 tips to remain calm while working from home with children.
We are aware that the reality we are facing right now is unprecedented. And we also know that these uncertain times might generate a lot of anxiety and stress. Because of this, it is more important than ever for us to keep spreading positivity and sharing wellbeing content. This article is one of the series to support employees in transitioning into working from home and remaining well in the process, physically, mentally and emotionally.
For those of you who read our previous article (Our 8 tips to remain productive while working from home) while working with children at home, we heard you. And we know that the challenge is real (believe us!). The 8 tips we shared are also true for your situation (especially number 6 and 7), so make sure you have a read.
However, we are well aware of the specific challenges. We trialled and errored it, we tried to follow a routine that went AWOL in less than 48 hours… so here are top 3 tips for you to remain calm while working from home along with children:
Set yourself fewer goals everyday: you won’t be able to achieve as much as usual (let’s face it!), so you need to be really clear on what is urgent and/or important in terms of work tasks. We often use the Eisenhower box to make these lists, very useful to plan ahead and select priorities to work on.
2. Work around nap time and bedtime: when your children go down for a nap or go to bed, power through your workload! You might get 2 hours in the afternoon and 1 hour in the evening. If these are very efficient, you can get a lot done. For this to work, you need to be very clear on what needs to be done: write small lists of the tasks for the following day every evening, just a few of them. If you get a longer slot than expected, start the following day’s list! If your children don’t nap, we would suggest starting a ‘quiet time’ after lunch, for 2 hours, where they can read, draw, watch a movie, listen to a podcast… If you keep doing this consistently after lunch, it will eventually become part of their routine as well. And you will have (some of) your time back!
3. And enjoy the time when you are not working! We know that a working-from-home-with-no-school-or-nursery situation can generate a lot of frustrations. Not working enough, not being fully present with the children, the house being a constant mess… Our best tip here is to try to separate the ‘slots’: work when you work (and make it clear to everyone else in the house) and enjoy family time when you don’t work. Be fully present in each, and you will feel much less frustrated (guaranteed!)
And finally, if anything, ask for help! Working from home and homeschooling at the same time is hard! If you are struggling, feel frustrated or seek some support, please reach out to a colleague, a friend, a family member or a charity (Mindwell Leeds has plenty of helpful resources). And remember: it’s ok to not feel ok! No one is perfect! This is SO challenging that it might take some time to adjust, but you will find your own ways very soon, we are sure!
In order to support families self-isolating and social distancing, we created live sessions as part of Leeds Wellbeing Week 2020. The festival was postponed because of the virus outbreak, yet some of the sessions are still available online. You would just need to book a ticket and you would receive all the instructions to plug onto the selected session! Make sure you have a look, most of them are child friendly and you can do them from your living room!