Are you thinking of working from home?
But, maybe you’re not sure if it’s possible, how to do it, or how anyone manages to juggle taking care of a baby and working at the same time.
You’ve begun to understand why no one makes fun of daycare workers for spending all day watching babies. It’s a job, and a big one, even if it doesn’t pay too well.
When my first was a baby, I spent a small fortune on a babysitter. Then, I took a freelance editing job, and stayed home. It was an adjustment, but apparently, it wasn’t too bad, because I’m about to do it again.
If you’re thinking about ditching your 9-5 job and wanting to work from home, there will be some new rules to follow.
Here are 6 rules to follow when you transition to a work from home job.
1. Find Your Best Hours
Are you an early bird, or a night owl? When do you have the most energy, and when do you feel the most sluggish? Everyone has an internal clock that regulates their energy levels.
Turn your best hours into your work hours, and you’ll probably do twice as much, twice as fast and higher quality, than if you worked during a more convenient, but less energetic, portion of the day.
Think about what time of day you are most alert, and try to get your toughest tasks done during those hours.
2. Set Your Baby’s Schedule
You’ve probably heard this before. If you get the baby on a schedule, everyone says, you’ll feel better, sleep better, and have more time for yourself. And they’re right.
But if you’re looking to work from home, this isn’t an option, it’s a must. Otherwise, you’ll end up feeling overwhelmed, and won’t be able to get work done.
3. Get Your Spouse on Board
If you have a spouse, you’re one step ahead. Sit down and talk. Figure out times that he or she can take the baby (or kids).
Get your spouse to cheer you on, give you reminders, be your chief assistant, and help with the house. A spouse can be a great motivator and cheerleader when you start to get into a slump.
4. Set Your Work Schedule – And Stick to It
People who work outside the home have a set schedule. They leave for work, take a lunch break, and go home – all at predetermined times. That helps productivity, a lot.
You need to do the same for your work-from-home job. Set times and stick to them. These times don’t have to be set in stone, and they don’t have to be contiguous, either. It’s perfectly fine to decide to work from 5am-7am, and then from 11am-2pm, for example.
What’s important is to predetermine the number of hours per week, and per day, that you plan to work – and how you’re going to make that happen.
5. Stay Healthy
If you’re not healthy, your work will suffer. You need to make sure that you get out of the house every day, eat healthy, rounded meals, and find time in your week to connect with friends.
By overlooking your needs, you leave yourself open to a lot of potential potholes: depression, exhaustion, frustration, illness, backaches, and lack of motivation are only a few.
Try to create easy, healthy menu plans, and stick to them. Also, find a time of day that you’ll be able to exercise. Walking to the grocery store, library, or to pick your older child up from school, all count.
What you’re looking for is time that you can move your muscles, breathe fresh air, and interact with other adults.
6. Have Realistic Expectations
Once you quit your day job and stay home, you’ll suddenly notice how much housework there is. Ignore it. Your house won’t look perfect, and that’s okay. You’re a working parent, even if your work is done from home.
Decide which household tasks are most important, and which can be overlooked. Then, sit down with your spouse and talk about splitting the load between you.
Do you have any other work-from-home tips? Did any of these work for you? Tell us what you think in the comments!