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Work-life balance for the homeworking mum.
25 Jul 2013
 

Work-life balance for the homeworking mum.

 

Work-life balance for the homeworking mum.

25 Jul 2013
work life balance for working mum

One of the great things about working from home is the ability to set your own hours and fit work around family commitments, especially if you’re responsible for childcare into the bargain.

Unfortunately, if you’re not careful, you can find yourself juggling too many things at once and giving none of them your full attention, and that’s when problems occur.

It’s easy to think you’ll be able to keep an eye on your kids while you work on your laptop, but if you have an active toddler or a mischievous six year old, you’ll soon learn the fallacy of that pipe dream.

Set boundaries early
One of the first things you’ll realise is, you need to distinguish between work time and family time, and set boundaries. Then you need to defend and stick to those boundaries until the people around you learn to respect them too.

Allocate work time, and arrange childcare for all but the youngest or oldest children during that time. While you may be able to work around an infant sleeping in a crib, or a teenager doing homework after school, kids in between are likely to need adult supervision, and that means giving them your full attention. Schedule work into school hours where possible, or negotiate times when your partner, a friend or relative watches them while you get your work done. Then do nothing but work during that time, instead of surfing social networks, so you don’t leave them feeling used.

Work smart
If you’re working for someone else, you might not have much control over what you do. If you’re self-employed, though, you can learn to work smart rather than hard to achieve more in less time, freeing you up to spend more time with your family.

Whether you call it outsourcing or delegation, figuring out which aspects of your work you can pass onto someone else with specialised skills will pay dividends. If your business relies on a personal talent, such as writing, design or coaching skills, you’ll need to deliver those yourself, or hire equally talented staff. What you don’t need to do is handle the admin yourself, when you could hire and train a virtual assistant to do that for you, or why learn the ins and outs of html programing to build your own website, when you could hire a student to build one for you.
You might also be able to package your skills and resell them multiple times, either in the form of training courses, webinars or downloadable content.

Take stock
Here’s a quick checklist to get you on track to work-life balance and personal fulfilment:

• Keep track of how you spend your time for one week.

• Highlight the tasks that give you no pleasure.

• Outsource the most time consuming job that you don’t enjoy doing.

• Check your email and social networks at scheduled times and deal with each item once and only once

• Work from a prioritised list, and leave room in your day to deal with the unexpected, rather than scheduling every minute.

• Make sure whatever you’re doing you’re fully focused on that activity. Switch off the phone to minimise distractions.

• Discuss your challenges with those around you. Ask for help, and be open to hearing their needs. Find a compromise that works for everyone and try it for a week.

• Arrange some down time away from family and work at least once a week. Use this to meet up with friends, exercise or do something that you love, just for you. You might have to fight for this at first if you’re not accustomed to taking time for yourself, but having some me time is vital to your sanity even if its only a couple of hours a week to help you reduce your stress levels will make you much more productive.





Get a feel for what we do!

Our FREE sample packs are full of great print ideas. They’ll give you a taste of what to expect when ordering your design and printing from us.

Request free sample pack

 

work life balance for working mum

One of the great things about working from home is the ability to set your own hours and fit work around family commitments, especially if you’re responsible for childcare into the bargain.

Unfortunately, if you’re not careful, you can find yourself juggling too many things at once and giving none of them your full attention, and that’s when problems occur.

It’s easy to think you’ll be able to keep an eye on your kids while you work on your laptop, but if you have an active toddler or a mischievous six year old, you’ll soon learn the fallacy of that pipe dream.

Set boundaries early
One of the first things you’ll realise is, you need to distinguish between work time and family time, and set boundaries. Then you need to defend and stick to those boundaries until the people around you learn to respect them too.

Allocate work time, and arrange childcare for all but the youngest or oldest children during that time. While you may be able to work around an infant sleeping in a crib, or a teenager doing homework after school, kids in between are likely to need adult supervision, and that means giving them your full attention. Schedule work into school hours where possible, or negotiate times when your partner, a friend or relative watches them while you get your work done. Then do nothing but work during that time, instead of surfing social networks, so you don’t leave them feeling used.

Work smart
If you’re working for someone else, you might not have much control over what you do. If you’re self-employed, though, you can learn to work smart rather than hard to achieve more in less time, freeing you up to spend more time with your family.

Whether you call it outsourcing or delegation, figuring out which aspects of your work you can pass onto someone else with specialised skills will pay dividends. If your business relies on a personal talent, such as writing, design or coaching skills, you’ll need to deliver those yourself, or hire equally talented staff. What you don’t need to do is handle the admin yourself, when you could hire and train a virtual assistant to do that for you, or why learn the ins and outs of html programing to build your own website, when you could hire a student to build one for you.
You might also be able to package your skills and resell them multiple times, either in the form of training courses, webinars or downloadable content.

Take stock
Here’s a quick checklist to get you on track to work-life balance and personal fulfilment:

• Keep track of how you spend your time for one week.

• Highlight the tasks that give you no pleasure.

• Outsource the most time consuming job that you don’t enjoy doing.

• Check your email and social networks at scheduled times and deal with each item once and only once

• Work from a prioritised list, and leave room in your day to deal with the unexpected, rather than scheduling every minute.

• Make sure whatever you’re doing you’re fully focused on that activity. Switch off the phone to minimise distractions.

• Discuss your challenges with those around you. Ask for help, and be open to hearing their needs. Find a compromise that works for everyone and try it for a week.

• Arrange some down time away from family and work at least once a week. Use this to meet up with friends, exercise or do something that you love, just for you. You might have to fight for this at first if you’re not accustomed to taking time for yourself, but having some me time is vital to your sanity even if its only a couple of hours a week to help you reduce your stress levels will make you much more productive.





Get a feel for what we do!

Our FREE sample packs are full of great print ideas. They’ll give you a taste of what to expect when ordering your design and printing from us.

Request free sample pack