Working from home as a parent is a challenge all on its own. But when you throw in summer vacation and your kids clamoring for your attention all day long, you can quickly shift into a state of overwhelm. Figuring out your summer work schedule is imperative so that you can get your work done and remain productive, but also so that you can enjoy your family and get in some fun before school starts in the fall. Here are four strategies from your NYC Professional Office Organizer that will help you get tasks checked off your list while working from home this summer.
Create a daily schedule that works for you. One of the benefits of working from home is the flexibility in your schedule. Think about what your business needs are and get creative with your scheduling. Maybe you start a little earlier in the morning while the kids are sleeping so that you can end your workday earlier. Another idea is to take a longer lunch break during the middle of the day so you can eat together and engage with your kids before getting back to work. Your kids will benefit from this, too – you can set the expectation that you’ll be working for X amount of time and that you’ll have lunch together. With that expectation in place, they are more likely to let you work uninterrupted.
Set clear expectations (with your kids AND your team/clients). Before you get into your summer workflow, have a discussion with your family about what you expect while they are home from school. Let them contribute to the discussion concerning the guidelines you want them to follow this summer. Remind them of the basic rules, such as not interrupting you while you are on a phone call. You might even include rules like they must knock before entering your
office. But because kids are kids and don’t always follow those guidelines, communicating changes in your availability in a timely manner is essential so that you can both participate in phone meetings and be able to pick-up your camper from summer camp at the appointed hour.
Schedule in some fun. Summer can feel very long once the excitement of not going to school has worn off. Schedule family outings that they can look forward to. When they have your undivided attention over the weekend, they are more likely to cooperate come Monday. Another trick is to take some short breaks to play with them during the day. Fifteen minutes of focused attention together while coloring or reading a book can go a long way and keep them quietly play while you head back to work.
Know when it’s time to hire support. No matter how structured you are, no matter how much fun you add to the day, the reality is that kids are kids and they are going to be knocking on your door and interrupting you often. Hiring support for the summer can look different for everyone depending on your children’s ages and the type of work you do. It may be a half or full day supervised summer program, hiring an in-home nanny, or possibly having a grandparent or other adult family member take care of the children on a set schedule.
Having your kids home for the summer while you work from your home office can be a challenge but by implementing these strategies, you will be well on your way to enjoying your summer. For more home office organizing strategies, reach out to this NYC Professional Office Organizer today.