Updated: Jun 8, 2019
Until recently I spent my days at my corporate job. I would leave the house around 7 am, spend 8 amazing hours baby-free working away in my office, and then come home to my family.
With my second pregnancy, I left my office job when I was only 5 months pregnant. I left for a wide variety of reasons that I won't get into, but the most important was that my body just couldn't keep up. This meant that as my husband returned to work from his parental leave, I was home alone to navigate pregnancy with a toddler every day.
Being as career focused as I am, I decided to spend my ‘free time' building my blog, and building my business. As Zoey gets busier and my belly gets bigger, I am definitely figuring out tricks to make it all work without stretching myself too thin. Below are some tips for anyone else trying to build a business with little ones at your heels.
1) Nap Time is Sacred- Now that we are down to only one consistent nap a day, I plan all of my ‘work' time around the nap schedule. I answer emails, take phone calls, and make time for virtual meetings while I have an hour or two totally uninterrupted.
2) Bed Time is Equally Important- now that I can somewhat predict bedtime, I schedule all my overflow from nap time into the evenings. Even though there are days where I would love to head to bed at the same time as Zoey, I make a point to stay up and knock a few things off the to do list, whether it’s cleaning that I neglected through the day, or blogging and emailing, I try to make the most of my quiet time.
3) Be Honest When Booking Meetings- Anytime someone suggests a day time meeting, I make sure it is known up front that I may have a toddler with me, and I also make sure to mention what times are best so I don’t lose nap time. There are still days that I rely on the car nap, or attempt to navigate a toddler who hasn't napped, but I try to balance her schedule with the things I want to accomplish.
4) Have a Solid Support System- whether it is a partner who can handle bed time, or family and friends willing to babysit, it is crucial to have a support system. There will be circumstances when it is less than ideal to have a tag along at your meeting (i.e. the 8 pm meeting over drinks), or circumstances where you simply want to work without worrying about what your kid could get into. Take advantage of your support system and let them help with the little one.
5) Don’t Be Too Hard on Yourself When Things Don’t Work Out- despite my best intentions, there are lots of days where the to do list doesn’t get anything crossed off, or something comes up that throws off my plans. Do your best not to get too frustrated by everything you ‘should' be doing, because the frustration makes it harder to get down to business when you do have a few minutes, plus it takes away from enjoying the time with your little one.
All this being said, I am in the final count down before baby number two arrives, so all of my great advice may go straight out the window once there are two little ones in the mix, but I promise to keep you updated as I go.
What are your best tips for working from home with little ones around?