Well the school holidays are here and as well as working around a two year old, I also have a 6 year old and a husband at home!
I know that I would definitely be rather doing this
So how do you balance parenting and working for yourself in the school holidays?
Let me start by saying I’m no expert and I also know that I’m very lucky that my husband will be at home for all but 2 weeks of the holidays so I don’t have the same issue I know a lot of you have of needing to entertain them for a full 6 weeks!
Here are my top 8 tips for working from home in the school holidays (apologies to my social media followers – as you will have seen some of these before!)
- Let your clients know you have your children at home – that way when they contact you they won’t expect an immediate answer and will understand if a mini war is breaking out in the background. I know a lot of working Mums worry about this but more clients will understand and it doesn’t make you any less of a professional!
- Put your out of office on your email and update your voicemail – let people know you are working more erratic hours but will get back to them as soon as you can
- Plan, plan and plan again! Spend time each evening planning your workload into 30-45 minute chunks, in between these spend an hour with your children, set them tasks, build a den and when the hour is up ask them what they are going to do whilst you do a little bit of work – children often get bored or play up when they feel like they don’t have your attention so breaking up the day like this will help.
- Ask for help! Arrange playdates or link up with another working Mum and share childcare responsibilities in order to give yourself a morning or afternoon to work in peace and quiet
- Move your office to the park! Pack a picnic, ball and colouring books – take your laptop or tablet to the park and let them run around whilst you get some work done – if you need internet access invest in pay as you go mobile internet or turn your phone into a mobile broadband hotspot
- Get them involved in your work – could they help package some products, draw a picture to decorate your office or go on a supplies trip with you – be creative and think outside the box
- Make some signs for your office door – ‘Do not disturb‘, ‘I’m working but you can come in‘ or things along those lines to indicate when you need to concentrate and when your are free to be disturbed.
- Work in the morning and evening. When we were away as a family in May, I worked for two hours in the morning (8am – 10am) and for three hours in the evening (6pm – 9pm) – I got 5 hours work done each day but still got to enjoy time on the beach with my family.
Do you have any tried and tested methods that you’d like to share?