Working from home as a parent
08 July 2020
Like so many others in this truly unique and challenging time, working from home as a parent is something I have had to get my head round and find ways to manage. My son is two years old and at that age they are still hugely dependant on you. With my husband working in digital healthcare he is so busy at the moment with COVID-19 related issues, that I’m having to make working from home as a mum work.
Here a few things I have learnt over the last 3 months which have helped me so far;
1. Expectations – It took me a little while in the beginning to realise that I am not going to be as productive as I am used to being, and that expectations have to be adjusted when you are working from home as a parent. Once I realised that I can only do my best, and have no choice but to continue with my responsibilities at home, I was comfortable with the situation as a whole.
2. Flexible hours – working the hours that suit me has really helped, and I have been fully supported by this from the rest of the team. As my son is an early riser anyway, I have found it most productive to start my day at 6.45am so I can catch up on emails and get the majority of my work done in the first few hours of the day before my husband starts work. I take a mid morning break where I take my son outside for a much needed run around, with my master plan of tiring him out so he will sleep after lunch and I can crack on with more work… a plan so far that has worked really well!
3. Communication – Richard and Ella have been hugely supportive during this time, we have been having weekly catch ups via video call and I have been sending weekly round up emails of everything I have been working on during my three day working period. This communication has been really important for both sides and the support has been really appreciated at this tough time!
4. Visitors during video calls – I try to attend the video calls where I can, but it’s not always possible. However, knowing that it’s ok to have little visit from my son time to time on the call makes it easier. He is also very cute so I’m sure people don’t really mind!
5. Mums can juggle – Mums are queens of the juggling act, and really can do multiple things at once as it’s a skill you have to master! So I can be looking through a contract report whilst overseeing a playdough session, or I even cooked his dinner once whilst taking part in the Friday quiz calls!
6. Caffeine – and a lot of it…!
I hope this little insight as to the way I am making this work is helpful. Although it is tough, I am really cherishing this time I have at home with my son, in a time where he is changing so much. It’s hard to take the positives out of this situation but you have to where you can, and that is surely one to remember.