How Parenting Has Prepared You For Work From Home Life
Work from home is a blessing and a curse. You can’t beat that commute, plus you get more time with your family. But, on the other hand, it gives us some unique challenges, and we see you working hard to keep everything on track! We noticed something though...as parents, we've totally been prepared for these new curveballs. Since more and more jobs are looking to stay remote for a little while, we decided to put together a quick list to show you just why you've 👏 got 👏 this! 👏
Feeling tired, but powering through
There’s something about working from home that’s just exhausting — somehow more so than actually going into the office. We think it’s partly cabin fever, partly lack of sunshine and exercise - plus, Zoom fatigue is a real thing. It’s ok to feel drained.
Speaking of being drained, that’s basically the definition of parenthood. Remember those few months right after your baby was born when you were practically awake 24/7? Actually, it’s better that you don’t remember. At least once you stop the 2:00 AM feedings, you get a little more rest.
But you’ve got this! You made it through the newborn stage — you can make it through working from home. Some days, you might need an extra cup of coffee, but that’s okay. When you start to feel especially drained, take the kids for a quick walk to get some air, get up and drink some water, or try working from a different area for a little while to switch things up.
Conquering the temptation to snack
Being in the house all day can be boring! Whether you’re running after your kids or working from home — or both — you’re sure to want a snack break multiple times a day. And as a parent, you're more than familiar with the importance of snack time.
One struggle a lot of us have is keeping our snacks healthy - especially when the Reese's Pieces are right there. To help with this, meal prep can be your best friend (if time allows!) and aim to have a house full of healthy snacks. Next time you have that craving, grab an apple or some celery and peanut butter for a tasty snack that’s also good for you. Even better, check out this recipe for no-bake protein bites that can keep you full until your next meal.
Dealing with that creeping brain fog
This probably has something to do with that exhaustion thing, but isn't it really hard to concentrate sometimes these days? When days start to look the same, you can find yourself spacing out in front of our screens or looking down at our boiling water on the stove, wondering what you're supposed to do next.
Brain fog happens when your brain is too overwhelmed by all of the things you’re thinking about. Is there anything else that sounds more like parenting than that? Keeping track of everything going on in your life, your kid’s life, your partner's life, plus remembering the little things (like where you left your keys) and the big things (like what the doctor said about administering medicine) — it all gets to be too much. Brain fog: incoming.
The thing about brain fog is that it happens to everyone, and that’s okay. Working from home AND parenting AND living your own life can definitely get stressful and overwhelming. Our tips? Take a break and breathe. We've all heard the advice to take a 10 minute screen break every hour - and we're here to tell you that yes, it really does help. And if you take a mid-day walk outside, switch up the route so every day looks a bit different.
Trying to manage work-life balance
When work from home first became the norm, our bedrooms and living rooms became offices. First, the shorter commute was pretty cool. But then, the lack of commute time meant you could work longer and still start dinner at the same time. And when your work laptop is right there, it’s easy to just jump back on and answer a few more emails. Work from home means lines are blurry, and the work-life balance you built during your regular schedule is harder to maintain.
As parents, our whole lives are a balance game. Between work, kids, and time with your partner - oh, and the elusive “me time”- it definitely all adds up to more than 24 hours. It’s a struggle, but not one that you can't handle.
The first step is to set a work schedule and stick to it. Of course, emergencies and rush requests come up, but not every day. Try to work your regular office hours even though you’re home. Enjoy the lack of a commute by making time to enjoy breakfast anywhere but your desk. Set an alarm for when you’re supposed to log off — and actually do it! And if you can, don’t check your work email after hours. You have enough on your plate just being a working parent. Make time for what’s important.
Parents: you’re ready to conquer working from home. You’ve already dealt with these challenges simply by raising your littles (and doing a great job, btw). If you need support or mid-week laughs, check out our Insider's community on Facebook full of other mamas & dads.