Balancing Parental Responsibilities with a Work-From-Home Job
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“A parent knows instinctively that if he or she is working, and setting an example for his or her child that means that the child is more likely to be in school, more likely to stay out of trouble, and more likely to complete his or her education.”
Are you having a hard time balancing parenting responsibilities with a work-from-home job? Truth-be-told, it can be quite challenging to care for a young child, and manage a work-from-home job at the same time. Working-from-home jobs may sound like a dream for some people; however, in reality it can involve juggling multiple home and work tasks simultaneously. In fact, trying to manage your time, workload, and availability (for your child) can be quite distressing for a work-from-home parent. When trying to decide if a work-from-home job will be a “good fit,” take an in-depth look at what working-from-home really entails. It is important to understand that in some cases, depending on your work ethic, personality, environment, age of your child, etc., working-from-home may prove to be more challenging than going to an office every day. Are you interested in learning more effective ways to balance your parenting responsibilities and your work-from-home job? If so, you have come to the right place. This article will teach you how to have the best of both worlds. Listed below are ways to effectively balance parenting responsibilities and a work-from-home job:
As mentioned above, it can be quite challenging to balance parenting responsibilities and a work-from-home job, however, a good way to accomplish this feat is by managing your time wisely. In other words, practicing good time management strategies can help you better balance all of your responsibilities, when you work-from-home. Truthfully, many employees, regardless of whether they work-from-home or not, fall into the trap of constantly checking emails, socializing on social network websites like: Twitter, Instagram, and/or Facebook, surfing the internet, chatting on the phone with friends, co-workers, and/or relatives, and repeatedly checking voicemails, but it is especially common with workers, who perform job duties from home. And, if you have a young child, it is important that you schedule your work schedule around the times you have “backup” (i.e. spouse, older child, friend, or daycare).
If a “backup” is not a viable option, then schedule your shifts around your child’s school and/or nap times. Also, if possible, work a part-time schedule, rather than a full-time one. Why? Well, because your young child is going to need a lot of your attention, especially if he or she is in the home most of the time. Moreover, you may want to invest in a regular babysitter, while you are working. The babysitter can care for your child, in your home, or in his or her home, while you perform your work duties. If the babysitter comes to your home to babysit, he or she can keep your child quiet, feed him or her, and/or entertain him or her, while you are busy. Furthermore, invest in a daily or weekly planner to help keep your work and parenting tasks organized. It will also help you establish a daily and/or weekly routine. Managing your time wisely will help you achieve the work/life balance you are seeking!
It is important to understand that you will probably be required to make some tough choices, if you try to parent a young child, while working a work-from-home job. What kind of tough choices? Well, you may have to forfeit time with your child, so that you can perform your work duties. If you are a single parent, or you and your partner need the money, you may have to work, whether you want to or not. The consequence of having to work-from-home is that you may miss all of your child benchmarks. In other words, you may not get to experience your child’s growth and development because you are tied up with work. That can be tough on a parent. On the flip side, you may not be able to work like you want to because you are a single parent, who needs to take care of your child (i.e. feed, bathe, change diapers, take to the park, practice early learning activities, etc.).
As a result, you may experience financial issues. In addition, when you have a young child in your home, while you are trying to work, you may have to say “no” to something. For instance, if your employer asks you to work extra hours, you may have to tell him or her “no” because you have to make your child dinner, or take him or her to a doctor’s appointment. If your employer does not understand, you may be forced to look for another job. It is also important to understand that you are only human – you can’t be all things to all people at all times. You have to make decisions based on your needs and your child’s needs. Ultimately, you have to do what is in the best interest of your child.
Lean on a Friend or Loved One
One of the best ways to effectively balance your parenting responsibilities, and a work-from-home job is to lean on a close friend or loved one. And, ask this person for help, if you need it. In other words, just because you work-from-home does not mean that you cannot ask for help from someone you trust. Working-from-home and caring for a young child – at the same time can be quite taxing, but it doesn’t have to be. Ask a friend to take your child out for a while, or if you are in a relationship, as your spouse or partner to care for the child, while you work. If you can lean on a loved one or friend, you will be less stressed, and more relaxed when you get off work. You also will still have the energy needed to play and “love on” your sweet child.
You can effectively balance your parenting responsibilities and work-from-home job with creativity, support, time management skills, organization, and persistence. Do not let the criticisms of others “rattle” you. Most of the people, who are judging you, are people, who have never worked a work-from-home job, while caring for a young child, so they may not have an accurate portrayal of what it really entails. And, most importantly make sure that your child is safe, while you are working. For instance, do not leave your child unattended to for long periods. Why? Well, a young child can get hurt when no one is supervising him or her. You may want to invest in safety gates and other childproof items, if you are going to be working-from-home parent.
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Sears, J. (2015). Avoid mommy burnout. Ask Dr. Sears. Retrieved from http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/parenting/child-rearing-and-development/mommy-burnout
Stern, J. (2010). Balancing your work and your kids' needs. Psychology Today. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/parenting-is-contact-sport/201006/balancing-your-work-and-your-kids-needs