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How to survive working from home for an extended period of time Mother

Everything that separates me from 4 contentious sisters is a reinforced door.

My girls are at home thanks to the closure of their schools in response to the COVID-19 pandemic (coronavirus).

For the foreseeable future, I will be both her mother and her (swallowing) teacher, while at the same time trying to maintain my practice as a lawyer and my career as a writer.

I am no stranger to working from home after working the past 10 years in an office littered with stray Barbie accessories and Legos with the needs of my other job, my wife and mother the other side of the door.

A home office with a reinforced door to keep the Riffraff away, I mean my kids, and they dampen the noise from the rest of the house.

How much work would you do if a stack of dirty dishes, an overfilled laundry basket and a crying child with a dirty diaper followed you to the office?

This week, hundreds, if not millions, of people will find out how they are forced to work from home for the first time due to a (hopefully) once-a-year public health crisis.

How to survive work from home for a long period of time.

Tip No. 1: Define a work area in your house

Have you ever heard the phrase “kitchen table millionaire”, someone who is expanding his home business into a widely successful company?

As someone who has been working with start-ups and entrepreneurs for years, I would like to tell you that the successful people leave the kitchen table very quickly. It turns out that the busiest area of ​​the house is not very conducive to work.

Forget the kitchen table and find a private area in the house where the house works. A home office if you’re lucky. Or maybe a corner of your bedroom or the guest room. While you don’t necessarily need a reinforced door like me, you need a door or a way to separate yourself from the rest of the house.

Why is it important to separate yourself from the rest of the house?

For starters, you won’t be tempted to hesitate by doing housework. Trust me, the urge to clean a sink with dirty dishes is pretty overwhelming when you sit at the kitchen table and try to get a job done.

It also helps your brain switch to work mode.

Tip # 2: stick to a regular work schedule and routine

Do you remember the magic of the snow days when you were a kid? Horn and roar when radio or television announced that your school was closed? Do you spend the day in your pajamas instead of remembering timetables and doing italics?

That’s not it.

You are not on vacation. The universe has not suddenly decided to restore spring break for adults. If you don’t take a PTO day, it is a working day and you should do it better.

Put yourself in the working state by going through your normal work routine, including getting up and getting on time.

While you don’t have to wear business attire, make yourself presentable and don’t wear pajamas or sweatpants. Take it from someone who has been working from home for a long time. You need to get dressed to get into work mode. Also, you never know when someone wants to make a Skype call. Don’t be ashamed by doing this in your jams.

Your boss and your customers need to know when you’re available and when they’re not. Guess when that is? Your normal working hours. During your normal working hours, you should respond to emails, texts, and calls in the same way that you would when you were in the office.

Keep work separate from home

Things I never did on an average working day when I worked full time in a real office?

Lots of laundry to catch up on the latest episode Outlanderand chat with the pool type. I did all of these things last week when I was supposed to be working. Do not end your working day with constant and unnecessary interruptions.

Tip No. 3: Stay in (virtual) contact with your boss

If remote working is not the norm in your company, your boss will be nervous that his employees will not be working at home (see comment above on “Vacation”).

Calm your boss and secure your job by communicating with him too much. Blindly copy it in emails to customers and employees. Send him daily updates on what you’re working on.

Not sure what to work on or don’t have enough on your plate?

“What can I do to help you?” are the words that every boss likes to hear.

Tip # 4: Find out what to do with the kids

My number one tip for someone considering working from home? You need childcare. When someone pays you, they deserve your full attention.

Well, I think we can throw this advice out the window for the foreseeable future.

My children’s schools are closed for at least a month, possibly until the end of the year. Only 2 days have passed, but my office is already full of school books and they have searched my secret store of good office supplies.

And my babysitter, my mother? I won’t risk her life so I can work a few hours.

How will my husband and I work with constant and annoying interruptions from our children?

Careful planning and negotiation.

planning Take the pressure off our working days by privatizing projects and planning calls when the other person is responsible for the children (see below). Plan children’s day so that they keep to an apparent schedule, do their homework, and hopefully the number of hours they spend on their iPads is not a double-digit number.

Negotiate by dividing the working day into 30- or 60-minute blocks and assigning childcare duties to one of us in each block of time.

Cars for conference calls

My best work-from-home hack? Cars for conference calls.

I was once in a conference call with a million people and every 30 seconds you could hear a small voice saying, “Can I have a drink?” Followed by a Shoosh. After about 10 rounds, the leader of the call was fed up and said, “Whoever that is, get him the damn drink.”

When people hear your children talking to you in the background, they know they don’t have your full attention, which is really annoying, especially when they pay you.

Secure your kids with entertainment, snacks, drinks, etc. before making a call, and use the most soundproof place in your house for the call. For me it is my car. Laundry rooms and cupboards also work.

Do you have good work from home? Leave a comment or send me an email.

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Tags: corona virus, work-at-home

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