Tips for Working at Home with Kids

Working from home certainly has its pros. You'll save time without the commute, you'll save money on gas, and you'll enjoy working in comfy shoes and clothing. But there are challenges as well, especially when children are present. Some parents are struggling to maintain a positive, stress-free environment for themselves and their children while meeting their employer's expectations. These tips will help.

Start Your Day Out Right - Give your children some quality time before your workday begins. A little undivided attention first thing in the morning will help them feel secure. They'll acclimate better to independent playtime if they know they matter.

Set Up a Work Space - Whether you have a home office or not, it is essential to set up a comfortable space. Let your children know that your equipment is not for play and that they should not disturb you when you are working. 

Watch the Clock - It's easy to get distracted by work when that work is in your home. Make sure you find balance and stay away from the work station during your personal time.

Be Flexible - If you have babies or toddlers, you may need to work for short periods. Acknowledging this up front will make it easier for you to adapt.

Take a Break - Schedule time to play, have lunch, take walks, and help your children with their school work. 

Involve Your Children - Rather than allowing them to disrupt your work, take time to invite them into a conversation at times. Show them what you are doing and let them ask questions.

Ask for Help - Ask your employer to clearly communicate expectations, priorities, and deadlines with a week's notice where possible. This will allow you to plan ahead and ask a family member for help with the children when there are tight deadlines to meet.