How to survive as a WFH mum 

How to survive as a WFH mum  busy-mom

How to survive as a WFH mum | Being a working mother can be quite difficult, even if you have a partner to share your responsibilities with. Young kids demand attention, and the housework is constantly piling up. So what can you do to thrive and survive in this chaos? 

Nowadays, it has become even more important to learn how to balance your private and work life within the boundaries of your home. If before we had the chance to go to the office, concentrate and just do what’s necessary, now we’re stuck doing the same things at home with screaming kids as background noise. 

In this article, we will share with you some helpful advice on how to achieve this balance and stay sane as a WFH mum in 2021 and beyond! 

Create a work timesheet

Organisation and planning is the key to a successful week. Make sure you have planned your work for the entire week. If your job does not allow precise planning, at least make an overall plan of what you need to do. A planner usually helps a lot with this as it allows you to write down the daily and weekly tasks. And the best part is that you don’t even have to buy an expensive planner to take advantage of its benefits. 

Many websites online, such as Canva, allow you to download and customise planner templates that you can later print out and use. We advise you to create two of them – one for your work and one for personal tasks, such as family responsibilities and house chores. 

If you’re a digital WFH mum, then you can use an online organiser like Trello. It’s completely free, and it lets you create up to 10 dashboards that you can completely customise and use on any device.  

Make a schedule for your kids

This is where it gets a bit complicated. It’s one thing to create a schedule for yourself and follow it, and a whole other trying to get your kids to follow a timetable, especially if they are younger. 

Here, there are two possible scenarios: either at school/ kindergarten or at home with you. Let’s see what you can do in either one of them: 

Surviving when your kids are at home 

Overall, this is considered the more complicated scenario. Kids get bored and require attention and care almost 24/7. So if you want to create some order in the chaos, making a schedule and a plan is the obvious route, but it is tricky with children. Here is some useful advice on how you can get them on board: 

  • Make a physical planner/calendar that is fun and colourful. Even better if you make it with your children so that they are involved in the process. You can let them choose the design and even add a few drawings. 
  • Make sure they know your work hours and that they shouldn’t bother you when you’re busy. If they are too young to realise what work hours mean, just explain that it’s when mommy makes money that she uses to buy cool stuff for them. Until kids are old enough to realise the concept of work, explaining with toys and sweets is probably the only option. 
  • Don’t threaten them with punishments; instead, go with the reward route. Motivate them to be good and quiet when they need to. Extra TV or gaming time, or maybe a special dessert are all great options, but in the end, you know your children best and the things you can use to motivate them. 
  • If they are studying online, make sure they have the needed support and supplies to go through the school day without too many problems. However, no matter how busy you are, if your child comes to you looking for help, don’t ignore them. Kids need to realise that they can still count on their parents even if they are working, but only for the things that really matter. It’s all about setting boundaries and clearing out the priorities. 
  • Ensure they have enough activities and tasks to do while you are working so they don’t get bored. 

If you have a partner, make sure they are aware of your struggles and work schedule. Any help is welcome and kids are more willing to follow certain rules if they are imposed by both parents. 

Surviving when your kids go to school

This is undoubtedly the better option of the two. If your work hours are at the same time as their school, you shouldn’t really have any problems, and you can continue your weeks as you did before. 

If your kid’s go back from school before you finish work, you can follow the advice above and create a schedule only for the afternoon and the time you’re not available. It will give them something to follow so they don’t wonder what to do during the day. 

Make a meal plan in advance 

Meal plans are a must, even if you don’t have kids. Thinking about what you’re going to cook every single day just takes too much time. So here is what you should do: 

  • Every Saturday, create a meal plan for the next week, as well as a grocery list for the ingredients that you need. 
  • This includes thinking about healthy breakfast meals for your kids and yourself, as well. 
  • Prep the meals on Sunday so that you don’t have to do as much when the workweek starts. 
  • We recommend cooking big enough meals for dinner that you can eat as lunch the next day. 

Get help in cleaning 

It’s important not to let the house chores pile up. Set a day in the week, like a Saturday or a Sunday, where you do a deep clean of the whole house. Include your partner and kids and make it a fun family activity. If you don’t know where to start, just google some advice from professional cleaners and see how you can make the whole process a lot easier. 

And if you don’t have time for that or you’d rather spend it doing something more enjoyable, then consider hiring a regular cleaner to help you out. You can schedule a session for every week or however often you need one. Most companies allow you to customise your cleaning appointments so you can set priorities, the number of cleaners and the hours they will spend at your property. 

Conclusion

It might take some time for your family to get used to this way of life, but if there is good communication and the expectations are set from the beginning, it shouldn’t be a problem. Always make sure that everyone in your household is okay with the new rules, and if changes are needed, that’s completely fine. Sometimes it may take more time, but that’s absolutely normal.