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The Back to School Work Hump

The Back to School Work Hump

The house is way too quiet to work and the back to school photos on Facebook constantly distract me.   I’ve spent the past three months figuring out how to work at home with kids for the summer and now I have to figure out how to work without them. The house is so noiseless that it is almost distracting. It’s so hard to concentrate on work and not let my mind wander to thinking about the kids. In between blog topics, I’m thinking about if they are making new friends, if they are scared, if they found a buddy to eat lunch with……if they need me.  It’s such a struggle for this stay-at-home mom to stay focused!

Once the kids are back in school, everyone tells you: “you’ll have a ton of extra time to devote to work”!!.   Yes, I agree.  Working from home will be a BREEZE! Right? Right. But maybe not right now….right now, it takes all of my effort to concentrate.  If you are like me, just don’t think about…..

Don’t think about how messy your house is.

Don’t think about all of the Netflix binge watching you need to catch up on.

Don’t think about how beautiful it is outside.

Don’t think about how nice it would be to go shopping alone.

Don’t think about how the bushes and flowers need trimmed.

Don’t think about the pile of laundry calling your name.

Don’t think about all of the toys that need to be organized.

Don’t think about the crockpot you need to put together for dinner tonight.

Don’t look down at your nails that are in desperate need of a manicure.

Just breathe and put emphasis on your work at hand. Keep telling yourself that you will get to all of those other things soon enough but don’t let these worries procrastinate the real work that needs to be done. Working from home can be the best of both worlds. It can provide you income while being flexible enough to fit the needs of your family. When the kids return to school, it just takes a few days to get back into the swing of things. Before you know it, it will be May and you’ll have to adjust to working amidst chaos once again. Until then, here are a few things you need to do to help you get over the back to school work hump:

Prioritize!

Did anyone else take the Franklin Covey Planner class? Planning and Solitude – is step number ONE! It’s important to map out not only what needs to be accomplished during the time that you have allotted each day, but also what things are most important. Make a list of the tasks that need to be completed and then rank them according to deadline, desire to complete, etc. Keep in mind that the more you can do while the kids are in school, the more time you’ll have to enjoy your family once they get home.

Schedule!

Now that you have your list in order, take the time to write out a schedule of how and when you will complete each item. This will give you a tangible way to see your progress each day. Your schedule doesn’t need to be set in stone – it needs to be somewhat flexible so that it doesn’t become burdensome. Having a plan of action will help you avoid distractions and accomplish more during the time you have available.

Take a Break!

One of the biggest mistakes that work-at-home moms make – is to work too much. Don’t be afraid to schedule breaks. Take that walk outside after lunch. Go to your Zumba class. Enjoy a pedicure and relax for an hour. Taking care of yourself is one of the best things that you can do for your mental health. Focusing on something other than your work can give you clarity and help you avoid burnout.

Working at home while your children are in school is possible, but it does take efficiency and organization. It’s very important that you set your priorities and schedule your time in a way that is flexible and that allows you to get the most accomplished while your kids are away. Don’t get discouraged if it seems like you’re not accomplishing much some days. Rest, go easy on yourself and do your best.

 

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