I was originally going to title this blog – “Working from Home” however, the more I thought about it, what I am doing isn’t work – its functioning and I think that is probably the same for a lot of us.
As a small business owner who relies solely on face to face contact, we are going into our fourth week of being closed, which having only opened our new studio in October, is devastating. Not only do we work face to face, but as pregnancy and post-natal specialists, our clients are some of the most vulnerable people right now.
So, now I am ‘working from home’, I am also home schooling (or at least attempting to) my two kids, making sure we all eat (far too much currently), making sure we don’t all kill each other and trying to come up with innovative ways for us to run our face to face business online…….and I thought I had it tough before coronavirus!
I think one of the key things I have realised is not to get too caught up in stressing about trying to do all things equally – it is just never going to happen and causes way more stress than any productivity! I think I realised this round about lunchtime on Day 2 when I seriously considered self-isolating from my kids for 14 days in the play house.
There is no way I can do a full day of schooling, try and create a new business model and work on my dissertation. Oh yes, forgot to add that little bit into the mix, my Masters dissertation is due in on 22nd May (and yes that is with a ‘generous’ 14 day extension from the university).
So rather than snapping at the girls for asking me what a subjective clause is (still no idea?) while I am trying to zoom call a client, while prepping lunch for us all (even though they only had breakfast what feels like 5 mins ago) I have started to break my days into chunks which so far, has helped massively not only with my stress levels, but also productivity.
Here’s a little snap shot of how we are sectioning our time – its not rigid, and if we need to shift it around a little each day then we will, but so far it is providing us with some structure and less stress! I totally get that for some of you who work from home properly, this won’t necessarily work, but it might give you a few ideas to make your day a bit easier.
9:am – Exercise
We always start the day off with exercise because I am a big believer in how exercise can stimulate the brain to focus, be creative and set you up for a good day. Sometimes we do Joe Wicks, sometimes our own Superkids and recently we have been going out for a run just to get a change of scenery.
10 – 1 School
I have set aside these 3 hours to focus solely on the girls and their school work whether that be set tasks on the Google classroom or fun art activities, online language games. The main thing is I am on hand, not distracted and able to answer those twenty million questions (Teachers need a pay rise) and help out where I can.
2-5 Mammy’s Work
After lunch, I set the girls off with a few options of activities – some school, although they surprisingly never choose this option and then other activities such as crafts, reading, or I set them mini projects. Honestly, quite often this ends up with them on the Wii playing Mario Winter Olympics but hey – its getting them active. I make them add up all of their scores (Maths) and it keeps them happy.
During this time, I get 3 hours (although it is interrupted sometimes) to either make zoom calls, write content for our online members site, work on dissertation and just get through my list of jobs needed to keep some element of our business ticking over.
It’s not a perfect schedule and for some wouldn’t work at all, but just thought I would share what is working for us at the moment!
Let us know how you are managing your working from home day in the comments below.