The struggle is real! Finding a balance between home life and work life is a real juggle, but I do have some key tips on getting through the day to day of it!
I'll be the first to admit though, I find these tips great but I don't always remember to follow them. We're all human. We all get overwhelmed sometimes. When I'm overwhelmed, I sometimes forget what works for me, so having it written down somewhere is just what I need. Take this as your reminder to sit back and take stock.
1. Create a space you want to be in!
OK...so I'm a very visual person, but this was a big one for me! In order to work from home, I had to have a dedicated workspace that I wanted to spend time in. I didn't want to be waking up in the morning and dreading the day. I didn't want work associated with anything negative (if I could help it!) so I set to work creating my own space. I decided to place this area in our living room. This was essential because I needed to keep an eye on Teddy while working and I hate being shut off from the hustle and bustle of day to day life. I purchased a simple but sturdy desk from Ikea, kept my favourite design books and magazines on hand and styled with my beloved Louie Luxe print received on the Revie Jane purpose tour in Sydney. Keeping items close that bring me inspiration and joy has been incredibly important!
2. Take it one hour at a time. Or half an hour at a time...or 10 minutes!
My point is, break it down. Don't tell yourself you have to sit down and hustle at the computer for 8 hours straight. It might be so daunting that you quit before you even begin (if you're an all or nothing type of person like I am). If you break the day down into time periods or even specific tasks, it can seem so much more achievable!
3. Write a list and break it down!
Writing a to-do list is a bit of a no-brainer, but a lot of people get carried away and write everything they can think of, and see it as a bit of a failure if everything isn't done. It's also hard to know where to begin with one huge list. My advice is to break your list down into three categories: 'must do' tasks, 'would be good to do' tasks and 'if I have time' tasks. This way you have priorities all ready and you avoid disappointment if you only get your 'must do' tasks completed for the day.
4. Clean a little every day, not ALL day!
When you're working from home, it's so easy to get fixated on your surroundings. There can be washing, dishes and all sorts of mess around you and it can be very distracting. My saviour has been a cleaning schedule! Another simple solution to make sure my mind is on what it needs to be focussed on. I dedicate time to cleaning in the day so that it is done and doesn't need to be thought about for the rest of the day. As I am doing small bits every day, it has helped me avoid saving it all for the weekend and then having to spend an entire day getting the house back to a respectable standard. I got the idea when I started following Just Another Mummy Blog, she has an amazing template (link) that I printed and laminated. I placed it in prime position at our Organisation Station and stick to it daily. James can refer to it and help me out once he gets home, it's been a life saver!
5. Take time to rest, take breaks and get outside!
You know the expression "you can't pour from an empty cup"? It's true. Take time out to rest and refuel during the day. I often schedule this time in or take it when I can feel my productivity dropping. Remember to be easy on yourself, it's ok to sit down and watch an episode on Netflix with a cup of tea in hand. Taking breaks isn't lazy, it often makes us even more productive than if we didn't take them! Just make sure not to over-do it. Set a time limit and stick to it.
Teddy is just over 1 and so far, is yet to go into daycare. This is about to change, but I wanted to touch on the fact that some mama's will have their kids at home with them and some won't. Some mama's will have some kids in care/at school and the younger kids at home with them. Whatever the situation, you're not alone and you can find a routine and method that works for you and your family. No two families are the same just as no two people are the same, so try not to compare your situation too closely with another's. You've got this!
I'm a 30 year old mother of 1 (soon to be 2!) and freelance Graphic Designer - just working my butt off trying to find that work/life balance. I have passions for all things design, sustainability and organisation and I love to share what helps me on a day to day basis with general #mumlife.