Working at home has always been a major time commitment for me, and I’ll readily admit that sometimes I struggle with balancing it with family time. How do you make sure you have enough of it?
A part of it comes from planning. If you don’t have a schedule it can be very easy to overdo, to feel that you have to keep working, even when your family needs you.
Your day to day routine can help you keep in touch with your family. You should always be taking time to be there with your family.
It can start with dinner. Eat together regularly. Daily is ideal, with the television off. Prepare dinner together. I got my kids started in the kitchen very young. They don’t have to be very old to tear lettuce, after all, and how they help changes as they grow.
That’s one of the important things to remember about family time, in my opinion. It is not just about having fun. It’s about living together and helping each other.
But I do try to get out with my family. We try to have family outings regularly. Our ideal is once a week, but other parts of life often get in the way of that.
A simple thing to do is pick a place and go hiking. It’s free and good for all of you.
Of course, at times you do have to cope with your work getting out of hand. Business picks up and you really need to work extra hours. Getting enough family time is tough.
In part you will need to decide how much work you should be taking on. Sometimes you have to just deal with it, but other times it’s a matter of knowing how to say no.
If it’s getting really tough, it may be time to consider a little childcare help. That may not be the reason you work at home, but it can be of great assistance at those times when you just really need to get things done without interruption.
If you’re one of the lucky ones, you’ll have family or friends who can help much of the time. In my case, that would be my inlaws. Retired, local grandparents are really amazing.
Other times you’ll have to pay for help. If that’s what it takes, you may have to be resigned to it.
Once you’re done with the busy times, make sure you commit to some good family time again. You do not want overwork to become a habit.