Monthly Archives: December 2016

Tips for Managing Your Work Schedule While Kids Are On Winter Break

It is almost Christmas and winter break starts today! Our schedules will be more relaxed, but it will also be challenging to manage both working at home and the kids.

Here are a few suggestions for the next two weeks:

Take a vacation: Plan on taking at least one week of vacation. Taking a break helps you connect with the kids instead of trying to stay focused on two things at the same time—it does not work. Multitasking is exhausting.

Plan the break: Have a list of activities that you can do as a family and a few where the kids get one-on-one time with each parent. It does not need to be fancy outings just something where you spend focused time with them.

Sports Practice: If kids have sports practice during the break attend those practices. It will give you a chance to regroup, finish last minute shopping, your work or just relax.

Daily schedule: Break down the day for the kids—work in the morning and fun in the afternoons. Having a general idea of the day will set expectations with the kids and will help ensure they do not spend all day on technology.

Activities: Keep the kids engaged with holiday fun activities while you are working. Keeping them involved will help you stay focused and get things done in time.

Share: If you have to work during the break see if your partner can take time off or you can take a week off, and your spouse can take the following week off. Breaking up your vacation will help you stay on task and give each parent a chance to spend time with the kids. Each parent can be a stay at home parent for a week while the other goes to work.

I hope this helps you and if you have any suggestions, please send them my way: info@telecommuterstalk.com

Gift Ideas for Telecommuting Parents

Holidays are a time of giving. Here are some of my favorite things as a telecommuter. You could give these items to yourself, or put it on your wish list:

Signs: A “do not disturb” sign or “I am on a conference call” sign is on my list this year. The sign gives everyone in the household a hint to be quiet. The sign can be simple and handmade—for example, here are a few cute ones I found.

Headphones: A comfortable, high-quality set of headphones will be great this year. As a remote employee, I am always wearing some to help me stay focused and keep out unwanted noise. Here are some options.

A Gym Membership: We telecommuters need to leave the house. Getting a gym membership will be a great way for us to get the exercise we need and the social connections we desire. You can find great deals here.

Experiences: Going out to the theater, art museums, movies, etc. are other ways to ensure we get dressed and get out. You can find some options for shows here.

If you have other ideas for holiday gifts, please share: info@telecommuterstalk.com

Telecommuter Tips to Stay on the Same Schedule as the Family

I’ve been working from home for over six years, and it seemed to me that my schedule is off from that of the rest of my family. I am home 40 hours a week during the weekdays, so when the weekend comes around, I want to go out and stay out. But since the rest of my family has been out for 40 hours a week, they want to stay home over the weekend.

I’ve tried a few things to get us on the same cycle, and I am having some success. So, here are some tips I wanted to share:

Drop-off: There are articles stating that getting ready for work makes you more productive. I am proof that this works. I’ve added another layer to this. I drop off one of the kids. I like the commute time and the connection I make in the morning with the child. I did not realize how important the commute time was for me to get into work mode. I know that not commuting is one of the advantages of telecommuting, but you need to do what works for you.

Practices: Sports practices are a good time to get out and stay out of the house. You can use this time to run errands or exercise. I use the time to exercise, plan the week, and catch up with other parents. Going for practices helps me stay connected with the community and get much-needed exercise.

Games: Weekend games are another way to enjoy the outdoors and stay involved in your kids’ activities. For weekend games, I am out for a few hours, then some additional time to run errands. Then, I am ready to stay in after all that.

Breaks: I’ve started using my lunch breaks or morning drop-offs to run at least one errand. Breaks help me feel productive and gets the day started right. Sometimes, I use lunch breaks to meet a friend for a walk or coffee.

Events: Keep a look out for local events that are kid-friendly or performances you might want to attend. Dressing up and going someplace special makes you feel good and provides an enriching experience.

Now, I feel like I go out of the house most days during the week, so that I am ready to stay home on the weekends and just relax with my family.

Do you have any ideas on syncing up with the rest of your family? Please share your ideas at info@telecommuterstalk.com