Many parents don’t want another person raising their children or having to deal with dropping their kids off to daycare so they opt in to find a way to create the best of both worlds. They are called Work at home parents. I would be one of them. My wife would be another. It seems great, but it’s not easy. At all. The work at home parent has decided to juggle both work and parenthood under the same roof and with it comes a bit of chaos. Sure the chaos can be managed and you will find your own tweaks to make this work, but it still is pretty chaotic.
While you may be able to figure out working hours versus family time, your kids won’t grasp this concept. The kids will see that their parents are home and have to ask you questions, sit down with you to chat about the next big show they are watching or come to you as they would any other time because you are there. It takes a special skill to train your kids to know when work time is in session and when family time is in session. This brings the number one part of chaotic life – your kids not respecting working hours because you are physically home. Most of the time they don’t even think you are working. No office, no work. Wrongo.
The next part of the chaotic life of work at home parents is that your family and friends won’t always respect boundaries. They know that you are home which in their mind means they can call, text, or pop in to visit with you. A person who doesn’t work at home won’t comprehend that importance of actually getting work done. Dude, don’t sit there all day then talk to me when I jump on a phone call. Clock work. Amazing. This is probably the most frustrating part of attempting to be successful when working at home.
Last but certainly not least, the most chaotic part of being a work at home parent is learning to cool your jets. Getting angry over the situation isn’t going to serve you any good. Fueling rage and negative emotions will only bring you down and make you less productive as a work at home parent. Occasionally you will have to step away from work to calm these emotions so that you can focus on getting work done without having a total meltdown. This is by far the most difficult portion of working at home; learning to get control of your emotions when frustrated that family won’t respect boundaries. I have learned to recongize a coming blow up, remove myself from the situation, start to take 5 deep breaths and chill. It works and it works well. It’s saved the business and the family!!!
While work at home parents may lead a pretty chaotic life there are so many benefits for opting into this line of work. The ability to have a flexible schedule, being more present in your kid’s life and having time to pursue your passions are just a few reasons why being a work at home parent is awesome.