Combination working from home/family
Do you combine working from home or continuing to go to work, with the care of your children, and continuing to dedicate yourself to school?
This inevitably means that working from home / working for school is not optimal, and that it takes a lot of energy to focus, concentrate and organize. Often the old rest moments, e.g. when the children are lying in bed, fall away to replace them for work and school.
This brings with it a lot of extra challenges, where it is very important that you can keep a sense of control, and don't lose sight of yourself!
The perfect solution does not exist, but we try to help you on your way with some tips:
Structure: try to apply as much structure as possible to your own day and that of your children, and let this structure be as similar as possible to an "ordinary" day. Also keep the difference between weekdays and weekend days. This helps to create some predictability and calm. This predictability is also very important for children to be able to hold on to in a strongly changed period. Tips to create this structure:
- Fixed daily schedule: try to make the day run according to a certain pattern, e.g. get up, get dressed, have breakfast, walk outside, homework/play moment.... Keep as many fixed times as possible of getting up, breakfast, lunch, dinner, going to bed and try to keep your fixed rituals.
- What do you do where? If you do everything in one place (e.g. eating at the same table, working, homework, colouring...) then the boundary between all these things becomes much blurred. Where possible, try to make fixed places for this: one place where you work, one place where your children do homework, one place where the children play, just like in kindergarten, for example, with game / reading corners... this also offers a grip and peace.
- Depending on the age of your children: try to make clear agreements with your children, what can they do in the time you work, try to make this as concrete as possible, and also see how they know whether or not they can disturb you (e.g. green leaf at the door = you can ask questions, red leaf at the door = don't disturb).
- Workplace: make sure there are as few distractions around you as possible. Temporarily turn off Facebook / Whatsapp alerts, make sure you have your back to washing dishes ... So that they do not attract your attention, make sure that on your desk / table is only the work you are currently doing...
- Make sure you have a written overview of all your tasks for yourself, and try to divide these into small concrete intermediate goals. Every small step you take counts!
Take good care of yourself!
Find out what your priorities are right now. Dare to set the bar a bit lower than usual: you can't possibly run your household optimally, entertain your children, work from home as productively as at work and prepare all school tasks as you want. You can't create extra hours in a day! Find out in which areas you can do less at the moment, and which things you want to give priority to. Sometimes it is better to drop something, to keep your chances of success and sense of control over your other goals. For example, you may not be able to participate in one course at the moment and want to participate in the reexaminations, in order to increase your chances of passing and focus on the other courses.
All these challenges require a lot of energy. Make sure that you can get this energy from somewhere, and that you can also build in moments of rest and relaxation. For example, try starting your day with a fresh walk. This is not a waste of time, but just an investment to make the rest of your day run more smoothly!
Keep in touch with your social network by phone / online, this also provides energy!
- Day structure for yourself and your environment provides peace and predictability
- Make clear agreements with your environment
- Create a nice workplace
- Provide a clear overview of your tasks, and divide them into small intermediate steps
- Last but not least: Take care of yourself!
- Set your priorities and dare to lower the bar for yourself
- Keep doing things that can give you energy and relaxation
- Social contact
Studying (together) with brothers and sisters at home
- If possible, isolate yourself (e.g. in a separate room). Earphones or earphones can help if this is not possible.
- Try to gain insight into the routines of all family members and draw up a daily schedule based on this. You can use the quieter moments to study more difficult subjects. Also ask your family members to take your concentration peaks into account: is it best to study in the morning or are you feeling refreshed in the evening?
- Make arrangements with the whole family: when, for example, younger sisters and brothers can play outside so that you can concentrate optimally. Arrange a 'don't disturb' sign with your family.
- Sisters or brothers at home still studying ? Plan joint study and relaxation moments. Provide active breaks (walking, playing soccer in the garden, ...).
- Be creative and active in your study method, which helps against external distractions. Make a mind map or schedule, ask questions about the subject matter, make a list of common mistakes... Do you have fellow students at home: motivate each other and agree, for example, that you will 'interrogate' each other at the end of the day.