Interruptions from the living room | MOM! I need you!

Working from home is a blessing. I am grateful that in-between coaching calls I get to emerge from my office and steal kisses from my kids. I get to be here when they get home from school, hear about my children’s day and connect with them for 10  minutes before they go out to play. I have also found that as much as it is a blessing I have had to learn to manage the interruptions. At times the interruptions are a welcomed break but other times…. lets just say they can get me off track especially when I am working on something creative or even better a task I have been resisting doing anyway.

My Mom cares for my children when I am working and I find that I still get pulled off task when the kids are crying, demanding something or when they don’t like the response they are getting from Grandma. Here are a few of my strategies and mindsets I use to deal with the interruptions.

  1. Schedule breaks where you can connect with kids and give them your full attention. This helps me stay focused on business when I should be working and my children when I am with them. Watch for my video Overcoming Mommy Guilt to be posted real soon.
  2. Set clear ground rules for your work time with your children. If my office door is closed it is a clear sign that kids do not enter! I am often working on the phone with coaching clients that deserve my full attention and my kids now understand that I am off  limits during this time unless there is an emergency. When I am working without childcare my office door is open and they know office visits are allowed.
  3. Create a work mindset (more on this later.) I focus on the outcome I am working on, trust that my children are being cared for and that my Mom can handle all the upsets.
  4. Admission- Loud screaming and crying really get to me. During these times I take a deep  breath and ask myself  “Do I really need to solve this? Do they really need me right now?” More often than not the answer to these questions is a big fat NO. My children are just fine, it will all blow over in a few minutes and I do not welcome this interruption to get me upset or off task. Next,  I need to make a decision, do I leave my office or stay on task?
  5. Sometimes I make the choice to leave the office to find out the problem. In the past I would engage with my kids angry for the interruption. My new habit is to first remember that I am choosing to get involved, center myself and enter the upset with my kids from a calm place.  I know when I do this the interruption is significantly shorter and we come to a solution and a hug much quicker.
  6. When I am ready to get back on task I always start with “what is my outcome right now?” Asking a question always grants me an answer. This allows to get back on track and engaged in what I am working on.
  7. Last I remind myself daily that I GET to work from home.  It is indeed a blessing and the truth is I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Please share your comments below. What are some of your tips for handling interruptions from your family while working from home?

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3 Responses to “Interruptions from the living room | MOM! I need you!”

  1. Alphonso Esposito May 12, 2011 at 11:11 am #

    What a funny pic of our little girl. She definitely loves that you work from home. Great new site also. I love it

  2. shanti May 16, 2011 at 8:45 am #

    Great tips Jayne!! I have a very similar situation and you hit everything right on! I really climb into my cave when I close my office door and I trust that my kids no matter what level the screams reach are being taken good care of. I am blessing this amazing weather because they are quite often outside ;)!! So when I am working with clients or studying I get to listen not only to the birds outside but the glee of my kids playing. Plus if I wanted to I could stay in my pjs all day!

    • Jayne May 16, 2011 at 10:05 am #

      Thanks Shanti, I love working listening to outside giggles! PJS are a huge BONUS! lol

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