The world, as we know it, seems to have changed overnight due to the Corona Virus pandemic and the drastic measures being taken to slow and stop its spread. No longer are we rushing out the door to shuttle kids to school, battling traffic on our commute to work (yay!), or stopping by our bosses’ office to say good morning on our way to get a cup of coffee (wait, I have to supply my own coffee now?). Our new normal is one with a lot more time at home, which can be exciting at first thought, then overwhelming as the reality sets in that you must still accomplish your work. Routine has been wholly disrupted, which begs the question- how do you stay productive while working from home? I took a poll of IVR Technology Group’s finest to find out what they’re doing to keep up their productivity during the CVC (Corona Virus Crisis).
By an overwhelming majority, the responses I received centered around self-discipline. Maintain your schedule at home as you would at work. Keep your daily behaviors the same as you would in the office. Have your coffee at the same time, take your lunch at the same time, etc. Set up an actual workspace if you don’t have a dedicated office in your home. Don’t let yourself fall into bad habits like working on your couch, where distractions are too easy. Self-discipline is key.
Easy Enough If It’s Just You
But what do you do if suddenly there are kids home due to school closures? Expecting them to silently entertain themselves for 8 hours so you can maintain productivity isn’t likely, especially if they’re under the age of 18. And if you’re like me with kids younger (11 and 8), good luck getting them to entertain themselves without an argument for more than 22 seconds.
Work At Home Ideas For Parents
Your child’s school is closed, and daycare doesn’t seem like a good option in a pandemic scenario. So let’s take a deep breath and be pragmatic.
Option 1- Hand them a device and leave them alone. All those parental control apps should keep them out of trouble. Stock fridge with Lunchables because they can’t be trusted with the microwave. Simmer in guilt, imagining the brain cells they’re losing, and how the silence inevitably means something is wrong. On to option 2!
Option 2- Bribes! Bribes will work…for about 15 minutes. Delusional thoughts creep in of kids working together to conquer household chores! Sure, we can get them to do a few tasks, but can we afford to pay them what it will take to keep them DOING them? Rhetorical question. And in my experience, the chores are undone faster than done and usually dissolve into threats, followed by whines and complaints from the restless natives.
Option 3- Probably your best option. Be realistic. Expect to take more frequent breaks from working to reset your kiddos and keep them entertained and fed. Stock up on crafts and healthy snacks that are self-serve like apples, string cheese, and yogurt. Allow playtime outside to burn off energy. Accommodate some screen time but load new educational games. Check-in often, and if you have a spouse or partner also working from home, work together (build a schedule if you’re really ambitious)- divide and conquer!
Remember, most of us are going through similar trials. If your 2-year old is on your lap during a customer call, let the customer know what’s going on. Chances are, they can relate even if they don’t have a 2-year old. My dogs bark at every jogger that passes our house and every squirrel that runs across our fence. Try to laugh at the ridiculous situation we find ourselves in. Be human, and remember, WE WILL GET THROUGH THIS!