Remote work has been on the rise for years, but it saw a major boom during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, many companies are transitioning to remote work on a permanent basis. If you’re the parent of a toddler, that has big benefits. It offers:
- more flexibility
- time at home with your little one
- extra cash from not having to send your child to daycare
However, you might find yourself having to juggle work and an energetic toddler demanding your attention. Thankfully, there are plenty of things you can do to keep your little one happy and entertained while you work. This way, you can stay productive while enjoying the perks of being home.
A Guide to Effectively Work from Home with a Toddler
Let’s cover some effective ways you can effectively work from home with a toddler.
Set Up a Playroom
Having a designated workspace for yourself is important for productivity and focus. It’s a good idea to set up a designated space to play for your child, too.
A playroom with all of their favorite toys is a great way to keep your little one occupied and happy while you have to get some things done. Make sure the room is nearby so you can get there quickly if you need to, and only allow your child to play with toys you feel are safe and appropriate while you’re not there to monitor them.
It’s also a good idea to set up a security camera in the playroom that can be viewed remotely. You can keep working in your office while checking in on your child from your phone or computer to make sure they’re okay. It allows you to do your work while prioritizing their safety.
Set Them Up for Success
Your toddler might be too young to attend school, but they’re never too young to start learning. In fact, encouraging them to learn in age-appropriate ways now can help to prepare them for school and encourage a love of reading as a kid that transcends to later in their life.
There are countless interactive online learning tools that your child can access via a computer or tablet. However, make sure you’re taking precautions to keep them safe online. It’s not uncommon for scammers to target children through games or learning apps. These cyberattacks can lead to identity theft via your child. You can go a long way in protecting them online by:
- Talking to them about how to stay safe online;
- Installing parental controls on digital devices;
- Limiting which apps they can use.
It’s also a good rule of thumb to check in on the apps and sites your child is using regularly. Some sites that might seem child-friendly on the surface aren’t as appropriate as they appear.
Develop a Schedule
One of the potential drawbacks of working from home is a flexible schedule. That might seem like a good thing, and in some ways, it is. However, it can also throw a wrench in your work-life balance.
If you’re waking up late every day, starting work in the afternoon, and letting yourself get distracted by what’s going on at home, you’re going to find yourself scrambling to finish everything. You might end up working late into the evening and missing out on that time with your little one.
Children thrive on having a consistent schedule, and a daily routine will benefit you, as well. While it’s important to develop a schedule that works for both of you, keep the following suggestions in mind as you work it out:
- Wake up at the same time each morning;
- Go through a morning routine with your child;
- Start work at the same time each day;
- Have dedicated working hours;
- Take frequent breaks to check on your child;
- Stop working at the same time each day;
- Enjoy some quality time with your child.
Having a routine will help you find a better balance while making the most of your time with your little one. It can also help to reduce your at-home expenses. Working from home and having a child there can cause your utilities to go up. Teach your little one energy-saving habits, like turning lights off when they leave a room. When you have a routine in place that gives you more free time, you can also save money by preparing meals at home instead of ordering out, doing laundry more efficiently, and even canceling your expensive gym membership to work out at home.
Working at home with a toddler can force you to be adaptable and use creativity to get everything done. However, at the end of the day, it gives you the comfort and peace of mind of having your little one right there with you, and there’s nothing more rewarding than that.
About the Writer: Miles is an independent writer with a background in business and passion for sustainability, psychology, news, and simply helping people live happy and fulfilled lives. He has lived and traveled all over the United States and continues to expand his awareness and experiences. When he is not writing, he is most likely mountain biking or kicking back with a cup of tea.