Sometimes I miss the days where I HAD to wake up to an alarm, shower, put on nice clothes and makeup, and be out the door before the kids woke up.
I also sometimes miss that 45-minute commute where I could jam out in my car or listen to my favorite podcast…uninterrupted!
And I definitely miss the office catering amazing lunches, or the boss taking us out (and footing the bill!)
But isn’t working from home and making a living on your own terms everyone’s dream? You ask?
Now don’t get me wrong, I freaking LOVE working from home, but it comes with its fair share of challenges.
If you are a work at home mom, I’m sure you can relate.
It really doesn’t matter if you work for someone else and are working from your home office full time, or are a full-time entrepreneur or side-hustler, we all share similar struggles.
I started officially working from home for someone else in May of 2016, with a 5-month-old and no childcare!
Needless to say, that gig didn’t last very long! Then I decided I hated being an employee and started working for myself! Although it has been one of the best decisions I have made, it’s not an easy road.
As a full-time blogger with 5 kids (a toddler and a baby home with me full-time), I work when and where I can. Although I do try to manage my time as best as I can. You can find some tips and tricks I share about how to stay productive as a WAHM with kids at home on my post on Minimal Capsule.
Thankfully, I also have a very supportive husband that sees my vision for the future and helps me in any way that he can.
So that is what I am here to talk about today. How can you get your husband (or significant other) to help you out around the house and with the kids when you are a WAHM.
Working at Home is Still Working!
I won’t lie, I think most of my friends and family think I just sit around all day, scroll Facebook, maybe write a post, but don’t ACTUALLY work.
Frustrating, I know. Sometimes people (or your kids) think just because you work from home you can drop whatever you are doing when they need something. People who don’t work from home don’t really understand that working from home is harder than going to work.
I always makes me laugh when I see those stock photos of “work at home moms” with the baby sitting so nicely on her lap while she types and is on the phone at the same time.
You know exactly what I’m talking about. That never happens. I keep my baby and toddler as far away from my computer as possible and the second I try to talk to anyone on the phone it’s nothing by screaming!
So how can you recruit your significant other to lessen the load?
1. Help Set Up a Home Office
If you don’t already have a home office, get one ASAP! Make it priority number one on the “honey do” list. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just space for you to work.
When I first started working from home, my home office was a blanket sectioning off part of my bedroom. It was not great, but it got me in the mindset of working pretty quick. My home office now is a whopping 100 square foot porch with no installation. Did I mention I live in Wisconsin? So even though during the winter I have to dress like a sherpa to stay warm, my office is my space.
2. Set Office Hours
If at all possible, work with your hubby and kids to set office hours that will work for everyone. This way they will know that you should not be disturbed unless someone is dying.
I actually like to get out of the house altogether for my office hours and go to a local coffee shop. Every Friday from about 11-3 (or 5 depending if the hubby picks up the kids from school), you can find me tucked away in my little corner in the coffee shop, in the zone, drinking a hot chai tea.
Which brings me to my next tip…
3. Ask for Help With the Kids
Now I say ASK here for a very specific reason. I love my husband, but he’s an idiot sometimes. He has told me straight out that if I don’t ask him to do something, how is he supposed to know I want him to do it? Uh…hello, after 11 years shouldn’t you be able to read my mind?
When you are working from home, every little bit of time you can get to work counts. Therefore, agree on a plan ahead of time so your husband is aware of your expectations.
Depending on his work schedule, there are lots of ways that he can help out with the kids.
- Take them and pick them up from school
- Drive them around to their activities
- Get them out of the house for a bit (take them to a playground)
- Have them help with chores
- Get them ready for bed or school in the morning
- Help with homework
4. Ask for Help Around the House
Again, make sure you both agree on the set expectations as to avoid an unnecessary argument. Now, I’m not saying he should take on all the household chore, but just because you work from home doesn’t mean you should be cleaning all day. You should be working and not feeling guilty about the house not being spotless!
Both the kids and the hubby can help out around the house so that you can keep your sanity.
- Making meals
- Taking care of pets
If your budget allows it, hire someone to come in a few days a week to clean your house. It will help out both of you.
5. Help Out With the Actual Work
Ok, this might be a long shot for some of you, it is for me. Although my husband is pretty tech savvy, he knows nothing about marketing or blogging.
Like zero! I just had to explain to him (again) the other day how I make money from my websites. He also says that blogging is “my thing,” and I’m ok with that.
However, if your husband is willing to lend you a hand, let him! I have seen many blogging couples. If he is unsure about it, give him simple things to do first. Give him some things to schedule on your social media, templates to fill out, simple VA type things. Just make sure not to overwhelm him with things so he never steps foot in your office again.
My last point is very important and I want to make sure you know that.
He is Your Cheerleader!
Working from home is an entirely different animal than going to an office every day. It can be lonely, frustrating, and just down-right hard, especially if you are working for yourself.
Your husband, your partner, should be just that. He should be your cheerleader when you are just not feeling up to it. When you are doubting yourself or just having a bad day.
There have been so many times where I just had to talk through something and even though he has no idea what I’m talking about, my husband will listen and say encouraging things. Which is just what I need to hear at that time.
So don’t forget to ask for help from your husband and your kids. It will make everyone’s life a little easier when everyone works together!