The recent change in remote work policies has been a great help for busy parents who might not have been able to spend more time with their children otherwise. In fact, the BBC suggests that this arrangement might be the new normal even after the pandemic ends.
However, people often underestimate the hidden challenges that come with working from home. In many ways, juggling all your different tasks as a partner, employee, and parent can be even more difficult to do when you have no sense of separation from all of these roles. As such, learning how to take mindful breaks can help you take stock of the current situation, so you can take care of yourself and cherish this time with your family as much as you can.
Step away from your laptop
It’s easy to lose track of time when you’re staring at a screen all day. To combat this, Healthline recommends the 20-20-20 rule to prevent digital eye strain: Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away from you for 20 seconds. The last measurement doesn’t have to be exact, you just have to be able to focus on something far away enough to help relax your eyes. This is worth incorporating even for those who take work breaks every so often, as it reminds you that your day isn’t all about work.
Give yourself a deadline and stick to it !
In connection to the previous point, give yourself a hard deadline each day. Once this deadline is reached, turn off any work-related communications and keep your mind away from work completely.
It’s equally important to take time out for yourself — even on busy days — and winding down at the end of the night is the perfect way to do so. The key is to pack your nighttime routine with things that you genuinely enjoy so that you’ll look forward to this nightly ritual. Sleep teas like loose-leaf blends, for instance, can work wonders if you have a hard time getting your brain to switch off even after you’ve put your work away.
Spend time outdoors at least once a day
When you get a mental block, sometimes all you need is some fresh air to clear your head. Consider making a habit of stepping out for a quick afternoon stroll to the park. The change in scenery can go a long way in refreshing your mind.
And if your child’s still a tot, why not turn your stroll into a family excursion? The pushchairs on iCandy can be especially useful for going over grass and concrete, thanks to their softer suspension and optimised tyre tread. This means you can easily manoeuvre the pushchair across different terrains — and accomplish a whole full-body workout while you’re at it. It’s life hacks like this that have kept parents sane and healthy during lockdowns.
Even a quick 10-minute walk through town can do wonders for your mental and physical health. Just make sure that you’re staying at a safe distance as much as possible!
Take stock of your emotions
Journaling has become pretty popular — and for good reason. Writing in a journal, even for just 10 to 15 minutes, allows you to diffuse tense emotions and keeps you from feeling overwhelmed. This can also help you increase your emotional control, preventing you from lashing out to those around you.
Accept a helping hand
Not everyone’s remote work setup is the same. You may know some WFH parents who seem to balance their work and personal lives with ease, but if you’re having a rough go of it, don’t feel pressured to keep up.It’s not easy.
After all, you and your partner are not them — you have your own unique challenges to face. So don’t feel ashamed to hire an extra hand, especially if you find that doing it all on your own is proving detrimental to the wellbeing of both yourself and your children.
You don’t need to worry about exactly how to find the right person, either. The comprehensive recruitment services offered right here on HappyNest ensure that you meet a nanny with whom you can trust your children completely. And with this weight off your mind, you can reconfigure your work-life balance in a way that doesn’t stress you even further.
Wrapping it up
Being a parent is challenging enough on its own, even without working from home. Although it’s no secret that juggling parenting and working from home is difficult, knowing when to take mindful breaks can help you re-centre and enjoy the time you have with your loved ones.
Written exclusively by Joan Brown for happy-nest.co.uk