How To Work From Home With A Baby? Ways To Stay Productive
As a new parent, you’ll be faced with many challenging situations. One of the toughest things you may have to figure out is how to juggle working and caring for a baby.
No matter what your work situation is—whether you work in an office full time, have a hybrid schedule, or are fully remote—if you’re a working parent, chances are at some point you’ll be faced with having to work and care for your baby at the same time.
In this blog post, we’ve rounded up six tips that can make it a little easier to juggle working from home with a baby.
6 Tips for How to Work From Home With a Baby
1. Establish a Baby-Friendly Workspace
Now sure how to work from home with a baby? Set yourself up for success by creating a baby-friendly workspace that makes it easy for you to focus and get your work done while keeping your baby safe and happy.
Designate an area of your workspace for your baby so they have a safe and stimulating environment to keep them busy while you work.
For older babies and toddlers, set up a playard with toys and books to create a cozy nook where they can safely play while you’re at your desk. If you’re working from home with a newborn or infant, an investment in gear that comforts them, like the MamaRoo® Multi-Motion Baby Swing™, is your best bet when you need a few hours to focus on work.
The MamaRoo Baby Swing is the only baby swing that moves like you do, with five motions, five speeds, and four sounds that you can customize to create the combination that works for your baby. For your baby, it’s the next best thing to being held in your arms, so you can take that conference call while your baby happily swings back and forth.
2. Establish a Routine for Working From Home With a Baby
A good routine can help you balance your work and your baby’s needs. Identifying pockets of time during the day when you know you can be most productive—such as naptime, early mornings, and times when your partner is free to pick up some of the childcare duties—is key to crossing all the important to-dos off your list.
Use these times to schedule high-priority calls or block your calendar so you can use this time for short bursts of focused work.
You should also be upfront with your manager about your availability so you can manage expectations about when you’ll be reachable. Set boundaries and communicate those boundaries to your manager and your co-workers so they know the best times to reach you.
3. Anticipate - and Manage - Interruptions
Once you’ve put a routine in place for working from home with a newborn or baby, you’ll start to notice patterns—maybe your manager calls an 'impromptu' meeting at 11am every Tuesday or your baby gets a little fussy around 3pm every afternoon.
Try to plan your schedule around these times but remember, there’s only one thing that’s predictable about babies… and that is that babies are unpredictable.
It’s inevitable that your baby will be inconsolable the afternoon you’re on an absolutely-can’t-miss deadline or will have a massive diaper blowout minutes before your scheduled one-on-one with your boss.
Create a gameplan to help you manage the times when you absolutely can’t be interrupted—have your partner plan to work from home, ask a friend or neighbor to pinch hit for you, or book a babysitter so you have help on hand.
4. Tap Into Your Support Systems
If possible, get your partner involved and share responsibilities as evenly as you can, and don’t be shy about taking friends and family up on their offers to help.
If working from home with a baby becomes truly overwhelming, it might be time to explore other childcare options, such as hiring a full- or part-time nanny, enrolling your baby in daycare, or booking a babysitter to come in for a few hours every week.
5. Take Time For You
You work hard to care for your baby and to manage your workload at work—but if you’re like most new parents, chances are you don’t do such a great job of taking care of yourself. To be your best, self-care is crucial so carve out a little time for activities that recharge you, such as exercise, meditation, engaging in hobbies you enjoy, or spending time with friends.
Setting realistic expectations for yourself as you work from home with a baby is also important. Keep in mind that you might not achieve the same level of productivity as before, and that's okay. Instead, be kind to yourself and celebrate small victories. Remember, if you take care of yourself, you'll be better equipped to care for your baby and fulfill your work responsibilities.
6. Lean on Technology to Make It Easier Working From Home With a Newborn
Technology and tools that help you navigate the challenges of working from home with a baby can help you be more productive and professional. Use productivity apps to keep you organized and on top of all your tasks, and task management software to set reminders and prioritize work so that nothing falls through the cracks.
You may want to set up an automatic response for your emails to let people know that your response may be delayed or that you may need additional time to reply. Look for ways to automate repetitive tasks, potentially lightening your workload and allowing you to focus on more critical responsibilities.
The right baby gear can also make work from home with a baby more manageable. A smart baby swing, like the MamaRoo Baby Swing or RockaRoo® Baby Rocker, can keep your baby content and entertained for long stretches of time so you can take calls and work through your to-do list.
Take a Deep Breath! You Got This!
Working from home with a newborn or baby can be both challenging and rewarding: you have to find a balance between work responsibilities and caring for a little one, but you get to witness your baby's milestones and be present for their everyday moments.
Finding the right balance in how to work from home with a baby can be tricky, but by setting boundaries, prioritizing tasks, and communicating your needs with your employer and family members, you can navigate these challenges and create a balanced life that lets you spend quality time with your baby while fulfilling work commitments.