Time Management With Twins
I am a work-at- home mom and I have twin toddlers who have turned 3 years old last November. I started blogging and freelance writing when they were around 1.5 years old and since then have been juggling between blogging, home and kids. I am often asked how do I manage work and life being at home full-time and mainly when do I get time to write while with kids?
Well, working from home even in the most ideal situation can be challenging for many. It’s very easy to get distracted by house chores, cooking, laundry, unexpected guests, and that constantly ringing phone bell. Add to that two little ones who need your complete attention and if not that atleast your supervision. It certainly isn’t easy. And it doesn’t run smoothly too. My house on most days does looks like a mess and I have to think twice if I have to step out for a small errand. But I guess I am ok with it as long as am happy and contented in my situation. I always envisioned a life where I could spend more time with my family, without giving up on my work and financial independence. And this specific arrangement of working from home helps me achieve that.
Now to tell you how I go about it and how easy is time management with twins, let me share with you things I do and personally follow to achieve that balance.
Sticking to a schedule
Someone really wise gave me a very valuable advice when my kids were just a few months old to get the twins on a schedule. That is set a routine for them (hour by hour) and stick to it. This really made things easy for me. My kids have a fixed routine and their meal time, nap time, play time, screen time etc is all as per the routine. I have accordingly fixed a schedule for my work. So I work when kids are off to school which is nearly three hours and in the afternoon when they nap. (around two hours). I try to finish major chunk of my blog work/writing in the morning hours as that’s the time when I am most fresh and my brain works the fastest. During the time kids nap, I mostly focus on emails and messages (writing and reverting). Once kids wake up, I take them for activity classes for an hour. During that one hour while I am waiting for them outside the class I mostly finish all the pending phone calls and offline messages. Post class, I take kids to the park and spend a good one hour with them in the garden. I prefer not to work once kids are back and spend my entire time with them.
Avoid Multi -tasking
I learnt this the hard way. The first six months into blogging, all I found myself doing was Multi-tasking. I would breastfeed and work on phone simultaneously. I would try to sneak out moments during the day to finish work on laptop while kids played or I finished cooking. But at the end I realised this wasn’t helping me at all. When our concentration is divided it not just affects our productivity but also leads to unnecessary frustration for not being able to do justice to any of the tasks. And the same happened with me. So I learnt to stick to a schedule, divide my time between work, home and kids and try not to mix the three.
As much as I want to be the perfect mother, perfect home maker and best blogger, I know can’t give my 100 percent everytime. Hiring help and outsourcing some work helps me to maintain my sanity while trying to do justice to all the three roles. So I have a domestic help who helps me with household chores. And I have divided my list of tasks which I need to do myself and which I need to outsource. This definitely helps me to organize my day well.
Planning In Advance
This is the key. Most of my planning for the day is done a night before. I usually prioritise my tasks-to-do (basis deadlines, etc) and create a checklist for the next day. It becomes much easier as I know what to tackle first.
Choosing work assignments
Working as a freelancer and blogger, I have this advantage to choose the projects/assignments that come my way. And I am very selective and I only choose those projects which I know I will be able to do justice to given to my time schedule. I personally don’t take up long term assignments or ones that require me to invest long number hours of the day on the same. One mantra that I follow and that really helps to maintain this balance as a work-from-home mom is to choose my work wisely – do less work, but do quality work.
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This post is a part of#BlogchatterA2Z Challenge on the alphabet ‘G’. You can find all 26 posts on ‘A to Z of Twin Parenting’ under the hashtags #atozoftwinparenting and #themomsagaswrites on Facebook and Twitter