My child is schooling at home this year. Many of us are dealing with this and the multitude of compromises that this means for my commitment to work and also to my family. It is confronting! Luckily, I have support. This is my first lesson. Could I do it all alone? Maybe. Perhaps badly. But when you are dealing with a commitment that is important like your kid’s education and your work…
Setting Up Structures For Support Are Key
This includes people who will be your partners and a plan that includes the flexibility you need. As with all business planning, it requires thinking through the big picture outcomes that you are looking to achieve, but it also includes ways to pivot when the unexpected happens. Business strategy has evolved in recent years with such speed that the utilization of a strategic frame is one of the most important structures for support that you can have.
Multi-Tasking Is A Fantasy
Multitasking is a way we lie to ourselves. The more I multi-task, the less engaged the people I am with will be, whether that is a kid or a client. And with the addition of constant Zoom calls to our daily schedule, it is more important than ever to show you are actually with people when they are talking to you. As my kid has caught me more than once, he says: “Mom, you told me to make eye contact with you, but I can’t if you are looking at your phone.” Sure, you can mute and turn off your video, but this still hurts you and them. Manage your schedule. Be present to one thing at a time. It will elevate the value you get and give as well as decrease your heart rate.
Don’t Ask Them To Do Anything That You Are Not Ready To Do
This started with my own patience back in March. We have figured out a lot with work and home to make things realistic and reasonable, but we still have our days, don’t we? Another quote from my son: “I am pushed way past my limits today!” Noticing this, giving voice to it (to a trusted advisor of course), and then acting in a productive way about it is mensa. Remember, we are facing a marathon of change, some of which is becoming permanent. Continue to adapt and give yourself room to deal with the change, and give them choices you can live with.
These actions will signal your people (and your peeps) that you are human and committed to moving forward.
Breaks, Breaks, Breaks
Assignment, break, assignment, repeat. Be creative – add movement – don’t sit all day. Our WFH practices need physical fitness built-in. Whether you grab some yoga or a swim each morning or you take a walk or run on your lunch, put it in the schedule. Consider it what helps make you be a high performer. Fitness and leadership have a lot to do with each other and leading yourself to have this will help you on this journey at work and anywhere you have a commitment to excellence.
Bottom line, in both the homeschooling and business realms I am finding planning, and my front-end investments are building long-term behavior and a future not just to survive but to thrive!