Productivity hacks for working from home with kids
Eat the frog first!
I have been working from home full-time for the last 3 months.
In my opinion, working a few days from home is totally different from working full-time from home. You really need to plan your time well, or you will get nothing done.
My kids are small which means their behaviour is unpredictable.
I’m freelancing which means my workload is unpredictable, and my deadlines vary on a weekly basis.
I pick up and drop off my kids on a daily basis, take them to their classes, and make it to the gym 2 - 3 times a week.
In the last 3 months, I have worked with 4 different clients, worked on my own projects (this and the AI Content Co), and completed a mini-workshop sprint that helped me launch, sell and conduct my first ever live virtual workshop (more on that later!).
Here are some things that are really helping me maximise my time working from home:
Allocating non-negotiable ‘deep work’ time:
My work involves research and writing. Some things I have to write about are challenging, so I need a big block of time. Getting the biggest and most challenging piece of writing I have to do out of the way in the morning (eating the frog first!), takes off the pressure of doing it during the rest of the day.
I have found that from 8am-1pm I can usually get this done. I am fresh, the house is quiet, there are no unexpected interruptions. These are my $100 hours!
I am lucky to have help at home, so if the doorbell rings, I don’t need to move 95% of the time.
Afternoon’s are for calls, emails, admin. I don’t do any of that during my morning kid-free hours.
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Keep your phone in another room:
This may sound silly but it is a game changer.
Not having your phone in arms reach and having notifications off, prevents you from reaching out to check it and then losing 45 minutes on the mindless scroll.
During my deep work time, my phone is on silent. My husband and parents are in my favourites so I always hear their calls. My husband knows he needs to call me if he needs to speak to me urgently. Family doesn’t usually call me out of the blue unless it’s an emergency.
Following Parkinson’s Law - ‘Work expands to the time you give it’.
I have started strictly allocating a fixed amount time for jobs. For example, I will give myself 30 minutes to research a story and draft interview questions. I must finish in that time. This time limitation prevents me from spending ages going down the research rabbit hole.
Eliminating tasks that are not important:
I am queen of having a long to do list. Instead, every morning I decide 3 key things I must finish on that day.
The rest, if done that’s great, but I’m not spending the evening doing them. This also helps me give some boundaries to my work, or it will never end.
Choosing sleep over late night work:
I’ve never been good at choosing sleep. Being a mum of two infants, I am tremendously sleep deprived. When I’m consciously aware of how tired I am, I have started to choose to sleep instead of finish that pending work task. Game changer.
I truly believe these few things allow me to be at my productive best.
Anything I can add to these?
In other news…
My 1-hour Children’s AI Book Creation Workshop was a success!
22 paying sign-ups; 16 participants live on the call. 2 of them have almost finish their books already! A huge milestone for me to get this out. Revenue generated was just over $1000. Not bad for a first attempt!
This workshop was on writing, illustrating, designing and publishing a children’s book using AI in 1-hour.
For those of you who missed it and are interested, I will be providing the option of getting a clean recording of the entire process very soon, stay tuned.
Affiliate marketing industry news..
And, for those of you have seen me do some affiliate marketing with Swapstack (I made my first (and last!) $25 on this platform), it has been acquired by Beehiiv.
I’m super happy for Swapstack and it demonstrates the value newsletters want to offer writers. However, I am disappointed that I need to find a new provider for my affiliate experiments. Or I need to move this newsletter to Beehiiv, which I am not ready to do yet.
That’s all for this week.
Over and out,