Tips on Working from Home with a Baby
Last week I started renovating my kitchen. I decided that this was the best time to do it because I’m not really traveling anywhere. So might as well use that money and start getting that kitchen done. And I am in love with my kitchen. The plumber still has to come, and I’m getting the backsplash done in two weeks, but it’s exactly what I envisioned. The other event that happened this week is that I will be taking guardianship of my grandson. This means that I will be the person who is legally making decisions for him taking care of him. With COVID, I don’t feel comfortable him going to a childcare center or a family daycare. I’m paranoid, and I don’t want him to get the coronavirus. He should stay home.
A few months ago, I did a video on working from home with kids from my experience when my kids weren’t elementary school age. And one of the things that I said in that video was I cannot imagine having to work from home with a baby or a toddler. Well, that has definitely changed is that I’m doing it now. So I just wanted to give you quick tips on what I am doing and how I can work from home with a baby. So for those who don’t know me, my name is Shevonne Polastre. I do videos on productivity, work, life balance, and management. And I try to post a video every week. It hasn’t been consistent, and that’s because of school and my MBA. And now, I’m taking care of a newborn. Still, when I graduated from my MBA program in December, I am ready to hit the ground running. I’m already working on plans, trying to organize everything for me to definitely start getting more consistent, even posting twice a week. I’m definitely excited to start a new phase in my life. And that definitely involves creating more videos and content for this YouTube channel.
Working from home with a baby is definitely more challenging than working from home with kids. Cause with kids, at least they can be more independent, and they can play, do homework, or whatever they have to do while you’re working. That’s not something a baby will do. The only way that a baby knows how to communicate is crying, laughing. And so they can’t really independently place, especially right now. My grandson’s about to be five months old, and he doesn’t know how to play by himself. He is starting to, he began to get the ability to grasp things and play with his feet and just be more independent, but he is still not fully there. So the first recommendation that I have is to put your baby on a routine. Now, if your baby is less than two months, hold, you can’t really put them on a routine.
So it’s definitely for babies that are older than two months. And if that’s the case, put them on a routine that makes sense for him. I’ve definitely been putting him on a consistent routine where he eats around the same time he naps around the same time. I make sure, or I try to get him to sleep an hour, which is where he should be sleeping right now. Every time he takes a nap and then tries to find ways to play with him when I don’t have meetings, or even if there’s a meeting that I’m not really the one talking, then I’ll have it on mute. I’ll have him on me while I’m talking to people, you know, while I’m listening and trying to focus on what’s going on in the meeting. And that has been really helpful in getting him on a routine, making sure that he goes to sleep at the same time at night because then he’s waking up at the same time.
I will say that I usually wake up at seven in the morning. Still, I started like lounging in bed until eight during the pandemic. I can’t do that anymore. So that definitely has motivated me to get up, get moving, walk the dogs, get him ready for the day, get myself prepared for the day. And then right now, we are going through a kitchen renovation. So that has involved me running to get some breakfast in the morning. But luckily, the kitchen will be done today. I’ll be much more comfortable with time because I don’t have to drive somewhere to get something to eat, but definitely get your baby in a consistent schedule. So then you’re able to time when he or she is up and moving, and you’re able to find creative ways. If meetings are going on during that time or there’s work going on, you can make sure that you plan your work around their nap schedule and try to do your meetings when they’re not being. But if you can,
I go into my second tip. My second tip is just to let your teams know. I think all of us should be understanding at this point, we’re all finding ourselves in a unique situation. It isn’t like you’re working from home while everybody is in the office or everybody’s out and about. And it can take their kids to daycare. That is not something that’s happening right now. So I think everybody has been very understanding about that. Even the clients have been times that we’ve been in meetings, and well, somebody will speak. You’ll hear kids in the background, or you listen to you know, the teacher talking to the kids, and everybody understands what’s going on. You just need to let your teams know and even let your clients know if you guys have an excellent relationship and just let them know like, Hey, there might be times that you might hear my baby in the background. Still, I’ll try to keep it to a minimum but just wanted to give you the heads up just so you know what’s going on.
And if you do that, believe me, the majority of the time, unless the person is a real douche, they will understand my third tip is where your babies. So what I mean by that is find a carrier, find one of those. Babies like it because they’re close to you. They can hear your heart. They can feel your warm, they’ll be asleep, or be quiet longer because they’re with you. So that is something that I recommend, especially if there is a meeting that you have to talk to or try to get something done before the deadline. A sling will help you keep that baby with you while ensuring that he or she is happy and satisfied with his mother or father. My other tip is to try to find toys or baby gear that will help you keep your baby entertained.
You can use baby gear like a swing and/or bouncy seat. You can have the playmat, or now there’s like those seats. My friend actually got that for us. Like there’s a seat that you can when the baby is at the point that he or she can hold his head up, you can have those seats where he sits there, and you can do that. There are actually like baby sensory videos on YouTube. I found some great ones, and now we’ll keep him entertained for, you know, 15 minutes or so, if there is something important that I have to do, or, and yeah, like in this house, we have the baby swing, the bouncy. You want to make sure that the baby is happy and isn’t screaming at the top of his lungs while working or holding a meeting.
And he said it before, but take advantage of those nap times during those nap times, don’t worry about cleaning the house. Don’t worry about those types of stuff. You can do the cleaning after work. That’s you can use that time to when he is he or she is napping. You can click clean then, but for now, when they’re sleeping, just make sure that that is the time that you can get that work done. Especially if it’s work that you really have to think about, or it’s something that really just, you have to use your brain, just make sure that you plan those during their nap times and depending on their age. So like younger babies, I believe from what I remember, sleep around like 17 hours. And right now, he’s four to five months. So he’s sleeping 11 to 12 hours. So definitely take advantage of those nap times and this for all of us.
But if you have help, then please take those people up on those offers. I am someone who I always feel weird having people help me. I don’t know why I’m like that, but I am. I am. I still feel like I’m intruding, but now I’m all about help. My son has offered to watch him. And so there are times that we’ll also alternate. Either I walk the dogs, or he walks the dogs. One of us gets breakfast. The other one stays with the baby. So that has been really, really helpful. And those tips have really, really helped me. I can’t believe that I have been able to work with a baby very demanding in my job. I’m always in a meeting or speaking with clients. There are times that I’m working on contracts or looking at the financials of my projects.
And it has been really, really helpful just getting that routine down and making sure that I get like those tasks where I really have to think I do it when he’s sleeping, and it has been great. Not going to lie. I am ready for this whole thing to blow over. I’m going to put him in daycare, even though it’s ridiculously expensive. I’m saving so much money right now, not putting him in daycare. But I think that at the point that hopefully, this will be done by 2021. So I hope that this was really, really helpful.