Those with small kids, how do you manage your time?

36 replies
I have 2 under 5 that are home with me pretty much 24/7. I also have a H that works ridiculous hours so I'm on my own 80% of the time. How do you juggle your IM responsibilities along with family obligations? I'm just wondering how to strike the right balance.
#kids #manage #small #time
  • Profile picture of the author Kirahster
    I have a 3.5 year old and I have to say that it is not easy. She goes to preschool 3 days per week so I try and get as much done during these hours. Other than that I am still trying to strike a balance. If I have something that I need to get done when she is at home, I will put on a movies. I also outsource quite a bit. Other than that it is not easy no matter what way you look at it unless you get a nanny or something.
    Signature
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3140996].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Audrey Harvey
    I homeschool my two, which has its own set of challenges. It's not as difficult as with very young children; they're 8 1/2 and nearly 11, so can be quite self directed.

    I set them up at the table with their work, and sit with them with my laptop. I can get stuff done but am still there to answer questions. It works when they're doing maths and English work, but I have to be right there in the thick of it for science pracs. Could you set them up at the table with you with some colouring books, or play doh, or even pick up an inexpensive little educational laptop for them?

    I also arrange play dates with friends who are also working from home, so the children play and we spend time with our laptops and a latte. There are times where my two spend an hour or so watching a National Geographic DVD or similar, which is still educational but gives me a bit of time to myself.

    Having said all that, after their bedtime is still my most productive time.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141046].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author paul wolfe
    When they're a bit older buy them a website for their birthday and get them interested. Then you can 'in-source' some of your workload for their pocket money



    Paul

    PS I'm only half joking!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141054].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author tomcam
    The problem is quite familiar here. We have 3, one of whom is severely handicapped. I get to choose 2: family, health, wealth. In my case sleep had to go, and a lot of my work has been done in the middle of the night. It is not fun waking up at 6:30am when you've gone to bed at 4:30, but I've done it many many times.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141072].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Andy Hart
    I have 2 Young daughters and I find locking them in a box whilst daddy "works" does the trick :p
    Signature

    I'm On Google + ------------- and of course Also On Twitter

    "The only thing thats keeping you from getting what you want is the story you keep telling yourself about why you can't have it"- Tony Robbins

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141094].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author rts2271
      Originally Posted by Andy Hart View Post

      I have 2 Young daughters and I find locking them in a box whilst daddy "works" does the trick :p
      A closet gives them leg room and you can throw a couple packs of matches in there for them to play with.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141135].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author miklanderson2
        Originally Posted by rts2271 View Post

        A closet gives them leg room and you can throw a couple packs of matches in there for them to play with.
        Much more leg room than the small cage I throw my 2 kids in...
        Signature

        "A bargain is something you don’t need at a price you can’t resist."
        -Franklin Jones

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141438].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Barry Unruh
      Originally Posted by Andy Hart View Post

      I have 2 Young daughters and I find locking them in a box whilst daddy "works" does the trick :p
      What size drill bit did you use for the holes?

      I have one little girl screaming "Daddy, Daddy, Daddy, Daddy, right now... and the other one doing the same thing but it sounds more like "waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa"

      Time to scoot....

      Barry
      Signature
      Brain Drained...Signature Coming Soon!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142770].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author paul wolfe
      Originally Posted by Andy Hart View Post

      I have 2 Young daughters and I find locking them in a box whilst daddy "works" does the trick :p
      There are days when that seems like a great option!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3143284].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BradCarroll
    Day-care/preschool has been a lifesaver for me. I know a lot of people who say they can't afford it, but at this point, I can't afford NOT to.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141124].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Mark Binnie
    wouldn't a candle be better for longer work periods, a box of matches just doesn't last long enough.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141164].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author alcymart
    My 2 kids are now teens, but when they were younger, I spent time equally with them and the PC. My wife was there for them when I wasn't. today they can manage on their own and I see them daily. Everything fell into place for me and my family, because that's how I wanted things to be.

    You'll need to think about a family reunion and tell them all what your personal goals are and see how they can help you, and in return you help them with their ambitions, goals if they have any.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141232].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author VanessaB
      I have two under 5 as well and daycare is definitely a lifesaver.

      You can also try to look for babysitting co-ops where each parent gives one full day to a group of kids, and you take turns doing that.

      Working with small kids is a precision exercise is planning and scheduling.

      Also, I gave up sleep. LOL.

      -Dani
      Signature
      Easily Recruit JV Partners & Affiliates
      with lifetime commissions
      Lead Money Locker
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141250].message }}
  • It is very difficult to find that right balance I know. I was not involved in IM at the time when my children were small but I worked full-time and was in college full-time. I can remember oh so well how hard it was to juggle family life along with work and school. I found my most productive time was in the wee hours of the morning. I was a waitress at night and would come home from work around midnight and then get up around 4:00 and start studying and doing homework. Then I would get up and get the kids ready for school and head off to class myself. I think many of us can relate to what you are going through but you just have to keep at it and find a way that works for you. As your children get a little older it will be easier to occupy them while you are working.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141369].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Sheryl Polomka
    My kids are 13, 11 and 8 now so it is getting easier, but I remember the days when they were younger and trying to juggle work and home life. Even at their age now I have to have a time schedule for work and make sure I take time away to spend time with them.

    I always found nights were the most productive - when they were in bed! The only trouble is if you don't get enough sleep then your productivity lessens too - so it really is a struggle sometimes to juggle it all.

    Toys, DVDs, - not that I want to be seen as a mother who sticks her kids in front of the TV, but I find that if you give them a bit of time playing with them then they will happily play or watch something on their own. Or, if weather permits, take them to the park and tire them out
    Signature
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141453].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Audrey Harvey
    I'm enjoying some of these replies - wet their lips and stick them to the wall, lol. Love it, must try that.

    For those who give up sleep, does fatigue not affect your productivity? If I'm really tired, I don't do as much work, or do it as well, as when I'm well rested.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141491].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Charlotte Jay
    Hey me too Audrey! Have you noticed most of the funny responses are from the male warriors? lol Anyway, thank you all for your suggestions, I'm taking them all into consideration
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141719].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Enfusia
      Straitjacket perhaps?
      Signature
      Free eBook =>
      The Secret To Success In Any Business
      Yes, Any Business!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3141760].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
      Originally Posted by Charlotte Jay View Post

      Hey me too Audrey! Have you noticed most of the funny responses are from the male warriors? lol Anyway, thank you all for your suggestions, I'm taking them all into consideration
      Damn,

      You mean I have to give a serious reply?

      OK, apart from the day care option already mentioned (increased productivity = extra funds to pay for it??) the best thing to do is sign up traffic exchanges and get your kids to click on the sites every so many seconds.

      It's win/win. You get a bit of extra traffic and more time to work and the kids practise their maths, counting down from 30 to zero twice a minute. It's also a good matching exercise with the anti-automation captcha symbols.


      Martin
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142508].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author miklanderson2
      Originally Posted by Charlotte Jay View Post

      Hey me too Audrey! Have you noticed most of the funny responses are from the male warriors? lol Anyway, thank you all for your suggestions, I'm taking them all into consideration
      LOL...I'm a male warrior who's home with my two kids full time. That's got to count for something

      All jokes aside, my 12 year old daughter's easy to take care of, it's my 2 1/2 year old son who's a handful. I really would like to lock him in a cage sometimes.
      Signature

      "A bargain is something you don’t need at a price you can’t resist."
      -Franklin Jones

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142808].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author stephfoster
    I have a 2 year old, 5 year old in half day kindergarten and an 8 year old I homeschool. Life gets pretty crazy and sometimes work is pretty near impossible.

    After bedtime and during the youngest's nap works pretty well for during the week most days, although homeschool stuff can take up the naptime. The older two like to go out to play with friends when school is done, which can make the youngest harder to deal with. She needs a lot of time and wants more.

    I try to get my husband to let me work one day each weekend upstairs on my laptop while he deals with the kids. When it works out, those are some great working hours. It doesn't work out every week, though. Sometimes the whole weekend is family stuff, which isn't a bad thing.

    My laptop is a big help too. It's nice to not be tied to my desk when I want to work.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142425].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rich Struck
    Sesame Street and NyQuil.
    Signature

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142560].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Barry Unruh
    I have a daughter who turn 2 years old next month, and one who is 5 months old. Here is the step by step method we used:

    1. Sell everything we owned.
    2. Quit my job.
    3. Bought tickets to the Philippines.
    4. Rented Apartment.
    5. Had Grandma, 2 Aunties, and 1 Uncle move in with us to fill in jobs of child care, cooking, laundry, house cleaning, and general maintenance.
    6. Work as much as we can, steal away to play with the girls when we want.

    Of course this probably won't work for everyone....

    Barry

    P.S. One of those little girls "happened" after we arrived in the Philippines. My wife technically does not do IM, she has a service business which I get to promote for her "for free".
    Signature
    Brain Drained...Signature Coming Soon!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142598].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Sylvia Meier
    I have 5 children myself. Ages are 3,4,6,7,12. The younger 4 out of the 5 are all special needs in one way or another.

    As for time LOL, I enjoy nap times for the younger two on days they don't go to school (they go afternoons 4-5 times a week), otherwise I utilize after their bed times till my bed time.

    There are also days I will get up before them, if I need some extra time to work.

    I also have computers set up for the kids that they play their own games on, like Elmo preschool, reader rabbit etc, that will hold their attention for about an hour.

    I also do like someone else suggested and use a special toy selection that they can play with if mommy really needs some time.

    And of course, I utilize days hubby is home to get as much work done as possible, and I do pay their eldest sister to watch them from time to time so I can get some work completed.

    Other than that, all I can offer is that as they get older it becomes easier. Take advantage of times they sleep, or even meal times if they are old enough to feed themselves. I've written quite a few articles with my laptop beside the stove LOL.

    Good luck and best wishes,
    Sylvia
    Signature
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142655].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rachel Incoll
    Wow, there's some great tips in here!

    My 2 are a bit older now (7 & 8) so school time works ok, but in the holidays I have to do things a bit differently.

    I always get up early 5.30ish and get a fair bit done first thing (in both term time and holidays). In the holidays, I'll often get the kids to give me a hand doing a quick clean of the house in the morning , then we'll all do something together for a while - go to the park, build some lego, go for a bike ride, go horse riding, shopping etc etc.

    After lunch is my time back on the computer for a couple of hours, and the kids can play quietly, go outside, or if I've managed to get them really tired in the morning , I'll let them watch a DVD or play computer games for a bit.

    It does get easier as they get older though!

    Best of luck

    Rach
    Signature
    Sick Of Spending Hour After Hour Searching For Australian Wholesalers?
    Discover Over 1,000 Genuine Australian Wholesalers In Just A Few Minutes At www.AussieWholesaleSuppliers.net.au
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142719].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Agep_flippo
    I love Andy Hart idea,lol
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142723].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author kc33
    I have a 2 year old. A lot of the time I have thomas the tank engine up on the screen. I take advantage of when she's asleep and when she's at childcare. I also have a step by step plan so that I know what I "must complete" on a certain day.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3142809].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author MikeHumphreys
    Our kids are 4 1/2 and 2 1/2 so I can relate.

    Initially, I worked when our then-infant daughter took naps and nights/weekends. My daughter was only a few months old and I bought a laptop and setup the house with wireless internet.

    The laptop is great for doing stuff like answering emails with my morning coffee while my kids are playing. My kids like playing together so there are times where I'll do work on the laptop at the dining room table while they're playing quietly in the living room in plain view.

    As I built up my copywriting and info-product businesses, I hired a local college student as a part-time babysitter for a few hours each week. As the businesses grew, I just increased my babysitter coverage.

    I continued to do work at nights after the family has gone to bed and on Saturdays.

    I've found doing work in small chunks helps a lot, especially on things like writing copy where it's impossible (for me at least) to sit down and write high-quality copy for 8 hours straight. Plus, my clients are scattered all over the world, so I can schedule Skype or phone meetings at different times of the day which fit into my work schedule for that given day.

    Any high-concentration tasks I do when I can work uninterrupted. There are info-product business tasks like article submission, video editing, graphic design, etc that I outsource because it's something I'm not good at... I don't want to spend the time doing it... or I don't enjoy doing.

    My oldest is in preschool at our church 4 days/week so that helps. She loves getting the break from family and hanging out with her preschool friends. The church's preschool is one of the best in the area and their fee is amazingly low (cheaper than the sitter per hour).

    My son starts preschool in the fall and my daughter moves onto kindergarten so I won't need a babysitter much, if at all anymore.

    Hang in there... the time you get with your kids when they're little is priceless. Keep your expectations on how much work you can get done each day low and then be happy when/if you exceed it. It's not how many hours of work you can get it each day... it's how much you can get done in minimal time each day.

    Best of luck,

    Mike
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3144698].message }}
  • Pre-school and day care is what has worked for me. Otherwise it is impossible to concentrate in work!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3144724].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author sellerscompanion
      I homeschool 3 kids that are 7, 9 and 11. They have seen me work from home for most of their lives, and there have always been rules. I tell them that when my door is closed, I am at work (because I might be recording a video or using Dragon to create an article). I have always been open with them about how money must be used for bills, and this is how mom creates money for us. Dad also works from home in IM too, so he runs defense a lot too!

      As I interview women for one of my upcoming projects, it is interesting to hear how differently women juggle home life with the IM world. The result is always the same, though: in order to be successful at IM, you will have to sacrifice some things at the beginning. I love the quote by financial guru Dave Ramsey: "Live like no one else so that LATER you can live like no one else."

      CC
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3144788].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Mike Schwenk
    I have one-year-old twins and a 3-year-old, so I can certainly relate.

    Personally, I've adjusted my schedule to wake up around 5 or 6 AM. This gives me about 2-3 hours EXTRA time to get things done before they wake up.

    As an added bonus, I've found that I'm a lot more productive at this time.

    I wrap things up, wake everyone up after breakfast is made and then I enjoy my time with them until they need a nap.

    Nap time usually means another two hours to get some work done. And like Mike, I can sometimes get work done at the dinner table while they are playing.

    It used to bother me to do so, but I realized they'd be doing the same thing whether I was working or not. Not to mention...what I'm doing is to support them.

    Still, it's important to me to also cherish this stage of their lives.

    If I can't get things done at the table, the rest usually has to wait until they go to bed.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3144814].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Fernando Veloso
    Not easy

    Find out HOW you can reduce your business hours, reduce everything to the minimum, optimize everything, spend less time chit chatting and raise your productivity.

    It can be done.

    Kids are the most precious treasures we have, especially when they are that young. Focus on how you can do to spend more time for them - keeping your business tight as usual.

    My oldest is now 6 years old and boy, it was so damn fast!!! You know?
    Signature
    People make good money selling to the rich. But the rich got rich selling to the masses.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3144842].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Leslie B
    Originally Posted by Charlotte Jay View Post

    I have 2 under 5 that are home with me pretty much 24/7. I also have a H that works ridiculous hours so I'm on my own 80% of the time. How do you juggle your IM responsibilities along with family obligations? I'm just wondering how to strike the right balance.
    I don't, actually. I work around everything.

    I have two kids, ages 6 and 4. Where I live, kids go to school starting at 2.5 years so most days I have a good schedule going, it's when they are at home for a day or a week or more that I get in trouble. So, I have about two schedules, one for when schoolday, one for none schooldays.

    The none schooldays look a bit like this: get up early (around 4am together with my husband), do work until the kids get up around 8am (focused time), and once they are up, I work around their needs. If they are playing nice, I can do some focused work, if they need attention, I don't do anything at all. Usually on those days my bedtime is around 1am, as most of my work hours are made once they are in bed.

    Leslie
    Signature
    Taking it one day at a time!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3144908].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Good News Now
      Oh, it is not easy. So hard to find time to do things with kids keep you busy and interrupt you. Here are things that I try to do:
      1.
      Plan tomorrow's To Do List today.
      2. One hour of Quiet Time early in the morning - I can get more accomplished in this hour than I normally can all day. Getting up before the kids is precious. It takes time but you DO get used to - and addicted -to it.
      3. I try to keep phone calls minimal-- and Short .It gives more extra time for my IM work.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3145508].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Andrew Rodney
    Time cannot by managed we get all there is you can only manage your activities.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[3145710].message }}

Trending Topics