1. Set a schedule and try to stick to it
- You should try to schedule each day in the most predictable way possible. Set timetables for each task (feeding and dressing the baby, making food, working, etc.), taking into account that a baby is unpredictable and needs constant attention.
- Ideally, you should do the household chores before or after your work hours, but not during. It's not very appropriate to reply to an e-mail while cooking or emptying the washing machine. If you do two things at once, it's likely that one won't get done right.
- You should take advantage of the baby's naps to do tasks that require more concentration. You always perform better if you spend some time working on the same task.
2. Ask those around you to respect your working hours
It's important for everyone (family, friends) to know and respect your work schedule.
- The fact that you're home doesn't mean that you're available to receive guests mid-morning or run errands. Explain to them that you wouldn't be able to do it if you worked outside and that working at home is the same.
- If you have older children who understand things, it's important to explain to them that the fact that you work from home now doesn't mean you're available 100% of the time. Tell them that you've decided to work from home so you can take better care of the family, but that you have to do the same work as before and you need to concentrate.
3. Work the right hours
The ILO study also notes that people who work from home tend to extend their working hours. You have to try to adjust to a set number of hours as much as possible, and most of all, take breaks as needed, for example, to go out for a walk with your baby.
4. Have an exclusive space to work
Even if the house is small, you should set aside a space that's comfortable and has good lighting in which to work and where you can leave your work material and documents. You can concentrate better in your own space.
You can have your baby lying with you in a rocker and later, when she's able to sit up, in a playpen with toys to keep her entertained.
5. Wear work clothes
When working at home, you run the risk of ending up working in pajamas and eating anything just to get through. You don't need to wear a suit, but it's good for your self-esteem to dress in street clothes. It also helps others to take your work seriously.
6. Be careful not to isolate yourself
Spending so much time at home with a baby can jeopardize the "relationship with the adults". You should take turns with your partner to do activities outside the home and set aside time during the day for yourself.
Meeting all these objectives isn't easy. The baby will have calm days and restless days in which he or she will demand your attention, and their care is paramount. You may have to work odd hours some days, even at night, so you can concentrate properly. But, in return, realize that you get to see your baby grow. Having your child close by is the best incentive to work.