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Like many young mothers working from home, I work hard in order to bring in much-needed income in a home environment where I am able to take care of the home and ensure that I miss very little of their children’s growing up years. And yet, sometimes it can be it can be a clown act, with the mother running herself frazzled in an effort to keep up with the demands made on her.

Here is a collection of tips I got from my forum friends, who are also work at home mothers:

Manage your time
It’s important that you work regular hours, say from 9 to 5, and switch off the computer at that time, or close the office door, and do not let it intrude into your private life. If you were working at an office, you would have left it behind at 5!

Take regular breaks
Take regular breaks from your work, otherwise you will get all stressed out and not be any use to anyone, never mind your family. Take time to make a cup of tea, to get up and stretch, or to just look out the window so that you can re-focus your mind.

Reinforce your child’s sense of security
If the kids are difficult, instead of chucking the computer at them :) get up and give them a hug, spend a little time with them so that they feel more secure. You will find that they will quite happily let you go back to work as soon as you have given them a bit of attention.

Make your kids feel like part of your work
Kids will in general not bug you too much if you allow them to come into your "office" and give them something to keep them busy. Let them play "office" with you by giving them some paper and something to write with and let them scribble their own "letters". If you have an old telephone I have found that this is a handy tool that will keep your little one occupied for hours. A basket full of toys that they can unpack at their leisure will also help.

Plan your day
As a home worker, you are in charge of your day and what you do with it. In order to make sure that there is order and routine to your working day:

1. Set goals for the day

Try to set your goals for the day, and try to complete them. If you have any carried over from the previous day, do them first thing in the morning.

2. Set aside time for homework and projects

If you have older children that need help with their homework or other projects, make sure that you set aside a certain time of the day to help them, and set rules that you are not to be disturbed outside of that period. They will probably still try to get your attention in the beginning, but if you stick to your rules, they will
soon get the message.

3. Post reminders

Leave notes on your fridge to remind you of which of your kids have to be picked up where and at what time, and to remind you of other important appointments. Do the same to remind the kids of what their chores and activities are for that day.

4. Tomorrow is another day

Don't get stressed out because you think you will never get though your work. Make a list of all the things that you have to do for the day, and then re-arrange them into priorities. Do the most urgent ones first, as well as the ones that you do not enjoy doing! I find that if I do the most unpleasant ones first, I can then enjoy the rest of
my day without the thought of that unpleasant task popping up in my head every now and again, and making me more unproductive anyway.

In conclusion, you should remember that you are a valued and cherished worker. Your boss should show appreciation for the good work you do. So, spoil yourself at the end of the day with something that you like doing, whether it be working out at the gym, lying in a hot bath lit with candles, or reading a good book for half an hour. This will regenerate your spirit, and boost the enthusiasm you will need to get through the next working day at home!