A new baby in the home changes the entire dynamic of your household and learning to manage remote work with a newborn or baby can be quite the challenge to even experienced parents. Take steps to ensure the experience is a positive one for everyone involved. Use these tips to help succeed with both your baby and your job as you learn to navigate this new world.
1. Create a Schedule You Can Stick To
Humans of all ages benefit from a schedule and when you have a newborn, you have a unique opportunity to establish one that can work for you both. Things like feeding times, naps, and diaper changes should be scheduled and you should do your best to arrange your work schedule around your baby’s needs. If possible, arrange for more intensive work times when your baby is napping or after they have nursed when they are most content. Pay attention to when they seem to have the most need of you throughout the day and do your best to schedule the least demanding work responsibilities during those periods.
Understand that even with the perfect schedule, parenthood is unpredictable, and there will inevitably be times when you have to rearrange things to care for your baby. Go easy on yourself when this happens. It is a natural part of life and you are doing your best.
2. Keep Your Baby Busy
During the times when your baby isn’t feeding and sleeping, plan activities that are engaging but require minimal supervision such as time in their bouncer, their activity mat, or other stationary play stations. Consider wearing your baby while you work when possible in a wrap or baby carrier so that they are still close to you and you can keep an eye on them.
3. Let People Help You
Caring for a baby is deeply rewarding, but even without a job to distract you, it is a lot of hard work. It’s easy to feel like you have to do everything on your own or else you are a bad parent, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Humans are community creatures and historically, new parents have had any number of people to rely on to help them raise their babies.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it from your support system and trained professionals. According to Mental Health First Aid, not only is it important for your mental health to feel supported, but it is also good for your baby to learn they have a group of people they can depend on for love, care, and attention.
Additionally, don’t take on too much at work. Now is not the time to be taking on extra tasks. Learn to say no to extra hours and more responsibilities. You have enough on your plate.
4. Consider a Career Switch
If your job is overwhelming you or you no longer feel it is the right fit now that you have a baby in the home, consider a career change. With degrees available online in almost every industry and many that span multiple sectors, there’s no reason you can’t go back to school from the comfort of your home to make it easier for you to find something that works for both you and your family.
You are capable of rising to the challenge before you. Prepare when you can, ask for help as you need it and make changes as you need to. Both you and your baby will be grateful for it.