Are you working from home with kids? This A-Z series shares tips to help you (and your kids) thrive. A is for Accepting Limitations.

An A-Z Guide to Working at Home with Kids: A

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Working at home with kids can be a challenge. But, it’s not impossible!

I’ve definitely learned a trick or two since launching my freelance writing and virtual assistance business two years ago.

Now, the time is right to share these with you. I’m excited to present:

An A-Z Guide to Working at Home with Kids

For the next month, I’ll be sharing a new tip each day (Monday-Friday) to help you be more productive as you work at home with kids.

These shorter blog posts are designed to help you succeed, without adding to your overwhelm.

Ready? Great! Let’s jump right in with today’s tip:

A Is for Accepting Limitations

You can’t give everything 100% all the time. Well, unless you want to wind up burnt out after a short period of time.

If perfection is your goal, you’re going to fall short.

Go ahead and let that sink in.

Perfectionism isn’t possible. When you’re working from home with kids, you must accept your limitations.


What are your limitations?

I’m not sure, but I’m learning what what mine are! Each of us has to find our own boundaries and figure out how far we can stretch before we reach the breaking point.

You’ll know you’re close to your limit if you’re:

  • Constantly feeling overwhelmed.
  • Struggling with guilt over taking a few minutes to catch your breath.
  • Sacrificing sleep to your never ending to-do list.
  • Yelling at the kids more frequently.

Ever feel like that? I sure have. The kids let me know when “Grumpy Mom” is emerging. When that happens, I know it’s time to scale back.

What to Do

Say no.

It’s really okay.

If you’re a people pleaser like me, it’ll probably feel strange at first. But, you must learn to protect yourself and your family from you being stretched too thin.

You also can work on lowering your expectations on things that you can’t drop completely. Everyone still needs to eat, but you don’t need to constantly try out recipes that keep you in the kitchen for hours.

Simplify as much as possible.

Remember to Adjust

Limitations aren’t static. What you struggle with now may be super easy six months down the road. Kids grow and change so quickly.

Take each season as it comes, and be watching for signs that you need to reevaluate. We do a complete rehaul every July, and touch base again at least once during the school year.

Ask Your Kids

Kids are smarter than a lot of people give them credit for. Ask them what parts of the day run the most smoothly, and which parts don’t.

See if they have suggestions for making the days easier. They may even volunteer to take on a new task or two. (This was my eight yeAn A-Z Guide to working at home with kids. A is for accepting limitations. ar old, such a sweet boy!)

Acceptance Helps

You may not like your limitations. Admitting that we can’t do everything is hard, or at least it was for me. But, once I made the decisions to let go of some tasks, it was a relief.

I was no longer a victim to a to-do list master I could never please. Instead, I purposefully decided what my limits were, and started saying no.

So much easier! Accepting your limitations really does help.

B is For…

I’ll be back tomorrow with An A-Z Guide to Working at Home with Kids: B.

Until then, I’d love for you to share this post with your friends who are working from home with kids. Also, are there any areas you’re struggling with? Drop a line in the comments and I’ll do my best to help you out during this series.




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Mompreneur - Freelance Writer & VA, Blogger at Lisa Tanner Writing

Lisa Tanner loves helping busy moms find time to grow their own business. As a homeschooling mom to nine, she knows a thing or two about balancing diapers and deadlines.

2 thoughts on “An A-Z Guide to Working at Home with Kids: A”

  1. Hello Lisa,
    I really appreciate your tips and your course Balancing Diapers and Deadlines. It’s inspiring to see that a mum can be a freelancer and not give up her children.
    I really struggle with following your advices, mostly because my son is 1 year old (and he is not collaborating to the chores for now).
    Seem that he is too young for me to applies a lot of advices… And there is the fact that he is an only child, and always be 🙂
    Can you tell me when will he be ready to “let me go” and do my job?
    He cries every time cries every time I put him down. How did you manage it?

    1. Hi Diana, your son is definitely young, but he’s the perfect age to begin working on playing by himself while you work. You’ll have to start small, find an engaging activity he enjoys (looking at books, stacking blocks, sorting toys, etc) and set the timer for five minutes. As soon as the timer beeps, stop and pick up. Talk about how fun it was. If he gets bored before five minutes, ask if he can play just a bit longer, until he hears the beep.

      Depending on the child, three minutes might be a better starting point. It’ll show him he can have fun without you holding him. Do this several times a day, with different activities.

      Slowly add another minute, until he can play by himself for fifteen minutes, even if he alternates between a couple of activities. I usually have my young ones sit in a playpen or high chair during this stage so I don’t have to worry about them running off while I’m trying to work. The physical boundaries seem to help (if I was consistent and had them sit until the timer beeped even if they threw a fit).

      I have a post on here on freelancing with babies and one on freelancing with toddlers. Those will have other age appropriate suggestions for you. Good luck, and remember that self entertainment is a good thing! It’s an important skill, and will be worth teaching!

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