How to balance writing and parenting
This guest post written by Stephen Millen talks about rules relating to writing and parenting. However the rules and strategies that Stephen suggests can apply to any kind of work which you are conducting – when trying to concentrate on “work” and are having to manage young children. Read on….
Have you had a hard time balancing writing and parenting also? Both activities require your attention that’s why it can become conflicting at times. It’s much easier if writing is a hobby, but if it’s what you do for a living, that’s a different story.
The conflict between writing and parenting is greater if you have younger kids. This wanes as children grow older since they start to learn to do things on their own. However, juggling between parenting and working as a writer is an acquired skill involving trial and error.
Setting a schedule
Some writer-parents resort with time management. This involves allotting a schedule for writing and for spending time with the family. If your young kids are in daycare or in school, this is your opportunity to write away without distractions.
When they take their afternoon nap or go to sleep at night, you can also pick-up from where you left in your writing.
Sharing time and space
Sharing time and space is an opportunity to do both. You can set-up a spot for your little one in your office. However, make sure that it’s safe enough for your children and they have activities they can enjoy on their own.
Most of the time, you get a surge of ideas and write continuously for a few minutes. Then they ran out. This is an opportunity to check how your little one is doing.
Another option is for you to join your children in their space. Bringing your laptop to write in the yard where your kids are playing can even help you get over writer’s block. You get to observe and hear a lot of things that can spur your creativity.
You should know what is important and keep this in your mind. Make sure to prioritize the safety of your kids. You can always try to remember that idea in your head but the safety of your little ones is crucial.
Priorities can also change depending on the situation. If you have a tight deadline for your writing, it will be understandable for you to prioritize your writing. Make sure to communicate this with other members of the family so you can have an alternate in minding the kids.
However, you should also dedicate time to your kids when you won’t think about writing.
Understanding that nobody’s perfect
Don’t worry too much. You do not have to set your eyes on your children 24/7. They also need to be independent. And while you juggle between writing and parenting, there are times when you mess up. Forgive yourself and figure out how issues can be prevented in the future.
There are times when you miss deadlines or get stressed out. This will pass and you can find ways to make it work. Tomorrow is always another day to make things right.
There are no definite rules when you try to balance parenting and writing. Achieving a routine to do both activities is a process of trial and error. You can try and try until you find a way that will work best for you. Which of these approaches will you try first?
Stephen K. Millen has been a writer since ever since he could remember. He is now working as a Junior Manager for a marketing company. He travels a lot on his weekends, mostly on his bike. He writes for myhomeworkdone.net . His favourite niche includes business management, development communication and online marketing.