Welcome to the next episode in the Business and Babies series, where I’m joined with my husband and co-parent, Robin Li.
In this episode, we’re talking all about scheduling your days post baby so that you can take care of your baby, yourself, and your business.
Plan on Being Absent From The Business For At Least A Month Or Two
In the first couple months after having our little girl Tegan, though, there wasn’t much of a pattern at all. But now that she’s about 6 months old,we’ve definitely got more of a rhythm or groove that makes it so much easier to balance baby, personal, and work needs.
As far as planning goes, it’s realistic to decide that you’re not going to work at all during those first two months. While I was definitely away from the business for that period of time, Robin did try to maintain a presence with the team…even though a lack of sleep made it a total struggle.
But then, when Tegan was 2 or 3 months old, she started sleeping through the night. And that’s really the time when you’re able to start maintaining a balance.
Planning A Workday With A Baby
Now that Tegan has more of a rhythm, we can plan out our workday a bit better.
There are some things that have to take place during a certain time, like scheduled calls or interviews. Since we both stay at home, one of us will primarily focus on taking care of Tegan, while the other one spends more focused time with business matters.
If your co-parent isn’t able to take over, having someone else there during your scheduled focus times is going to be somewhat necessary. That other person might be a nanny, a grandparent, or a neighbor – anyone who can pop in for a few hours to help with the baby when you really have to pay attention to business stuff.
Because realistically, life after baby is all about being flexible and having your expectations calibrated.
Take Advantage Of Your Focus Times
We’re trained to believe that when we sit at a desk, we’re automatically productive. Realistically, we can only focus on a project for about 30 – 45 minutes.
Even before the baby arrived, Robin would stand up after a project and walk outside to relax a little before he sat down for another focused work session.
So even though our work time with Tegan isn’t as continuous, it’s actually ok. The periods of time when she’s sleeping is prime time for us to tap into that ultra-focused mode and be productive with work.
Of course, time spent with baby doesn’t have to be mutually exclusive with work.
In fact, there are a lot of work-related projects that you can do while taking care of your baby. You can attend and facilitate meetings (our team members love seeing Tegan on the screen!), for example, or review projects.
Some Days You Are Just Tired
As an entrepreneur, we often put our business before ourselves…but as a parent, our baby becomes priority #1.
This shift has required us to be very intentional about giving ourselves the permission to take the day off…from work AND baby!
Sometimes one of us is feeling particularly drained and exhausted and we just need to take a step back from everything.
Don’t feel bad if this happens to you! Give yourself permission to take time away, and communicate your needs with your spouse.
Keep Yourself Healthy With Your Lifestyle
As entrepreneurs it can be really hard to start putting our own needs higher on the priority scale, but in the end it translates into increased productivity (whenever you can fit it in!), a better relationship with each other, and a much happier little one.
And there’s absolutely nothing better than to be able to spend time with your baby and watch her grow and discover the world for the very first time.