3 Tips to Maintain a Work-Life Balance Working From Home

- | 66 Aha! comments | Posted in category: Work & Career

A work-from-home woman finding a work-life balance

I’m so honored Harleena has asked me to share my thoughts on how to balance a family and work-from-home career.

Even during our email exchange about the topic, I already knew what I was going to say because I strive to achieve a work-life balance on a daily basis.

So before I get into today’s post, I’d take this moment to thank Harleena for letting me share these suggestions with you, her audience.

Whenever anyone asks me what is the most challenging part of having a work from home life, without a doubt my first response will be – maintaining a balance between my family life and work-from-home business.

Why Do People Lose Their Work-Life Balance

Well, just like an office job, work from home too has a sense of determination to be a success. There are still dreams of being promoted and then there are times one will put in some overtime for extra money.

And those are just a couple of reasons why one may lose their balance when a work-from-home career or home-based business gets in the way of family time.

Yes, even a work-from-home career can affect family life. I wouldn’t say that I’m the guru of balancing the family and my work-from-home business because I’ve worked plenty of late nights to prove otherwise. I’d like to consider myself a work in progress.

Why Is It Important To Have Work-Life Balance

Dictionary.com describes work-life balance as the achievement of equality between the time spent working and one’s personal life. Meaning, you can’t spend your life working all the time. You have to make time for other areas of your life like family, volunteering or anything else that brings you happiness.

Making time for things outside of your career or business will give you a sense of fulfillment. When you have a work-life balance, you have less stress and less stress means you can work more efficiently for your customers or clients.

The time off away from work also gives you the opportunity to refresh the mind and perhaps result in being more creative at work or for your business.

How To Tell You’re Losing Your Balance

Here’s a list of questions for you. If you answer yes to one or more of the following questions, you might be focusing too much on your work-from-home career or home-based business.

1. Do you sit in the bedroom with your laptop while your partner is next to you watching TV? You can hear him or her talking but can’t make out what they’re saying because you’re typing awayNot that it’s happening to me right now, lol.

2. If you get up in the middle of the night, do you check your email before going back to bed?

3. Are you skipping dinner and ordering take-out just to work longer hours?

4. Are you working on the weekend when you said you wouldn’t?

5. When spending time with the family, do you find yourself drifting away and thinking about work?

How did you do? Not to worry, I do these myself and it wasn’t difficult to come up with these questions either. We’ve probably done this at some point or another but there is a way we can change to get our balance back.

work-life balance signpost

Three Key Things To Keep In Mind For A Work-Life Balance

I’ve had plenty of practice to try and get this down. Even through the craziness of my work and home schedules, I still manage to make time for the family and other things that are important to me like volunteering at my church.

There are three key things you have to do in order to make this happen. Yes, you have to work at it because it won’t happen by itself but no worries there are three very simple things you have to be.

You have to be flexible. This is the most important thing. There are going to be distractions throughout the day and then there are things like doctor’s appointments that can keep you away from the office. Thanks to technology we can take our work with us.

Smartphones and iPads make it possible to keep in touch with clients or a supervisor. With email and social media at your fingertips you’ll be accessible and there are apps that make it possible for you to work away from your desk. Even bloggers can create a post while sitting in a waiting room somewhere.

You have to create a schedule and stick to it. When you have a work-from-home career you can select the schedule that best fit your needs but when you have a home-based or online business you can easily find yourself working in the wee hours and skipping dinner all for the sake of your business and its success.

You have to make time for family so make a rule. In my house we are a family of 5 and there are four different schedules going on. And even though my kids are becoming young adults the one rule we won’t break unless there’s a scheduling conflict, is to have dinner as a family.

If that’s the only time we have to be together then that’s what we do. No cell phones, no TV, it’s just the family talking about what went on during the day and enjoying a home-cooked or fast-food meal.

Some Things You Can Do To Find A Work-Life Balance

• Take advantage of car rides to school to talk to the kids about what’s going on in their lives. You can have a great conversation in 10 minutes.

• Take out the laptop and join the kids at the dinner table as they’re doing homework.

• See if you can delegate some of your work. Sites like Fiverr and Odesk have freelancers willing to help you out and on the cheap. If you can afford it, it would be worth the investment.

And Finally

Time management will play a key role in maintaining a balance between your family and work-from-home career. A balance between family and a work-from-home career or work-from-home business will remind you why you’re working in the first place.

Over To You –

What do you do to balance family and work? Fill out the comments section below and let us know how you keep your work-life balance. What’s the secret to your success?

 

Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos



Show Comments

66 Comments - Read and share thoughts

  1. Harleena Singh

    September 20, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Hi Corina,

    Welcome to my blog as a guest author! It’s been a long time since you’ve been contributing your wise thoughts through the comments on the posts of my blog, and today I’m so happy that you’re writing a post instead, and delivering more useful information for my readers.:)

    I’m sure most of my blog readers will be able to relate with this post topic, as most of them work from home. To speak of myself, I find your suggestions so helpful as I’m most of the time stuck between work-family and my home, as I’m a full-time work-at-home professional.

    I always value family time and I know work-at-home situation can on the contrary make things difficult if you don’t tackle them the right way by creating a schedule and going as per plan. You certainly need to be flexible and make maximum use of being at home.

    Creating a work-life balance between your family and work from home career is definitely not as easy as it appears, and you’ve done a great job letting people know that by giving the solutions that can help them.

    I’m sure my readers will enjoy reading your post and have lots of queries or feedback for you from their own personal life experiences. I’m not coming in-between you and them, except for welcoming the newcomers. So, it’s over to you, Corina, and once again, many thanks for being my guest on Aha!NOW. 🙂

    • Corina Ramos

      September 20, 2013 at 7:13 pm

      Thank you so much for the confidence you have in me to talk with your readers about maintaining a work-life balance. As a rather newbie blogger this learning experience is priceless!

      My daily goal is achieving work-life balance and I tell ya there are days when it’s more difficult than others. I work from home full time as well as take care of my parents, taxi my kids to and from high school and their extra curricular activities, plus I update my church’s website and volunteer there.

      As you can see I have a lot on my plate so a schedule is almost mandatory if not I’m sure to forget something or someone :). But no matter how crazy it gets, I do see the balance at the end of the day.

      The secret is it takes the whole family to make it happen. Without their support and understanding (like nights when I’m working late) I wouldn’t be able to achieve it in the first place.

      You’re right, it’s not as easy as it appears to be but the effort is so worth it.

      I hope your readers enjoy the post…It’s from personal experience.

      • Susan Neal

        September 20, 2013 at 10:39 pm

        Hi Corina,

        Congratulations on a great guest post – and what a good subject for you to write about! I think you offer excellent advice in this post, but the point you make in the comment above is really important – I think it must be very difficult for bloggers who don’t have the support of their partners and families. One of the disadvantages of working from home is that it can really intrude on your family life. I’m fortunate that my husband is very supportive and understanding. I don’t have children (unless dogs count!) but I make sure I carve out time to spend with my husband – and he’s a great help at forcing me to put the breaks on if I start having too many late nights.

        Thanks, Corina and Harleena, for a great share 🙂

        • Corina Ramos

          September 21, 2013 at 3:07 am

          Hi Sue!

          Dogs do count as kids…I have four of them myself!

          Your husband sounds like my husband. He’s very supportive but he isn’t afraid to tell me to slow down. His favorite line “You are your own boss, you can take a break when you want to”

          Family is a major part of the support system. We need them, right? Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts!

          • Susan Neal

            September 21, 2013 at 6:41 pm

            FOUR dogs!!! You’re even more amazing than I thought, Corina! I hope they’re better trained then my two!

            • Harleena Singh

              September 21, 2013 at 8:26 pm

              Sorry coming in…but I just couldn’t help myself! Four dogs! Corina, how do you manage your kids, hubby, and these dogs! Gosh! I have a tough time with just my one at times. I guess they ALL must be so disciplined 🙂

  2. ologundudu abraham

    September 20, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    Hi Corina

    Great post here. If it were two weeks ago, I would have answered yes to all the questions. If one is not disciplined, one will loose balance.

    Creating schedules comes very handy. Another thing i make sure i don’t do is to switch work time for family time. It’s very important.

    • Corina Ramos

      September 20, 2013 at 7:20 pm

      This was my just the other day! 🙂

      I agree with you Ologundudu a schedule is important but more importantly executing and sticking to it is what brings the balance, right? Another good thing about it is we can adjust our schedule at anytime to accommodate everything that’s important to us.

      I’ll admit I can slip very easily, especially when I know there’s work to do but I always remind myself about what’s important and get back on track.

      Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughs!

  3. Jane

    September 20, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    Corlina, you have hit the nail. Its absolutely necessary to MAKE time for family as it seems that you won’t automagically “get” time when you work from home.

    Let’s be realistic here – 24 hours could be never enough for someone who works from home since if you work at an office, you strictly have “work-only” hours. But when you work from home you get all sorts of household work that demand your attention. Even if you have a schedule, it is impossible to totally avoid all the distraction 100% – this is where flexibility comes into picture.

    Nice topic and good tips!

    • Corina Ramos

      September 20, 2013 at 10:21 pm

      I think we can all relate in some way right Jane?

      You hit it right there too, there are not enough hours in the day! Working from home is not as easy as it seems….there are always distractions and I’m living proof of that.

      Not one day goes by without one but I’ve learned to adjust my schedule and move things around to accommodate all I’ve got going on.

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read my post and share your thoughts…and I’m so glad you enjoyed it. Nice meeting you Jane! Have a wonderful weekend!

  4. Ellen M. Gregg

    September 20, 2013 at 10:00 pm

    Thank you for hosting Corina, Harleena. 🙂

    Great topic, Corina. Working from home may sound “easy” to those who don’t do it. Like you, my experience is that it’s anything but that. Working from home comes with its own set of challenges.

    What works best for me is having a near-non-negotiable time at which the office is “closed.” Just like working outside the office, I have a start time and a stop time that I adhere to.

    I admit, though, there are times when I’m so involved with something, closing time passes by without me noticing, and all of a sudden it’s dinner time, and I haven’t even started it yet. Oops. 😉

    • Corina Ramos

      September 20, 2013 at 10:35 pm

      I like that “non-negotiable” time. I guess that’s how I should describe dinner time. That time is just for us…no work or school stuff.

      Girlfriend there is never a dull moment over here. My schedule is always adjusted but that’s what we gotta do, right?

      Girl once I got so caught up with work…my phone rings and my son is like “hello, did you forget us” LOL. Happens to the best of us :).

      So glad you stopped by Ellen, thank you for sharing too! TGIF!

  5. Donna Merrill

    September 21, 2013 at 2:38 am

    Hi Corina,

    Great to see you here at Harleena’s place!

    Yes, I was guilty as charged! I used to work 24/7. I would have that overwhelming feeling of guilt if I wasn’t online every day. Then I had a feeling of overwhelm.

    That red flag immediately went up in my head. Things just had to change. The first thing for me was “forgiveness.” I had to go through the process of forgiving myself. I had to realize that I cannot do all things all of the time.

    I set up a time management schedule for myself and stuck to it. Sometimes life gets in the way and I do stray a bit, but I forgive myself for doing that.

    That was the root of my problem of over working. If it is a sunny beautiful day, you won’t see me online. Instead I will take time out to take a walk with my hubby and dog. No guilty feelings.

    The worst was when I was moving. It took all summer to pack, move and unpack. My time online was limited. I started thinking…oh no, I’ll be lost Plus I didn’t want to not keep up with my usual syndication.

    Everyone understood and I realized that it’s ok to be off line for a while, especially when it comes to family.

    -Donna

    • Corina Ramos

      September 21, 2013 at 8:16 am

      I tell you Donna, you taught me something. I’ve been dealing with feelings of guilt for years because of my career and I never knew why I couldn’t shake the feeling. Oh it went away for a little while but just by me saying no to my kids would stir up all these feelings of guilt, I’d feel awful.

      All along I needed to forgive myself. While I was reading your comment, I had this light bulb moment and I’m thinking that’s the missing piece of my puzzle.

      I live by a schedule and it’s always being adjusted. There isn’t a day when things go as planned…and I’d pay big bucks to anyone who has the solution 😉 lol.

      It used to be if I didn’t have everything crossed out I felt like a total failure but now my motto is “there’s always tomorrow”.

      Now that the Fall season is upon us I plan on working outside but more importantly, I’m going to leave the laptop inside and just grab a cup of coffee (which I just started drinking by the way 🙂 )!

      Thank you for sharing your experience with me. Have a wonderful weekend!

  6. Adrienne

    September 21, 2013 at 3:39 am

    Hey Cori,

    So great to see you here at Harleena’s blog and I so appreciate you stepping in and writing a post for her. Especially this week since we’ve kept her so busy over at my blog.

    Harleena, Mayura and I were talking about a similar thing on Facebook because they were in awe at how I’m able to respond to all my comments in a timely manner and still be everywhere. It’s not easy for me and it certainly wouldn’t be easy for you or Harleena because you both have a family to care for. I don’t so that’s where I’m different.

    Like Oprah would always say that she thought being a mother is the hardest job on earth and the one that has the least acknowledgement. As you both know I’m not a mother so I don’t have any children of my own. I do have Kayla but trust me, she’s nothing. She’s so easy to care for and I love her dearly.

    I so admire those ladies that not only take care of their families but have an offline job and also work online. I would be pulling my hair out, I even admit that.

    Your tips on being able to keep a balanced life, I’m in awe. You definitely have to be flexible because at certain times things just happen so you have to be prepared. That I so get even with my Mom living next door and having to go to ALL her appointments with her now.

    At the same time, and I harp this a lot myself, you have to stick with a schedule that works for you. And stick to it darn it, stop making excuses or playing around with other things. If you really want this then prove it.

    You two ladies, and all the other working Mom’s out there to, have my deepest respect. I might complain at times about how busy I am or how tired I am but I’ve got nothing on what you ladies deal with every single day. Once again, I’m in awe.

    Bravo to your two and since the weekend is coming up, relax. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know what you’re thinking and I’m going to do a little of that myself. A little.

    Catch you guys next week.

    ~Adrienne

    • Corina Ramos

      September 21, 2013 at 8:49 am

      Hi Adrienne,

      I was a little nervous to tell the truth because she has a loyal audience who is used to her awesomeness. I’m glad I was able to help Harleena out, especially because her post at your place is still going strong. It’s a topic every blogger relates to so I’m not surprised at all the buzz. 🙂

      I’m just as in awe of all that you do too Adrienne. You definitely set the bar lady! I know one day I’ll get it though…I’m determined, lol!

      Yes adding a family to the mix can make for a crazy day so a schedule and sticking to it is a must. It’s a dirty job but somebody’s gotta do it :). Even after all the madness I wouldn’t change a thing.

      The tips I shared is what I do personally, as well as the checklist ;). My son is 20 years old and there he is at the table. He’ll even tell his gaming friends, “I’ll be back I have to eat dinner” He’s 6’5 and about 300 lbs but he recognizes why I’m doing it.

      I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts Adrienne and thank you so much for those kind words, truly meant a lot because yep being a Mom is thankless job at times.

      Oh yes TGIF! I’m hoping it will still be raining in the morning so I can sleep in! Have a great weekend yourself and stay dry!

  7. Sylviane Nuccio

    September 21, 2013 at 6:16 am

    Hi Corina,

    How nice to see you here! I saw a title somewhere were you said “check my post at Aha Now!” So I knew that “Harleena’s” new post had arrived.

    I know that our dear Harleena’s been very busy lately, so I’m sure she appreciated you helping out on her blog 🙂

    I have only a cat (Well and another job I should add too), and at times finding a balance is not easy. I do work loooong hours. This past Wednesday morning I had to get up at 4:00 AM because my post for that morning was far from being ready. So I had two choices, just let it be and post later or just do it. I chose to do it, because a bad habit is quickly taken.

    It’s very important to be balanced, especially if you have children. Working for oneself, can be tough.

    Great job, Corina and nice to read your post over here 🙂

    • Corina Ramos

      September 21, 2013 at 8:58 am

      Hi Sylviane!

      I should have put Harleena instead of her blog name but I assumed everyone would know who I was talking about :).

      Oh yes, I’m very excited to be here, a little nervous too but it’s been a great learning experience! Yes, she has been super busy this week and I was glad to be able to help her out.

      I have plenty of long days too and there are times I’m working past midnight but I love what I’m doing so I don’t see it as work and that’s what gets me off balance. 🙂

      I love what you said about having a choice and that’s exactly what we have to do to have a work-life balance. There are choices to be made to make it happen like working long hours when you have to. I know exactly where you’re coming from!

      Our pets are definitely part of the equation because they are part of the family. I have four dogs myself. 🙂 I’m lucky I work from home because I can spend time with them here but I do get the occasional look like “can we play now” lol.

      I’m so glad you stopped by and thank you so much for sharing your thoughts! Have a wonderful weekend my dear friend!

    • Harleena Singh

      September 21, 2013 at 9:08 am

      Hi Sylviane,

      Sorry for coming in-between, but there was some problem with the RSS I think, though now it’s resolved. I guess that’s why you saw Corina’s post link to her guest post here, while this link would show up now 🙂

      Oh yes…busy week for sure and I’m glad Corina’s post was already scheduled long back for Friday. She did give me a breather for sure 🙂

      I’ll let Corina answer the rest, and thanks for your visit as always 🙂

  8. Pramod

    September 21, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Hi Corina,

    Glad to see you sharing your thoughts through Harleena’s blog. It’s very important to maintain an equal balance between professional/work life and personal life as too much focus on one side may affect the other. I like the 2nd last paragraph on Time Management the most as it is the only way one can maintain a good balance between work and life. Thanks for sharing the information and have a great weekend @Harleena and Corina!

    -Pramod

    • Corina Ramos

      September 21, 2013 at 8:09 pm

      Hello Pramod,

      Thanks to you and everyone else, I’m over my nervousness. You all have made me feel right at home here 🙂

      Oh yes, time management is key. I can get so caught up on a project I’m working on. I remember once I was so focused on a project one of my son’s came in and said “just checking if you’re still here, you’ve been at it for three hours and we’re hungry” lol. I go from one shift to another :).

      Sometimes we just have to make ourselves stop and get back on track to the things that truly matter most, right?

      Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. It’s a rainy Saturday morning and the house it quiet so guess what, I’m sneaking in some work :).

  9. Kumar Chandan

    September 21, 2013 at 11:19 am

    Hi Corlna,

    Indeed an excellent post. 🙂

    The time management plays a special role in our daily life. And, time management is the key player that makes our professional and personal life better or worse.

    I am agreeing with your some points of well utilizing about the time at the dinner table and dropping kids at their school. These two small steps that make big differences.

    Thank you very much for sharing lovely points. 🙂

    • Corina Ramos

      September 21, 2013 at 8:15 pm

      Thank you Kumar.

      I was just telling Pramod that yes time management is very important…I can easily get caught up with work and time will fly by for sure.

      I’m glad you liked the tips I shared. Of course the only downfall about sharing the dining table with teens is the arguing of the seats before we settle in…but that’s music to my ears believe it or not :).

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts…Have a wonderful weekend!

  10. Shalu Sharma

    September 21, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    I think its possible to drift away from your life/family and slip into your own world. Specially if you are blogging and doing a business. Blogging is one of those activities that’s addictive hence its possible to get into a situation that creates a negative work life balance.
    You have to make it a point not to work certain hours, or at weekends and take regular breaks, not check your emails before going to sleep etc.

    • Corina Ramos

      September 21, 2013 at 8:24 pm

      Oh my goodness Shalu…you said it all….blogging and the business of it can be very addicting. I know my wheels are always spinning from how I can make the blog look better to thinking about content to write about, a never-ending cycle.

      You are right…we have to make ourselves get to a stopping point to end our work day and yes, avoid working on weekends or any other special day.

      It was so good to meet you. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Have a wonderful weekend. 🙂

  11. Lisa

    September 21, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    Corina, it’s not easy!

    I work at work and work at home and they are days I do pull my hair out. But I try to use tools more than ever like the Buffer Awesome and Triberr to eleminate tasks for me. I’m always finding new ways at efficiences. Even on my retail sites with inventory I’ve found ways to do it better and faster. I could not do it all without my Droid and awesome bloggers like yourself that share my stuff along the way.
    I also turn off my notification sound on my phone when watching movies or before going to bed. I should really start the process sooner though. Great topic! I was just about to log off to go jogging when I saw your post here…

    • Corina Ramos

      September 21, 2013 at 8:35 pm

      You said it Lisa it’s not easy at all and thank goodness for tools like Triberr and Buffer, which I did sign up for yesterday by the way :). If it weren’t for those tools, I’d be pulling my hair for sure or crying, lol!

      I love my Droid too and I’m just starting to use it to it’s full abilities but who has time to learn all that stuff :). I just give it to Marisa and she goes to town, lol.

      I’m so honored to be a part of your blogging community Lisa and yes our little blogging family is so supportive. It’s comforting to know we can take a day off or two knowing we have an online support system to keep our posts out there when we can’t…it’s awesome!

      I love the idea of turning off the notifications…I never thought of that. It does wake me up and there I go checking why it beeped. Thanks for that tip!

      You’ve been doing great on your jogging. I’m walking on the treadmill and have reached 2 miles at 3mph…it’s not much but it’s a milestone for me :). I’d love to start jogging though…

      Glad you stopped by! Hope you’re enjoying the weekend. We’ve got some rain this morning and everyone is sleeping in…and yep I’m working 🙂 but I did get on the treadmill before I started my day. 🙂

  12. Christy Garrett

    September 21, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    Corina this is a great post and very useful. As a work at home mom, I sometimes struggle with this. I tend to work at odd hours just to get my work done. It often cuts into my family time because I have a toddler at home with me all day.1

    • Corina Ramos

      September 22, 2013 at 6:32 am

      I was working in an office when my kids were toddlers..girlfriend I know you have your hands full. My grandson is a 22 months old and he is all over the place when he comes over. I don’t think I could manage having him all day, lol.

      I wish I could tell you it gets better but as they get into their teens they still require the same attention lol ;).

      I work all kinds of odd hours too. I’ve got my laptop in front of my from 8pm til about midnight but like you said it does cut into my family time so I’m trying my best to change that.

      I don’t know about you but I want a super hero’s cape…and in hot pink please! Thank you for sharing your thoughts! Hope you’re having a great weekend!

  13. Nicole

    September 22, 2013 at 12:06 am

    First off, Great post!

    I am embarrassed to say that I answered yes to most (4 of 5)of the “are you losing work balance” questionnaire. It’s really hard to balance anything – life, time and nutrition comes to mind. I will implement more “rules” as you suggested: Always eating as a family, one-on-one conversations while driving, putting the laptop down during “family time.” These are great tips that aren’t so hard to stick too if you’re dedicating to keeping you and your family well-balanced.

    Thanks again for the tips,

    Nicole

    • Corina Ramos

      September 22, 2013 at 6:46 am

      Girl don’t be embarrassed….those questions came so easy for me because I do that all the time :). I agree with you…it’s hard to maintain a balance between work and life…sometimes one thing will demand more of your time than others and that’s when we have to be flexible.

      I’m glad you’ll be able to use my suggestions. My kids are teens now so I feel it’s vital to keep communicating with them.

      Thanks for stopping by Nic! Hope you’re having a great weekend!

    • Harleena Singh

      October 3, 2013 at 11:47 am

      Welcome to the blog Nicole!

      Sorry for a late welcome – I was just waiting for Corina to have her say fully before I took over 🙂

      I agree with you – it IS tough to strike a real balance betweek our work-home life and if you are a work from home Mom alongside, things get all the more tougher. I liked the tips Corina shared with us and if we can use these simple ways, we’d surely have more time with our loved ones, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views. 🙂

  14. Jeevan Jacob John

    September 22, 2013 at 1:43 am

    Hey Corina,

    Time management is one of my favorite topics. I like experimenting around with my schedules, and since I am in college, it is easy for me to experiment around (it is much easier this semester as I am not taking any classes right now).

    Right now, I have a schedule, and I stick with it (I have gaps within my schedule – like during dinner, to make sure that I do eat with my family, so not much problem there).

    As for balancing, I try to spend about 5 hours learning something new (since I am not taking any classes, this is really important). Rest of the time is used for blogging (I limit my blogging time to 2.5 hours a day. Since, I don’t manage a blog right now, it works wonderfully), entertainment and the usual stuff 😀

    Anyways, appreciate the post on managing time 🙂 Balancing between life and work 😀

    • Corina Ramos

      September 23, 2013 at 10:11 pm

      Hi Jeevan!

      Gosh you certainly have your time planned out perfectly, which goes to show that time management is key in every aspect of our lives, right?

      Although I see you have taken time to learn something new and that’s always important, don’t forget to have some fun on the way!

      It was so nice to meet you Jeevan. Thank you for sharing how you balance your life! Have a great new week! 🙂

  15. Babanature

    September 22, 2013 at 5:04 am

    Hello Corina and welcome to Harleena’s blog,
    You have indeed share with us some great tips on how to stabilize our busy work with our regular life.

    What i’ll say is, in what ever we do, scheduling our task should be the first and best thing any man/ woman could ever think of. I have never for once failed to follow my daily plans :). Doing so, it helps me keep time with my kid…

    Thanks for the lovely post Corina, Do have a beautiful weekend 🙂

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 12:03 am

      Hello Babanature.

      Yes, I believe every parent should have a schedule to make time for family…it helps make sure we make all those special occasions like school plays.

      I wish I could say I’ve always stuck to my schedule but there is always an adjustment made, got to be flexible too. 🙂

      Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts! Have a great week and it was so nice to meet you!

  16. Malika Bourne

    September 22, 2013 at 7:09 am

    I am still laughing at the first ways to tell if you life is out of balance. Really the first two reasons aren’t funny, though.

    I work at home. My kids are grown and I have grandkids. I live with my 40 year old boomerang son just because he has MS. Fortunately he works on his computer, too. This works out pretty well for us. I can stop what I’m doing a take care of things for him as he has needs.

    I just don’t work when I have the grandkids over to my home. That time is for them and them alone. (I know it is much more difficult when your kids ares small and at home.)

    Before we moved to a new apartment, several months ago, we had neighbors dropping by uninvited when they felt like it.There they were peeking into our patio door asking if we were home.
    YIKES!
    NO one understood that were weren’t playing computer games. We were working. That threw our work off balance as I would have to alter my sleeping around to meet deadlines.

    I am happy to say my son and I have a nice working well balance work schedule. Still I am flexible when a doctor appointment comes along or the grandkids need to come over at a different time.

    I admit that I dream in 140 character Tweets and think about my next series. It is hard to shut off. For this reason my son and I made a pact.

    We have nurse aids put him in bed every night. After that I have to stop what I am doing. We watch King of the Hill every night together. No computers.that is our time to laugh together and put aside work.(Granted we are two adults.)

    Corina, you put a lot of thought in to this post I see. Your thoughts will be very helpful to all of those parents working at home. I will share this.
    thanks, Malika

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 1:43 am

      OMG Malika you and I are a lot alike :). When my grandson comes over I stop what I’m doing and hang out with him. He’s 22 months old and at that age where everything is funny to him and cracks up at anything…can’t miss those moments. 🙂

      Also, it isn’t so much my neighbors distracting my day as it is my family. I don’t think the get it, you know? Like you said, I’m not playing games or just sitting her surfing the web…I’m working my a#@ off. By the way, glad you moved from there! 🙂

      You’re too funny: “I admit that I dream in 140 character Tweets and think about my next series.” I admit I always have work on the mind but I make a point to make time for my family…just like you and your son watching TV…nothing wrong with that. We hang out and watch TV too…of course we fight about what we’re watching for about an hour ;). Crazy as it seems deep down that is music to my ears.

      My son suffers from a seizure disorder so my schedule is always open for him. He’s 19 years old now but he’ll always be my priority.

      So nice to meet you Malika! Happy Monday! Thank your for sharing how you find balance!

      • Malika Bourne

        September 24, 2013 at 10:38 am

        Corina, we do seem to have a ton in common. It is very good to meet you. I hope we stay in touch. If you ever need someone to listen, you can always feel free to contact me. I am a very good listener.

  17. Akaahan Terungwa

    September 22, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Hello Corina,

    As a workaholic, I can easily come to terms with your guest entry here. The first question everyone in that shoe has to ask in my estimation is ‘why do I overwork in the first place?’ It could be an undue craze for material things or another inordinate reason.

    However, whatever it is, one should realize that a family comes first and should be treated as such! Only then will things fall into place!!

    – Terungwa

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 1:57 am

      Hello fellow workaholic, so nice to meet you :).

      You know, I ask myself that and I can come up with all kinds of reasons why I “have” to work so much. Spoken like a true work addict, right?

      But you’re right we need to stop and make time for the things that are important to us and that’s when the balance will fall into place.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this…have a great week Akaahan!

    • Harleena Singh

      October 3, 2013 at 11:53 am

      Welcome to my blog Terungwa!

      I’m glad you could relate to Corina’s guest post here today 🙂

      You are SO right – being at home, we are forever working, and I see that with myself, and have often asked myself the very same question – why am I working all the time whereas working from home should give me the freedom to work at my own time, isn’t it? I guess the answer is because you need to manage the limited time you get to sort out your home, kids, family, and take care of your work. CHalking out the right way to do all of this IS what makes us feel so because our work never ends. Oh yes…family always should come first.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  18. Hiten

    September 22, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    Hi Corina,

    This was an excellent post on how to maintain a work-life balance when working from home. It’s great to see you at Harleena’s blog, too!

    One thing I like to do to help me maintain a balance is to spend an hour with the family every evening, just talking and/or watching TV together. It helps everyone to keep interacting with each other and talk through any problems a member of the family might be facing.

    Thank you.

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 2:14 am

      Hi Hiten,

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the post and it’s been great chatting with all her readers. She’s got a loyal following and I wanted to give them the same great content they’re used to :).

      I share the same love of TV time with the family. My kids are teens now so they wouldn’t mind if I didn’t do family night because I veto all reality shows :). I just don’t want to keep with a Kardashian 🙂

      They gripe about the final selection (can’t please everyone) but after a while they’re all into it laughing and of course arguing about who is sitting where :).

      Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing how you balance your family and career. Have a great week!

  19. Ahsan

    September 22, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    Hello Corina,

    It’s an excellent post. i think there must be check & balance in work & life. Life is one time. So we must utilize it properly. Why we use all time in just working? sometime i saw lots of people bring their work at home. Its not good. Enjoy your time with family, hear their interaction & give your opinion. So it will bring a good bondage between family.

    Anyway this article will be a good lesson for every human being

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 6:09 am

      Hi Ahsan,

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. Yes we should make time to check our schedules and make adjustments as the needs of the family are always changing.

      I admit I was one of the ones who brought work home from the office. And as the sales manager I would shop on the weekends so I was always on the clock so to speak.

      I agree with you totally…we need to enjoy the time with our family, especially the kids because the grow up so fast. Not to mention the lack of attention can cause kids to rebel.

      Really appreciate you sharing your thoughts! Have a great week :).

  20. Viola Tam

    September 23, 2013 at 4:27 am

    Hi Harleena & Corina,

    Great insights! I love the way that you use questions to guide people to see if they MIGHT be a bit off the balance. If we wait until our body tells us that something is not okay, it is often too late. Dr. Ross Walker, an outspoken cardiologist in Sydney, says that stress is often the trigger for major health challenges.

    You are right, Corina! Having a schedule is very important. Developing a habit of leaving work when we should is crucial. Learning how to switch off may not be easy at the beginning. Yet, with practice, it can be developed into a great habit!

    We human beings are not supposed to work 24/7. Why should we? Awesome insights, Thanks!

    Viola Tam – The Business Mum

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 8:30 am

      Hello Viola,

      So nice to meet you! I was telling Nicole in her response that those questions came so easy for me because I do those a lot :). I’m getting better but every now and then my husband will say “hello, did you hear what I said” LOL…my poor sweetie. 🙂

      My therapist once told me it takes 7 days to break a habit…she obviously wasn’t referring to balance our life and work :). Yeah, that turn-off switch a hard to push, isn’t it?

      I agree, we were not put on this Earth to work 24/7. We have to enjoy our life and the things that make us happy, which is almost always the same reason for why we work :).

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us Viola! I’ll have to stop by your blog and pay a visit! Have an awesome week!

  21. Mitch

    September 23, 2013 at 11:56 am

    This is probably one of the most amazing articles I’ve read so far on blogs.

    I’m a web developer and an online marketer myself, I work from home, but I’m single and got few responsibilities. I’ve always hated working a regular job because of a fixed schedule- I like the way things are right now, wake up whenever I want , work whenever I want, sometime in the middle of the night, sometimes more than 10 hours a day, I have no fixed schedules, no fixed rules, and none of the things you mention here. But I never looked so far ahead like you do. I guess I’m heading for big trouble!

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 8:36 am

      Aw Mitch, your first line truly made my day. I admit I was nervous with my first guest post here. I wanted to make Harleena proud and engage her audience :).

      Ah yes, enjoy all those carefree moments Mitch, there’s certainly nothing wrong with that. Heck, if I were single and had no responsibilities I’d have your mindset too :). Pardon me while I daydream for a couple of seconds on how that would be…lol.

      Yes, you’re in for some crazy times but you know what it’s all worth it my friend, I promise :). I’m in a new chapter in my life and that’s the role of grandma…there’s no better feeling let me tell you :).

      I’m so glad you stopped by and put a different spin on things! Have a great week! 🙂

  22. Nate Leung

    September 23, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    Hi Corina!

    Great guest blog post! I do believe that if a person doesn’t make the time to relax and recharge, their ability to do their job decreases and their performance level suffers. I strongly believe that it can affect other areas in life as well. Having a demanding career is one thing but it’s another thing to put an emphasis on spending time with friends and family so that they can return to work refreshed and ready to do their job. This past year I have put a big priority in terms of having balance in my life. Thank you so much for the reminder!

    • Corina Ramos

      September 24, 2013 at 8:45 am

      So glad I reminded you Nate…we can all use that every now and then because we will get caught up in work…at least I do. 🙂

      I’ve learned not having a work-life balance can easily induce stress and that can lead to other health issues.

      I think it’s awesome that you made it a priority to focus on your balance Nate, cheers to ya buddy!

      Thanks for stopping by! Have a great week!

  23. Maggie

    September 24, 2013 at 10:48 am

    Very helpful post, Corina! Yes, being flexible is important. Thank goodness for technology to make those times in waiting rooms become productive!

    I love that you have conversations with your kids in the car. It’s the perfect opportunity when they can’t walk away from you! lol

    • Corina Ramos

      September 25, 2013 at 6:59 am

      Girlfriend if I wasn’t flexible I’d be pulling my hair out. 🙂 There’s always a wrench thrown in my day and I’m ready for them…I’d think it was the zombie apocalypse if I had a smooth day, lol 🙂

      When they were kids it was easy to get the conversations going. But I’m up against their smartphone and headphones so I have to be creative. They’re pretty good about sharing.

      Hope you’re having a great week Maggie!

  24. Jodi

    September 24, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    I usually make a schedule and stick to it with loads of flexibility, like you say Corina. I am a go with the flow. Sometimes I multitaks but when I am with someone, I really try to be with them. I think I create a OK balance most of the time. Sometimes I am harried and it gets hectic, but other than that I do OK!

    • Corina Ramos

      September 25, 2013 at 7:23 am

      I’ve tried winging it one day and I was out of it. I didn’t know what to work on first and then I’d drop one project and pick up another. Total fail like my daughter would say 🙂

      I love my schedule and yes to keep it all in balance we have to “go with the flow”…love that!

      So nice to meet you Jodi! Thanks for sharing how you keep that balance going! Hope you’re having a great week!

  25. Carolyn

    September 24, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    Hi Corina, Welcome to Harleena’s place!

    You sound just like me! I am a mom of a family of five and I work at home. My laptop is usually in the kitchen, even though I have a home office. Your idea of doing work while kids do their homework is a good one. I don’t take my laptop to be with me, but I do confess to checking in on my work from my iPad when in bed.

    You’re right about sectioning off work vs. home. It’s difficult when they seem to mesh, but it’s one of the advantages of working from home as well as one of the disadvantages.

    I’ve started to take one day a week off from my blog, usually Saturdays. I find that my head is clear then for the week ahead.

    I also like your idea of using car time to talk to my kids. I try to keep the radio off and then ask them questions about their day. They usually get so engaged in the conversation that they forget to turn on the radio!

    • Corina Ramos

      September 25, 2013 at 8:21 am

      Hi Carolyn

      I’m having a great time here at Harleena’s place. It has been a great experience and meeting awesome folks like you is definitely a plus!

      So nice to meet a fellow mama working from home :)! there’s never a dull moment, right but somehow we make it all work and at the end of the day everyone is happy.

      I’m off on the weekends but the family also understands there will be times I have to work on the weekend. Their support is important in order for it to work.

      Yes even though there are some disadvantages to working from home but the advantages outweighs them hands down. I don’t see myself going back to an office job so no matter what the day brings, that’s my life and I just have to do it :).

      Now that the kids are teens I make it a point to talk to them. There’s too much stuff going on not to be involved. Like your kids, mine will share and not pay attention to the radio. 🙂

      Appreciate you taking time to share your thoughts. Hope you’re having a great week!

  26. Karen Hoyt

    September 26, 2013 at 3:15 am

    Corina –
    When I first saw the title, it didn’t seem to apply to me. I just walked in from work and …. hit the computer. Yes, this article is for everyone who is maintaining a website, even if they work full time outside the home.

    Your 3 key things were great. I especially like the flexibility part. My granddaughters asked me to come watch them at gymnastics tonight. I am going to stick with my goal to write tonight. But I’m going to take an hour for the most important little ones on the planet too!

    As for the balancing act. Whoa! You nailed it! I have already addressed some of those issues like checking email or tweeting in the middle of the night. It was reassuring to hear that others face the same problems.

    It’s a joy to be able to help others with our writing for sure. We all have a passion for what we do. Thank you for making me, and other readers more aware of the pitfalls and how to deal with them.

    Karen
    P.S. I’m eating dinner at the computer! lol

    • Corina Ramos

      October 3, 2013 at 8:11 am

      Hi Karen!

      First, please accept my apologies for not replying to your awesome comment sooner! This is my favorite part of blogging but too many things kept me away but I’m back :).

      You’re right, anyone who is working or running a business can relate to these. I remember bringing work home from the office too.

      When I started reading the comments I was very relieved to know that I wasn’t the only one going through the balancing act. :). And I love how you said you make the time for the granddaughters, how old are they? I know what you mean…

      My grandson is 22 months and when he visits I literally drop what I’m doing. I lose all concentration when he’s here :).

      I love what I’m doing and knowing that it’s helping others, that’s the biggest payoff for me.

      Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts…and I eat at my desk too. Having popcorn as I write to ya :)!

  27. Lalitha

    September 26, 2013 at 11:30 pm

    Nice article it is something very helpful to all the working class. We all face all the above explained difficulties in maintaining a work/life balance. But we never think on how to achieve it and by the time we learn them, half of our life will be spent by being busy in our work life. So it is better to have a clear idea of how we are going to maintain both our family and work life in balance, at the start of our career itself.

    • Corina Ramos

      October 3, 2013 at 8:46 am

      Hi Lalitha,

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the post and yes, everyone who is working can relate to this, right?

      I love how you said “by the time we learn, half our life will be spent being busy” you are so right about that! For me, my two oldest didn’t take interest in school or extracurricular activities.

      I can immediately tel the difference the positive impact my decision to work from home had on the younger kids. They are doing great in school and pursuing colleges.

      We have to pay attention to our families, they are the ones that give us a hint that we need to balance our life more with work.

      Oh yes, planning ahead is always good but I’ve also learned life doesn’t always go as planned, right :).

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I apologize for having responded so late. Wasn’t doing too good on my balancing :).

  28. Olili Bob

    September 28, 2013 at 1:40 am

    I must say this is a post that explains alot that has been happening to me lately, sometimes i forget to eat just because am on pc. Tnx alot for this post i must say this post is life transforming.

    • Corina Ramos

      October 3, 2013 at 8:51 am

      Olili, that is one thing I don’t forget to do…eat :), LOL! I wish I could though but that’s a whole other post :).

      I do have some snacks at my desk and I do admit sometimes they aren’t that healthy. But I have made a commitment to get on the treadmill at the end of my day to relieve stress and burn off the calories I too in with my daily soda :).

      I’m glad this was a great reminder for you my friend. Remember, your health should always be a priority and a healthy diet can make us more productive too :).

      Have a great week!

  29. Reginald

    September 29, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    Hi Corina and Harleena,

    Well written! For me, I have a day job plus a part time blogging job and that’s crazy. At times, I really feel that there isn’t anyway to make it work unless you have absolutely great time management skills.

    With such limited time, make sure you have a GREAT plan if not, you will be very ‘off’ from the main goal. Ouch!

    • Corina Ramos

      October 3, 2013 at 9:04 am

      Hi my friend!

      You can tell by how late I am replying to you that I was loosing the battle of the balancing act :).

      You’re absolutely right Reg, we need a time management plan. I’ve tried winging it and doing without one but I was all over the place and not productive at all.

      I think everyone can agree there isn’t enough time in the day to get it all done, right?

      I’m so glad you liked the post and you telling me that it’s well written, that’s a major compliment for me!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts Reginald! Hope you’re having a great week.






Read more posts in the category: Work & Career




3 Tips to Maintain a Work-Life Balance Working From Home

by Corina Ramos time to read: 4 min