How we stay productive with a baby
So someone’s slid into my DMs asking me to write a blog about productivity with a baby and I decided to give it a go. So me and Adam travel 90% of the year, we like to stay active, we have a business together and of course the biggest project of all, is our sweet little coconut - Malia. So what’s productivity like for us? To be honest it will vary from country to country and if we run an escape or not with New Horizon Escapes.
So first I’ll talk about our daily routine while we’re back in the UK and where we have an actual routine. We would normally chat the night before about the responsibilities of the following day. So assuming neither me or him are working on anything major, we would split the day in half; one of us would work in the am and the other one would work from her nap time - roughly 1pm to about 6pm. This way we both get about 5-6 hrs of work per day. We also like to go to the gym so that is usually down to having our parents watch Malia while we train together or we take it in turns to go. It’s not really easy to be an active parent with a business and I have massive respect for all hard working parents out there because the HUSSLE IS REAL.
I’ll give you a break down of 2 types of days - 1 in the UK & 1 on the road.
1 - DAY IN THE UK WHERE WHEN WE DON’T TRAVEL
So here is a rough break down of our day;
5 am wake up
6 am - workout or if I skip the workout I choose to work from 5am until she wakes up. Adam is currently away in Kenya so I’m going to go bed earlier and attempt a 4am wake up so I can get a few hrs of work in before she wakes up. Everyone has to find their own little routine.
7.30am - Malia wakes up and we’re ready to rock & roll
7.30am to 1 - One of us will be with her while the other works. Quite often, whoever is with her will also be able to get bits of work done. I choose not to do this because I like to focus on separate tasks and be more productive this way.
1 to 6pm - The second person gets to work. While Malia naps, both of us are actually able to get about 2 hrs of work in. Now, I’m aware there are parents with kids older than Malia (20 months) so I don’t really know what to say… Nap times are currently saving us.
6pm onwards - We do our best to unwind and be a family but that’s not always possible. When you own a business it’s pretty hard to switch off, specially when you have your own deadlines to reach. I do my absolute best to be done by 7pm and turn off my phone for the night.
SUNDAYS - Every single Sunday we take a full day off everything - no gym, we have lie ins, relaxed eating, family day, being together as a couple etc.
2 - DAY ON THE ROAD AND DURING AN ESCAPE
5 am wake up - One of us goes out to start the day with our guests while the other works and waits for Malia to wake up.
7am - Malia wakes up. So we would then just start the morning together and keep it up until it’s time to have a shift change haha. Usually during escape weeks we will alternate the work we have to do when it comes to being with our guests. Where possible we will also have a nursery, friends or parents come to help us.
We used to have a nanny for the first 3 months of 2019, but that didn’t workout for us or the nanny. There are a few reasons for that; it’s a massive commitment for the nanny to travel constantly, it’s a huge financial strain on us, it changes the family dynamics and there is no more freedom to just be us 3. So we won’t be hiring a nanny again but instead we will try and use our own energies, family and nurseries to get through the next couple of years until we decide if we want her to go to school or not.
Here are my personal productivity hacks with a baby
Wake up as early as you can without compromising on sleep
Go to bed early every night in order to wake up fresh and productive
Take time off for yourself without kids, partner, friends or any other family
Stay active - I like to train first thing in the morning, if you’re struggling to find a way to keep active I’m releasing my own online training programme for women who want to train from home and have only 30 min per day to spare to staying fit.
Cut off distractions - when it’s work time, get off your phone and focus on single tasks. Increase your productivity by focusing on 1 thing at a time.
Social media doesn't help, so I usually put my phone on flight mode or I actually turned off all of my notifications.
Focus on the baby or a task. Trying to do both at the same time can lead to frustrations. Kids are loud and disruptive so you’ll only end up getting extremely wound up.
Use family help as much as you can and go out to get jobs done. I like to work from cafes from time to time.
Take time off to unwind and switch off so that creativity and innovation can come find you. When I spend time in Norfolk at Adams family I usually go for 5.30am (20min walks) and also a 7pm longer walk. I also try and add a 10min meditation or mindfulness in where I sit on the ground in the field and stare at the sun. P.S - I do them alone, not with a baby or family. My walks are me time and everyone knows this.
Be kind to yourself. We parents have to deal with an unlimited amount of sleepless nights and it doesn’t matter how many coffees we have, nothing will help. So sometimes if you had a rough night with a little one, just let it be. Wake up, have a coffee and see how things go.
I hope this made sense… Let me know if you want me to cover anything else and I’ll cover that in this blog post too.