By Kim Myers, Pilates Coordinator
Q; How do I plan and stick to a schedule for toddlers while working from home?
A; There is no silver bullet here. It’s almost impossible to stick to the same routine every day. What you can do is TRY, without driving yourself crazy. So, take a deep breath –
Here are some tips:
1. If morning time is usually your check email time; allow your kids to watch their favorite TV show for those 30 or 60 minutes. It’s hard to be present with them if you can’t make time to get that out of the way before you start your day.
2. Switch gears to be present. Enjoy breakfast time with the kids. Don’t look at your phone. Talk to your children, even if they are only 11 months old. Show them your SMILES, even if you feel like you want to cry. Kids pick up on our emotions.
Have a LOOSE schedule. For example:
- Zoom calls with my daughter’s school. This keeps her (almost 4) engaged while I play with my son (11 months). On days where there is no Zoom call, we tune into either Cosmic Kid’s Yoga or Just Dance on YOUTUBE. This still gives me the time to play with my son before his morning nap. Kids Exercise opportunity #1 for my daughter.
- Baby morning nap – I use this time to get to work. I have figured out what keeps my daughter entertained the longest and we sit next to each other while we both work.
- Puzzles. Give her a drawing assignment. Send her to go do stuff around the house while you work. I hid eggs again the other day and sent her on a hunt that gave me 30 minutes of no interruption.
- On nice days I can take my computer outside with me. Give your little ones yard tasks. Let’s see how many sticks you can find. How high can you jump on the trampoline? How far can you get that ball? Let them see that you are still watching them, even while you work. Kids Exercise opportunity #2.
3. Clean as you go. Seeing my bed unmade or having a sink full of dishes puts me a in a bad mood. That’s how I start to feel overwhelmed. Have your little ones help you make the bed. Turn on music while you do the dishes and ask for their help. My daughter loves to unload the ‘’kids’’ dishes from the dishwasher. We sing and dance while we do it. My son sits on the floor and bangs on pots with a wooden spoon. Cleaning throughout the day is far less stressful than tackling the whole house at one time.
4. Exercise – on your own. We all need our space. Instead of mindlessly snacking in front of the TV during nap time, take the time to MOVE. Your body and your mind will thank you. There are so many options on the Club Greenwood workout page. Search for your favorite trainer/instructor and commit to working out with them. I can’t make the LIVE Pilates classes that I love, so I tune in later. I tell someone that I am going to do it and I do. Hold yourself accountable.
To all the stay at home mom’s and dad’s – I see you. I feel you. We are in this together. I welcome you to send me a direct message if you just need someone to talk to. None of us are perfect. We are all going to make mistakes. Accept that. Just do your best.
Kim comes to us from the Claremont Club in California, where she taught Pilates and group fitness. Kim has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Texas State University in San Marcos and has two children with her husband Chris. She loves spending time with her family, knitting and watching a great episode of Dateline.
“Be in control of your body and not at it’s mercy’’ – Joseph Pilates