I remember a moment from the first week of lockdown when I stood in the kitchen and felt stressed, impatient and irritable. I told my husband how I felt. Working from home was difficult and frustrating. I wanted my husband to understand and fix my stress. He looked at me and said ‘I am stressed, too.‘ There we were: standing in the kitchen hoping that the other would magically make the situation easier and more tolerable. We were trying to work from home and manage the children with a cloud of uncertainty and anxiety above us.
Managing the pressure of parenting and working
The spring of 2020 was not easy. I have never loved my office more than I have loved its quiet and calm this year. Working with home if you have children has never been easy. Working from home when your children are learning from home is at its worst incompatible and at its best a challenge.
In many countries lockdowns are back in place. The summer months gave a short respite from families having to once again navigate work and school from home. Some of you may find the situation more manageable as it is familiar. However, some of you may find that your mental bandwidth is too stretched to see any positives in the situation. You may wonder where to find the energy and strength to get through this winter and this lockdown.
In Part 1 of this article I wire about how to make the best of difficult situation. I will share some suggestions on how to survive both working from home and supporting your children in their studies. Use my suggestions as a starting point to your creative problem solving. If you find it difficult, remember that your position is difficult. You are standing in-between the demands of parenting and providing.
Matleena Vanhanen is a licensed Counselling Psychologist with over 20 years of experience working in Europe and the Middle East. She has a practice of couples and individual therapy at the MapleTree Center in Dubai.