by Meg Rohs
Maybe it was the postpartum hormones or the fact that I was in quarantine while being on maternity leave making me a little crazy, but I was determined to do more than just survive my days working from home. I wanted to thrive in them.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge believer in not trying to do it all or be it all during the postpartum period. After all, the most important thing is to focus on healing your body and taking care of your baby. But for me, creating an intentional daily routine wasn’t about getting more done, it was about showing up as my best to do the things I needed to do well. And more than just hurrying through them to move onto the next thing, actually enjoying them (answering emails, changing diapers, and cleaning the kitchen included).
The secret to thriving in your daily routine isn’t just for postpartum mamas. I built a work-from-home routine that not only allowed me take care of my baby, but also myself, and my business. Here’s how:
Design your day in blocks.
Our days can lose purpose and direction when they don’t have structure but we can also get really discouraged and frustrated when we try to adhere to a strict schedule that we can’t keep up with. Blocking is a technique I use to create both structure and flexibility in my routine.
The technique of blocking consists of dividing your day into blocks of similar amounts of time and filling those blocks of time with activities that work well together. This is a great way to bring both variety and structure to every day. The magic of blocking is that it allows you to easily adapt to different needs the day brings without losing your rhythm.
Here’s an example of how I block my days taking care of a new baby and running a business.
Block one. I’m focused on getting some work done for my business. I love sipping my morning coffee, creating content for my brand, and snuggly my babe next to my chest as he snoozes in his wrap (of course sometimes he’s screaming and I don’t get any work done, but those moments are going to happen too). I write the top three things that I want to get done for my business the night before so I can dive right in and make the most of these morning hours.
Block two. Here’s when we usually go on a walk and I’ll try to get a short exercise in. I also make myself a smoothie during this time (yes, even something as small as making a healthy smoothie for myself is part of my routine because otherwise I don’t take the time to do it). I found I’m much more likely to enjoy exercise after having a slow morning first. I tried to be the gal who jumped out of bed and got her workout in right away but it just didn’t feel productive to me. To block your routine in an effective way, you need to pay attention to which tasks flow best for you in which parts of your day.
Block three. This time I spend on miscellaneous tasks that I want to get done. This can look like bath time, taking photos for Instagram content, cleaning the house, ordering household supplies, anything that needs to get done. It’s important for me to block time for this kind of stuff every day. Otherwise they sit at the bottom of my to-do list and accumulate until I’m really bogged down.
Block four. I’m focused on getting dinner ready, cleaning the kitchen from the day, and getting ready for the next day. After I nurse my baby around 8pm we start our bedtime routine and are sleeping as soon as we can be after that. What I love about building my routine with blocks is that it keeps me focused on my priorities for this season but it’s also designed to evolve. So as my baby gets older and and our priorities change, our rhythm can easily change with them.
Meg Rohs is a small town mama, loungewear enthusiast, and total homebody who gives women tools to own their worth. She’s the founder of Nine56 Studio, a luxury loungewear brand for work-from-home mamas, dream builders, and homebodies like herself. Sign up for her weekly tips on connecting your clothing to your lifestyle and stories from her simple life in rural Wisconsin.