Puppies are adorable, and there is no denying that fact. However, they may also prove to be a distraction for some people. We will take a little time now and show you how working from home with a puppy can be made a little easier for you.
Working From Home with a Puppy Time Management
I’m not going to lie; I am easily distracted by my puppy. Would I instead be taking pictures of her and posting them on Instagram instead of doing my work? Yes! However, I know that I need to be a responsible adult and try to get assigned tasks completed as well. What can a person do when faced with the responsibilities of being an adult and the endearing nature of a new puppy running around?
I took some tips on what to do with a puppy while working from home, and I could find peace and balance in the situation. Namely, I have been able to put my work life and the time with my puppy in their boxes. I don’t feel like I am neglecting either, but I do feel like I finally have more balance between the two.
There was a lot of trial and error on my part, and my puppy took some time to adjust to this new life, but I finally found the balance that I was going for, and we are all on a better path now!
What Should I do with my Puppy While I Work from Home?
You should ensure that your puppy has plenty of care and attention while at the same time not getting in the way of accomplishing your tasks for the day. If you can balance out both of those things, then there is no reason why your puppy can’t be a blessing to you. Whenever I start to sit down to get things done, I use the Kanban time management method, which takes a lot of my focus to manage. Trying to do so while also working with a puppy is a lot of work, but I think the following tips can make it work out.
15 Time Management Tips for Household Chores When You Have a Puppy
1. Set Aside Puppy Time
Be realistic and understand that you want to spend time with your puppy throughout your work day. You are still trying to get a lot accomplished, to be sure, but that doesn’t mean you never sit back and appreciate the joy that your puppy provides to you. If anything, you may need more of that joy and comfort at this time when things can be so isolating and dark at times.
2. Use a Pomodoro Technique
One of the most effective time management tips that I have used myself is something known as the Pomodoro technique. I can do the Pomodoro while working from home, which has produced results that I can rely on. It is a timer set to a 25-minute interval to get things done. For the full 25 minutes, you are solely focused on the task at hand. You stay with that one thing and focus all your efforts on it for that period. Once those 25 minutes are up, you can give yourself a short 5-minute break to recollect and recharge your mental batteries. After that, you get right back on your tasks again. It works like a charm!
3. Create a Separate Workspace
Your new puppy will probably want to be in your space (I know mine does!), but you need to create a separate area where you can get things done. Your office space should be set up so you can mentally distinguish between your workspace and the room where you can enjoy your puppy.
I set aside an entire room to use as my Office. I include:
- A comfortable office chair.
- My adequately sized computer.
- I need all the other tools to get things done on the computer without any hassle.
4. Act like You are Going into the Office
If you were working in a traditional office, you would likely not be able to have your puppy with you at all. You should put yourself in that mental space if you are having trouble focusing and remember how lucky you are that you can have your puppy where you are now. This doesn’t mean that you ignore your puppy, but it does mean that you need to pretend as if you were working as you typically would in a traditional office without a puppy available to you.
What happens to your brain when you treat your work as a traditional office job, you are likelier to behave in a manner that gets things done. You will take your projects more seriously and be extra respectful of deadlines. All of that is extraordinarily important in a WFH setting.
5. Be Mindful of Displaced Productivity
When you work from home with a puppy, you may lose the belief that you are doing productive things when you aren’t. This is called displaced productivity, and people do it all the time. They switch gears from something that they know they should be working on to something that isn’t as much of a priority, and this causes them to have the appearance of being productive even though they know in their heart that they are not getting everything done that they need to.
Puppies make it particularly easy to do this because they create opportunities to do other tasks. Try to stay hard on yourself to get what you need to be done.
6. Try to Find Small Wins
Staying on task means finding ways to reward yourself. It would be best if you tried to find little ways to reward the small wins when you hit significant milestones worthy of your recognition. It would be best if you congratulated yourself for your hard work when you saw that you could hit some of the milestones you intended in your workday, even though your dog was there the entire time. You are making it happen piece by piece.
7. Exert Your Efforts Wisely
The Pareto productivity method teaches us that 80% of our results come from 20% of our efforts. It is important to remember this because it is too easy to get caught up in the tasks we are working on on a given day and forget that we may be applying too much effort to something that isn’t going to net us much of a result ultimately. This applies to being a dog owner as well. The small things you do to get your dog on the test behavior are often the things that ultimately produce the biggest results for you.
8. Try Using Time Blocks
Your puppy may be demanding your attention virtually any time, but your responsibility is to keep that behavior in check. One way to do so is to block out your time so that you are only keeping your mind on one task at a time. Doing more may stretch your schedule a bit too thin, and you certainly don’t want to put yourself in that position.
9. Meal Prep
Meal prepping is something that people have done for a long time to help free themselves up for time with your lovely puppy. Some people swear by it and say that it helps them take one little thing off of their minds so they can focus on their actual work. I do this as a end of day routine, so I have some additional time to spend with my loved one the next day.
10. Take Breaks
Being on the go all the time may seem noble to you, but it isn’t. Your brain needs time to rest and catch up with everything else you have been doing. It is not fair to yourself to try to push beyond what you are capable of doing, and you will ultimately end up burning yourself out if you do this too often. Instead, take your breaks and make the most of them to recharge your energy levels.
11. Create Priorities
You should know what you are aiming for on a given day. If you don’t have a set list of priorities you are shooting for each day, you will surely miss the mark every time. When you sit down to create your list of goals, make sure you know what those goals are and why you are doing what you do each day.
12. Think Positively
Practice positive thinking if you want to know how to work from home with a puppy and keep your morale up. This doesn’t mean you throw everything out the window and think irrationally. Instead, it just means spending at least some of your time thinking about the good and positive things in your life.
13. Get Together with Other WFH Dog Owners
It is fun to get together with other work-from-home dog owners and let your new puppy interact with some other dogs. Your puppy can make some dog friends, and you can also make some friends for yourself. Besides, it will allow you to get out of the house, take in some fresh air, and enjoy the feeling of not working for a little while.
14. Find Your Best Working Hours
You may need to realign your work hours to work your hardest when your puppy is asleep or otherwise preoccupied. It is important to make sure you find the hours of work that are your most productive and use them up as best as you can. You only have so many hours in the day to use towards your goals, so make sure you are making the most of it. Look for your biological prime time hours to enhance your chances of getting the most done.
15. Find Other Dog Owners and Make Friends Who Can Watch Your Dog
It would be best if you tried to entertain your puppy as much as possible when working. Perhaps you can work with other dog owners to allow your puppy to meet up with them and enjoy their company. It is an idea that might buy you some extra puppy-free time to get things done, and it can keep your dog happy and occupied at the same time. If you can make close enough friends with people who can watch your dog, that is a great thing to do to free yourself up a bit more.
How Do You Keep a Puppy Quiet When Working from Home?
Make sure your puppy has plenty of things to keep itself entertained. Also, keep your puppy’s food and water dishes filled up during working hours. Those are the big reasons a puppy may want to bug you while at work. If you can manage those things, then perhaps you can get some peace to get things done.
I always try to remember these tips when working with a puppy in the house. Just getting away and taking breaks, pacing my workout into manageable chunks, and remembering to take time to enjoy the puppy being there have all been a big deal for me.