Sunday, 3 April 2011

Distractions Faced by Work-at-Home Moms

I decided to talk about distraction today as it is one of many productivity killers. One of the definitions given by for distractions is "that which divides the attention, or prevents concentration".

So what are some of the distractions faced by a work at home mom?

House chores
These form some of the day-to-day activities in the home anyway, but as a work at home mom, it becomes a distraction when the chores are done at a time when work
pertaining to the business should be done.

Sometimes it could be hard to distance oneself from house work because it is there in front of you, but without allocating time for house work and business, it may be difficult to get things done on time or done at all.

This is an area where I'm trying to discipline myself. Having set times to check one's e-mail is a way of avoiding distractions. Checking one's e-mail every now and
again without any set time, could lead one to respond to e-mails that could be done at a later time or even get carried away with an irrelevant mail that adds little or no value to what you are working on at the moment.

Social Media
Facebook, twitter and other social media avenues are very good ways to gain visibility and promotion for one's business. There are however times when this can become a distraction when that is all that person seems to be doing. Social media is just one aspect of building one's business and therefore attention needs to be given to other areas as well.

Unless one is disciplined with regards to watching TV, this could be a distraction especially if you don't have a room set up specifically for your business. Modern
technology now gives us an opportunity to record TV programs. Why not record your favorite program and watch when you are giving yourself a break.

Telephone Calls
Telephone calls become a distraction when they have nothing to do with your business during working hours. As a work at home mom, you may have friends and relatives who do not really understand the concept of working from home and may be on the phone wanting to chat. There are two things that you may do here - either put the phone on silent and let them leave a message or let them know the time you will be able to take calls.

In addition to the above there could be other distractions which we don't have control over such as attending to the children. I hate to use the word distractions for children, but if one is going by the dictionary definition then that is the word that qualifies it. You may be in the middle of writing a blog post and your child needs you - you have no choice than to leave what you are doing and attend to them. Afterall the reason why you became a work at home mom was to be able to attend to your children and buisness in the comfort of your home.

What distractions have you been able to overcome or avoid?


  1. Great article, Kifayat! I am very easily distracted. It seems like time just flies by when I am on Facebook and Twitter.
    I also have some dogs that start howling when they want me to take them for a walk ~ That is a huge distraction.
    Well, the work is always there when I get back to the computer. I just keep on keeping on.

  2. I can definitely relate, as I work from home also (although not a mom), especially the social media. It can become addicting! ;o)

  3. @Janette - Your dogs definitely need their daily walks! lol

    @Reba - Thanks for stopping by - social media can sometimes be a social mayhem I know!

  4. One of the biggest distractions my mumpreneurs tell me about is visitors. When we work from home often our friends and family forget that it is our place of work and turn up for a coffee and a chat because they think we are 'at home' LOL

  5. Wow that is one big distraction Heather!

  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog!
    My major distraction is definitely social media ans my mom! LOL! I have a hard time saying no to my mom when she wants to go out for the day because I am home so much with the kiddos.

  7. Hi Pam, you made me laugh when you mentioned your mom! Moms what a blessing they are.

  8. Thanks for this great article. It's not only a challenge for moms but anyone who works from home. This is really practical advise thank you.

  9. I have found one of the biggest time-savers is to have a cordless phone with a headset. I am a web site designer working from home (and a mother, housewife, etc). I wear an apron with a pocket, and if the phone rings I answer it with the cordless/headset and pop the phone in the apron pocket.

    That way, I can go and do dishes, or hang washing, or whatever housework needs to be done, all while on the phone. Whether it is a client or a friend, I can still do no-brainer stuff like housework while I am talking on the phone. Not only does it leave my hands free, I can also walk around the house while on the phone.