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New dad...work remote...Any advice?

Hey War Room,


Welcomed our first savage into the world 2 weeks ago. I'm back in the office this week (I work from home).


Wife doesn't go back until after labor day (teacher)...I've found it difficult with constant visitors, helping the wife, etc to keep on schedule.


Any advice to help me keep my sanity for these next 8 weeks?

🙏 Mental Wellness
💆‍♂ Mindset
🏄 Personal Life
34
funcoupons
WR Officer
+11
up in Fiji, under paddy
Not a parent so no advice from me, but congrats on the little savage!
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Appreciate you @funcoupons!
Kinonez
Celebrated Contributor
+9
WR Enthusiast
Not a parent, but just got a nephew, my best advice, book your lunch time. It's a time where you can enjoy your liitle savage whit no one questioning you.
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Great point. Gotta eat and refuel to be your best for the little ones.
Kinonez
Celebrated Contributor
+9
WR Enthusiast
oh yeah, that's my uncle time for sure, I eat and spent time with him, and know that no one in the office will call me. BTW huge congrats!! I forgot to add that!! What's the name of your first born?
GDO
Politicker
+7
BDM
It’s all about setting boundaries and scheduling. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
100%
bamageorge
Celebrated Contributor
+9
International Sales Director
Family first, always. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
100%!
looper1010
Celebrated Contributor
+13
Account Executive
Congrats on your new bundle of joy! I'm not a wfh parent but work with a lot of them.  One thing I noticed is a daily blocker of time devoted only to family.  For ex, one parent devotes 6am-10am for family and the rest for work.  Another parent will have blocks in the morning and afternoon but will pop back into work after 6pm to catch up.

I'm fine with either and understand their schedules.  Just provide notice and set boundary for family time and work time.   Most people will understand, especially if it's a newborn!  

I'd also communicate the same to your wife.  Letting her know this block is reserved for work so she doesn't feel neglected if she calls on you. 

Good luck and try to get some sleep <3!
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
That’s a great point in the time blocking being reciprocated with the wife. I’m soooo guilty of dropping everything to help her, even when she knows she may be using that to her advantage. Which is 100% fine but I need to be self aware about tasks I need to accomplish.
looper1010
Celebrated Contributor
+13
Account Executive
You sound like a devoted hubby! I'm sure she'll understand boundaries since this is your job.  I'd also advise getting a dedicated workspace with door.  You don't want to mesh personal space and work areas.  Your wife and kids will know that Daddy is current on DnD mode when in the "office."
Show 1 more replies
1nbatopshotfan
Politicker
+5
Senior Director, Enterprise Technology
Congrats!! I recently moved back to a coworking space, but before that was a WFH dad with a kid. We added a new one 4 weeks ago, so I did a bit at home with a 4 year old and new born. 

My main tip is know that you’re going to have to be ok with feeing like you’re failing at work and as a dad. It’s not easy. You’ll be stuck on an important call and you’re wife will really need you to bail her out because your new baby is cluster feeding and she’s exhausted, or the diaper exploded and she just can’t. You’ll be stuck. Once you realize that you’ll do both at about 80% it becomes much easier. Also right now, the new baby won’t have a consistent schedule so you’ll need to be comfortable being flexible. Make a strong outline of what things at work you cannot miss or be distracted by. Adhere to that. Work with your wife on understanding what calls can be interrupted. Go over your schedule in the morning. 

happy to add more if you have questions! The newborn phase is the toughest to plan around because the baby changes daily. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Man this is super helpful. I already have a bad inner critic, so feeling like I’m behind at work gives me some anxiety. My main concern is truly just keeping my wife sane and healthy. But to do this absolutely requires some intentional time blocking away from the computer.
1nbatopshotfan
Politicker
+5
Senior Director, Enterprise Technology
Some other stuff that helps. Get rest when you can. We have 3 weeknights where I just change the diaper for wake ups and go back to bed. The other nights I help with putting the baby back to sleep after feeding. Having my wife set up for nursing before I go to sleep is also helpful. Put out some water and a cliff bar. 

People are generally very understanding with a new baby. If you’re late for an internal meeting it’s understood etc. don’t be afraid to take people up on their goodwill. 
Show 1 more replies
NoSuperhero
Politicker
+7
BDR
I'm a step parent, and well my best advice is for you to be present when needed to in both life and work. So really organize your time, and watch that little savage grow!!
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
I've definitely got to work on my boundaries!
youKNOW
Politicker
+7
Sales Manager
While I haven't done the WFH thing with a newborn (congrat's btw) I've been there when it just comes to having a newborn altogether. What helped me the most was getting in very consistent daily habits of your own. The baby is going to be a baby, obviously, so it's going to be something new every 5 minutes. If you can maintain some strict every day type habits...eating, working out, showering, WHATEVER...it'll help you stave off the insanity. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Appreciate the support. 

I'm coming to realize the biggest factors are time blocking (for work and baby/wife) but acting within those times (aka habits) to build the routine is extremely important. 

While I can't control the baby, I can control my actions and emotions. Love the GYM part. I've been slacking since he's been born. Dad bod in full effect :) 
youKNOW
Politicker
+7
Sales Manager
No worries man, it's a marathon not a sprint. For the first few months you just have to gut it out. Once they get past the blob phase things get a little easier. 
Hotlead
Politicker
+7
Producer
Get the kid a headset and a call list you'll be okay 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
This was my first thought. I’ve got an unpaid SDR at my fingertips.
FamilyTruckster
Acclaimed Answer
+7
Exec Director, Major Accounts
Father of 3 here - 6,4,1. Baby born mid pandemmy. 6 yo was remote kindergarten and took my office.  

You’re going to feel like shit often. If you can, work odd hours on non-customer facing work (training, internal emails, whatever). Delay send emails to align with “normal” business hours. It works. 


Don’t apologize. If your boss doesn’t get it, screw em. 

Most important thing is to take care of the baby and your wife. CONGRATS!!!
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Wow, that's a handful. Congrats to you!

Things are slowly getting better day by day. My wife is crushing it and knows I need to work. She's the true superstar. 
hurtscuzimold
Opinionated
+5
Dude abiding
Practice patience. It’s your only tool for the calamity soon to befall you. Just kidding. But really try to set solid hours and stick to them. Take naps. And drink extra coffee until you don’t need to anymore. Survival is your new KPI.
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Survival is the new KPI - that's outstanding. 

Honestly the parenting part hasn't been hard...it's been my inner critic that I'm failing on work aspect. 

Living and learning...we will overcome!
hurtscuzimold
Opinionated
+5
Dude abiding
Yes you will!!
SADNES5
Politicker
+6
Hittin' Dingers
Best advice from me. Have a kid free work space. Take a 10-15 every hour to go help. Changing diapers goes a long way. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
This is tough for me. Guest bedroom is pretty full so tough to free up space outside of my "office" which is currently the dining room. 
Beasthouse
Opinionated
+5
Corporate trainer
honestly, I can't begin to recommend a room more, It is critical babies grab and pull and will cost you a monitor or a coffee on a key board or a board meeting like I did. not only that but it destroys the boundaries for work and meal time. gotta suck it up and get that office set up I promise you its essential to your sanity it really does feel like I'm leaving work once I'm out of this room it makes switching gears sooo much easier! i have another savage common in December so I feel the pain but I promise its worth it!!!!
Show 1 more replies
fuzzy
Notable Contributor
+21
CMO (Chief Meme Officer)
I have a 19mo old and another on the way. Get your own (quiet) space. I have 1 bedroom dedicated as my office. Before that, I had a giant shed/workshop in the backyard I used. I also have an Amazon Echo Glow outside of my door and downstairs to signal when to leave me alone. I can set the color of it to whatever I want and I synced it to my calendar via Zapier so it auto changes. I also recommend getting a small fridge and coffee in the room to reduce having to get scope crept on duties anytime you leave the room. Just take a hardline stance that you are at work. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Congrats! They're incredible aren't they? 

This is quality right here. I think moving into our guest bedroom may be a necessity for the next 8 weeks before daycare. 

I'd assume it's syncable (is that a word?) through outlook which is the calendar I use. I'll figure something out for sure. Super helpful! Thank you!

fuzzy
Notable Contributor
+21
CMO (Chief Meme Officer)
you can do it manually with alexa "Alexa, set Echo Glow to Red" etc...I'm just a nerd and extra. You could use IFTTT or Zapier. I had to sync Outlook to Google Calendar then to Zapier to get it to work. 
Justatitle
Politicker
+8
Senior AE
@detectivegibbles congrats on the newborn. I’ve got 2 young children. It’s very important to set our blocks of time to honor the responsibilities and time needed to successfully do your job. It’s also really important to shut off from work and focus on family which is very tough in sales because we want to be responsive. If you can work in some alone time as well that is always nice.
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Thanks!!

It's weird being purposely intent on family but working from home. You feel required to drop everything for family, but you realize there are certain things that can be waited on. 

Appreciate the advice!
Safety3rd
Contributor
+1
Sr. Account Executive
Congrats on your new addition,@detectivegibbles!  I've never been remote except the two weeks back in 2020 when we all thought we were doomed.  But when they allowed us to work from home for those two weeks there was a stipulation that there needed to be some kind of child care in place for at least 75% of the time we were WFH.  Luckily I didn't have a newborn, and an awesome baby momma and some family close.  I wish I could be of more help!!
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
No apologies needed! Appreciate the kind words. 
SiliconBBQ
Politicker
+3
The Metal Rooster
Time blocks. And booze - for you and the baby when you're both inconsolable. ...I gave up booze post kid due to sleep issues.

"Sleep when the baby sleeps. Do Laundry when the baby does laundry". On the real, your sleep is going to suffer - so get it in early when you can.

I didn't really understand  "This too shall pass," and "Long days, short years" until a few months in.... 

Good luck. Enjoy it. It will go very quickly, be amazingly hard and rewarding at the same time. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
I'm just a dad that shits a lot at this point. Hopefully never thrown that label of shit dad. 

It's been amazing so far and honestly just so motivating to start my own biz to be more present at home!
SiliconBBQ
Politicker
+3
The Metal Rooster
I edited it b4 your reply bc I think the context was off. The fact you’re asking the questions is indicative of your direction. It’s overwhelming at times, and sometimes what’s good for Mom/Dad is good for baby…but that can take some convincing. The reality is the first few month are survival.

it’s been a really tough balancing act for me, but I wouldnt trade anything for my kid.

the tip I’ll leave you with that may not come into play for 9-12 months is glow stick baths….they make for a baby party tub and it’s really fun once they are old enough to sit up and play in a bath. I’m also a Dad that poops aplenty. 
Show 1 more replies
nomdeguerre
Valued Contributor
+5
VP of Channel Partner Sales
Congrats man... I have three (3, 5 and 8 years) so I can relate.

I'm not going to sugarcoat it, it is not going to be easy. I used to be 100% WFH, now it is more like 3 days at home 2 in the office.

I think the most important thing is probably communication. If you are worried and stressed about not getting work done, as I was/am, talk to your wife about it. Find a bit of time (I know difficult right now) and just be open and honest about your concerns. Say that you really want to be there for her and the baby but you are also worried about getting things done at work.

Also, it is very important that you prioritize your time and stick to the things you set out to accomplish. It is very easy to feel super guilty about doing work stuff and not stopping and helping with stuff around the house and with the baby. However, you have to set some boundaries for yourself and focus on what you need to do. Of course there are going to be things that come up and you will have to deal with it which is fine, as long as it is more the exception than the rule.

Also, try and figure out what the baby's schedule is like. If the baby wakes up late in the morning, you wake up early and get shit done. It might not be what you are used to, but if the baby typically wakes up at 8-9am. Then you wake up at 5am and get 3-4 hours in before baby wakes up, you'll feel great about getting stuff accomplished and you can still be there for your wife and baby. Obviously, if baby wakes up early, then you switch around and work late at night - whatever works, flexibility is the name of the game.

Also, I hate to break it to you, but you have no spare time anymore. You will wonder what you used to do with all your time, but that's just the way it is.

Final words of encouragement, kids are amazing and it is both the most stressful and also the best thing you have ever done. However, having kids do present some challenges for sales people, but one big benefit is that there are no better way to learn patience than kids and that is super helpful for any sales person.

Best of luck... also one is easy, talk to me when you have three kids LOL!
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Man, this is incredibly helpful. Thank you!

I worry about being "that dad" who's always in front of the computer. Not because I LOVE it, but because it provides the best life for us. 

Lot of soul searching these past few days about what I really want out of life.

Having spent so much time just staring at this perfect little creature makes me want to work even harder to get that "spare time" back. Wild how they change you!
seasonedsavage82
Senior Sales Leader
Worked remote or semi-remote my entire career and for the last six had a kiddo to work around. I found the following helps;
1. Plan out your day/routine and if you can share a calendar with the wife - my wife interrupts less when she know my schedule
2. Plan breaks; two or three 5-10 min breaks other than grabbing a bite at lunch to say hi to the fam or even give the wife a quick break.
3. Plan a time to end your day and end it. If you have more work that needs to get done, come back when the fam is asleep to finish. End at a reasonable time and enjoy fam time that way you dont feel guilty
4. Add 10-15 mins to the end of your day to disconnect. I like to end my day and then take a few mins to just relax before i jump in to dad mode
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
It feels like breaks are going to be key. 

Just a quick 5-10 minute, decompress, breathe. 

Structure always wins!
eds
Opinionated
+3
Salesy
Get a trustworthy nanny asap. If you can afford it, get two.

Either way, spend as much time with your baby as possible, the first 5 years are key!!
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Hahaha I'll jump right on that after I have enough commission to get the Rolex and resell to afford a nanny 😂
tr
troutbum7
Opinionated
+1
AE
Went through the same thing back in March, congratulations! A quiet space to focus on work (and really focus) makes the most of your working hours so you can schedule hard stops and time blocks to spend time with family during the day. Take your lunches if you can, and try not to spend family time checking email or looking at your phone. Keep work in the work hours as best as you can by being as productive as you can which means minimizing breaks, interruptions, walks out of your workspace to check on how things are going. Be present and in the moment with work and with family and you'll do great. Huge congrats on the new addition, it's the best feeling in the world.
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
It's been amazing so far, thanks so much for the advice!

PS - do you flyfish? @troutbum7 the handle jumped out at me...
bareknuckles
Valued Contributor
+4
CEO of my kitchen table
Congrats, I have a three-month-old. Clear communication with your wife is important to set boundaries. I also let my wife know when I have meetings and am making calls. That said, this is a very important time when a lot of this will go out the window and you need to focus on your family - so just go with the flow and embrace the chaos. 
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Congrats on the new addition!

I need to lay out some ground rules with the wife. It's one thing I truly haven't done as I've just been winging it. 

Thanks for the insight, I'm soaking this all in!
bareknuckles
Valued Contributor
+4
CEO of my kitchen table
Good luck and enjoy this
KingofGIF
Politicker
+6
Account Executive
congrats man! 2 things: coffee and wake up before your baby does, I mean, focus on giving yourself 2 hours of headstart by starting your workday at 6 am, or so. You'll be able to crunch 2 or 3 hours for tasks and follow-ups that you have to do, or that you should have done the day before...
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Finding that any free time, you need to essentially create during those moments the kid is sleeping or eating.
Lambda
Politicker
+6
Sales Consultant
Congrats, are you going to be hiring a nanny or have family to help? My wife stopped working to take care of the kids
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
We can’t afford a nanny. I’m a shitty salesman 🤓
Mudmoon18
Valued Contributor
+5
Sales Manager
Yes, be present. Here’s how I’ve found the easiest way to do it: 1. Separate office space, if not possible at least noise cancelling headphones 2. Set expectations with your wife that you’re not on call to come out and help whenever but if you’re out of the office or have your headphones off then you’re free game 3. Train your body/mind to get reenergized from doing dad stuff like changing diapers and doing the dishes (this is the biggest one but so clutch, your work breaks are breaks for your wife and you end up way more productive, and you feel helpful) Congrats man 🙏
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Appreciate the advice!!! Gotta find my rhythm for sure. We will get there 🤘🤘
Se
Sessions
Good Citizen
Sales Representative
Give yourself a workspace.  Focus on work but ready to get on Dad duty when needed.  You figure it out, it can be stressful but all in all I love it.  Also have been more successful at home, all about adjusting your schedule.
detectivegibbles
Politicker
+8
Territory Rep
Routine routine routine. It’s been enjoyable for sure!
JC10X
Politicker
+8
Senior Sales Manager
Enjoy - smoke weed or something - sleep in a different room when you can, play warzone, meditate, go for walks - take a vacation when you can. Enjoy, again. Its a blessing!
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