Child Care Professional

Protecting Your Time Off as a Caregiver

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When you work in your own home, it can seem like there’s no real off time. Sure, you have your care hours but often parents stay late talking or contact you in the evenings and on weekends with questions and concerns. You want to stay connected to them but it can get overwhelming. Here are three ways you can make changes.

1. Set Clear Boundaries

Even though it’s important to stay available to your parent clients, it’s also important to have professional boundaries around your time and energy. Having clear close times and “no response hours,” time when you’ve made it clear you won’t be reading or responding to any communication, will allow you to truly take time off and relax. Using an app like Rayz Kidz allows parents to send you messages when it’s convenient for them and allows you to read and act when it’s work time for you.

2. Be Proactive Around Providing Information

Develop ways to effectively communicate with all parents with one action. Rayz Kidz makes this easy for both you and your clients. For updates about the child’s day, add a photo or description of the group events of the day or add individual events and photos by child, all done efficiently. Have one source of truth by using the in app shared calendar where you can add close dates and other special events. This will allow for easy access on demand. Other options include group email and text, however, those can take a lot of time to track and respond to.

3. Provide Opportunities to Connect

Hosting a family day can be a great way to invite parents into your space during time you’ve allotted so you can satisfy a parent’s need for connection and provide an understanding of all that the children are learning in your care. Even still, there will be times when a parent needs to talk to you outside of care hours. Take control of those meetings by setting office hours and using a free booking app like Calendly. You can limit the hours you’re available and how long a meeting can last. The parent can view your availability and book a meeting without any work on your end. This allows you to protect your off time while providing parents the support and connection they need.

Your time and energy is valuable. You provide great care all day and deserve to have real off time to relax and recharge.