Not to place blame anywhere, but there are a ton of people (like me) who work a non-traditional work schedule. Contrary to what the mainstream says, there are over 30 million people in the United States who work off-shift, like afternoons or nights. We still have a house to care for too. Here is how I combine Home Economics and an off-shift work schedule.
How Does Home Economics Work with Off-Shift Schedules?
Getting things done when you don’t work 9-5 can be difficult. Not only can you not quite figure out when to sleep, but where do you fit in household chores?
The first key step is to get your sleep schedule figured out. If you work afternoons and wake up at 7a, then obviously you have the most time to do chores before work. If you work nights, and you stay up until 11a, then you will want to plan for chores after work.
I get it. When you have to adjust your sleep schedule to accommodate other appointments, things get difficult. This is especially a night shift problem.
Based on the fact that I currently work a 2-2-3 schedule of 12-hour overnight hours, adjusting to sleeping and eating is my main focus. Scheduling anything around work is just rough. Just one adjustment can get my entire week (at least) of sleep to be thrown out of whack.
Trust me… I Feel Your Pain
One trick I have learned for doing chores when you work off-shift is that doing any household tasks when it’s dark outside is difficult. Your body’s natural internal clock throws things for a loop. You have to train yourself and create the habit to make that work. It can be done, but it’s hard.
Another trick for off-shift housekeeping is to break it up. Do part of your list as soon as you get home, and do other things before you go to work.
Throw in a load of laundry when you get home, and then toss it into the dryer when you wake up. Or load the dishwasher before you leave for work and then empty it when you get home. By using your time wisely, you’ll find a routine that works best for you.
Off-Shift Home Economics
Finding what works for you and your household can take a little time. Do not give up! You will find a way to get everything done if you practice. Try things one way, see how it goes, and change it up until you feel that it’s working best.
To get you started, grab my Free Cleaning Checklist Printables here. I recommend writing Before Work and After Work instead of Morning and Evening on them. Do it this way at first, and alter it as needed. If you start getting the basics flowing, you will find you have more time to add in things to get even more done.
As you create new habits, you will start seeing when you have the most energy to do more chores. Just make sure you pay attention to what times your body seems to have the most energy AND when your mind has the most focus.
That balance is the trickiest part of off-shift home economics. But give yourself time. By using these tricks I’ve laid out, and putting them into practice, you will find an off-shift home economics routine that works for you.