Exclusive Interview with Shweta Thota on Being an Influencer and Successful Parenting Blogger

Shweta is a dotting mom, a loving life partner, techie, and parenting blogger based in Silicon Valley- California.

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Being a parent can be a challenge even without the ups and downs of expat life. However, living abroad can also make you more resilient. Studied and settled in the US for 11 years, I understand the challenges of working parents in the technical field with bare minimum support. Trust me, I’d be lying if I say it’s easy. I share my journey on how I manage a full-time job as an engineer, being a loving partner, mothering a kindergartener, and a super hyper toddler and still staying motivated, healthy, and sane. Keeping it real, judgment-free is what is communicated through my work as a creator on my page.

How did the pandemic affect your life?

Well, this is a tough time for everyone, and we are no exception to it. Safety is a priority right now. All the schools, daycares have been shut down for the last 3 months. We are staying home and working remotely, managing our professional commitments, and at the same time homeschooling kids plus managing household. Trust me, it’s been quite a new learning. We anticipate working remotely for the next 3-4 months -at least in California. 

How are you dealing with the situation? 

Working from home right now can feel overwhelming because everything — right from work, virtual-school, fitness, family time, alone time, self-care, etc. — is happening under one roof.  My husband and I staggered our work times during the day.  We review our upcoming schedules each evening and figure out when one of us can take care of the kids, while the other takes calls/handles work that requires focus/gets to be alone in an office. We also share the responsibility for assisting my kindergartner with virtual school every alternate day depending on our meeting commitments. Rest of the day – Kids are occupied with craft, coloring, puzzles, reading, and writing logs. Free playtime, educational screen time, and nap time is our productive time.  We get most of our work done at night once kids are off to bed. Minimization of meetings will help, but we’ve also quickly learned that we can’t expect the kids to be patient and quiet when we’re on the phone. So, one person has to pay attention to the kids while the other tends to work. Try and finish off the chores before they are up and get off work at the right time!  Evening walks or cycle rides in the neighborhood and regular zoom calls with friends and family are helping us stay connected to our normal regular life.

What precautions are you taking to stay safe?

We strongly adhere to social distancing. Pretty much got used to the new normal ☺. Stepping out only twice a week for groceries with all necessary precautions – facemask, gloves, and sanitizers. Ensure packages/groceries are sanitized before opening them. Educating the kids on the importance of staying home, washing hands regularly, and maintaining social distancing is very crucial currently.

What advice do you have for fellow parents working from home? 

Here are my 2 cents – to friends and family experiencing the WFH+kids life is to have patience and be flexible because no two days are going to be the same. Having the patience to listen, understand, and respond accordingly will make rough days a lot smoother. Be flexible with your schedule (and yourself) and safeguard family time. The stress, anxiety, and guilt are real. You’ll probably need to lower your expectations, and that’s okay. Surround yourselves with positivity – there are the little moments of joy and happiness we get snuggling and hugging my kids, along with spending time with them.  

What message would you like to give to anybody who has a plan of creating something of their own and making a living through it?

Find your niche before plunging into the blogging world. Be more realistic. The audience connects well when you are in your authentic self rather than whitewashed images or experiences.  Just remember social media is part of your life, not your life! Be very clear on your pyramid of priorities. 

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