There is no balance. The end.
I thought about hitting publish but figured y’all would hate me for the wasted time of clicking over here to find some life-altering advice to make balancing this whole motherhood and business ownership thing a little easier. While I can’t promise a perfect balance of the two (because I don’t think that really exists), I do want to show you a few programs and practice I use to make it work (most days).
Some days I feel like super mom, other days I feel like I’ve failed in every way possible. Some days I feel like the ultimate business woman, other days I feel like I need a re-do.
It’s not easy, this juggling two distinct and opposite roles thing. That’s especially true if you have little ones who are not yet in school – finding ways to keep your business going when your heart and mind are in two different places. It’s a struggle, and there is no perfect answer except to give yourself grace. You’re going to have days when you feel like you have it all together and days when you’re just trying to survive. Hear me mama: It’s normal. It’s okay.
With all of that being said, here are a few tips and programs that I love that I couldn’t do this mom/business owner thing without!
Tips and Advice
1. Set Your Alarm
Training yourself to wake 1-2 hours before the rest of your house to get started on your day can help you be more proactive, productive, and more successful overall (says recent studies highlighted in this Forbes article). Also, if you’re like me with little ones under school-age, the only time of day you can work is when they are sleeping or random few and far between pockets of time throughout the day when they are content and you aren’t needed for a snack, to break up a fight, fix a boo-boo, etc.
2. Complete House Chores While Children Are Awake
I know, I know. Easier said than done if you have wee little ones. However, I’ve always tried to get my twins involved in the household cleaning by giving them age appropriate chores. They are never too young to teach them responsibility! At 18 months old, this was limited to having them throw their dirty diapers in the trash and putting their dirty clothes in the laundry room. Now at four years old, they are able to help a lot more around the house, from unloading the dishwasher to vacuuming the floors! This way I’m not spending their quiet times when they are in their rooms (or nap time if your little ones are still taking them!) catching up on house work and instead can be focused on my business.
3. Set A Daily And Weekly Schedule
Setting certain days and hours to complete specific tasks is a great way to stay organized and on track. I check and respond to emails just twice a day as studies show that checking your email fewer times a day reduces stress and increases productivity. If you are prone to getting distracted while working, block all the websites and Apps that distract you using the Self Control app for your Mac!
4. Create a Social Media Calendar
Buy yourself a separate calendar from the one you use for every day life. I personally use (and love) this hardbound planner from Erin Condren as it provides plenty of space for scheduling all of my social media and blog posts in an overall monthly view as well as breaking down my daily tasks related to social media in the weekly view. Or if you prefer a digital calendar, I highly recommend BusyCal!
Plan your calendar at least a month out. This allows you to remain consistent on social media and/or blog which is better for your business and your stress level.
Apps and Programs
1. 17 Hats
I honestly don’t know how I would run my business without 17 Hats. I always joke that it’s the “mothership” of my business. It runs my bookkeeping, client management, calendar, workflow, to do lists, contracts, questionnaires, everything.17 Hats or another similar program is crucial to keeping your business organized, efficient and getting time back to spend with your family. Use THIS LINK for a special discount from me to you!
Buffer allows you to schedule all your social media posts in advance that you created in your social media calendar I mentioned above which is incredibly helpful. Setting aside a few hours every Monday to schedule a week’s worth of posts will give you more time with your family during the week.
4. Virtual Assistant
While I don’t use a Virtual Assistant myself, I know many business owning mamas who swear by them! You can hand off any jobs to them that will free time up for you such as managing your bookings, calendar, social media, and email. The best ways to find a VA are through a referral from a friend/colleague or browsing Upwork.