Being a mom entrepreneur is hard work. It is also the kind of work that many people cannot relate to. You have the demand of having a more than full time job of being a business owner with another more than full time job of being a mom thrown on the side. It’s rewarding, confusing, stressful, fun…basically all the feelings rolled into one.
I am currently 6+ years deep in the whole mom entrepreneur gig. While it’s not always smooth sailing, I have figured out a whole bunch of tips that help me keep myself together!
15 Tips for Surviving Life as a Mom Entrepreneur!
Keep a Clean House
Stay with me on this one. I know the task of keeping a clean house while also having kids is borderline impossible. I also know that many articles and pretty quotes tell us to “embrace the mess”. I’m a messy person by nature, so I totally get it.
HOWEVER. I have noticed a huge difference in both my mood and my productivity when my house is clean vs. when my house is messy. I noticed that when my house is messy I am more likely to have a feeling of anxiety. The feeling of “I have too much on my plate, there is no way I can finish everything”. When my house is clean, that feeling melts away. It may seem hard to peel yourself away from your work or from a round of Monopoly, but do take the time to make sure that the house is tidy. I promise it helps!
I do want to point out that I am not saying that your house needs to be squeaky clean. What I am saying is that it needs to be tidy enough that the thought of all you have to clean is not causing stress.
Wake Up Before Anyone Else!
Waking up earlier than the rest of my household is key to having a nice day. I need that time to have a cup of coffee and to be able to sit in silence. I also like to take this time to get started on a task that I may be dreaded, or to knock a few easy tasks out of the way. When the kids wake up I’m already up and going and feeling productive!
Now, I know some of you may be saying “yes, but my kid wakes up at 6”. That means you wake up at 4. It may seem like an absolutely absurd time to wake up, but I’m telling you-it’s life changing!
Prepare the Night Before
Each night prepare yourself for the next day. Take out anything you need for the next day’s dinner. Pack the kids’ lunches and backpacks. Have your to-do list ready to go on your desk. I even go so far as to have my computer set to any websites or documents that I need up for the next day so I am ready to jump right in.
When I wake up in the morning knowing I have myself together, I feel like a total badass that can do anything! When I don’t, I feel like I’m on the hot mess express. All Aboard!
Multitasking is Out, Time Blocking is In!
Multitasking is just asking for chaos. There’s nothing worse at the end of the day than knowing you were crazy busy all dang day while having absolutely nothing complete. Honestly, multitasking usually leaves me feeling frazzled. It usually results in a load of laundry left in the washer too long as well.
On a whole other page, it’s just not ideal. Your business does not deserve to share attention with your children or your household tasks. Your family does not deserve to share attention with your business. Multitasking leaves room for you to do many things poorly.
Time Blocking is simply dedicated time where you give your undivided attention to each task you need to complete during each day. Write down every single thing you want to do and need to do down on a piece of paper. Then, allot a time for each task on your daily schedule. You are still touching each task you need to do, but instead of answering emails while writing down your meal plan, you are dedicating a certain amount of time to JUST emails, and amount of time to plan your meals.
I add EVERYTHING to my daily schedule. This includes undivided time to play with the kids, to relax, to exercise, to do the laundry, etc. You would be surprised at how much you can achieve each day as a mom entrepreneur when you time block!
Focus on Your Health
It’s just like in an airplane. You must put on your own oxygen mask before helping others. If you aren’t keeping up with your own health, you are not your best self. You need to be your best self in order to run a business AND a family.
This can be as simple as making sure to drink enough water. Seriously. Drink the water. Prepping healthy snacks is also a great idea. Eating high protein foods and watching the sugar and carbs will help you fight the mid-day slump that we all encounter!
Taking your vitamins and making sure you are keeping up with your regular doctor appointments are also two important things to do! Take the time to go to the gym or for a run outside. Make it a priority. Also, you are going to laugh at me, but GET ENOUGH SLEEP.
Refresh Yourself on Upcoming Events Each Week
I’m not sure if you can all relate, but I noticed myself feeling frazzled because events and meetings (that had been planned well in advance) always seemed to pop up on me. Every now and then that still happens, but I have made it a point to check out my calendar on a weekly basis and refresh myself on the events and due dates that are coming up for the next few weeks. This has really helped me feel more organized!
Have a “Calm” Spot in Your House
We talked about keeping a tidy house above, but tidy does not necessarily mean calm. For some your calm spot may be your bathtub. Mine is not because my child has taken over my tub. I just can’t relax and unwind in a tub that has a pirate ship sitting on the side of it.
My family actually doesn’t even know that I have a calm spot. There is one spot in my house that is always clean, has no clutter, and is away from all things laundry, dishes, calendars, and kid toys. Find yourself a spot in your house like this and use it! Read a book, drink a cup of tea, and think about how awesome it is that you get to be a mom entrepreneur!
Have a Passion Project
When you have your own business it almost inevitable that you will experience on occasion the feeling of burnout. Even if you aren’t necessarily burnt out, there are times where you may feel uninspired or unmotivated to really put in the work to make your business thrive.
Having a passion project has really helped me through these slumps. This blog is sometimes my passion project. When I need to completely switch gears and clear my head I spend more time on this blog. It helps refresh me.
Focus on Priorities, Eliminate the Fluff
If us mom entrepreneurs are being completely honest with ourselves, we can probably agree that sometimes we just aren’t being productive. Either we aren’t being productive or we are wasting time on things that are not necessary or a priority.
One thing we lack as mom entrepreneurs is the luxury of time. Every minute of our time is precious and needs to be spent with purpose. Before diving into a new business project be sure to ask yourself how necessary it is and how it is going to impact your bottom line. Entrepreneurs have a way of adding elaborate projects to their task list that are simply just fluff. Quit doing that!
Sidenote: Spending time with your friends, date nights, play dates, dates with YOURSELF: They are never fluff, always priorities!
I never knew that deciding what to cook for dinner each night would be one of the most stressful things in my life. My least favorite part of adulting. This is where meal prepping comes in. Plan your weekly menu ahead of time and make sure (and double check) that you have all ingredients. Prep anything you can ahead of time (cutting vegetables, measuring out ingredients and putting them in little containers). This will make cooking dinner feel a bit easier. Relying on crockpot meals is also an awesome way to make your meals easier (and those crockpot liners, I swear by them).
Set (and stick to) Boundaries
Work/life balance is about as easy to find as the Bermuda Triangle. I don’t love the word balance, so instead I use the word boundaries. Every person is different when it comes to their boundaries, and sometimes my boundaries change. Right now one of my boundaries is that my evenings and weekends are work-free unless there is an event where the date is out of my control.
Of course with creating boundaries within your business comes sticking to these boundaries. Simply put, if you do not stick to them, nobody else will.
Get Rid of the Mom Guilt
Just get rid of it. It’s not necessary (especially if you are setting and sticking to boundaries). There are going to times when your business is just in a busy period and you need to work a little longer each night or you have to miss a practice or a dance recital. It’s OK and your kids are going to be just fine.
Give Yourself Grace
You can only do what you can do. A busy day at work followed by a long playground session may mean that your kids eat fast food for dinner and laundry doesn’t get done. A day spent deep cleaning your house may mean that your kids had a day full of screen time. You can only do what you can do, and the rest can (and will have to) wait. Allow yourself to be at peace with this!
Plan Activities Outside of the House
Planning activities outside of the house is the best way to completely unplug from work and focus on your family. When you are out of the house you are “out of the office” and it’s not so easy to get caught up with work tasks when you are to be spending time with your family!
Outsourcing is soooo so so soooo important! It’s important to accept that a mom entrepreneur need help. We simply cannot do it all. Outsourcing does not necessarily mean work tasks. This could be having a cleaner come monthly, or even quarterly. You can outsource your grocery shopping (we use Shipt). This could mean asking neighbors for help with school pickup or with watching the kids for an evening so you can meet a deadline. Get creative. Outsourcing is where it’s at!
Remember, being a mom entrepreneur is a privelege and we sometimes forget that. Take in mind the tips above and it will help slow your racing mind and allow you to enjoy the journey!
What are your favorite tips when it comes to surviving life as a mom entrepreneur! Share in the comments below!