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Mompreneurs wear quite a few hats (and shoes)!
You know the old adage “if the shoot fits, wear it”? Well…this would be the epitome of the mompreneur life: being able to fit comfy sneakers, cozy slippers, or working heels.
We wear them all.
The question, then, is how do we take care of ourselves while tending to our busy, hectic and chaotic lives?
How do I balance three coaching calls, two design clients, a leaky faucet, a sink full of dirty dishes, and a day of homeschooling my daughters?
The true question is: how do I balance these things while maintaining self-care?
Welcome, Allison Jackson of Allison Jackson Fitness- this week’s podcast guest.
Allison is the founder of Allison Jackson Fitness. She is passionate about all things health and fitness, but she really loves sharing her knowledge and expertise to help corporate moms get lean eating foods they love so they can be at their best.
She knows exactly how hard it is to work full-time, take care of the kids and household…plus try to fit in working out, eating right and taking care of herself, too!
Allison has spent the last seven years training and competing in figure competitions — even winning her pro card — so she has a crystal clear picture of what it takes to get to your ideal weight and stay there. Now she’s ready to share what she’s learned and experienced.
What we talked about on the podcast
As mompreneurs and bloggers we might often find that sitting behind the desk at the computer can keep us more sedentary.
Allison recommends looking for ways to get movement throughout the day. Shoot for 10-12,000 steps.
Just focus on taking a few extra steps. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, for example.
Ways to set goals for our health
Self care for moms doesn’t have to be rocket science. It’s often just a matter of creating small and easy goals. I talk a lot about creating easyblogging goals, but we should do the same when it comes to caring for our bodies.
Break down huge goals into bite-sized manageable tasks.
Another way to set goals is to track what you eat (five days out of the week).
Simply focus on eating and working out. Setting tiny goals makes a big difference at the end of the day.
Suggestions for healthy snacks on-the-go
Allison suggests focusing on protein. Did you know that women don’t get enough protein in our diets?
So, guess what? Protein bars are great and quickly accessible. Slip them in your purse on your way out the door before running errands or keep a few at your desk while you’re working throughout the day.
Also, don’t forget small snacks like almonds. They keep well and travel well. Almonds also provide both protein and healthy fats.
Allison offers an 8-week group coaching program. She helps with tracking goals and teaching how to eat foods you love and still lose weight.
Mom guilt is real, and if you are a mom blogger you totally get it. I talk about this topic so often with mompreneurs because it’s completely relevant and something that I know a LOT of us are dealing with constantly.
How do we find work-life balance? How do we spend time with our families and get it all done?
I try to cover just a portion of this massive subject in my Facebook live video- and I hope you find it helpful.
Make family your priority.
I think our greatest priority is to spend time with family, and we moms know this. We understand already that being grounded in faith and spirituality is important, and we so desperately want to. make family priority. But how do we do this and build our blogs? Blogging full time is truly a full time job!
In my life, I try to make family and spending quality time with my kids number 1. This is my high priority although I’m not always great at it.
In a perfect world my life would go like this: after taking care of my spiritual wellness, my physical health, loving my husband and my kids, business comes next in the line of priorities.
But sometimes (just sometimes), blogging sucks up so much of my time that I forget all sense of time. I mean, I literally enjoy blogging this much!
I’ve found that it’s important as a homeschool mom to use block scheduling so that after I homeschool my girls I spend time working, then time is spent preparing meals and doing housework and chores. I also have to unwind and just spend time enjoying my family- playing games and enjoying life together over family dinner.
It’s so important to make sure you have your own system of priorities that defines who you are so that you can balance your life better. I know it’s not an easy feat (I’m right there with you in the throes of family life), but it is possible.
Don’t feel guilty for being busy.
Entrepreneurship, as I’ve learned, is full of twists and turns. It’s not a straight shot to your next destination so it can be a rather tricky journey. There will be seasons when you’ll be extra busy with client work and you’ll need to stay later for meetings or leave your kids with a sitter a bit more often.
As your work load increases and your business expands you may find the need to call in extra support for your children, but that’s okay. It’s all part of your journey. So long as the new obligations you have don’t impede on your joyful journey or make you feel out of balance or completely out of sync with your family, it’s just a hiccup and you’ll get through it fine. In order to build a business you may just have to make some sacrifices. Prep your family for what to expect during the busy seasons.
Of course, if you feel that you are getting totally out of balance, then you’ll need to re-think your schedule and responsibilities and perhaps take some things off your plate. I’m always re-evaluating my life to see what needs to be eliminated if I feel like I’m out of balance.
Spend time with your family as much as possible.
When you’re together with your kids, really make it count. Let them know you’re available for them to talk and connect, or do activities they enjoy most.
If you spend quality time with your kids daily, likely a good 98% of your guilt will dissipate because of your connection with them. Whether it looks like 30 minutes or 2 hours, any amount of time with them is better than none at all.
I snag whatever moments I can, after school, before meals, just whenever – to do fun things with my kids that don’t take much time. We like to play card games or just simple word games. I read them stories, pray with them, and tuck them in at night even though they’re getting too old! I try to milk as much time out of being their mom in and around the clock although I’m working tons to build my business.
Give extra affection.
Another idea is to have reward systems in place so that the kids have something to look forward ton (for example, a mall outing with a teen daughter or a trip to Chuck E Cheese with younger kids). You can take them for ice cream or go for a special treat that they would really like.
This extra affection gives your kids the confidence that although you’re working hard all week and need some space and time to work uninterrupted, you understand their sacrifice of giving up some time with you. You’re letting them know they are important because you’re willing to reward them with some extra special fun at the end of the week as a result.
I truly believe that you can have your work life and home life combined and live without the burden of guilt.
I’m a homeschool mompreneur, and I know that there are a few of you others out there as well who are trying, like me, to balance both of these unique lifestyles. And if homeschooling isn’t your thing but you’re raising kids while working your business, then this podcast is still for you…so stay tuned!
Okay, mompreneurs out there- I know by the title of this post you’re thinking, “But is balance really possible?” Like you, I am skeptical of the promise of complete balance and freedom and bliss in my daily schedule. It just won’t happen.
I firmly believe, however, that balance doesn’t just happen but it is achieved through hard work and perseverance (and even then it’s not a complete “balance”). Balance happens for every mompreneur in the way that suits her best for each particular season of her life. And it’s different all the time.
At this season of my life I am homeschooling my kids…and…I’m working flexibly around our daily school schedules. On this podcast I will be sharing what’s been working for me (or not) and how I’ve managed over the years to merge two very alternative lifestyles and adapt them to meet my unique family needs.
I’ve also got a video to share from my homeschool YouTube channel over at MomZest. Most of what you’ll hear in this podcast will reiterate what I’ve mentioned in the video, but I share a few extra tips in the podcast that you might find helpful if you are balancing these two unique lifestyles.
Watch the video
You might be thinking: “But I don’t homeschool” or “I don’t have kids at home, but I’m a mompreneur who still needs help with life balance. Will this podcast be helpful for me?” Although I’m gearing up this particular episode with tips I’ve learned along the way as a homeschooling mom in particular, I do believe that no matter your kids’ education status is, you can still very much benefit from this episode…so don’t tune out.
How I balance being a homeschool mompreneur
Prepare for the ride.
I’ll be honest with you, if you are planning to become a homeschool mompreneur, getting ready for the ride ahead of you will be the biggest challenge. Mindset is always the #1 deterrent from success. Being mentally prepared for the task ahead and not cheating yourself out of the truth will take you a long way.
You will need to own up to the fact that the ride ahead of you will have some bumps and challenges. It won’t be smooth sailing and there will be days that you may feel like giving up. But in order to succeed, you’ll need to keep going. Prepare for the ride ahead of you by getting some support systems in place. Find groups of like-minded moms who are following the same path as you, who have also decided to become a homeschool mompreneur. Join entrepreneur meetups and groups in your area. Join groups online. But whatever you do, get with somebody else who is walking the same path as you because you’ll need that support for your journey. Here are a few more tips to help you find homeschool mompreneur life balance…
One of the biggest lessons I learned in the beginning is that if an event, a task, a new routine or schedule isn’t efficient for the family, we won’t choose it. If it takes too much time or energy or doesn’t give our family the room to practice the simplicity when we need it, we won’t do it.
For many of you listening, that may mean finding schools for your kids closer to your home so you reduce travel time. It likely means arranging your work hours to fit around your kids’ school schedules so that you’re available for drop off and pick up. For a homeschool mom like myself that could mean choosing curriculum that doesn’t require a ton of parent teacher prep, choosing school hours that fit around my work routine, and changing my wake/sleep cycle to allow for more time in the mornings and evenings to accomplish my business work so that I still have the space to homeschool.
Efficiency means streamlining my family lifestyle in a way that allows for increased productivitywith the least amount of stress for everyone in involved. That’s a huge undertaking and it’s not a perfect process, but I find that when I set my mind to it, I can place my plans into motion and watch the efficiency begin happening.
Keep a loose, yet solid routine.
Playing off the idea of efficiency, is the concept of scheduling.
Time management is a major topic in the business industry because everyone in business has to learn how to make good use of their time. What I’ve learned as a homeschool mom is that I have to keep our family schedule loose enough to allow for flexible situations that may come up: like education field trips, weekly coops and group classes. But I also have to make sure our routine is solid enough so that, although our days don’t look alike from one day to the next, we at least have some idea of what a daily school routine looks like. I also have an idea of what my routine looks like for keeping up my home (meal prep and cooking, cleaning days, laundry) and what routines I have in place for work.
As a homeschool mompreneur, keeping organized is crucial. I keep physical notebooks as well as Google docs and a Google calendar. At the beginning of each week I like to set expectations for the week, what I wish to accomplish.
If you stay organized best with physical notebooks, digital notebooks, post it notes, checklists, or one of those fancy planners, do whatever works best for you. The main things to organize are your physical space and your time. If I can ensure that I spend quality time with each child throughout the week, and time with my husband as well, I’m a happy camper.
I love family game nights, and dinner at the table together. That doesn’t happen all the time but when it does at any point during the week, it makes me pretty happy. Our time together as a family is even more important to me than the time I spend on business. However, if I want to succeed in business I have to make sure that I spend adequate amounts of time moving forward on my plans and not getting stuck in a rut, which can happen so often with distractions.
For this reason, I hole myself up in an office or coffee shop during my business hours with a no-disturb sign if I’m at home so that I actually can get some work done. It’s just one of those things I have to do personally to make sure my family is on the same page with me and everyone understands I am working and that just because I’m in the room next door doesn’t mean I’m available to make a sandwich. 😉
Also, my kids are, thankfully, of the age now where they are making their own snacks and pretty much keeping the house running for me while I’m working. They know that when I’m done working, we can spend time together and they’ll get 100% of me at that time. Keeping organized with my time is the only way for me to maintain family balance and still keep my business rolling!
I hope that these tips have been helpful to you if you are in the same boat as I am. Being a homeschool mompreneur isn’t easy but it is definitely doable. Let me know if I can help you in any way such as with branding your business or designing your new logo and website.
Let me know how you enjoyed the video and podcast!
Mompreneur overwhelm is a real thing! Over the years I’ve learned (and am still learning) how to set reasonable expectations for my life as both a mom and an entrepreneur so that I can wear both hats. Or as I like to say: fill both shoes. The slippers and the heels, that is.
How do I keep balance? Honestly, sometimes I don’t. But, here’s what I’m learning.
(If you’re a visual here’s a video for you!)
How I beat mompreneur overwhelm
Set small and realistic goals.
It’s so important that as mompreneurs we ensure our values and priorities in line. Family and spirituality is first. Everything is else is second.
I do mean this. In my life, if I have to choose between spending a week digging into a project that will make me a nice income for the month but I must choose to ignore my family for the week…I’m going to choose my family first. It’s okay if you would choose to dig in for a week and catch up with your family later. I just choose to run by a different beat and the thread of family life is the fabric of my life right now. I must…no, I need to have the kind of balance in my life that allows for flexibility to be a mom and a wife. Seasons are important, and in this season I am a mom.
So, in order to beat mompreneur overwhelm I set my goals small and try to remain realistic. I have three blogs currently, with a fourth in the works. I also run two podcasts with a third in the works. For many of you this might seem unrealistic. For me, this is the bread and butter of what keeps sponsors and clients coming my way and is part of my marketing goals.
That said, I must set realistic goals if I expect to be successful at any or all of these blogs. In my blogging life, this means that I don’t blog every day at each blog. I don’t even blog several times per week, or even weekly on some of my blogs. On all but one of my blogs I post every few weeks with a podcast or tutorial and try to remain active on my Facebook groups. If I tried blogging every day, posting to my social media accounts every day I would drive myself nuts. So I don’t do it. Which leads me to the next tip…
Don’t over schedule.
Why pack in so much at once when you have a lifetime to grow and achieve in your business? I’ve been there, done that when it comes to over scheduling and it just doesn’t feel worth it and the end of the day. Beat mompreneur overwhelm by not overscheduling.
Granted, there are those times when you’re just having a really busy week in business. But as I mentioned in the video, if you’re attempting to launch your website and a membership site all in a month and post to all your social media 8 times per day all while developing your product line- things can get a wee bit crazy. You’re stepping into a spin zone.
Don’t over schedule. Take your life and your business at stride. It will grow with you. You don’t have to do everything at once.
Embrace your season.
As mompreneurs we want to love the season of motherhood we’re in because it won’t last forever. Our kids will grow up and we’ll have plenty of time to work and throw ourselves into our passions.
Life with littles can make working business a bit tricky. You’ll have to find ways to work around the kids’ routines and schedules. Maybe nap times work out best for you. Maybe you work late in the evenings or early mornings. But the kids do grow up eventually, so…embrace your season. Being a mom is truly special. Enjoy it!
There is so much going on in our lives between parenting responsibilities and our social lives, and of course, work. It’s easy to procrastinate and put work on the back burner when you’re an entrepreneur.
How do we avoid procrastination?
Have a plan
Every business needs a roadmap. Ask yourself questions like:
How do you plan to make money?
How do you plan to network and grow your network?
How do you plan to market your business?
Who do you plan to collaborate with to help you accomplish your goals?
Most mompreneurs and creatives don’t have it all figured out. But the reason we’re getting where we’re going is because we have an idea of where we want to be. I like to use reverse engineering to figure out where I want to end up and plan the details backward.
Whether you have details or not, though, the main thing is to have an overall vision and plan and then start moving. Which leads me to my next point…
Once you have a plan you need to take action. No use sitting on your idea, meditating on it, wondering if it will work, and feeling paralyzed. My husband calls this “paralysis by analysis”.
If it’s a website you need, take action by finding a great designer.
If you need a business coach, hire someone you trust.
Whatever your needs are, remember that it all starts with today. The moment you take action you realize that it’s easier to continue the process once it’s begun. Nothing will begin magically. You really have to press for the things you want out of life.
This means you just have got to take action.
Remember it’s not about being perfect or finding the perfect people to support you on your journey. Entrepreneurship is a messy journey, and there will be days you want to give up. There will be days you will hear crickets and won’t see results right away.
The thing is, nobody and no situation is ever perfect. Your journey may start off pretty rocky and you won’t have all the pieces in place at first- and that’s okay.
You don’t have to be perfect to be successful. Start where you are and make strides from there.
Has this post helped you? Did you enjoy the video? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!
I admit, it’s not easy balancing that one important commodity we have as mompreneurs: time. How can we manage time effectively- serving both customer and family?
A few weeks ago I recorded a live Facebook video on this very topic in hopes to assist you in finding the simple tricks that work for your lifestyle for finding time. Time management can be tricky, but if you look at all the places where you can grab a few minutes here and there, I’m convinced you’ll be able to find the time you need to accomplish your goals.
Ways to manage time
Change your wake/sleep cycle
I know I talk about this all the time- but it is seriously a life saver. If you simply change your wake/sleep cycle, sometimes this is the only thing you’ll need to do in order to find yourself gaining traction in business.
Get up earlier or go to bed later- you get to choose. You’ll get more done and feel more productive.
Determine your routine flow
I don’t keep a schedule really, but I love routines. I talked about this on my homeschool blog recently- that keeping a tight schedule just doesn’t work for our family. I really don’t think it works for most families, but I know some for whom an hourly and minute-by-minute schedule is their saving grace. This doesn’t work for me, though.
I like to keep my routine flows very loose. There are days that generally I’m up at a 6 a.m. and I get started with my work for the day right away. Other days we have doctor appointments and some mornings I might go to the gym. If I go workout, I’ll stop by Starbucks and work for a few hours before I come home. If my husband is working from home, I have even more time to stay at a coffee shop. Other mornings I’m up early and focusing on the kids’ homeschool routines before I touch my client work. It depends on the morning, the week, and my mood.
Determine what your daily routine flow might generally look like, then work your life around it. It’s really up to you, and you get to call the shots. It’s your work life, your schedule, your day.
Keep a checklist
I’m a type A personality and love to see my accomplishments in front of me. A running checklist keeps me motivated to keep going and gives me that pat on the back I need to feel good about what I’ve been able to accomplish.
As moms we tend to go, and keep going. We want to accomplish so much in a short amount of time- plus we’re dividing our limited time amongst family, friends, activities and volunteering in addition to business.
There are moments, though, that we’ll simply need to turn that “go” switch off and get into relaxation mode. We need to learn to enjoy life and relax. Life is to be enjoyed not creating a burnout situation for ourselves.
Have these tips been helpful? Are you creating doable routines for yourself? Let me know your thoughts and if you’d simply like someone to chat with about all of this, book me for an appointment and let’s talk.
Hi, I’m Demetria– podcaster, blogger, mompreneur of two daughters and Navy wife. I’m passionate about blogging and helping women start an online business through blogging. To learn how to start a blog you can read my book, take my course, or get coaching. I’m here to help you!
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