They say being a parent is a full-time job. But few full-time workers are required to change diapers, quell temper tantrums, make late night trips to the ER, and quiet loud crying at 2 am.
So as anyone who has tried it surely knows, starting a business while juggling the obligations of family life can be an overwhelming task. Though it certainly seems to require superhuman abilities, it is by no means impossible. The benefits of taking on the task mean you can plan your business around your parenting needs.
Fortunately, being a mom and an entrepreneur today is easier than ever, meaning you can balance both responsibilities. The web allows parents to work from home, while nonetheless connecting with customers from around the world, with whom they can share their unique talents and expertise.
From handicrafts to corporate consultation services, the business possibilities are nearly endless. So if you’ve made up your mind to set up a business while raising your youngsters, here are some great tips to help you get started.
Make lists, divide your projects into manageable tasks, and learn to recognize the exigencies of your work and family life. Starting a successful business within the demanding schedule of parenthood requires efficiency, above all else. So to excel in entrepreneurship, you’ll need to eliminate the clutter and focus on the work that produces results.
Monetize Your Passion
The best work doesn’t seem like work at all. If you can find a way to monetize a talent or skill you are passionate about, you will be able to take pleasure in the job you do. Going to work won’t be a nuisance or feel like a painful theft of family time.
It will be a challenge and a joy, and its impact will ultimately be a positive force in your life and that of your little ones. In fact being boss means you can make more time for your family and choose your hours.
Find Quiet Time
If you are a parent and an entrepreneur, there is no question that you are also a multitasker with rare talents. But, even so, your best work can only get done when you are able to give it your undivided attention.
So make it a priority to find quiet time to work in, whenever it may be. Whether it’s after the kids are asleep, before they wake, or while they are away at school, your quiet time is essential.
No Time Like Now
Parents always have a million things to do. Between cooking, cleaning, and all the other obligations of family life, procrastination is painfully easy – and often quite productive. But this is the danger of working from home.
If you hope to get anything substantial done, you’ll have to be disciplined enough to compartmentalize work tasks from household tasks. So fight back the urge for productive procrastination, and use the hours when you are sharpest for work, while leaving all the rest for your ‘free time’.
Give yourself realistic goals. Understand that you are human, and can only do so much. Overburdening yourself will only contribute to stress, affect the quality of your work, and damage family relations.
Get the Kids Involved
If there are any tasks which you can involve your children, why not turn it into an afternoon activity for them? It means you can balance work tasks and spending time with your children. Of course it will depend on their age group.
Older children can be enticed to help you if you reward them with pocket money, and younger children will see the appeal if some of your work tasks are creative or fun.
All entrepreneurs face tough odds and countless obstacles. For parents, whose attention must be split between family and work, the situation is even more complex. So it is important to focus on what matters most, and develop manageable working habits that will keep you sane and relatively stress free.
Don’t forget to make time for yourself, especially when it seems most impossible. Your work will ultimately benefit, your family will benefit, and you’ll be able to realize your goal of being a great parent while nonetheless excelling in your professional passion.
About the author: Kirsten took the plunge to work from home, setting up her own jewellery website www.kirstenhendrich.com, she balances work with family duties. At times it is difficult, but working from home means she is always around to enjoy those special family moments.
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