The Mompreneur Effect is a community to help mothers and provide a resource for those women who are entrepreneurs, or mothers who would like to become an entrepreneur, work for themselves, or start their own business.
If you are mom, as well as an entrepreneur (either solely or in addition to your day job) there are times you may feel overwhelmed. Those overwhelming feelings can lead to real-time stress. Starting up a business of any kind, feeling uncertain about the future of that business and working double-time to get the ball rolling can take its toll. Add being a mom to the mix and you may feel you are at your breaking point at times.
But here’s the thing, being a mom is supposed to be a fun, rewarding experience (at least most of the time!). Here are some ways to stay positive and avoid the stress and truly enjoy your life as a MOMpreneur.
Find the Source
Stop and think about where the source of stress is coming from. You may have to talk yourself through this or even make a list. Finding the root of the stress is the first and necessary step to fixing the problem. For example, if you are suffering from insomnia and are tired the next day, think about what is causing it. Are you working at night after the children go to bed? If so, stop work earlier and find time to unwind and allow your brain to rest and regroup.
Make a Change
Once you find out the cause of the stress, think of ways to change. Using the above example, if you are unable to stop working too close to bedtime, perhaps finding more time in the morning will help. This will allow you to give your brain time to rest and get the sleep your body needs. Once you begin to make a change to get rid of unnecessary stress, do it for a few days to see if it has worked. It may take time to adjust. Either way, once the change is made, you will see a reduction in feeling overwhelmed.
Listen to Your Body
Our inner voice is usually right in many situations. Taking care of you is one of the most important things you can do to banish stress. Yes, you may have a lot of work to do, especially if you are just beginning a business on your own, but if your body is telling you to slow down, then do it. If you are feeling sluggish during the day, stop and take a fifteen minute power walk. If you are feeling under the weather, take time to rest and keep hydrated.
Know How to Cope
Research ways to deal with stressful situations as they pop up. Deep breathing techniques, listening to your favorite song, reading positive affirmations, closing your eyes and meditating, and many other ways to banish stress on the spot can help. If you have certain “go-to” ways to get immediate relief, have them ready for when sudden issues strike. Some people even have small bottles of aromatic oils to breathe in when they become stressed out; lavender or sandalwood aromas can really do the trick!
Lean on Someone
We all need someone to lean on from time to time. Finding people that have common schedules or others that have their own business will know how you are feeling. When you feel as if you are only treading water, get the support you need. There is no shame in asking for advice, spending time with another person who knows all too well what you are going through! And who knows? One day you will be the person someone comes to for advice!
Yes, owning your own business as a mom can be difficult at times. However, it is important to reflect on why you are doing what you are doing. Remember, there was a time when you said to yourself, “You know what? I want to do that!” Work stress is going to occur no matter what you do; dealing with it effectively will help you enjoy your job even more.
Dr. Melissa Mullins, EdD, Goal Achievement Coach
“What I do is help people to get “unstuck” and to regain balance in their lives through life coaching.” For more information, please visit my website http://www.drmelissamblog.com
The book will be on sale for $4.99, but for a limited time you can get it for $0.99! But even better, for the next 2 days, you can download it for FREE!
Besides coaching other mothers who want to be in business for themselves, my first passion has always been writing and I am enjoying writing more ebooks and books for others. I have a couple of more books that are in the works right now and I can’t wait to share those with you too!
I am booking interviews and guest posting opportunities, so feel free to contact me at email@example.com.
Also as a special THANK YOU for downloading my ebook, if you decided to leave a review on Amazon, I’ll send you a physical copy of the book and invite to the Mompreneur Effect launch and Get together! Just fill out the link here to get your copy!
Whether you are a mom who works from home, or just a busy mom, juggling a lot throughout the day, the key to getting through everything without losing it is to stay organized. Staying organized allows you to know what you need to get through and when. With everything from doctor’s appointments, to parent teacher conferences, and just feeding the little ones a mother’s to do list can seem like it never ends, but there are some great tips that you can follow to get through it all.
Keep a Running List
Keep a list of everything you have to do handy. You can’t get through everything you have to get through if you forget, and forgetting is easy to do when you have a lot to get through. Keeping a list is a great way to remember the tasks that are urgent and those that can wait.
Clean The House The Night Before
If the house is clean the night before, it will be one less thing to do. This is especially helpful for working moms, if you spend a large part of your day working, end your day by cleaning the house and you will not have to do the cleaning during the day.
Exercise is not just a means of staying fit, but a great way to stay sane too. Working out will leave you in a better mood. It is proven, exercise is the ultimate, natural mood enhancer. It releases all those feel good brain chemicals, and leaves you relaxed and a little bit happier. Exercising will help to give you the boost of energy you will need to get through that long to do list.
Whether you are religious or not, meditation is a great way of calming yourself down and preparing mentally for the day. Taking the time to pray or meditate at the beginning of your day, is a great way to make time for yourself as well. Make the effort to make more time for you and you will be better prepared to handle everything else.
Have a Cup Of Coffee or Tea
I certainly cannot function without my morning cup of coffee. Take your coffee or tea early in the morning so that you can give the caffeine enough time to kick in.
Make The Bed (if there isn’t a kid in it)
As soon as the kids are up and ready to go, make the beds so that you won’t have to worry about them later. Remembering to make the beds as soon the kids jump out of them will make it much easier on you. Sometimes it’s hard to get to those simple tasks after your day has started.
Take a shower
After your meditation and workout, hop in the shower before everyone else is up.
Put Your Needs First Sometimes, It’s Important
It is important to make that time early in the morning, your time. These are some of the times that you will need to put your needs ahead of the kids, and it is important. You have to take time to get yourself together sometimes so that you can be productive enough during the day.
Hectic Mornings Are Common With a Family of 6
I am very familiar with hectic mornings, because with a family of 6, they are very common in my household. Having to get the kids together, help my husband with things he may need help with, and then taking the time to get organized for my day, I understand how busy mornings can get. Following these simple tips to help me get things done, before breakfast.
Don’t Spend Your Mornings Checking Emails, Rather Spend That Time With the Kids
Spending the morning with your kids, after taking time for yourself will help to remind you why you do everything that you do. As moms a lot of what we do is for our kids, so make time for them, before your work hours take your focus away from you little ones.
One of the best things I did when I decided to simplify my life was to simplify my workday — first with my business and later, by focusing on my writing and blogging.
I’ve eliminated most of the routine, boring, administrative tasks with a few simple principles.
These days, I have eliminated the non-essentials, and can focus on what I truly love: creating.
Not everyone can make such drastic steps toward simplicity, but if you have some control over your workday, you can do a few small things that will simplify things greatly.
If you don’t have control, or if you find yourself thinking, “I can’t do these things”, I’d start to ask why not? Is it possible to change things, if not today then over the long term? I found that often I thought something wasn’t possible (working from home, for example), but in the long run they were.
You don’t need to do all of these things — pick just one, and try it. Then try another and see if it works. Experiment to find what works for you.
And enjoy the simple work life.
Start early. Going into work early was one of my favorite tricks — it was quiet, before the phones and chatter and meetings started, and I could get a lot of work done in peace. By the time everyone else was getting started, I’d gotten two or three big tasks checked off.
Limit your hours. It’s ironic, because so many people work long hours and think they’re getting more done and being more productive. But they’re throwing brute hours at the problem. Instead, cut back on your hours and set a limit — say 6 or 7 hours a day — and get your most essential work done within that limit. If you know you’re only working 6 hours today, you’ll be sure to get the important tasks done first and waste less time. Limits force you to be effective.
Make a short list. Make a long list of all the tasks you need to do … then make a short list of 1-3 things you really want to get done. Choose so that, if you got only these tasks done, you’d be proud of what you did today. Start with the most important task, before checking email or reading online.
Batch distractions. What are your common distractions? Perhaps things like email, reading blogs, Twitter or another social network? Set a time for these, preferably later in the day: say, from 3-4 p.m. Don’t do the distractions before then. By grouping them all into one time period, you allow yourself to do other work first, but still get in your distraction time. Another approach might be to do them for 10 minutes at the end of each hour — but stick to that 10-minute limit!
Write shorter emails. If email takes up a lot of your day, the simple change of limiting yourself to 3-4 sentences per email will make a big difference. First, it’ll drastically shorten the time it takes to write or respond to emails. And second, it’ll shorten responses to your emails, which means you’ll spend less time reading email.
Limit meetings. The fewer the better. Some top Google executives just do 5-minute meetings — anyone who attends these meetings had better be prepared, and concise. If you can get out of meetings and just get the notes, or find an alternative way to communicate, it could save you hours per week.
Automate. The fewer repetitive and routine tasks you have to do, the more time you’ll free up for creating and important work. So automate wherever possible: have people fill things out electronically, or get info from your website instead of emailing or calling you, or use a service that automatically processes payments or ships your product, and so on.
Eliminate paperwork. I used to deal with a lot of paperwork, and even then I knew it was a waste of my time. If businesses and organizations could have paperwork filled out electronically, it would save a lot of paper, copying, filing, and duplicate effort. Whenever possible, eliminate paperwork in favor of digital. This might be more of a long-term move.
Clear your desk. This can be done in a few minutes. Clear everything off the top of your desk. Only put back a few essential items. Everything else should be: filed, given to the appropriate person, given a permanent spot in a drawer, or trashed/recycled. Make quick decisions and then get back to work.
Get away. If you can get out of your office, you can find a peaceful spot where you can focus on important work. Find a spot where you can work, turn off the Internet and do your work, and then turn the Internet back on so you can email or upload it to the appropriate spot. Working from home is a good option here. The more you can do this (it might be once a week, or an hour a day, or half of every workday), the better.
Take breathing breaks. Every 15-20 minutes, get up from your desk, and take a breathing break. It could be simply walking around the office, saying hi to someone, or even better, getting outside to get some fresh air. Walk around, get your blood circulating, perhaps massage your neck and shoulders if you feel tension. Do some pushups if you want to get fitter. When you get back to work, remind yourself what you want to be working on, and clear away all distractions.
Practice a focus ritual. Every hour or two, do a refocus ritual. This only takes a minute or two. You might start it by closing down your browser and maybe other open applications, and maybe even take a walk for a couple of minutes to clear your head and get your blood circulating. Then return to your list of Most Important Tasks and figure out what you need to accomplish next. Before you check email again or go back online, work on that important task for as long as you can. Repeat this refocus ritual throughout the day, to bring yourself back. It’s also nice to take some nice deep breaths to focus yourself back on the present. More focus rituals.
Schedule big blocks of creative time. Not everyone can do this, but when possible, put a big block of 3-4 hours in your schedule for creating or doing other important work. Make this time inviolate, and don’t allow meetings or other things to be scheduled during this time. Be ruthless about clearing distractions and doing the work you love during these blocks, taking breathing breaks as necessary. Rejoice in your creativity.
Being a business owner can be a very stressful task. It often means sitting tied to your desk. However, there are a ton of great apps to move the work from your desk to the mobility of your smartphone.
The G Suite by Google. The G Suite is a suite of applications designed to work anywhere you have an internet connection. It includes a word processor, a spreadsheet utility, and even a presentation builder. As it’s made by Google, it integrates extremely well with the well known e-mail service GMail. You can even set it up to work on your own domain to make company specific email addresses..
FreshBooks. FreshBooks is a cloud based mobile accounting software. Much like big names like Quickbooks, it has all the features needed to run a small business. However, unlike Quickbooks, you can do it all from your phone. Send invoices to new clients, manage accounts payable, and even track time and projects.
Square Register. Square reinvented the merchant processing world. Anyone with any smartphone can connect their free reader and collect credit and debit card payments anywhere in the world. They later introduced a POS application for any smartphone to help you track sales, inventory, and itemize customer receipts.
Gusto. Formerly known as ZenPayroll, Gusto allows you to manage your entire companies payroll, right from your phone. Starting at only $39 / month, there’s no need to spend hours upon hours every week trying to pay your employees. Gusto does it all.
Slack. Well known in the tech world, Slack helps teams manage projects together. Organizing your team’s chats in public or private channels, you can keep track of your progress on a team process, discuss new business ideas, and even share files between your entire team.
Skype. Skype is the world’s most well known video conferencing platform. Known mostly for personal use, Skype allows a business to meet with anyone anywhere in the world without paying for costly travel.
Overall, there is no need at all for a business owner to be chained to their desk all the time. Explore the world, all while maintaining a strong hold on your business.
Networking is so important for entrepreneurs and small business owners. Not only is this your chance to talk with customers and clients, and get some amazing feedback, but is also crucial to make connections with other people.
I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. – Maya Angelou
If your business comes from relationships, relationships should be your business. – Doug Ales
Easy Networking Tips for Busy Mompreneurs - YouTube
These top five podcasts by women offer a unique perspective on entrepreneurship and managing work-life balance. Whether you are a new parent just figuring out how to manage a baby and the office or a seasoned business owner these podcasts offer engaging information you can listen to during your commute or while you hit the gym after work. This is a great way to use your time productively.
Called “the #1 podcast that all female entrepreneurs should listed to” by Inc, The Lively Show offers weekly conversations with entrepreneurs and experts in healthy living. The podcast is honest yet positive, touching on the struggles of guests as they have forged their paths through life.
The Great Girlfriends Show, hosted by entrepreneurs Sybil Amuti and Brandice Daniel, shares personal insights from these enterprising business women and encourages women to care for themselves as well as their businesses.
Kate’s Take offers practical tips to improve your productivity and improve all facets of a growing business. Airing twice weekly on the EOFire Audio Blog this is a great podcast to listen to when you only have a few minutes.
Lane Kennedy, founder of multiple businesses, hosts The Game Changer Podcast where she interviews a diverse cast of guests. This podcast is unique in centering on those central, life defining moments the influenced the lives and careers of Kennedy’s guests.
The Amy Porterfield podcast is a must listen podcast for entrepreneurs striving to grow their businesses. Podcasts center on informative how-tos on topics as diverse as managing Facebook ads and legal protections for your business. Porterfield offers a goldmine of information in easy to understand chunks.
Women bring a distinct experience to the challenges and benefits of entrepreneurship and work life balance. Learning from these powerful, creative women is as simple as tuning in for a few minutes a day and gaining the insights of years of combined experience. New parents, single business owners and everyone in between can find a topic of interest from these top five podcasts by women.
One of the biggest hurdles you will have to overcome as a momprenuer is the tough job at staying productive. You will find yourself saying you don’t have the time, but the reality is, we all have the same 24 hours in a day. There is nothing we can do to make that time longer. We’ve got to love our children, give our spouses attention, turn in that homework assignment, meet with that client, and remember to care for ourselves all in one 24 hour day. The one thing I always tell my Mompreneur Effect clients is that we have got to take a hold of being productive and use our time wisely. By setting up systems we can use our time to focus on work and growing a business, and at the same time making the time we do spend with our family and loved ones, more meaningful. These are some of my favorite Mompreneur productivity tips that keep my business afloat and my life fulfilled.
Image credit: Stacia PierceLife Coach 2 Women via Entrepreneur.com
1. Make Mornings Your Sacred Me-Time.
“I start each day with a walking meditation outside that I call a thought walk. My mornings are a sacred time for me to cultivate creativity and take control of my day. I also use this special morning time to write down my daily three goals in my success journal. Then, I add in notes and thoughts next to each goal that remind me of what to focus on or how to complete the task.
“Morning is the time we all need to take for ourselves, reconnecting and taking a deep breath. It’s when we think about our day and what we want to get from it, family- and business-wise. We have a lot going on and this is how we start to make it all happen.”
I find that digital to-do lists help me with organizing my tasks for the day. My team and I use Asana which is great for collaboration, assigning tasks under projects, and setting deadlines for ourselves. Another great feature to implement into your busy life is the Notes app on the iPhone. The updated version allows you to create a running check-list and to check off work when it’s done. These 2 applications are great because you can always check your phone to see what you need to get done. This is SO helpful when you’re out of the office or working remotely.
“Always ask yourself, ‘Can someone else do this?’ For example, I found a wonderful housekeeper who comes once a week for $40. How much are those 3 hours of my time really worth? In those same 3 hours, I could be signing up new clients or game-planning with a new sales associate who will go on to sell 10 memberships a month. When it comes to business activities, how can you leverage your time? I take new sales associates with me on appointments and calls so they learn how to do it faster and eventually take that leadership role. “I am always asking myself ‘how can I replace myself?’ This way, if I have an opportunity to sign up 35 clients on a Saturday, I can confidently send somebody else to do it so I can go to a birthday party.”
Be 100% Present. Your attention is a precious commodity. Whether you are with your kids or working in your business, be present with your full attention. Multi-tasking isn’t effective for success. If you aren’t focused on your kids they’ll know it and fight for your attention. Your business also deserves your full focus. Create a schedule and stick with it to ensure that no one gets the short end of the stick, or the short end of your attention.
We are always looking for a space to connect and learn from other women who are going through or may be going through the same type of things we are. As mompreneurs not only do we focus on building our dreams and our empires, but also raising a family and being the best we can be in both challenging worlds.
I created the Mompreneur Effect VIP Tribe Group on Facebook to give us a place to connect with each other on the most popular social networking site without feeling obligated or put under pressure. My goal is to limit the “oversharing” groups that we find ourselves in, and join a group where it’s main purpose is to help and provide for it’s members.