Work-life balance is such a big promise, especially when you are a mum who is also trying to run a business.
Does the work “balance” make you shift and tense up? Or does it make you feel optimistic and relaxed?
Balance is the promise of having it all. Being perfect. This can be kind of stressful in itself and unrealistic. Yet, it also represents calm, an equal distribution of your attention and a varied, beautiful life.
Who doesn’t want that?
Personally, I like the word; it makes me feel like I have something to strive for. To be balanced is such a priority for me. To feel ok with where I am, how I am spending my time, and who with.
However, for a business mum the work–life balance can be one of our BIGGEST challenges. So after 5 years of balancing my solo business and my two gorgeous kids, I want to share with you my top 5 work/kids balance tips and how they work for me.
1. Balance is always changing
The first thing to know about balance is that it is never consistent. Every day is different when juggling a business and your lovely kids. Bumps always appear in the road – sick kids, school trips, doctor appointments, or my recent experience of my son’s kinder being closed down for a month while they fixed the water pipes.
If you approach balance knowing every day is different and you accept it, it feels easier already.
2. Balance is having support
Often we can feel as though we must do everything ourselves. The housework, dinner, looking after our kids and running our business. It takes a village to raise a child, maintain a house and run a business. So ask for help. Get a cleaner; part-time day care won’t harm your kids, ask your partner, neighbours, parents, siblings and friends to take your kids for an hour here and there; find yourself a great virtual assistant etc. Balance gets easier when you have support.
You are doing an amazing job as a balancing business mum
3. Balance is having fun
Our kids are creative, playful, fun and full of imagination. If we really make the most of our time with them, it can be the perfect way to bust your work stress. Take a bath with them at the end of the day; jump up and down like a “crazy” on the trampoline; join them in their painting sessions; or play hide and seek. Really engage with your kids. Be hands on. Enjoy them. This is a massive key to having balance in your life.
4. Balance is communicating
If projects or client appointments are going to be delayed because of family events, them communication is the answer to keep your business running smoothly. It is not the end of the world if something is delayed. Often, if you just keep your customers and clients in the loop so they know about the delay and the ETA, then it is likely that they will be pretty cool about it.
5. Balance is productivity
Productivity becomes a super skill for a business mum when balancing a business and kids. You become so smart about time and to do lists. Be strict about your work windows. Prioritise what you need to work on, switch off your email and social media, and get through those tasks. As I said, productivity is every business mums’ superpower, so embrace it and tweak it over time.
All I wanted to share with you today is how to change your perception of balance. Just let go and trust that things will happen eventually. Accept that things won’t always go to plan, but to try and be easy going about it – don’t stress. You will get there.
You are doing an amazing job as a balancing business mum.
Try these tips in your juggle this week.
Be conscious of patterns, behaviour and when something comes up, be observant and consider where your attention needs to be.
I would love to hear your tips with the work/kids juggle. How do you maintain balance?
Clare Greig is the creator of Breath Online – Business and Creativity Coaching. Clare believes women can be devoted mums AND smart, creative business owners. Helping business mums wherever they are on their journey – from creation, growing or balancing their business and life as a mum. Be part of Clare’s community, grab her free business tools, goodies and a copy of her Business Mum eMag. Clare can help you discover to you can create an online business that is present for you 24/7 and works perfectly on a part-time basis.