Mumpreneurs face an inordinate amount of stress when starting and running a business and adding that to raising children can seem like an uphill task.
If you don’t watch it, you could find yourself shouting at your children for no reason whatsoever or feeling overwhelmed with everything in your business.
There’s no need for despair. Here are ways to cope with this sort of stress:
1. Invest in help early on.
As a mum simultaneously building a business and raising young children — ask for help when necessary. Sometimes we passionately believe in our vision and often have the strong personalities to go along with it. This leads us to frequently think we can do everything ourselves, which is why it’s important to know your limits.
When your business is based around you, it’s easy to try and do everything yourself, this is unsustainable and harmful to you and your family.
Outsource some of the functions in your business, you must not do everything yourself.
2. Prioritizing vs. Busy
Take a look at your calendar. How many things on your calendar are you doing out of guilt or because people expect you to? Get those things off your calendar. When you say yes to others, you’re saying no to yourself and your family.
Create a life plan. Begin by writing down everything from your calendar and to do list, write it all down so that you can see it all visually. Cross out the things that are not critical to your families’ health, wellness, and happiness.
3. Don’t be cheap.
My biggest piece of advice for small business owners is don’t be cheap. And within the same breath I’d add hire an attorney.
It’s important to make this investment upfront. It gives you the peace of mind knowing that you have the right legal setup and contracts in place. Most importantly, it can save you lots of money in the long run. It can also save your business. You never know what kind of issues might come up, and if you haven’t protected your business, you can lose it later.
4. Get out of your head.
As women we often give to others first and sometimes we forget to do fun stuff for ourselves. Put yourself on your calendar. Pencil in some time that is reserved for you that cannot be booked with someone else’s needs.
Activities such as yoga, running, painting or playing music are vital to your health, creativity and soul. These activites teach you to pace yourself and recharge by releasing your brain from your work.
You can take a yoga or dance class at the end of the day. The classes will help you relax, and give you more creative and renewed energy to give your business and family.
If you don’t feel like you have time for this type of activity, then you need to take a close look at what you’re doing. If you work 24 hours a day on your business, you need to reassess what you’re spending your time on.
5. Set boundaries.
Entrepreneurs could work 24/7, but it is unsustainable. You need to take personal time as seriously as work time.
You never say no. You never take a vacation. You’re always in the office, hoping that the next phone call you answer is your lucky break. But more than likely you just burn out or experience the law of diminishing returns.
To stop this addictive behavior, start by setting three to five strategic goals each year. This will help you understand what you need to prioritize and what you need to say no to. Then make sure to always ask yourself if what you’re doing is in alignment with your goals. If it isn’t, then don’t do it. Without strategic goals, it’s easy to get distracted and work yourself to the bone and still not see any significant results.
Finally do not buying into the “old paradigm that everything should be hard, painful, and brutal, and if you aren’t working 10 to 12 hours a day you aren’t doing it right. You are in charge of how you run your company, you are in charge of how you parent, you are in charge of making the rules. Do You.