It has been a testing week this week for me.  Any busy working mum would agree that we are constantly juggling balls and occasionally some may slip from our grip.

I have had many conversations this week with other working mums and clients who, whilst they love their role as a mum, also need to be earning an income or fulfilling their desire to build a business.  When working for yourself the responsibility can sometimes be overwhelming.

Here are three of the balls I have experienced juggling this week – Time, Expertise and being Flexible…

Time – tick tock tick tock

Without question this is the one thing that we all scream we do not have enough of.  We stay up late, snatch moments during sleeps and generally feel like we are working all hours.  Oh and being a mum, dashing to after school clubs or kindy pick ups.  Have you thought about planning your day and to ‘chunk’ your time?  Consider what you can do when you do have uninterrupted time – like in the 45mins -2hour sleeps – if you still have them.   Use that time to work on projects or things that you need to ‘finish’.  Any working mum knows that we feel like we never finish anything.  The sense of achievement associated with finishing something will send endorphines rushing through your body!

I know one person that uses the kitchen timer as an alarm clock to finish a task and move on to the next thing!

Doing everything – and doing nothing

As all business owners know we have to do everything and be across everything. It is not realistic to be an expert in everything though.  You will not only feel overwhelmed as your to do list grows but also feel like progress is not being made as the items you dread or fear move to the bottom of the pile.  I recently outsourced some copywriting for my business.  It was so good to have somebody interview me and then come up with some writing for my website – especially at a time when I had more important things to focus on and lacked creativity due to sleep deprivation.  Design is not one of my strong points so I also outsource that when I can.  OK – so some of you may be thinking that you do not have the funds to outsource work?  Consider contra-deals.  If you can offer that person something in return for their work they may consider it – you will be surprised at just how many people work this way to get ‘set up’.  Be the expert at something – not everything.

Who do you know in your mothers group circle?  Maybe there are marketing consultants, designers, lawyers…seek and you shall find.

Flexibility – bending your own rules

Some people may have a documented business plan others have a ‘in my head’ masterplan.  The dilemma we face when we plan something is if opportunity comes-a-knocking and it does not seem to fit your plan you can become confused and momentarily distracted.  With one friend this week we discussed how in her high flying high achiever corporate job she knew where she was heading and how to get there.  In her role of mother and small business woman she was experiencing daily conflict as to where she was heading.  She was being approached by various people and businesses that wanted to work with her and this only added to her confusion.  When taking the time to step back – she realised that the plus side was she was being approached.  The down side – for now – was her lack of care in place for her children and not being able to commit to ‘normal’ hours.  So as a working mum we can break out of the normal mould and be flexible with how and what we work with.  For her it was a realisation that if she just rolled with the punches – was open to considering every proposition – then something would fit.  In March when she has childcare in place she can then fine tune that and work on her plan.

Let no one think that flexibility and a predisposition to compromise is a sign of weakness or a sell-out – Paul Kagame

Being a mum, running a household and a business takes commitment, focus and energy.  Where you draw that energy from will amaze you.  As mumpreneurs we have amazing reservoirs of energy and passion and can dig deep when required.  So go easy on yourself and remember that if a ball slips – you can just pause the game for a moment and then start juggling when you have caught your breath.

Note – no babies were harmed in the production of this blog post – though 2 were changed, fed and set up with playtime.  All before 7am!

About The Author

Sally-Anne Blanshard is the founder and Director of Nourish Coaching and helps people reinvent their careers, businesses and life through structured coaching programs.  She has been featured on TV, Radio and is often quoted in newspapers and magazines.  Sal is also proud mum of two amazing kids and keeps her head above water with great coffee, great conversations with friends and a great husband.

Nourish Coaching – Feed your Career Cravings – Satisfy Life’s Appetite. 0433 162244

Other posts by this author:

  1. caramello

    March 31, 2014 at 10:34 pm,

    MoM Rewards: caramello has a diamond MoM rewards level caramello said:

    thank you for sharing this

  2. mummy liana

    March 23, 2014 at 2:50 am,

    MoM Rewards: mummy liana has a diamond MoM rewards level mummy liana said:

    thanks for sharing, was a good read

  3. March 21, 2014 at 12:41 am,

    MoM Rewards: jadeeeee has a diamond MoM rewards level jadeeeee said:

    Thank you sharing this article to read.

  4. mummy liana

    March 03, 2014 at 11:38 pm,

    MoM Rewards: mummy liana has a diamond MoM rewards level mummy liana said:

    thanks for sharing was a great read

  5. angel_mon

    February 07, 2014 at 12:57 am,

    MoM Rewards: angel_mon has a diamond MoM rewards level angel_mon said:

    I used to think this juggling act would be simple…..then I tried it, thanks for the tips

  6. ilees68

    January 27, 2014 at 12:26 pm,

    MoM Rewards: ilees68 has a diamond MoM rewards level ilees68 said:

    There were some – great tips here

  7. January 14, 2014 at 12:17 am,

    MoM Rewards: johstone has a diamond MoM rewards level johstone said:

    It is a hard role for mums that work and look after the kids. Great tips for how to combine/seperate the 2

  8. January 13, 2014 at 6:06 pm,

    MoM Rewards: scottie has a diamond MoM rewards level scottie said:

    Being a working mum is hard but I think I prefer to leave the house for work – creates a definitive line between the two.

  9. seachtheteach

    January 04, 2014 at 9:49 am,

    MoM Rewards: seachtheteach has a diamond MoM rewards level seachtheteach said:

    Working from home would be a very tough gig. I admire those who give it a go!
    Being a working mum is tough but I must admit, getting out of the house is great!

  10. January 02, 2014 at 1:20 pm,

    MoM Rewards: memo has a diamond MoM rewards level memo said:

    Working from home would be a dream, would need to be super organised.

  11. yoyo1973

    January 02, 2014 at 1:20 am,

    MoM Rewards: yoyo1973 has a sapphire MoM rewards level yoyo1973 said:

    wish i can work from home.

  12. January 01, 2014 at 10:57 am,

    MoM Rewards: ljsalomon has a diamond MoM rewards level ljsalomon said:

    I think it is great that more mums are working from home.

  13. meltingmoment

    December 31, 2013 at 10:23 am,

    MoM Rewards: meltingmoment has a diamond MoM rewards level meltingmoment said:

    I would find it hard to work and be at home. You’d have to be able to work around distractions.

    1. December 31, 2013 at 8:50 pm,

      MoM Rewards: kathryn has a diamond MoM rewards level kathryn said:

      I have tried it before and it is difficult. Worst part is that it can be hard t ‘turn off’ and stop working!

  14. sah13

    December 30, 2013 at 5:57 pm,

    MoM Rewards: sah13 has a diamond MoM rewards level sah13 said:

    I was working full-time and a young mum of 2 under 3 years of age. I was also travelling 1.5 hours each way too and from work. I recently resigned from my position as our family is now financially stable and my son started started kindy and I want to be able to take him to school, pick him up and be apart of his school life. As a child my parents were working full time and were never at anything. I didn’t want that for my kids. Since stopping work I look back and I’m not even sure how I managed? I take my hat off to full time working mothers because I have been there and done that. Just remember your child is only a child once and try to be there for their milestones. I am also so grateful for my partner, mother-in-law and step mum for helping me with my kids when I had to work full time, I would never of been able to do it without them, support is so important!

  15. December 29, 2013 at 8:58 pm,

    MoM Rewards: sizzlingcool has a diamond MoM rewards level sizzlingcool said:

    Well done… great article. I got a lot out of it.

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