The thought of working at home and running a home based business is appealing. Being your own boss, setting your own hours, having a business that works around your life instead of the other way around. And while this can be achieved, it’s highly unlikely that it’s going to happen overnight. In actuality, you may fail a few times before you succeed. It may take a few bad ideas or ideas that aren’t fully formed before you find the idea or mix of ideas that work. Then there’s the matter of balancing your business and your life; this can be tricky at first but it is also doable. These tips are mostly aimed towards work at home moms but can be modified or applied to anyone who’s thinking about working at home.
For moms who work from home, balancing the home and business sides of their lives can feel downright impossible, especially when the reason they began working from home was so they could spend more time with family. However, many home businesses actually fail because moms don’t manage to balance business and home life. How can you juggle your family’s needs, your business needs and occasionally find some time for your needs without being a super hero?
The first thing any mom should do to achieve balance is to get the family involved.
If your children and husband support you, you will find that they interrupt less often and are more likely to pitch in to get household chores done. You’re probably thinking that will happen the day the moon turns to blue cheese, right? However, if you mention that you need to get a major project done and will be able to buy a pizza and rent a video when you are paid, you may be surprised at how quickly everyone pitches in to help out.
If you have young children, they may not be able to understand the concept of waiting for a reward. To get your younger children involved, try explaining what you are doing in very simple terms and having them help you. Set up a small desk or table for your toddlers and add crayons and paper so they can help you with your work by drawing some pictures or writing a letter.
Children that are a bit older can put stamps on envelopes and seal them, paperclip papers together or do other simple organizational tasks.
Of course, no matter how supportive your family and friends are, they are not going to be happy if you work 15 hours a day.
Make sure that you ask for uninterrupted time to do your job or run your business, but also make sure that you schedule time for your family and friends. While you are making up that schedule, don’t forget your significant other. If you sit at your computer all evening after the children are tucked away for the night, you may end up with some serious relationship issues!
Once your family and friends are involved and you’ve scheduled time for them in your life, it is time to consider a few ways to make the most of your valuable work time.
While you may be tempted to work non-stop during the time you have dedicated to your business, you should actually try to take some breaks. Taking a half-hour walk or having lunch away from your desk can really help you recharge your mind and keeps your body from growing stiff and tired. When you sit back down, you can do so with a clearer view of your goals and fresh energy and focus.
Also, don’t be afraid to make a “to do” list for your business.
Write the four or five items you absolutely must do on your list and promise yourself that you will get them done before you visit your favorite forums or check your email. This can really help you get more work accomplished in less time.
So, although you may not have super powers, you can still have a home life, a business life and some time for yourself. The next time you are feeling overwhelmed, take a deep breath, ask your family for some help and try out a few of these great ideas for balancing your life.
You may also want to consider hiring a business coach to help you focus.
Whether you’re just starting a business or you’re well into your venture, the idea of hiring a business coach may have come to mind. But you may be wondering if a business coach can really make a difference for you. To answer this question, you need to understand what a business coach does, and how to choose the right one for you.
Business coaching provides a way to interact with a professional who has your best interests at heart and can help you be more effective building your business and balancing your life and your business. Business coaches are a good mixture of accountability partner, sounding board, cheerleader and even emotional support. The business coach specializes in ensuring that all aspects of your life work together with the ultimate focus on ensuring that your business works.
Even the process of hiring a coach can be beneficial to your business. The coach will want to assess where you are right now with your business and find out where you want to go. An effective business coach will help you determine not just the direction you want your business to go, but will also identity actionable steps to take to achieve the goals you and your coach set.
* Accountability – Checking in with someone else on a regular basis to tell them and show them what you’ve accomplished since the last meeting will give you someone besides yourself to be accountable to. For many people this helps them act in their own best interests and not put off anything, since most people don’t want to disappoint others.
* Sounding Board – Talking plans and proposals out with a third party who is also well versed in your type of business will help solidify each plan you make so that you’re not going down the wrong roads to start with.
* Cheerleader – Running a business is hard and some business coaches make excellent support systems and cheerleaders. In this way, you not only have a good plan of action to make your dreams come true but also someone to share your success with who has your best interests at heart.
* Emotional Support – Many business coaches understand how home life can affect your business life. They can often help you deal with your family and friends when it comes to pushing your business forward.
If you need help identifying holes in your business plan, ways to fill the gaps, and how to create an actionable plan to push your business forward, then a business coach can definitely make a difference. The trick is finding the right business coach for your particular business.
In order to find the right coach for you that fits your business type and personality, ask the right questions of any potential coach. Plus, ask others for referrals before hiring any business coach. Finally, buy some of the coach’s products and services and try working on a short-term project with them first. This can help you ensure that they are the right coach to push your business to the next level.
These are just a few ways that work at home moms can balance their work life and personal life; but there are many other ways as well. And always keep in mind- what works for one mom, may not work for you and vice versa.
Talk to your support network and I wish you the best of luck in your business adventures!