Why do mothers often feel guilt when it comes to their children? As moms, we feel like we aren’t giving our child the attention they deserve. We make a decision about something and then think twice about it. We dedicate time to spend with the kids and then we think about our business. We work on our business and think about our kids and what we should be doing with them instead. Guilt surrounds us and we are regularly thinking, “Did I make the right decision?”
It can be a difficult decision to start a home-based business – it requires careful planning and time management, in order to run a business and a family.
Some moms start a business to provide extra income to help support the family, or to do something in addition to being a mom. Guilt inevitably comes with the territory. We feel guilty that we’re not spending 100% of our time with our family. We feel guilty that we want to do something beyond motherhood and utilize our talents by building a business around them while also working out a way to spend time with family.
Guilt is an unnecessary and negative emotion that can disrupt our lives and business if not handled correctly. Here are some tips on handling guilt:
Be true to you. The old saying is true, “When Mom’s happy, the family is happy.”
Moms are the center of the family focal point. Your husband or partner, and children feed off you and your feelings; your kids are in tune to you and pick up on your vibes. They will know when “Mamma” is stressed or not happy and they’ll react to it, unfortunately, usually in a negative manner by acting out in some fashion. Look deep within yourself and identify what makes you happy; hopefully it is being a Mom and a CEO of your own business – and there’s nothing wrong with that! When you’re happy, the family unit is happy.
Plan quality time to spend with your family. Scheduling and time management is important for mom business owners. Keeping a separate personal and business calendar, side-by-side for easy viewing (Google Calendar is my favorite tool for this) is helpful for planning family activities. Summer is a great opportunity to catch up on some much needed family time, so consider cutting down work hours to schedule some fun family time. It’s okay to schedule time during the day. Your business is just that… your business. You can do what you like! Build a business that conforms to your family lifestyle.
Plan quality time to spend on your business. It is a good idea to schedule your week according to business and family time. Certain times of the week could be dedicated to family, and then other times during the week should be dedicated to growing your business. An example of how I handle this is I use Fridays as my business development day. It is also a day that my husband and I schedule day long activities with the kids. My husband also knows that if he needs to schedule a pediatrician appointment, to schedule it on Friday. Time management is critical to having a successful business that gives you the freedom you so desire to spend with your family.
Be flexible with time. Building a business that conforms to your family lifestyle is critical to finding and realizing that dream of work/life balance. In order to do that, you should be flexible with your family time AND with your business time. This may mean working on your business during hours that you don’t normally work such as weekends or evenings. You may choose to work on your business at night so that you can take the kids to the park during the day. Be creative and flexible with your time!
Master your Mindset. I can’t emphasize this enough – it is all in the mind. Know that what you’re doing is critical to your happiness and that of your family’s… and that of your business. You’re setting an amazing example to your children by deciding to work at home and also be with them. They will take these lessons and remember them when they experience challenges later in life as adults. They will remember the many times you were able to attend important events in their life.
They will remember that you were able to run your own business so that you could spend more time with them (and they will certainly be proud of you for it also!).
Utilizing these tips in your life will decrease the amount of guilt that we all feel. Keep them handy to help keep that nasty gook called “guilt” out of your life.