When I decided to start my own home-based business while raising my son there was a lot that I didn’t plan for. Being an entrepreneur and a mom, while extremely fulfilling, is also really tough to manage sometimes.
I’m a freelance social media manager and virtual assistant but I’m also helping other moms create home-based businesses that give them the freedom to earn an income from home and raise their kids at the same time.
My purpose and passion has grown from wanting to work for myself and into having a dream that moms will never again have to choose between motherhood and career if they don’t want to.
I know that before starting my business I was so stressed about leaving my son to go back to work. But I also really loved my job! Why did I have to choose?
Thankfully I learned that I didn’t have to choose at all and my life has been an incredible adventure ever since.
This doesn’t mean that things are perfect, though. I do speak to a lot of moms about building businesses but there are a few things that you should consider before taking the leap.
Below are the things I wish I would have known before becoming a work from home mom.
There Is No Such Thing As Balance
I hate to be the bearer of bad news but I do cherish honesty and I hope you do as well.
There is always so much flack about balancing it ALL as a mom. Let me be the first to say that is total BS.
There may be days where you are superwoman and efficient and your kids are angels but most days that’s not the case. If you already have kiddos then you know trying to balance everything and be everything to everyone every single day is a quick way to burn out and even get depressed.
So when becoming a work from home mom it’s really important to know starting out that it will not be easy.
Here’s a post on how I manage my time as a work from home mom.
You will have days where no work will get done.
You’ll experience times when your kids are not at all cooperative.
There will be moments when you have to put your work ahead of your family. It might hurt a little but sometimes this is vital for your income.
And let me just point out that if you want to build a business for fun then that’s awesome!
But I’m sure most of the women reading this are either desperate to be able to afford to stay home or desperate to get far away from the 9-5. Those in this group will have to make harder choices on a day-to-day basis.
So as you move forward in the work from home journey, just remember that there is NO real pressure that requires you to accomplish everything in a single day but you may also have more on your plate.
If you need to get out of the house and go to the park instead of work then do it. You’re earning that freedom when you decide to work for yourself.
And then on the days when work has to be your priority let go of the guilt when you have to tell your family ‘no, we can’t go to the park today’. Relaxing and taking it easy every day will not grow your business and that’s a major factor to consider before working from home.
Getting Started Is Not Always Easy
Online entrepreneurs are fun to watch and listen to but a lot of times their advice for starting a home-based business is not detailed enough.
There is A LOT that goes into having a business, especially one where you’re also taking care of your kids at the same time.
I started out as a social media manager and that’s still what I’m doing now but my business has slowly evolved over time to be more realistic in goals while also allowing me to be creative about my business’ future.
This is exactly why I created the 5-Phase Framework. I wish I would have had a resource that guided me into taking those first major steps in developing my business, which admittedly took me longer than it should have, especially considering I did already have a service figured out.
If you aren’t like me where you can just transfer your current job into a freelance position then you may have an even harder time narrowing down what kind of business you want to create.
It’s common to get so distracted by the million interests you have that you prevent yourself from making decisions and just starting.
On top of that you have all of these logistics to plan out such as…
- getting clients
- different kinds of marketing avenues
- website development
- social media management
- graphic design
- legality, and more.
So it’s important to keep in mind that getting started is by far the hardest part. It takes time, concentration, and maybe some late night strategy sessions. Then you have to add in the family factor and how that will impact that time you need to create your home-based business.
You Can’t Do It Alone
I really thought starting out that I would just get some clients, work from home and everything would be perfect.
One major reality check later (aka breaking up with a client), I realized I needed some help.
Something that you’ll benefit from that entrepreneurs often overlook is the help of those around you. And I’m not just talking about business relationships.
One of my first major clients was referred to me from a family member.
I found that it was easier to get my first clients with the help of friends, family and acquaintances because they were the ones who were most excited to help me grow my business.
Even if that’s not the case for you, I highly recommend jumping on social media and connecting with someone who can be a friend and maybe even a mentor for you.
For example, if you connect with me on LinkedIn, join my free Facebook group or follow me on Instagram you are free to ask me questions and can potentially work with me one-on-one to help develop your business!
Having people in your circle that want to see you succeed will be immeasurably helpful for you whether in helping you get customers/clients or just being there to motivate you.
I can honestly say that having people in my corner has made the biggest difference in my motivation, how I run my business and my success in increasing my income over time.
So go into this with an open mind and open arms, welcoming opportunities to get help with your business. There are so many other work from home boss moms out there that would be so excited to connect with you and help you grow.
Things Will Always Change
When people become entrepreneurs they will experience times when it feels like nothing is working.
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned as a work from home mom is that just like how my son grows and changes, so does my business.
There are days where it feels like I’m stuck in a loop and if you’re a mom you know this happens with your kids too.
You’ll feel like the day is dragging on and nothing is going as planned. Your toddler is having tantrum after tantrum and they won’t eat their lunch. You’re wondering why it’s so hard to be a mom. You beg for moments where you don’t have to worry about anything. All you want to do is drink some wine and to watch a TV show and take a nap. You’re feeling out-touched and you wonder if you’re even doing this mom thing right.
Your day feels chaotic and endless and stressful.
But then something amazing happens.
Your toddler runs toward you with a smile and a “mama”! Their love is intense and pure and unique in every way. And suddenly those moments of chaos are all worth it. Those long days feel short and you will feel like time is passing much too quickly.
And let me tell you, the exact same thing happens in your business.
You will have long, hard days of work. You’ll wonder if any of this effort you’re putting in is even worth it.
Am I even an entrepreneur? Am I cut out for this? How will I possibly make this work?
But then you’ll wake up one day with an inbox full of emails, a bank full of money and SO. MUCH. PRIDE.
There will be tough days ahead but just like with being a mom, they’re always worth the effort to seeing the end result.