Being a stay at home mom is seriously hard work. Being a working mom is also really stinking difficult. However, neither of these even compare to being a work from home mom. I mean can you imagine trying to balance both of these worlds at the same time? It’s nuts!
I give major props to women out there killing it as work from home moms. I tried to conquer that title for about 6 months while we waited for a daycare spot to open up. Let me just tell you – never again. Seriously, it was a tough 6 months.
I don’t mean to scare you away from your dream of working from home. I swear to you that’s not my intention! Being a work from home mom is tough, but it’s not even close to impossible. If I survived it, then I know you can too. Heck, I even know that you can thrive as a work from home mom with the right tools. That’s why I rounded up my best secrets to success that I learned when working from home. I know that if you implement these into your daily routine, then you will totally kick butt in this new role of yours. Let’s get started.
Wake up Before Your Kids Do
I know first hand how tempting it can be to sleep in until your kids wake up. I mean who doesn’t love hitting the snooze button a few times? However, this is one of the biggest mistakes you can make when working from home. The hours you have before your kids get up are crucial. Do not miss out on them!
I’m not saying you should get up and start working right away. My brain is barely functioning well enough to put my pants on without tripping in the morning. I can’t even imagine trying to respond to emails at 5 am. Yikes! Instead, use it as a time to wake up and get your mind and body ready for the day.
This is the perfect time to enjoy a hot cup of coffee. Yes, girl – I said hot, not cold and sitting out for three hours. I also recommend using this time to journal and set your intentions for the day. Review your calendar and plan for any upcoming deadlines or meetings. Get a quick thirty-minute workout in to wake your body up. This is the time to set yourself up for success for the rest of the day.
Ditch Your Pajamas
How many of you decided to work from home because you wouldn’t have to dress up every day? Okay well maybe that wasn’t the entire reason, but I’m sure it crossed your mind at some point. I mean who doesn’t want to be cozy all day! Messy buns and sweatpants are my love language. So please hear me when I say I’m not here to take away your cozy clothes.
I’m not asking you to wake up and put on a suit and heels every day. What I am asking you to do is get dressed, period. I don’t care if that’s in jeans and a t-shirt or a cute dress and boots. Whatever floats your boat sister. All I want you to do is wake up, take a quick shower, throw on some clean clothes, and brush your teeth. Easy right?
I know that this might not be an easy task for some of you. Trust me, I’d stay in my pajamas all day if I could. There is no problem with doing that every once in a while. However, it can easily become a habit. The problem with staying in your jammies is that it can really drag down your productivity. So, do yourself a favor and ditch them first thing when you wake up. Just the act of getting ready will make you feel awake and in the zone to get stuff done.
Ask for Help
Why as women do we feel compelled to do it all and be it all? Newsflash – we aren’t superheroes! It would be insane to expect that we can be a boss in the boardroom, a nurturing mother at home, and everything in between without any help. Yet women set this expectation on themselves every single day. Here’s the truth sister, you’ve got to stop.
A huge part of why I was able to somewhat successfully work from home is that I had help. That’s right, your girl didn’t do this all on her own. I had a husband who would take over on baby duty when he got off work so that I could get some devoted work time. I also had amazing parents who lived only a block away who loved spending time with my daughter. You better bet I relied on them often. On top of all that help, I also had a part-time assistant to help me with tasks for my business.
I want to challenge you to break down the myth that you can do this all on your own. Ask your partner for help. If you have family nearby, then let them spend time with your kids for a few hours. Invest in a part-time babysitter even if it’s only one day a week. Hire someone to clean your house so you can take that off your plate. There are plenty of ways to make working from home easier on yourself. Trust me, it’s okay to do some of them.
Get out of the House
Let’s face it, when you work from home it’s easy to spend most of the day inside. Heck, somedays you don’t even leave your house at all. While this may seem appealing for you introverts out there, it’s not the most productive way to spend your day. After all, it’s easy to get stuck in a funk when you stay inside. That’s why you need to make time for fresh air and a bit of socialization every day.
Recently, one of my fellow girl bosses hopped on Instagram Stories to share that it was 2 pm and she hadn’t said a single word that day. You know what, I completely believe her. That’s pretty darn easy to do when you are working from home and don’t have anyone to speak to. So, you know what she did? She packed up her laptop and her notes and headed to her local coffee shop. The change in environment and the new conversations she had gave her the inspiration she desperately needed.
That is what I want you to do my friend. Every single day I want you to find a way to get out of the house, change your scenery, have a conversation, and be inspired. I know you are feeling like I just added one more thing to your plate. That is totally not what you came here for and I get that! This doesn’t have to be time consuming or overwhelming. It can be as simple as you need it to be.
Learn How to Say No
Working moms have a ton of stuff on their plate. Seriously, it’s basically overflowing. There’s a job to dominate, kids to nurture, a home to run, a husband to love, and all the little things in between. Just trust me when I say it’s a lot to balance.
On top of all of those things, women are constantly getting asked to add even more to their plate. Do you want to volunteer on the PTA this year? Will you help in the church nursery this month? Can you host the mom group at your house this weekend? Listen, my friend, the list of asks goes on for miles. If you’re not careful, it can easily pile up and become a very large problem.
That’s why I want you to become comfortable with saying no. A lot of people find the word no to be negative, but it’s not. It’s actually a very beautiful thing. The word no allows us to guard our boundaries including our time. Remember, every time you say yes to something you are saying no to something else. For example, if you say yes to an extra shift at work, then you might be saying no to a movie night with your kids. Every decision you make has consequences. That’s why it is so stinking important that you think each decision through. Don’t be afraid to say no!