I think it can be said with certainty that Mompreneurs have all experienced, at different times in our lives, the feeling of being overstretched, out of balance and moving on autopilot from one responsibility to the next. It can be overwhelming to feel that we may be living on the sidelines of our own lives without true joy and sometimes even wishing away time. Wishing for the next stage or the easier stage in life. Wishing for our babies to sleep through the night, the laundry to already be folded wishing for our business to require less hands-on time. Wishing for there to be more hours in a day. All of that unhelpful wishful thinking is a huge time suck and can feel exhausting. Having been on both ends of the balancing teeter totter I can say with confidence that feeling balanced is significantly better to the alternative. I have found that strategizing and planning for personal and professional balance is something I consider as part of my mompreneur job description. If I’m not balanced, my family and my business are negatively impacted.
Balance is a personal achievement and an intentional practice. Accepting that busy periods in our lives ebb and flow is central to knowing how to approach the daily mompreneur hustle. Balance doesn’t come simply or without challenges and it isn’t a reliable given. Finding equilibrium within the dynamics of work, family and friendships is entirely interdependent on personal resources such as: available time, support from my partner, reliable childcare, finances, personal and family health, emotional well being, inclination and proclivity. Naturally having all of these personal resources available during goal setting makes sustainable balance more likely to attain. That being said, commonly one or more of these resources will be amiss or unavailable. I believe that with clear goal setting, balance, at least on some level, is still achievable. Saying ‘yes’ to the important prospects or responsibilities and ‘no’ to the ambitions that are easier to let go of, will make finding balance exponentially more attainable.
I recently spoke with local mompreneur, Chantelle Bowden of Wild & Free Organics www.wildandfree.com I asked her what advice she would like to share with fellow mompreneurs on the topic of creating intentional work/life balance. Chantelle believes that owning her time and stripping away the mom guilt that can happen when she is working, is key to her success. Understanding that her work is important and allowing distance between her home life and business so she is able to feel fully invested in the present moment whether it be time with her family or time spent on her business.
Similarly to Chantelle, I appreciate the distinction between family time and work time. When it comes to actively creating balance and determining my priorities I use personal goal setting. The questions that I ask myself are: Does saying yes to this task accomplish a direct goal? Does it fit with my ethical value system? Does it impact my family favourably? In answering these questions I feel better able to focus on the goal and feel energized about the work I’m doing. Life is busy and managing family commitments and business responsibilities take intentional work and planning.