If you are a parent then you know the school holidays are coming around FAST, those that have children and run a business know that this can be one of the most stressful times of the year!
We are aware that our families are probably one of the reasons why we started our businesses, but equally, we know that if we don’t work then we don’t get paid, which that is a concept that some children just don’t understand!
They see mum or dad at home which to them equals family fun time!
So, what do you do? I hear you sigh
Last year was probably my most successful summer holidays with my children, I removed the pressure from my shoulders and reminded myself why I am doing my business and that my children are small for such a short period of time.
I follow a lady called Claire Mitchell of The Girls Mean Business, and last year she published a book dedicated to surviving the school holiday. Not all of it was relevant to me, and necessarily be helpful to me in my business or with my children, so I had to adapt and learn as I went through the 6 weeks, and I can honestly say, that come September when my children went back to school, I didn’t feel as frazzled as previous years.
What did I do so differently?
Most of my clients are family orientated, so I could let them know that I was still available during the school holidays, but made some changes:
- I spoke with my children and set a rota, so for an example, Monday AM I was working, clearing any weekend enquiries, and schedule in my social media for the week. Then Monday PM I would take them out to a park or something fun, this would happen throughout the week. It gave them something to look forward to and I got to tick a few things off my list.
- My reply time changed from within an hour to the same day response. If I had a message come in just as I went out with the children it gave me some breathing space knowing I could still have fun and reply when I got back to the office.
- Soft Play! This was a great one for us, it gave my children that time to run off steam and have fun, and I could sit there with a coffee and laptop and work, that was a great compromise, and will be doing that again this year.
- Park trips, this one was quite useful for me, as it meant I could get away from my laptop yet still get some work done, I found I was able to sit and write or come up with topics for my posts and blogs etc
- Logging on when they went to bed, this one goes against most of my ethics really, I tend to have one late night a week, but I did allow myself to log on once or twice a week in the evening to clear things and get back to people should they have messaged me. But again, I was strict!
These were just a few of the slight changes I made last year, it was all about compromising with the children, and myself, I also learnt how to manage my expectations on what I can and what I wanted to get done, luckily my children are at that age now where when they see me in my office ‘mummy is working’.
I plan to do the same this year, we will sit down and work out a rota for time with the family and time for work, this will be put in place a week or so before they pack up from school, giving them time to get used to the rota.
Work-life balance is hard to achieve but you can do it, you need to compromise with yourself and cut yourself some slack too. This is your dream, you have been building your business for some time don’t let school holiday break you.
Remember, you can outsource too, there is no shame in having a VA on hand to help you out either regularly or through holidays, this option does give you that peace of mind and free up some time, it’s one less ball to have to juggle.
If you are struggling to stay on top of things, why not have a chat with me, I am happy to discuss outsourcing and how I can help you gain back sometime during your week. And check out my latest freebie HERE
Hope to chat with you soon