So many women are taking the pleasant plunge into entrepreneurship and working from home. Whether it is to explore turning a passion into profit, creating more freedom in their schedule to spend with children or aging parents, or having the flexibility to travel. There is no limit to the reasons that mothers are choosing to work from home. And why shouldn’t we? Working from home has many perks, and thousands of women right here in the U.S are doing it successfully every day.
Over my years as a home-based entrepreneur, I’ve developed a few habits that have allowed me to continually achieve my goals as a small business owner. The business you’re in doesn’t matter. What matters is how you program yourself to reach your goals and propel your business to the next level. As with anything significant, good habits are key. When I first began my journey down this road a decade ago, I was put onto this book by a former co-worker and it has truly changed my perspective on self employment and success.
Here are my top 7 habits of being a successful work at home mother, in no particular order.
1. Self Care
You must take care of yourself. Why? Well first is simply because you deserve it! Second is, without you there is no business therefore there is no success. Taking care of yourself is as essential as eating healthy and exercising. When you feel good, you will move in a way that exudes confidence and security and that will roll over into how you conduct business. Self care can be a quick run for a mani/pedi, catching a movie by yourself, or curling up with a good book and a cup of tea. Whatever it is, do it for yourself and do it often.
Keep your home and work space organized. This doesn’t have to take ton of money or time. Buy used items on Craigslist, or search Freecycle to find goods for free. Things like file cabinets, paper organizers, shelves, office supplies, pen holders, and binders can make all the difference in keeping your workspace neat and organized. When you need something you’ll know exactly where it is. Use online tools like Quickbooks or Google calendar to stay on top of your finances and appointments. Set reminders for yourself so that you don’t miss deadlines, forget to make that important call, or send timely invoices.
We plan for vacations, weddings and family meals, right? Well we need to plan for success within our businesses. Write out daily and weekly goals. Review them frequently to make sure that you are staying on task. Use a pen and paper instead of a tablet or phone notepad. Writing things down will help you commit them to memory. Have an accountability partner. Your spouse or a friend, that can check you on your progress. It helps to have someone in your corner for the times when you fall off. Trust me, you will fall off! But that accountability partner will reign you back in. Hooray for supportive spouses and true friends!
4. Eat healthy and exercise
A healthy diet is key to achieving success. We all have those cheat moments when we just must have that cake or those tacos loaded with cheese, and that is 100% ok. I’m referring to what we eat on a regular basis. Plenty of fruit, veggies, water and a regular exercise regimen will carry you far along your journey to success. A healthy body leads to a healthy mind, and health minds bring clarity. Clarity brings focus which we all need to keep us on the path to greatness. Your exercise routine doesn’t need to be strenuous. A walk after dinner, or a 15 minute morning yoga will do plenty.
This has always been a struggle for me, however I am getting better at asking for help and delegating certain tasks. We want to do it all, and sometimes we actually do. The point here is to avoid burnout and times of being unproductive by delegating. Hire someone to reply to emails and follow up on product or service requests. Maybe you can get someone to edit your photo’s, or update your website listings. Whatever you need, reach out to support people who share your vision and philosophy and can get the job done. This will free up some of your time so you can continue being amazing.
6. Dedicated work time
Working from home is a pleasure that can become cumbersome if not scheduled properly. We have our duties as mother and/or wife to consider as well, so it makes sense to arrange our time accordingly. Just as we schedule time for dinner, kid’s baths, and movie night, we need to schedule time to get our work done. Set a schedule for yourself to work from home successfully. It could be early mornings before the children wake up or during the day while they are at school. Any time that works for you is fine, just be consistent with it and you’ll start to see your growth.
7. Sleep well
My mind is busiest at night, so this is continually a challenge for me. I do find that when I go to bed earlier, I wake up more refreshed and ready to tackle the day ahead. Getting a good night’s rest is very important for our productivity. Turn off your phone and the lights and call it a night. You’ll thank yourself in the morning.