Summer is the greatest. Pool, kids, vacation, hot weather, relaxed bed times and schedules, ice cream… But if I’m not careful, it can also become a big ball of work stress. This is my 4th summer of being a work-from-home mom. I think I’m getting better! Here are a few things that help keep my sanity in check.
1. Continue to spend time on your own business. If you only have 1 hour to work, spend 15 minutes on yourself. Clean out your inbox, write thank you notes to clients, plan blog posts. Don’t give this up! Even in a pinch. Check out the video for more on this!
2. Be where you are. When it’s snack time, or pool time, or zoo time, try to be there and present with your kids. I don’t just mean not answering a client call, but having your mind present, to enjoy what’s happening before you. I mean this for activities that you are engaged in, not necessarily the times that you are supervising 3 hours of bike-riding in the driveway.
3. Reclaim your 5 minutes. I’ve found that I have pockets throughout the day that are sort of lost. Maybe the kids are playing *quietly* in their room, or picking out books for bed, or going down the slide for the 100,000 time. Take it! And use it to kick the can down the street on a project. Maybe this means sending a quick email, posting to your business social media page, or journaling part of a blog post. This doesn’t seem like much, but I’ve used 5 min blocks to build an entire website.
4. Get up early. It’s summer, it’s hard, but getting an hour or two of work in while the kids are still sleeping is my golden hour. If you’re a night owl, stay up late instead!
5. Take on less work. I work on a project basis, and I know my schedule is slim in the summer. So in spring, I start scaling back, because I know the clients I take on in March and April, will be launching in June and July. I take on about half the work, and then put clients on a wait list that’s first come, first served. So that means I don’t tell clients that I can begin their project in June, I say, I have 3 ahead of you, it’s looking like end of June. These potential clients typically appreciate the honesty and wait for their turn. If they don’t, then they aren’t the best fit for me.
6. Hire a babysitter if you need to. It may not seem to make sense financially, but if it helps you keep a project on track and a good reputation for service and deadlines, then it’s worth it in the short-term. I’ve done this a few times when I just couldn’t get a project done, and it’s made for a happy client and less stress. And happy clients refer other clients.
7. Allow yourself some time off. This one is really hard for me, but scheduling a few weeks off will really make you feel good when fall comes around. Don’t look back at the summer and think that you wasted it working! Don’t do that.
Have another tip to share? I’d love to hear it in the comments! Now my kids are waking up, so I’m off… Happy Summer Friends!