This article was written byJeannette Lees, Rosy Lees Design
2017 Bronze winner of AusMumpreneur Network Excellence category
I learned that when you run a successful business and have a young family you have to set boundaries, take timeout for yourself and have a set of non-negotiables.
I have worked myself into the ground several times whilst trying to be all things to all people. It is all too easy to give too much of yourself to others and to face burn out. You get to the point where you are no good to anyone because all you want is to hide away from the world.
One of my non-negotiables is my two girls. They come first at the moment because things will change all too soon and I want to savor every moment with them while they still want and need my attention. If they need me then I will be there.
The list below will help you to stay sane, get things done and create balance in your life.
Ask for help
Don’t be too hard on yourself: juggling both family and business at the same time is no easy task. Since moving to Sydney, far away from family and old friends, I have learned to be more honest with those around me when I need help.
Share out the chores at home so that everyone understands that being a family is about pulling together. My girls are now eight and ten so they understand that if we pull together and help each other then we all have a happier life. This is a balance which we have to work on all of the time as everyone’s needs are constantly changing.
Remember that even though you are the mummy at home, not everything is down to you.
Schedule time to yourself
I’m sure we can all agree that we get more done when we feel happy and rested. As mums we often feel guilty taking time out, but letting yourself get stressed or burned out can set you, your business and your family back a long way.
I try to make time at least once a week for a cup of tea in a cafe, time with a friend, a run or a trip to the beach. When I’m really under pressure I even set myself alarms reminding myself to eat, have a cuppa or pick up the girls from school. Food alarms might sound like odd behavior, but making time to look after yourself will help you avoid stress and stay strong for work and family.
Think nap to nap, not 9 to 5.
Your hours as a mumpreneur might start before your family wakes up, be focused on nap times or go on in the wee hours of the night. Prioritize appointments that need to be accomplished in person during the traditional work day and do everything else when you have time. We need to remember that we are breaking out of tradition by being mumpreneurs , there is no rule book that we need to follow. It is up to us to do what works for us and our very unique families.
When I am working hard on a big project I really enjoy getting a head start before dawn, because my house is so still and quiet, no one needs me and I feel like I am getting ahead of my schedule which is a really satisfying feeling.
One of the hardest things for work-at-home mumpreneurs is getting sidetracked by children, laundry, dishes. Well, you name it really. If you are struggling with the weight of all those to-dos, I recommend you make a full list of what you intend to get done. Then break the list down week by week, then day by day even hour by hour. If you stay focused, you can stay committed to getting things done. If you don’t achieve what you set out to then be easy on yourself, remember how much you accomplish on a daily basis.
When I was having one of those days where I felt like I had achieved nothing my friend advised me to write a Ta-da list instead of a To-do list. The idea is to write down every little thing that you have done that day. Include absolutely everything. You end up with a crazy long list as long as your arm. It always makes me giggle and it really puts everything into perspective.
Under promise and over deliver
Try not to set unrealistic deadlines for yourself. I avoid promising a short deadline. You never know what curve ball you are going to get thrown at you when you are juggling family and work.
If a client asks how long it will take for me to finish, I try to think how long it will take me and then add an extra few days or a week. It is always better to under promise and over deliver instead of the other way around.
My clients are always delighted when the work arrives ahead of schedule and better than expected.
I hope to have provided you with at least one little gold nugget of advice which makes you realize how important and wonderful you are.
Keep it going Ausmummies. You’re the best!!
To learn more about Jeanette and Rosy Lees Design, please visit