Working for myself is really the only option for me. I’ve had my own company(s) for over 15 years now and can’t see myself clocking in for anyone but my own worst boss -– me! Besides loving every minute of being my own slave-driving-boss, I’m a single mom to three and a half year old identical twin girls, so being available when necessary is important to me as a mom, and for the flexibility it provides for my lifestyle.
What I love about arranging my own hours and what-I-do-when, is that since I live and die (read: function) by my calendar, I can rearrange things on a whim to accommodate a last minute playdate, a party invitation, or even an unplanned get-away with the kids. What this does is give me freedom.
Freedom to me means that I can take off an afternoon knowing that I scheduled and planned to work 2 hours after the kids go down if I couldn’t get my work done. I am able to make choices that allow me to enjoy my life on my terms.
Often working for yourself means that you don’t plan vacations because you have clients or customers that depend on you, right? I used to feel the same way until I realized that no one can be at their best 24/7/365. Everyone needs recharging of some kind –- especially us gals. Some of us need more and some less, but as a woman it is beneficial to recognize what’s important to you and what makes you feel good about yourself. It might mean working out daily, a massage, a mani/pedi, dinner with friends every Friday, a movie each week, or extended vacations — whatever it is, it’s important to do it.
So here is my truth. I decided to spend the month of August with my mom and my twins at a beach house this summer with various siblings (kids in tow) drifting in and out over the month. To be honest, once I’d made the plan, I panicked about my client dependent work-load and how I was going to manage with everyone around. Once I gave myself a “pep-talk” and figured out how I was going to balance my calendar, clients, kids (luckily with a lot of help from my mom), I was excited and looking forward to a semi-relaxed-part-time working month with friends and family who I love dearly.
I am here now and loving it. Once I gave in and embraced my fear, the ideas have been flowing and my work is about three times as productive. Perhaps the change of scene, not being in my own everyday life, or possibly the acceptance that life gives you what you can handle, and when you speak your truth it answers.
Here are a few tips of ways that I organize my life to work and play in harmony.
- Decide on your work hours and days off –- and stick to it.
- Fill your calendar with “must-do” work projects or client calls so you can build around them. Try to find blocks of time to “chunk” things like blog posts, phone calls, marketing, or sales calls so you are more productive.
- Enter your planned family time, outings and adventures in your calendar so you don’t miss out.
- Decide on several evenings you are willing to work on unfinished projects to take advantage of fun filled daytime activities. Others will be happy to have a “night-off” as no one wants to hang 24/7, they just don’t admit it.
- Promise yourself that you will enjoy every moment, and trust that you will make it work out so that you have fond memories and don’t only remember photos that someone else took.
Be bold and ask for what you want, take what you deserve and live the life you dream of.