Being a mum is a tough gig. Throw in a business as well and you have your hands full (and then some) Being a mum in business not only comes with an increased work load, but it also comes with its challenges. There is always something to do and it can be difficult. I know for me that I face various challenges every day. Let’s take a look at some of them. These are my 5 challenges mums in business face.
The Mum Guilt
This is one of the biggest challenges that a business mum can face. Society expects a lot from us. They expect us to parent like we don’t work and work like we aren’t parents. When you are trying to do both, it can become exhausting at times. There will be times when you feel a lot of mum guilt. This is the guilt that you feel when you think that you are not doing enough as a parent. Maybe it feels like you aren’t spending enough time with your kids, or that they are getting too much screen time. Mum guilt is a real thing that needs to be recognised. Once you recognise it, you are able to change your mindset and remind yourself why you are doing what you are doing.
There are only so many hours in the day. Sometimes it feels like we need three times the amount of hours. It can be difficult and stressful to try and fit all of your mum duties, housework and then your business all in. Once you have it all down pat and a routine in place it is a lot easier, but its getting to that point. Being organised is something that is crucial when you are a business mum. But it can be harder than it sounds. Using different programs in your business to automate parts of it, home routines where everyone pitches in and a good calendar can help you to become more organised in both your home and business life.
Finding The Work / Life Balance
When people talk about finding the work/life balance they sometimes think that it means a 50/50 balance. But this is not actually the case. Finding the balance is about finding the sweet spot between your home and your business that suits you. It could be that 70% of your time is on your family and only 30% on your business – because that could be all that your business needs. Without the balance though, you can end up feeling stressed, overworked and underappreciated. Finding the balance can be difficult as you want to be able to give as much as you can to both worlds, even though sometimes it doesn’t need that much.
Managing The Expectations
Have you ever heard the term ‘supermum’? This term is thrown around a lot when a women is not only taking care of her family but also working or running a business. It is a term that is meant to provide a compliment, however it can also be detrimental people, whether it is the person being said to or someone else. As mums, we are expected to do a lot already. Looking after children, cooking, cleaning and maintaining a household. But as a working woman we have a whole other basket of expectations we need to hold as well. When you are doing both; working and raising children, the managing of these expectations can be difficult. We want to be able to please everyone and live up to everyones expectations, however sometimes it is healthier and wiser to let some slide.
Becoming a parent, whether it is for the first time or your fourth – there will always be moments where you are feeling overwhelmed. If you then decide to start a business on top of that, this can be increased. There may be times when you become so overwhelmed with everything you need to do that you start to question if you have taken too much on, or if you need to pull back. Overwhelm can be turned around though, you can use it as a positive and a chance to rethink and regather yourself.
Although there are many challenges that face mums in business, you need to remember that you are doing an amazing job. Not only are you raising tiny humans, but you are also reating a legacy. Take it one step and one day at a time. If you need to take a break – go for it. Come back tomorrow and give it another try. And most importantly, be your own biggest supporter!