Week two of our summer blog series is already here! I seriously can not believe it. Incase you missed last weeks post, check it out here. My friend Navy and I have teamed up this summer on a summer blog series where each week 8 other ladies will join in. The topic is different, and the other bloggers are different weekly so you will get fun perspectives on great topics every Wednesday. This week we are talking about balance as a work from home mom. Most of the ladies in this series are bloggers as their main job, thus we all work from home. The income we generate, and the amount we see this as a “job” vs “hobby” may differ from person to person, so I think this will be a great topic to get insight on!
Balance as a Work From Home Mom
When I started my blog in 2016 (read more about that here), I never thought this would be a job. I thought I would do this as a little hobby. But over time it has evolved into a job. I work probably close to 30/40 hours a week, but as with many jobs like this, the hours are at my own discretion, which has allowed for me to still be a stay at home mom. I get asked a lot how I do that. Do I have help? Do I like it? I am going to talk about what being a stay at home mom/blogger has been like for me, as well as my tips for making it less hard on yourself and your family.
Designated Work Time
The biggest thing that is hard about find balance as a work from home mom is having designated work time. There are no hard lines on when to work, and when to be a mom, or do laundry or all the other things that need to happen. I have found that there are a few things that have helped me to designate work time.
- Getting up early – not my favorite, but when you get up early, its time that you wouldn’t have been awake, thus time you are not taking away from other things you would normally need to be getting done. You can easily add 5 extra hours into your week by doing this.
- Join a gym with childcare. During the school year my older two kids were in School half day, but I had Walker home daily. We belong to a gym that you can get up to 2 hours of childcare a day at. Some days I only go to the gym for 1 hour to ONLY workout. Somedays I would go for 2 hours and workout for an hour then work. The biggest thing to do is to workout first and set a time or workout goal that has to be completed before you can sit down and work – this takes more self control than you might realize.
- Hire help and use that time wisely. We recently hired a sitter for 2 mornings a week. That means most weeks I have 8 hours of hired help. Sometimes I am still carpooling kids, or having to step in, so it is not always perfectly ideal, and that will sort of look different when the baby comes, but for now I designate that time for WORK. It is very rare that I will take that time for anything social. I go straight upstairs for the first 2 hours our sitter comes and get computer and blogging work done. Then many times ill run errands that need to be done for the second 2 Hours. Its good balance for my mental and physical wellbeing, and has allowed me to batch work.
I also recommend you designate time that YOU DO NOT WORK. This is harder than it seems. For me its Fridays. For the most part Fridays I do no work. I focus on my kids and my husband. I go on date night and enjoy my time with Sam, and I don’t think about the Instagram world. I have also tried to set out one other night a week where I get housework done and not blog work after the kids are in bed. This helps with overall stress levels!! Also – holidays and vacations are huge for bloggers, but make sure you do check out sometimes.
Have a Game Plan
Speaking of batching work. Nothing is worse than getting time from a sitter only to sit there and realize you don’t know what to get done. I keep a planner but also a check list in order of what needs to be done weekly. During the time our sitter is here I try to get 3 to 4 blog posts written. That typically means doing nothing but typing for those hours, but allows me to not have to do anything blog wise the rest of the week typically.
I also recommend a game plan of what HAS to be done weekly because the truth is you could work everyday all day and all night every night. When that list is complete take some time to focus on backend things. Chances re you started a blog because you had a passion for something, so spend some time keeping that passion afloat.
I already talked about the fact that we have a nanny. But something else I did this past month was hire someone to take over a backend side of my blog. She works for me for 5 hours a week keeping things on autopilot for me. I set a goal of when I could hire someone to do this for me, and it has been great. It was the one thing that I couldn’t stay caught up on with the rest of my work load, so for me this has been a game changer, and allows me to actually focus on my blog when I need to blog, and my family other times.
Sometimes I think you need to hire someone when it’s out of your comfort zone. It won’t always feel great sending that money off, but in order to balance things it is important.
Do I like being a Work from Home Mom?
Yes and no. When I had kids I never wavered on if I wanted to stay home. I KNEW I wanted to be home with them. But by about 4 years into it I also had some desire to make connections and have something to talk about other than my kids. We moved to St. Louis when I was pregnant with Jack and I have few friends here, and was really lonely. I also knew that my drive and my hard work could be put into something. For me being a work from home mom has allowed me to fuel my soul in both arenas, and be home daily with my kids which is priceless for me, but that doesn’t mean I find it easy.
I think sometimes that unless you’re balancing well, your kids get more of you when you work out of the home. When you can leave your kids when you leave your kids and leave your work when you leave your work. I feel like I’m giving 50% to both areas a lot which is hard!! But for right now I am working hard on making that a bit better balancing things better and better with time. I see the end goal, so I push through, but I think its important to know that it isn’t always easy!
My last big piece of advice is to know this: Being a work from home mom in this capacity is a sacrifice from everyone in the family. If your spouse isn’t on board I wouldn’t take it on. Understand your children will sacrifice in some ways, but also I know for me, they see benefits in other ways. Have a plan, be organized and ask for help when you need it, and you will find so much better balance as a work from home mom.
Read the other ladies Posts this week
All of these bloggers have written posts on the same topic!
Navy | Kate | Chelsee | Aryn | Rese | Hannah | Jen | Holly
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NavyJuly 3, 2019 at 7:06 am
I loved reading this and I love that you and me are constantly helping each other find balance. Crazy to think we’ve been friends for almost two years! Love you!
ArinJuly 3, 2019 at 9:09 am
YESSSSS!!! I would die in this business…and just in motherhood without you!
KatelynJuly 3, 2019 at 9:17 am
I learn so much from you! Thanks for keeping it real in life and business .
ArinJuly 3, 2019 at 1:46 pm
you’re the best girlfriend!
NicoleJuly 3, 2019 at 9:33 am
Taking time not to work is key. I feel like as work from home moms, we can work all day long and that’s not healthy!
ArinJuly 3, 2019 at 1:46 pm
yes!! I totally agree.
TeresaJuly 3, 2019 at 10:36 am
I started out as a hobby blogger too and this blogging gig has sure turned into an amazing job!
ArinJuly 3, 2019 at 1:46 pm
could not agree with you more!! I sometimes think thats why it has been such a great job for me. It was so natural.
HollyJuly 3, 2019 at 11:18 am
I love the tip about making time for things that are not work. I have such a hard time shutting off.
ArinJuly 3, 2019 at 1:45 pm
It really is so hard!! I have to remind myself all the time!
HannahJuly 4, 2019 at 12:36 am
It’s so hard to carve out the time and adjust to what areas are lacking – but so worth it! It’s all about growth!
Alyssa H.July 4, 2019 at 7:55 am
I felt at ease reading that part about you feeling like you are only there 50% of the time in your work and your family. I am constantly feeling this way. I, too, work from home and finding that mental strength to distinguish this is family time and this is work time, is so hard! Glad to see that it’s a struggle for others too! ❤️
ArinJuly 5, 2019 at 3:01 pm
It really is so hard. I try to remind myself that I have to have grace for myself, and just try daily to be better! You got this and are a great mom!