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Parenting and Business Balancing Tips for Stressed Moms - Advice and Solutions

maybe even the next day! Third, and this is KEY, you need to find a SUPPORT SYSTEM for yourself. You're not alone! There are people who are going through this too. I joined a group on Yahoo! called Home Business Warriors. It's a great group of people who are going through the same thing as you. They are there to support and encourage you.
heather223
Gold Member
1,602
Hi! I am very stressed and frustrated right now. I am a mom of 4 young children (ages 9 months, 2 years, 7 years, and 10 years) , go to school full time, and am full time PC consultant. I usually manage all of it very well, but the last few weeks I am just ready to scream and cry at the same time. I am on break from school and was hoping to everything accomplished in my business I need to since my older 2 children are not in school. I haven't gotten much done other than what HAS to be done for upcoming shows and even that is lacking the time and effort I normally put into it. I can't seem to pick up that phone even thought I know what happens when I don't. I am just exhausted and have no motivation. When I do get motivation and want to make calls then the younger kids start crying and want my attention. I am just at my whits end. Then when my husband gets home I feel that I should be able to get things done and I can't because all 4 kids are home and they want my attention. My husband, who is supportive of my business, expects that I have plenty of time during the day to do what I need to wants me to still handle the kids, dinner, etc. Or if I do go to my office to work, they all come down and want to talk, play, etc. I need to turn this downward spiral up, but am feeling today like I can't. (not looking for a pity party, just looking for advice to make this better. )

Thank you for letting me vent and for your suggestions!
 
DEEP BREATH!! It can be done. Set grounds rules for yourself. Then discuss these with EVERYONE in your house. Decide what times and what days you want to dedicate to your business. Ask your hubby to be the go to person for the kids during those times and days. I am not saying to pick Tuesday night for example and do it for 4 hours, that is simply not going to work. Maybe an hour every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. Or just an hour every Tuesday and Thursday. Make the conversation simple as well. Talk to DH first, decide how to broach the subject with the kids then BOTH of you sit down with them. Yes, I know the little ones may not understand but it is not really them that has be convinced. It's your DH who needs to be on board. If he realizes how important this time is to you, then he should be OK with taking on the "challenge" so to speak and help you out. And one of your best arguments is time. The best time to reach prospects and hosts, is between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. on weeknights.
 
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First, you need to set some realistic expectations for yourself, but also for your family. If your DH thinks you just sit around all day with nothing to do, or things you have all of this down time, you need to make it very apparent what you DO. (Keep a list! I did that once..I was shocked. We do alot, that doesn't visibly show up on the outside.)Second, don't wait until you are MOTIVATED and have ENERGY to make a phone call or two. You'll NEVER DO IT then. I've listened to several training calls lately that all said that- you just need to start doing it, because you won't ever be "in the mood" or "motivated". NO one is. It's like saying you need to be in the mood to exercise or do the yard work. Really? That never happens for me. I just have to DO IT, and I know I"ll feel better when it's done. The other thing I learned from Tammy Stanley (I still need to take this advice myself, but it's good)....she did her DS business with 4 little ones underfoot also. She said, don't try to set aside an hour to make phone calls. It's not realistic! If you have 5 minutes, make a phone call. If you get another 5 minutes, make another phone call! and so on. You might get 10 minutes later. By the end of the day, you've made 3-4 or more phone calls without even realizing it! Even if you don't catch someone live...that's ok. Have a script of what you want to leave as a message, and then keep a log of who you called, voicemail/time, etc. Then try them at a later time. if you know they have kids in school, call before school lets out. if you don't know, just call when it convenient and work up from there.For your DH, it's great that he's supportive. I agree with John, sit down and talk to him first and explain what's going on and ask for his help. 1-2 nights a week, for even just 1 focused hour may be all you need to plan for the next day, or to work on something that night. Enlist the help of your 7 and 10 yr old! Find them jobs to do- like put together customer packets, host packets, stamp/label catalogs (older), stuff invitations if you do the invites, etc. Tell them you'll pay them so much per job. Figure out what's fair and motivational. If you are working towards a goal with your PC money (like a family vacation somewhere, or something the whole family will enjoy), let them know! Make a goal chart they can all see. They may leave you alone during your work hours.Another thing I am working on MYSELF in implementing is having a home-routine....I've been going through FlyLady's stuff to try to have a routine so I'm not struggling to keep up with the house, bills, day-to-day stuff. It would include knowing what's for dinner and having it set out in the morning, versus thinking at 3:30 or 4pm, "hmmmm..I should figure out something for dinner!" You have lots of resources through PC recipes of 30-minute meals, quick dinner prep, etc. Use them as practice. Having a plan is half the battle! Have your customer service call list- who you want to call. Know what your meal plan is for the week. And Talk to your family!Good luck. :)
 
I agree with Bobbi & John. :) I'm right there with ya, too! 4 kids: 12, 10, 6 & 4. DH works till 8pm almost every night and I find that every time I get on the phone, the kids decide to fight, be loud, or need something from me. UGH! It's very frustrating.Another thing you can do is set a timer for 15 minutes and tell the kids you need them to play/watch a show/color/draw/etc for those 15 minutes while you make some calls. It's amazing how many calls can be made in 15 minutes. Since the kids know that you are on a timer, they know your task will end and then they can have you and your attention again. Then play with them for a while and then repeat. (I like Flylady, too, like Bobbi! Timers are our friends!!) :DAnother tip I hear a lot is to carve out time that you would be out doing a show, if you had a booking, and then block that time off to work your business. You could even leave home and go someplace else to make calls. I've gone out to my car and sat in there to make some calls so I could be alone! :D
 
Funniest thing about it is I have a 52 year old KID who thinks all attention should be on him all the time he is awake! BS I say! BS! I have told him that I will be making calls on such and such a day from such and such a time. If he expects me to help pay the bills, he sure as heck better let me do business! That usually shuts him long enough for me to do some calls and organizing!
 
I think the advice to just take 5 or 10 minutes to make calls is spot-on. The key to this is having the phone numbers you need organized so you can do it.

Painting a picture for your husband about what goes on during the day can help, too. When I got laid off a few years back, he apparently thought I was sitting around all day eating bonbons from a few cracks he made.

The truth of the matter was, I was on the phone trying to get signed up for unemployment and that was an unreal horroshow of an ordeal for 2 weeks solid. My state has a system where 1) you can only apply by phone and 2) if there are too many callers, it just hangs up on you.
Also - you cannot press the menu choices ahead of time like many phone systems. I had to tot it up and tell him it was 6 minutes to get through the menu, just so to get hung up on. Then try again, calling a dozen times was over an hour's time shot, yadda yadda. Not to mention the mental exhaustion & fury at it all. I couldn't take more than an hour in the morning, an hour mid-day, and an hour before they closed.

I realize my applying for unemployment isn't your situation at all, but I bet your husband doesn't realize how much time you spend just feeding those 4 kids INCLUDING the prep & cleanup. When/if he takes all 4, is it to McDonald's where the time-consuming part of prep & cleanup doesn't happen? LOL. And good grief you must have tons of laundry...not to mention studying....

After I sat my husband down and explained how it was going he was a lot more understanding. Maybe yours will be too, but don't count on changing him. Change yourself and go hide out in the car for 10 mintues to make some calls, haha. That's another excellent suggestion. Have some names & phone numbers ready and a pad to take notes for follow-up.
 
Just a side comment... :)Sometimes when our significant others don't appreciate us, it makes me think of that joke that gets passes around on FB with a picture of a house in complete chaos. The husband comes home from work and everything is a mess, kids are dirty, trash and mess everywhere, fridge open, food out, etc. Husband panics and thinks something bad happened to his wife or something. She says "You know how you come home from work and ask what I did all day? Well, today I didn't do it." :D
 
That's funny Amanda!Just so you know Heather, I personally don't think your DH is being one of "those guys" when it comes to what you do during the day....just wanted you to know that, or didn't want you to think when I (or even some of the other posters) made suggestions towards that aspect, that we are digging on him. NOT! :D But I know from EXPERIENCE that the husband sometimes doesn't see it all, even though he was very supportive and such of me...since, like the joke above, their isn't obvious evidence when he walks in the door all the time. What I found funny in my case, was when there were a few times when I would be gone ALL day, or better yet, a couple of times when I had to travel. Early on in our parenting days, I had to travel home because my dad was in the hospital. Our boys were maybe 2 and 4? When I got home, he had a changed perspective. He even told me "I had no idea how much you do!" Now, my DH can accomplish ALOT more than I in a same amount of time, but that's just his style- he's "black and white" when it comes to vision and focus. Me...I'm "multitasking" (translation....SQUIRREL! Easily distracted ;)). But he gets it more. The boys are older now, so it's a bit easier, but he still completely understands that what you see isn't always "what you get". There is more to it. (Plus, I like leaving him for several hours..>I come home and my house is CLEAN and sparkling. ;))He's supportive- that's awesome. Capitalize on it and prioritize what you need first. Things won't be perfect. Goodness knows I keep trying to get them that way, but I find myself spending too much time trying to make that happen before I can get busy in my business. I'm fooling myself. I need to prioritize and have a plan.
 
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heather223 said:
Hi! I am very stressed and frustrated right now. I am a mom of 4 young children (ages 9 months, 2 years, 7 years, and 10 years) , go to school full time, and am full time PC consultant. I usually manage all of it very well, but the last few weeks I am just ready to scream and cry at the same time. I am on break from school and was hoping to everything accomplished in my business I need to since my older 2 children are not in school. I haven't gotten much done other than what HAS to be done for upcoming shows and even that is lacking the time and effort I normally put into it. I can't seem to pick up that phone even thought I know what happens when I don't. I am just exhausted and have no motivation. When I do get motivation and want to make calls then the younger kids start crying and want my attention. I am just at my whits end. Then when my husband gets home I feel that I should be able to get things done and I can't because all 4 kids are home and they want my attention. My husband, who is supportive of my business, expects that I have plenty of time during the day to do what I need to wants me to still handle the kids, dinner, etc. Or if I do go to my office to work, they all come down and want to talk, play, etc. I need to turn this downward spiral up, but am feeling today like I can't. (not looking for a pity party, just looking for advice to make this better. )

Thank you for letting me vent and for your suggestions!

This is what you said YESTERDAY. Today is a new day! Praise God, He has given you today! Today, to start fresh, anew. Your signature mentions that PC helped you quit your full time job, so go back to your WHY. Why again did you start your business? What about it makes it DIFFERENT than your prior job, or ANY job? What do you love about it? Remember those things, focus on those things. Then have a heart to heart with your husband.

From what you've said, this is NOT a hobby to keep momma happy, this is a JOB. If your husband isn't getting that then you need to remind him, firmly, that the time (6-7, 7-8, whatever you determine) is YOUR work time. He needs to man up, take care of the kids, keep them busy, give them baths, do the dishes, clean the living room, rake the yard, go on a daddy and kids walk, whatever. Just DON'T BOTHER MOM-SHE'S WORKING! Do you pop in on him with the kids during the day, jump up and down on his desk, whine and complain cuz sissy won't share, blah blah blah. No, I'm pretty sure you don't. His not letting you have the quality time you need and deserve to work your business is selfish and foolish. Tell him so, and be specific so there's no question about what you need him to do, how you need him to do it, and (for his sake) why you need him to do it.

Please don't take offense to the seemingly harsh response. Sometimes we get into ruts that become our norm and we can't see past it. We don't remember what was different so we can't go back to it. Seems to me you both have fallen into a rut of sorts, a 4 kids crazy rut, and just need to refocus and regain your positions as partners.

Your PC business is worth it. And so are you!
 
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  • #10
Thank you all for your suggestions! Today is a new day and I feel better, I was just so overwhelmed yesterday. My husband sort of gets it, but not all the way. And honestly at this point he should! I have left him home enough with all of the kids that he should have a clue at least. I think what sent me over the edge yesterday was him telling me that he was going to quit school (I go to traditional college and he goes to an online school that is done on his time and they are in 6 month semesters) because he didn't have enough time to do his school work. l am not a quitter and don't feel that he should quit school either. I told him if he could find a way to pay his student loans then he was able to make the decision. For the life of me I can't grasp why you would spend 2+ years working on a degree and then just give up. You made it that far why not just suck it up and finish? I can't tell you how many times I wanted to just quit, but it isn't worth giving up. Sorry for my rant, I knew I could come here and you would all make me feel better! I am going to make a plan, talk to my husband and kids about it, and then put it in place this weekend. Thank you all again for your suggestions (and keep them coming!)
 
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  • #11
I also need to add, my husband is good at helping out with the household stuff. It's just that he feels I should be able to get done what I need to work and home wise during the day so basically I am able to pay attention to them all night. And as we all know, sometimes that just isn't reality in this business. Funny enough he doesn't have an issue when I go do a show and am working, so why the issue when I am home?? Guess I do need to go sit in my car or at a park and work! Thinking out loud, sorry!
 

Related to Parenting and Business Balancing Tips for Stressed Moms - Advice and Solutions

1. How can I manage my stress levels while working a demanding job?

One way to manage stress is to prioritize your tasks and make a realistic schedule. Also, be sure to take breaks and engage in self-care activities such as exercise, meditation, or hobbies.

2. What are some healthy coping mechanisms for stress?

Some healthy ways to cope with stress include talking to a trusted friend or family member, journaling, practicing deep breathing techniques, and seeking professional therapy or counseling.

3. How can I prevent burnout from work-related stress?

To prevent burnout, it's important to set boundaries and not take on too much work. Make sure to take breaks and prioritize self-care. It can also be helpful to talk to a supervisor about workload and any concerns you may have.

4. What are some signs that my stress levels are becoming unmanageable?

Some signs of unmanageable stress include changes in sleep patterns, loss of appetite, difficulty concentrating, and physical symptoms such as headaches or stomachaches. It's important to recognize these signs and seek help if needed.

5. How can I support a co-worker who is stressed and needs advice?

The best way to support a stressed co-worker is to listen and offer empathy. Encourage them to take breaks and practice self-care. You can also offer to help with their workload or suggest resources such as therapy or stress management workshops.

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