Entrepreneurship May Give You the Flexibility and Freedom to Be a Mother and Have a Career, Here’s Why

Before COVID, mothers were struggling with “having it all”, juggling work, life, marriage, babies, and everything in between. After COVID? Over 2 million women left the workforce. 

That’s in 2020 alone. 

A more startling fact? According to The Washington Post, the progress women have made since the ‘70s has been completely erased by the pandemic. 

Fortune Magazine agrees, “Without significant action, such as additional employer support and training programs, there is a real danger that female labor force participation could face its steepest sustained decline since World War II.”

If that doesn’t speak to how wildly unsupported mothers are in the United States, I don’t know what will.

When I had my first baby in September 2019. I had the privilege of a 14-week, paid maternity leave. Yes, this is a privilege and that makes me furious.

While 14 weeks may sound significant, it is relative to the 0 weeks that many other women are afforded in this country. However, I can tell you from my own experience that leaving your 14-week old is the most painful, counterintuitive experience for a new mom.  

The answer doesn’t have to be tethering yourself to your baby 24/7 (unless that is your right decision), but there has to be a better middle ground. Because it feels like the moment you begin to find your footing with your baby, you hand them over to someone else so you can go back to work. 

The transition from spending 24 hours a day with your newborn to a few hours a day is dramatic. If you choose to feed your baby breastmilk, you’re also trying to fit pumping into your workday. Secluded in an awkward room staring at pictures and videos of you newborn, a.k.a. pumping porn. 

Being a working mom has been challenging forever. Today, it is impossible. 

My pessimism on this topic makes me believe that we may never recover. Being pulled in opposite directions by our babies and the unjust expectations of the businesses that pay our salaries. How do we choose?

My optimism, on the other hand, encourages me and helps me see that perhaps the pandemic has brought to light an issue that needed more awareness. I hope that mothers will finally receive the support and recognition they deserve.

If we aren’t supported by the organizations, policies, and laws informing how mothers are treated, we deserve to do without them.  While entrepreneurship seems like an impossibility, I am committed to changing this belief. Because we deserve to feel empowered to go into business for ourselves if we are not receiving the support, respect, or recognition we deserve elsewhere. 

After working with dozens of mompreneurs, and being one myself, a few themes emerged. The most successful mompreneurs are not necessarily the most innovative, wealthy, or time-flexible. The key to growing a business is not reinventing the wheel; it’s obsessively building the habits that will allow your business to flourish.  

I am going to share with you four habits that are easy to adopt and to apply to your busy life. They will allow you to start building a business and ensure that you can nurture it, and grow it, no matter your circumstances.

Define your time. 

Knowing how to define the time you have available for your work is essential for staying motivated and focused. Prioritize everything that is non-work related in your week, and dedicate the remaining time to your business. No matter how much time you have to commit, 10 minutes, 90 minutes, show up and do the work.

Plan your work. 

By planning your work ahead of time, knowing what needs to happen when, what is most important, etc., you do all your thinking ahead of time so you can maximize the time you’ve defined for work.  

Prioritize with ease. 

Know that just because something feels easy doesn’t mean it’s not valuable. Your priorities can shift and change regularly. This flexible thinking allows mompreneurs the ability to stay the course and find their success.

Say goodbye to supermom. 

This idea applies to more than parenting. It applies to everything. You don’t need to be the best at everything. And when it comes to your business, you’d be amazed at how far “good enough” will get you.  Your business should be a source of excitement, autonomy, and dare-I-say it? I’m going to! Self-care.  

Whether you’re an active entrepreneur, an aspiring one, or are entrepre-curious, know that in your business you’re your boss. 

Be the boss you always wish you had.

Looking for more insight around what happens to your business baby when you have a real baby? Click here.

You may also be interested in this mom’s story about choosing to be a SAHM and this mom’s story about choosing to go back to work.

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