I have a new plan for the summer, which I started implementing last year with great success. Before this plan, I felt I could not even sustain a business and in truth, it was a struggle. Every year I dreaded the summer holidays because it meant I feared losing momentum in my business. No matter how much I tried to make my husband understand, because he had never run a business, he did not understand.
As a home educating mum, you would think that the summer holidays didn’t change anything in my routine but they actually do. The reason is that co-home educate with my husband. So in the rest of our school year, I have some time to work on my business when my husband home educates. However, in the summer when the formal home educating stops, what do I do?
First of all, I do what I do the rest of the year which is to work before the kids wake up. I am lucky that my kids wake up quite late and realise that maybe this will not be the case for other mums. I also wake up fairly early – between 5 and 6 am every day. I wasn’t always an early bird. It is actually my four children who trained me into this schedule. And now that they enjoy late sleeping in the morning, this gives me a couple of hours every day to do things for me and my business. I start with a morning routine of meditation and yoga. Then I do some work. As I work with Australian clients, I can often have sessions with them at 7 am which works beautifully for all of us.
I have also negotiated with my husband that he looks after them one day per week. For other mums who have grand parents around (we don’t) that could be another option. Or perhaps organise child care. I realised by having a really clearly define work time (boundaries), I am able to enjoy spending time with my kids more because I don’t constantly think I should be working on my business. I am also able to let them know that mummy works Mondays which means they know the rest of the week, I am theirs. It’s created a beautiful work-home balance for me. It also enables me to know that my business does not die during the school holidays which are innumerable. I only take complete time off during our annual holiday, one week over Christmas and one week over Easter. The rest of the year, Mummy works Mondays. I actually love Mondays. I get to be something else than a Mummy and because I am ambitious, this has always been incredibly important to me. I believe it is better for my kids to know that I have interests outside of them. My husband is happy because I no longer try to squeeze in work everywhere. It works for us. Everyone is happy.