There seems to be a common misconception that it’s impossible to both homeschool and run a business from home.
I’m here to tell you, it’s not an either/or option. You can have a productive, engaging and flourishing homeschool life while also running a successful, profitable and kick-ass business.
I’ve learned a few tips and tricks in my four years of homeschooling and one year as a mompreneur that has made a huge difference in the success of managing these two massive endeavors. It is possible, but it’s not easy, and some days it’s not pretty, but it is so worth it.
Making the choice to homeschool and run your own business is a huge commitment that will change your life. Each one on its own can be all encompassing of your time, energy, and emotions.
Before you pursue either, know that homeschooling and entrepreneurship are not things to be done half-way. You have to want it and be all in. If you find yourself pondering or daydreaming the following ‘what if’ questions, chances are you want it.
What if I could teach my own kids?
What if I could make an income on my own?
What if we could spend this time together?
What if I was my own boss?
What if we managed our own time, the way we want to?
This is not an option. You must find people who can support you. Find other mompreneurs, join a virtual coworking space, join a co-op or community.
It will probably take a couple of different groups of people in order to feel completely supported, because there aren’t many places or groups that understand the hardships and joys of both homeschooling and entrepreneurship.
Finding a tribe that can say, “yes! That’s totally normal!” is a lifesaver on the days you feel like you’re failing miserably, (and there will be those days).
When your days are filled with answering a million questions, sounding out the word ‘cat’ for the fifth time, answering client emails, and sending proposals and invoices, you’ll probably find that the end of the day comes with a huge sigh of relief followed by collapsing on the couch.
This is fine 6 out of 7 days, but you need to take one night a week away from your computer, emails, kids and partner.
I find that when I stick to this, I’m a better mom, friend, wife, client, and boss. Taking the time to recharge is so important when 98% of your time is devoted to serving other people. So, grab a coffee, get dinner, see a movie, stroll the aisles of Target, do whatever you like — just make sure there are no children with you.
The second your business generates revenue, you need to outsource something. Pick the one thing that you despise doing, or the task you know you could pay someone to do.
For me, that was housekeeping. The first time a client paid me, I hired a housekeeper. I knew that I would have to work for 3 hours, or write one piece, and I could have my house professionally cleaned for two months. What a huge relief it has been to not have to scrub a toilet or mop the floors!
Kids thrive on routine, and your clients or customers will want to know when they can call for meetings or expect email responses. Establishing a schedule and routine will help everyone mitigate expectations and know your availability.
Your routine doesn’t really matter as long as it works for you and your family, and it allows you to do business in a way that suits your business. Here’s my daily routine, which works great for my family:
This routine works for my family and our lives, but maybe your kids don’t get up until 10 a.m., or maybe you need more than 4 hours a day to work. Through trial and error, you’ll find the routine that works best for you.
While a routine is important, it’s also important to remember that there will be days when things don’t work according to plan: a kid gets sick, or a client has an emergency deadline, or everyone is fighting.
It’s ok to stop the routine and do something completely different.
Maybe that means setting an out-of-office email and taking the kids to the zoo for the day, or maybe it means turning on the T.V. with snacks laid out on the table while you crank out as much work as possible. These days will happen, and it’s ok.
You’ll discover where your weaknesses lie and learn your amazing strengths. Like motherhood and professional life, it’s hard, it’s incredible, and it’s amazing, but it’s not either/or.
If you are a homeschool mom wishing for more, know that you can create it for yourself! The opportunity is there. Take steps to start your own business now. If your kids attend school, and you’ve been feeling the desire to homeschool but you just don’t think there will be time, know that it can be done.
Adrienne Barnes is a content marketer for SaaS companies at Adrienne Nakohl Copywriting. She’s a word nerd and Grammarly junkie. Her expertise is in taking the technical and boring and making it easy to understand and interesting. She homeschools her three crazies (as she lovingly calls them) and can be found sipping copious amounts of coffee every morning. Connect with her on LinkedIn.
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