Every year in March an event known as International Women’s Day takes place with a theme or focus for women who work in the world of business from solo entrepreneurs to those who work in multinational companies and every lovely lady in between. This year the event takes place on the 8th of March, and the focus is #BalanceforBetter, which is all about building a gender balance in every industry and business area recognising that both men and women have a different but equally valuable skill set to bring to the arena. ‘A balanced world is a better world. How can you help forge a more gender-balanced world? Celebrate women’s achievement. Raise awareness against bias. Take action for equality.’ (IWD 2019).
Each time there are various events linked to International Women’s Day, and if you can take part in any of them, I would encourage you to do so as you will gain loads of insight and experience that will help you in your own professional journey. On the website, you can see where the events are being held and the details you will need to attend. Women are an integral part of any business and should be encouraged to hit their goals and dreams rather than set in competition against male counterparts or worse still other women. Whatever our walk of life should be promoting and supporting each other, as the famous quote says, a flame does not burn brighter by extinguishing others around it.
Women who run small businesses are discovering the unique pleasure that comes from another type of balance in their lives. The balance between home and work that comes from being your own boss, and while this can be a challenging journey it is one that thousands of women embark on, and importantly succeed at through all walks of life and with a massive variety of skills, through many different businesses and industries. Running a business brings a degree of freedom that you do not get from working for other people, the time off to attend appointments and school events, the ability to work in the evening having spent precious hours with the children. It might not be the easiest road but the value women in business bring to industry is something we should not overlook. It is essential that we acknowledge and support these women, whether this is supporting them by sharing their work or creating peer group mentoring support with others in the same boat. Women in business will always hold a significant importance which is why events like International Women’s Day exist.
My own journey has been one of learning, failing and getting back up, and most importantly learning to fly and succeed. This adventure is something that I have been supported in by lots of other women and had the pleasure of offering my support to many more. I would like to thank all of the women who have been involved in my story so far, it has been a pleasure and a privilege working with each and every one of you.
We’ve all had days that involve a cascade of things going wrong here are 3 tips on how to handle those days.
In this video, I give 3 tips on how to handle rough days.
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Self-care is vital when you’re a parent entrepreneur. It can be so challenging to try and make sense of things when you’re always dealing with all the trials and tribulations which come from having both a business to run and kids to bring up.
Thankfully, there are a lot of simple things that you can do as a parent entrepreneur that aren’t that difficult and will help your self-care. To make sure that you’re not neglecting your self-care, we’re going to be taking a look at just a few of the different things that you can do here.
Make Time For Fitness
While it may seem like something of a novelty, you do actually need to make time for fitness. We know that a lot of parents can lose weight or get fit just from the time they spend rushing around, but this isn’t the way to practice self-care. It’s worth making time to go for a walk by yourself or with your partner, even if it is just once a week. Making time for fitness also boosts your energy levels.
Meditation has a range of benefits for the human body. However, what’s important is that you’re using this time to rejuvenate your spirit and care for yourself. If you don’t have time to meditate during the day, perhaps you could get up earlier or do it before you go to bed. However, it’s definitely worth looking into.
Clean Up Your Space
There’s a school of thought which suggests that the space we have is a representation of our mind. If your space is cluttered and untidy, then it’s an indicator that perhaps you’re not doing as well as you could be in self-care. Try cleaning up and reorganising and seeing the difference it’ll make.
Say What You Feel
Reaffirming your connections and bonds to people is an essential part of the self-care process. It may not seem like that big of a deal, but it can be crucial for making yourself and your partner feel good again. As a parent entrepreneur, you don’t want to take anyone for granted, so make sure you always say when someone’s essential or valued.
A large part of self-care is understanding what you have to be grateful for and expressing it. If you are thankful for something or someone, make sure you acknowledge it as much as you can. Tell that person or write it down, and you’ll see it makes you feel good too.
Overall, these are just a few of the different things that you can do as part of self-care as a parent entrepreneur. It’s never easy to manage your business, your family and your spirit all at once, but it’s worth doing. Otherwise, you can’t enjoy as rich and full a life if you’re not looking after you while looking after everyone else.
Being a freelancer or entrepreneur can be tough, if you are a small business, it might just be you, and that can be pretty isolating. Add to that the pressure of trying to work and bring up your family and you can sometimes find the anxiety voice in the back of your head challenging everything you do. Often we worry that we are not good enough, perhaps you feel torn between the need to earn a living and the urge to be with your children more often or maybe you feel you cannot compete with other businesses in the area. Whatever your fears are they can become genuine and leave us feeling second rate. So just how do you stop anxiety telling you that you’re not good enough?
Don’t Sweat the Size Difference
Ok, you are a one man (or woman) band, so what? Just because you know of other larger companies in your area that do the same as you, doesn’t mean your business is not valid. Some clients actively prefer the personal touch that comes with dealing with the same person consistently; they seek out the small business. You need to remember that you have your own set of unique selling points and that is your advantage. You need to focus on your services and offering them to the best of your ability, and you will find there is a massive amount of customer loyalty out there.
Bad Days Happen
However, with that in mind, even doing your best can lead to a bad day. Bad days happen to everyone. It doesn’t matter what line of work you are in, whether you work for yourself or are a faceless soul in a sea of thousands in a giant corporation, it happens. People make mistakes; customers are foul, this is just life. Try not to beat yourself up if you screw up. Try and remember that a problematic client might actually be dealing with something awful at home. Bad days are not a reason to throw in the towel, so try and shrug it off with that old adage that ‘tomorrow is another day’. On the subject of making mistakes, the best tactic is to own up, apologise, correct and move on. People generally understand that things sometimes go wrong so just be brave and move on.
The third tip is to ensure that you have support. It can be a lonely world, so whether you find other freelancers and working parents in a similar boat and create a networking group, or whether you have friends and family happy to step in, use your support. It can make all the difference in the world if you can voice your concerns to another person. They will be able to help you see why the anxiety voice is wrong and why you are doing an excellent job, but that is something we struggle to do for ourselves, so be sure to build in support somehow.
Keeping yourself grounded and disciplined can be difficult when you’re a parent entrepreneur. Parents especially have to manage their own temptations alongside a business and a family. Therefore, it can understandably become very difficult to do so. As people, we’re presented with a lot of different temptations. It’s a very liberal society where not a lot is restricted to you. This can make it really easy to lose track of what’s important and to give into temptation. To try and help, we’re going to be looking at a few ways to maintain some self-discipline.
Remove Temptations In Your Path
It’s hardest to ignore something when it’s right in front of you. People often struggle with temptation the most when it becomes a case of having to maintain yours all the time. Parents will often find that if there’s something there that’s tempting, they’ll be more likely to give in if they have to look at it all day. To try and prevent this, you should endeavor to remove the temptation from your life. This can extend to both your professional and personal life. You want a brand new item for your office, but it’s frivolous? Sign out of sites like Amazon and eBay. You want to just stick a ready meal into the microwave at the end of a long day? Don’t keep them in the house. It’s little things like this that will help you to maintain self-discipline. The more work you have to do in order to get something, the more chances you have to stop and change your mind.
Be Fair With Yourself
When trying to maintain a sense of self-discipline, whether as parents or the owners of a startup, try not to be too harsh with yourself. In spite of all the efforts you may go to, you are still a human being. All the limitations and personal weaknesses that you may be prone to are completely natural. Therefore, you can’t beat yourself up too much or be too harsh on yourself. Remember that motivation is a large part of maintaining self-discipline, so try and reward that motivation. Have a treat, whether it’s going for a nice walk or some chocolate. It’s important to be fair to yourself when it comes to maintaining self-discipline. Otherwise, you won’t be able to keep up whatever you’re trying to do.
Overall, maintaining self-discipline can be tricky, but is an important part of life whether you’re entrepreneurs or mums and dads. It’s not just important for us, but also for our kids. They look to us for guidance on what to do and how to do it, and we’re setting them an example all the time whether we know it or not. Therefore, it’s so essential that you try and look strong for your children, but also to prove to yourself that you can be strong as well. Life is as much about proving things to ourselves as well as anyone else.
One of the hardest things to consider when you are a parent who has to head out to work is how to get the right work-life balance. Spending enough time with your family and enough time focused on earning money is hard. Now if you run your own business, you will need to spend plenty of time focused on making that a success. Now that being said it does not mean you should stress about work-life balance.
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Although you are a hardworking and ambitious entrepreneur with a goal to conquer the world, a little bit of me-time won’t hurt. This episode looks at why you should devote time to self-care.
Self-care is engaging in activities and behaviours that have a positive effect on your mental and physical health. There is no one thing or even a list of things that encompasses self-care. It’s different for each person. We are here to encourage you to take a little bit of time for yourself, away from the hustle of running a business, and the strain of taking care of your family.
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Being parentpreneur isn’t easy. Finding a balance between being able to run your business and look after your family is hard. Stress is inevitable, but whilst it can’t be avoided, you can find ways to manage it better.
So, want to make sure that you don’t sink into a pit of despair due to those feelings of stress? Here are our top 3 tips for parentpreneurs and how you can deal with stress.
Create a bonfire in your mind
One of the main reasons that a parentpreneur feels stressed is due to being overwhelmed because of all the things that need to be done. This can lead to a lack of focus as well as motivation too. You can also feel that your mind is too full of to-do lists, some of which may not actually need to be done there and then.
A great way to try and combat these feelings of being overwhelmed is to set up a little bonfire in your mind. Think about those to-do lists that are not actually a priority to get done and see if you can add them as fuel to the fire. Not only will it make you sit down and think about the things that you really need to do, but also you will feel that you have a clearer mind and less overwhelmed too.
Set yourself a goal for the next day at bedtime
If you are the type of person who lies in bed thinking about things and wondering about the day ahead of you, then this is a tip that you are definitely going to benefit from. If you find that you have thoughts going through your mind which are stopping you from going to sleep, then maybe it is time to make a decision or set a goal.
Worried about a big decision? Tell yourself that you have to make it tomorrow morning when you wake up. Thinking about things that you need to do. Let your brain know that you will write a to-do list first thing. Sounds like a simple tip, but this can really be a huge benefit to those people who are feeling stressed out about the things that you need to think about.
Talk it out
We have already covered how important it is to make sure that you have a good support network around you when it comes to running your own business. This means if you are feeling overwhelmed and stressed out, then use them.
Find someone who you can talk to about the way that you are feeling, and make sure that you ask for their advice. You may be surprised by the ideas and approaches that they can recommend for you to try out and even if they don’t have any sound advice for you, you may find that simply getting things off your chest makes you feel better.
Stress might be something we all feel, but that doesn’t mean that you should ever let it get on top of you. Think that you need some help when it comes to feelings of being overwhelmed? Why not try out some of these ideas for yourself?
One of the hardest things to consider when you are a parent who has to head out to work is how to get the right work-life balance. Spending enough time with your family and enough time focused on earning money is hard.
This is particularly true if you are an entrepreneur or you run your own business, where you will need to spend plenty of time focused on making that a success.
It doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to achieve a good level of work-life balance. The first thing that you need to do is to set better mental boundaries for yourself. But how do you do this? How can you make sure that you set better mental work-life boundaries and get the best of both worlds?
Think about your priorities
Planning your time isn’t always the easiest or the most fun thing to do. However, if you want to set yourself some workable work-life boundaries then you need to think about your priorities. The best way to do this is to plan it week by week, but we know that isn’t always possible. Ultimately you are thinking about things that you have coming up in that particular time period such as family celebrations, things with your kids or perhaps planning a holiday.
Once you know when these things will be and how much time they will take, you can look at your working life. Don’t take on any time sensitive projects if you are not going to be able to deliver them, as this will just lead you to be stressed out and working longer hours than you normally would.
Establish these boundaries with others
Having boundaries in mind is one thing, but actually implementing them is another. You need to start by trying them out with other people. This is particularly true when it comes to life boundaries in your work. Explain to your partner or family members that you are going to be facing a rather tricky time in your work or business, and that your focus will be there. Whilst this may not be the thing that they want to hear, they will at least know that it is coming and can accept it.
Understand that sometimes you are going to fail
Despite the best planning, there are going to be times where you will fail. The trouble with failure for some of us is that it leads us to give up and throw in the towel. You need to understand that in life, there are going to be times that you will fail, and you will need to make sure that you feel able to pick yourself up and dust yourself off. If you fail on the same thing more than once, then maybe it is time to rethink this particular boundary and see if there is a better way to work!
So, there you go, three ways to set your own boundaries and try to achieve that work-life balance. Figure out what is important for you and then make time for that in your life. There really is no better way to make yourself and those around you happier.
How to find better balance
Now you can make sure that you set better mental work-life boundaries and get the best of both worlds.
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We already know that what you focus on you attract fear and negative thinking allow the mind to focus on things you don’t want. This episode covers tips on how to overcome fear and negative thinking. Listening in and eliminate fear negative thoughts.
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