Running a business from home while in the midst of a pandemic – the mom perspective.
The little kids are crying – they want something to either do, eat, or wear.
The big kids are either so bored, so bored they’re going to cry, or so bored they’re considering actually doing schoolwork.
The adults are eyeing either a glass of wine or that car sitting in the driveway like it’s manna from heaven by 10 am.
Welcome to running a business during a pandemic. This entire month has redefined my business and the entire world. But how do we really function in this new and strange world? There’s no childcare, school, activities, and there’s absolutely no break.
So. Let’s check out my quick advice on surviving (along with your business) in these new and strange times.
Keep Expectations Low
You may have started out with awesome ideas and plans; maybe even a little color coded schedule? Now, though, we are weeks into the “stay-at-home” here in Ohio and all of those good intentions have flown out of the window. I found myself so stressed out and overwhelmed trying to keep to a strict schedule, that I created myself mind you, that no actual work got finished. I was working in 10 minute spurts. Clients were understanding – they were in the same boat – but the pressure I was putting myself under was doing more damage than good.
So I set lower expectations. No one dressed today? That’s okay. Eating breakfast at 10 am instead of 8 am? At least they’re fed. We have to remember that everyone is living this same “normal” right now and comparing ourselves to others, or to our own expectations is overwhelming and unrealistic.
Get Your Priorities Straight
Is everything really important right now? Like everything? The best way to calm the chaos is to sit down and truly think about what is actually a priority.
Let’s say you have four hours you can count on working every day because a partner, older child, or TV program is able to watch your littlest. What are you going to do with those four hours? What is really important to get completed?
Personally, it’s client work. I know I have three solid hours per day (during the daylight hours) that I can knock out some work. So do the work. Then stop. You can randomly check email, texts, and do odds and ends here and there. Do the biggest chunk that requires the most concentration when you have that work time carved out.
Then go spend time with your kiddo’s. Or come take mine…just stand outside and make sure none escape…
Do Not Compare
Just don’t. Don’t compare any part of your life to anyone else. This is true from a parental perspective, business perspective, and personal perspective. There is always going to be someone who you think is doing better than you are. Some mom is always going to have better craft ideas, some business person is always going to have a better promotion going on, and some lady’s makeup is always going to be looking good while you look like a character from the Lost Lagoon.
You can only do what you can do.
Yesterday, my four-year-old daughter decided to test my absolute limits. First, she woke up at 7 am demanding popcorn for breakfast (she got it), then she wanted to paint (which went surprisingly well), then a whole bunch of life stuff happened and I had to focus on work. So my littlest decided that stripping naked and streaking through THE FRONT YARD would be a good idea. Yup. But check out my social media. We look totally sane.
My point? Don’t compare – you have no idea what is going on behind the scenes.
That’s it. There’s nothing earth shattering. Just a few simple reminders that you’re not going to lose your mind, good enough is good enough, and you are an amazing parent. Stay the course and keep dreaming.