So many of the solopreneurs we work with are divorced mothers in their 40s/50s who realized that running their own business allowed them the flexibility, income and autonomy that a typical 9-to-5 did not. These are our ideal clients – women who took stock of their lives and saw possibilities instead of pitfalls, have a ‘let’s do this’ attitude, a ‘this is my time’ belief, and are unstoppable. S.B.M. Single Business Moms.
We recognize these women because they are us. Divorced. Mothers. Business owners. One income household. Bloggers, product creators, client supporters…Forces to be reckoned with.
But no matter how strong the force or positive the attitude, running your own business comes with challenges and stress. We have to make all the decisions. Complete all the tasks. That one income falls on our shoulders and no one else is walking in the door with extra bacon. We juggle plates nonstop as our time is split between kids, homework, dinner, household maintenance, work responsibilities, friends, and significant others. When there is an extra hour in the day – do we play legos, check email, fold laundry, call a client, write a blog, read a book? (And let’s be honest, if we work from home, we are probably checking email, folding laundry and calling a client during that 60 minutes…then hanging up to go help create a Lego masterpiece. All in an hour’s work.)
And all that multitasking and plate juggling causes issues we often don’t notice. Headaches, nail biting, sleepless nights. Here’s an activity for you. -> Click here for full list of stress symptoms. Then be honest. How many do you experience on a daily basis? Are they effecting your daily functioning (or caffeine, Tylenol or alcohol consumption)?
So what’s the solution? This is where a blog usually launches into ways to solve the problem and we would offer stress reduction symptoms, right? So here we go:
1. Give up your business and go back to a 9-to-5.
Hopefully you didn’t immediately log onto Monster.com and #1 annoyed you. Good. That means you have passion and fire for your business. Write that down – remind yourself why you started your business in the first place. What you get out of it.
Yeah we know…S.B.M., TRUST US! We know how impossible this one seems. But we challenge you to find ways – five minute yoga routines with the free app Asana Rebel (not to be confused with Asana which is a great task management tool), walk around the house on a client call or head outside at lunch (add that also to the stress reduction list – TAKE A LUNCH). Exercise is the #1 way to burn off the cortisol and adrenaline that course through your veins due to ongoing stress.
3. Set boundaries.
One of the hardest things S.B.M.s need to learn to do is establish and be strict with their work hours. If you don’t want to work weekends, then don’t turn on your computer. Taking a day off? Don’t check your email. It’s that easy. (Okay, we know it’s not right away, but it gets easier with practice.)
4. Admit you can’t do it all.
It’s completely freeing to realize that you can’t do it all and don’t have to. You do NOT have to be Ms Independent Superwoman. And no one but you expects you to be. So cut yourself some damn slack.
5. Get help.
We don’t mean psychological help (although if the glass slipper fits, wear it. No judgment and actually we’d love you more). We mean get help for tasks YOU don’t have to do. Have your kids to put away their laundry or unload the dishwasher. Hire the teenager next door to mow the lawn. Hire someone to help you in your business!
(And yes, that’s a segue to our How to Hire a VA training guide to help you with all the steps to hire someone to help you in your business so you reduce the stress in your life!)
Please start reducing the stress in your business and life, S.B.M. – we want you around doing what you do to make the world a better place for a very long time! We love you and we’ve got your back!