Parenthood is a full-time role. It’s difficult if you’re a single mother who has to juggle work and family. Things can be tough financially. And it can feel like there’s just not enough time to do everything.
There’s a popular notion that having your own business can give you more freedom with your time because you are your own boss. It’s not easy, but being a solopreneur may be more worthwhile given that you’re the one who reaps off from your hard work and not someone else up the ladder.
Here are ways to succeed as a single parent cum entrepreneur:
Pursue Something You’re Passionate About
When you start your own business, you should follow your passion. Offer products or services that you believe in. For example, if you’re passionate about sustainability and do your own steps to minimize your waste, then you can consider starting a company that provides eco-friendly products and services.
The idea of following one’s passion may be a cliche idea, but it’s true. Even well-known figures such as Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg pursued their passion and reached success through it. If you do something you love, you’re more likely to stay committed and work earnestly.
Structure Your Day
Time management is key in becoming a solopreneur, especially if you’re also a single mom. You only have 24 hours per day. And some of it needs to be spent on sleeping. Structuring your day can help you keep your day organized.
One strategy you can use is a combination of time batching and time blocking. Batching means grouping similar tasks. This strategy can save you up to 40 percent of your productive time because your mental capacities will need a shorter period to adjust from one task to another. On the other hand, blocking refers to allocating a period of time to just one task.
For example, you can use time batching by doing all data-related chores together during the morning, such as answering emails and blog writing. And then you can use time blocking by devoting only the first third minutes of your day to answering emails and the next two hours dedicated to blog writing.
Have a To-do List
You can’t always trust your brain to retain all the information you need. If you have a busy schedule, you are likely to forget some things you need to do.
That’s where a to-do list comes in. You can use a notebook or a notes app on your phone. Consider breaking down your list into two categories: dailies and weeklies. You first need to write all your tasks for the week. Include everything, even the personal ones. For example, if you have an important appointment with a lawyer to discuss issues with child support enforcement, add the item “Go to law firm” to your list. If you need to go grocery shopping, add that to your to-do list as well.
Once you’re done writing the weekly list, schedule the tasks. When do you plan to do them? By when should they be finished? The to-do list will serve as your tracker and will guide you throughout the week.
Delegate and Automate
You’re just one person. Naturally, you can’t do all the things you want or need to do in a day, whether they’re business-related or family-related.
You’ll need a helping hand. As such, you should delegate tasks when you can. For example, you can hire a housekeeper. This way, you can use the time for household chores to other more important things, such as helping your kids with homework or answering client emails.
Automation will also help you save time and energy. For instance, use chatbots to deal with frequently asked questions on business. Automate your bill payments. If you have a smart assistant and smart appliances at home, you can use the assistant to automate thermostat adjustments, turning the lights on and off, and so on.
Learn to Say No
Saying no may not be a strategy per se. But it’s an important skill to develop when you’re a busy mompreneur.
Saying no is a part of finding balance and managing your time. For example, when a client asks for a sudden meeting and you say yes, it might derail your schedule for the rest of your day. So don’t be afraid to say no. Instead, you can tell the client when you’re available for a meeting.
Being a single parent and entrepreneur is difficult but not impossible. With the right strategies, you’ll find the right balance and succeed as a single mom solopreneur.