I know what it’s like to build a business while raising kids. And it might seem crazy, but there are some striking similarities.
You’re probably thinking:
“Jo, you’ve lost the plot! My business is nothing like my kids – it doesn’t answer back, it doesn’t have a meltdown when I ask it to do something, it doesn’t leave sticky fingers on the sofa, and it doesn’t refuse to eat the dinner I’ve made.”
Just hear me out, okay?
I have 3 babies.
One is 6 years old. She’s my first born. Not so much of a baby now - beautiful, funny, clever, independent - she’ll always be a baby in my eyes, though.
The second is my 2-year-old. She’s fierce, feral and demanding! But she’s also super-cute, hilarious and she loves her mummy.
The third is my business. Not even a year old yet, but I have to nurture it to help it grow. Since I birthed my little freelance writing empire, I’ve realised there are a number of similarities between being a business owner and being a mum.
Here are 7 reasons why building a business is like raising kids…
1. It’s a juggling act
There’s so much to consider when raising kids – making sure they eat well, checking their clothes and shoes fit, making sure they behave nicely and don’t fall on their face at the park. And that’s before you’ve even thought about your own health and wellbeing.
Equally, there’s a lot to think about when running a business – hitting client deadlines, keeping on top of your emails, promoting yourself regularly on social media, sending invoices, following up on feedback – the list goes on.
Sometimes it can feel like you spread yourself too thinly, but we just plough on because that’s how we roll.
2. Celebrating milestones
You celebrate every little milestone in those early days as a parent – their first steps, their first words, the first time they slept through the night.
As a business owner, you do the same – cracking open the champagne to celebrate your first client, your first invoice being paid on time, and the first time you complete your tax return.
3. Trusting your gut
Mother’s instinct – it’s a thing. You get that gut feeling when you know your child isn’t well, or if something (or someone) is making them sad.
It’s the same when you run a business. You have to trust your gut – like when you get a client you’re not quite sure about, or when the piece of work that’s been requested isn’t quite your skillset.
4. Wanting to give up
There have been many times when I’ve thought I’m not cut out to be a mum. Although I’d never actually abandon my mum duties, it can get a bit much sometimes, and the temptation to give up and run away to a desert island is all too alluring.
Since setting up my freelance business, there have also been times when I’ve thought I’m not cut out to be a business owner. It’d be much easier to go back to an employed role where I get a regular salary and don’t have to worry about all the little things that go into running a company.
5. It’s a learning curve
Just like when my first daughter was born and I had to learn how to change her nappy and sterilise her bottles, I’m also learning about all the elements I need to master in order to run a successful business.
I’m learning as I go – both as a mum and a business owner. Yes, I’ve made some mistakes along the way, but I learn from them.
There’s definitely an element of winging it in both parenthood and being a business owner.
6. Getting unwanted advice
We’ve all come across a know-it-all who feels the need to impart their wisdom about parenting. Likewise, I’ve received unsolicited advice on how to run my business. You nod along to be polite but actually, you just want them to stop talking!
Remember, there’s more than one way to raise a child, just as there are plenty of ways to build a business.
7. It’s rewarding
When they’re not screaming at each other or refusing to eat their veg, my girls make me super-proud, especially when they get a good report from school and nursery, or they remember their pleases and thank yous when we’re out in public.
They’re growing up to be amazing young women, and I beam with pride because I realise I’m actually pretty good at this parenting gig.
Similarly, I find running my own business really rewarding – I don’t need to get anyone else’s permission to make a decision, the success of the Grammar Mamma is in my own hands, and I love it!
It’s tough being a mum and a business owner, but both jobs are oh so satisfying.
If all this sounds familiar, just know that you’re not alone.
And, if you feel stuck when it comes to writing blogs, social media posts and newsletter content to allow your business baby to grow, I can help by taking the content writing off your plate so you can focus on your actual babies!
So drop me a message and let’s chat!