Untitled design(1)As busy mom it’s not like many of us are just sitting around with nothing to do, so we think…”hum, maybe I’ll start a business with all this free time.”

And if you are currently working full time or have no childcare, your free time is even more limited.

To find the time we have to shift our thinking and streamline many aspects of our lives.

And most of all… we need a solid plan.

Extra time just won’t materialize and to expect there to be time ‘left over’ after you finish everything else, just doesn’t happen.

You have to actively carve out time, but where?

The Business Building Myth

First, lets talk about the business myth that you need 15 to 30 hours a week to devote to your business.

Sure, you may need or want to devote more time to your business if you want to quit your day job and make your entrepreneurial endeavor your full-time moneymaker.

But you don’t have to start there.

It’s like making the decision to run a marathon, you don’t need to run 26 mile the day you decide to start training, you start with a one-mile run and build up your endurance.

Same thing goes for finding time to run your business.

Start by carving out a few hours.  Once that becomes more comfortable, you’ll find other ways add more and more time and pretty soon you’re running a marathon of a business.

Steps to Carve out Time for Your Business:

Know What You Are Looking For

The first step is to get an idea of how much time you are looking for.  I recommend beginning by finding 2-6 hours a week to start your business.  Anything more than that will feel overwhelming and un-doable.

Know What You Are Working With

The next step is to figure out exactly what time you don’t have.  Print out a weekly calendar sheet and write in your current work hours, your kids schedule and non negotiable blocks of time.

Get Creative           

Now comes the fun part.  Grab your highlighter and start looking for chunks of time you can dedicate to your business.

Let me say here…there are going to be A LOT of opportunities to say “that won’t work” or “that will be hard” or “I can’t be away from my family then.”  But if you are going to get your business moving forward, you have to turn that limiting belief around.

Here’s the truth…we are afraid of failing.

There I said it.  No one wants to fail, especially when you are starting a business you are passionate about.  SO, if you are not able to work on your business because you “don’t have the time.”  Then you technically haven’t failed, right??  But if you want your business to move forward and succeed you have to work on it.

You have to shut that fear of failing down and know that you will only fail if you don’t start.

SO..back to finding time to work.

If you are working full time outside of the home try:

  • Get up 1 hour before you normal do on your work days – total weekly time =5 hours
  • Get up 2 hours before you normally do two times a week- total weekly time = 4 hours
  • Come home after work for dinner then scoot out to a coffee shop from 7:30-9:30 once a week (and dad gets special bedtime duty with the kids)– total weekly time = 2 hours
  • Stay 1 hour after work 2 times a week – total weekly time = 2 hours
  • Work for 1 hour each night after kids bedtimes –total weekly time = 5 hours
  • (disclaimer – I don’t recommend doing early mornings and late nights, pick one that works best for you and stick to that!)
  • Get up early on a weekend day, work from 6-9 and be back in time to head out on a family adventure – total weekly time -3 hours
  • Stay “out” while running errands on the weekends while the kids are home napping total weekly time= 2 hours
  • Trade time with spouse or grandparent one weekend morning or afternoon (ie he heads out for a bike ride in the morning, you get a block of work time in the afternoon) –Total weekly time = 4 hours
  • Devote one full weekend day a month to your business (choose the day in advance, kids go out for an adventure with the other parent, grandparents, or a sitter) –Total time = 7 hours (averaged into weekly time almost 2 hours a week)
  • If you are close to leaving your job, consider using one vacation day a month to have a business retreat day.  Total time =8 hours (averaged weekly time, 2 hours)

If you are home full time with your kids without childcare, in addition to the ideas above try:

  • Consider getting childcare…seriously.  No, no one can care for your child as well as you can, but 1 or 2 hours with a recommended sitter will do you and your kids a world of good. Total weekly time = 2 hours (or more!)
  • Find drop in classes for your kids, they do gymnastics, you check emails in the lobby.  Total weekly time – 1 hour
  • Swap childcare with a neighbor or friend (she takes the kids for 2 hours one week, you take them the next.) Total weekly time – averages 1 hour
  • Enlist a ‘quiet time’ where mommy gets to work for one hour a day (use tv, coloring books, legos, playdoh as needed) Total Weekly Time = 5 hours
  • Don’t do house hold chores during nap time, only work.  Total Weekly Time = 5-10 hours!

Choose 1-3 of the above time bullet points and you’ll easily have 2-6 hours a week of dedicated work time!  Put in on your calendar, let everyone else know and commit to it for a few weeks.  You can always tweak as needed, swap for another time slot or add another time slot on as it gets more comfortable!


Banish Mommy Guilt

For most of us we are starting a business so we can either be home with our kids more, so we can contribute more financial to support our family, or so we can be happier more fulfilled in our lives.  These ideals are tremendously import for our children.  So, yes, they may be sad when you are not home to read them books one night or they may say they missed you while you were gone on Sunday at the coffee shop….but you are building a stronger life for them and for you.  They want a happy fulfilled mom more than they want to hear “Goodnight Moon” for the 400th time (even if they don’ know it yet.)

You’ve got this mom!

How Not To Summer Break Your Business(1)Summer break brings its own set of planning challenges.  My newest FREE planning guide – How Not To {Summer} Break Your Business will be released this Monday, June 9th.  It is chalked full of steps to help you make sure your business and your family bonds grow this summer.  Get on the wait list here.