Homeschool mama, blogger, business owner, "How do you do it all?"
Posted by Michelle Osborn on
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image from sonaturellewellness.com
I read a post this morning on a homeschool group page asking, "Work, life balance? How do you do it?" I started writing an answer to this comment and realized that is was more than a comment, I was writing a book! So I decided to make a blog post out of it.
So many moms ask this question. I have asked this question. My Yellow House Book Rental assistant just asked me this question yesterday. When we look at Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, etc and see all the blogs that are pumped out by just one mom, their business taking off faster than they can keep up, accruing thousands of followers in such a short time, how do they do it? My guess is that they don't and can't. Something has to give. So here is my answer to this mamas question.
You can't do it all. That is a fact and the first thing you must realize. It seems like you already have or you wouldn't be asking this question. Secondly, you should remember that what you see on social media is pretty much everyone "good days". Unless some of these amazing mompreneurs have come up with a "no need for sleep pill" that they haven't shared with the rest of us, it can't all be done.
Zion National Park, 2013, the year I started my business.
I didn't even come up with the idea of Yellow House Book Rental until my two oldest were homeschool graduates and my two youngest were in middle school/ high school. So thankfully, I didn’t have to struggle with this problem when my children were little. I know that there is no way I could have done it and been pleased with myself as a parent and an entrepreneur.
I expect 100% of myself for everything, all the time! It was hard enough just being a mom, homeschool teacher, wife, piano teacher, maid, cook, taxi driver, etc. For those that add business owner/blogger, etc to their titles, rest assured that somethings, probably many somethings aren’t done at all or not done very well.
Have you heard the old saying, “jack of all trade but master of none”? That is how I feel now as a homeschool mompreneur and my kids are old enough to take care of themselves! I do so much but I am always frustrated with myself because I can’t give 100% to all my responsibilities.
I just had two conversations yesterday about just the same thing. My daughter who had a 10-month-old is also a momrepreneur. (She was asking if I thought if she should take a business trip with the baby or not.) My response to my daughter was, " You need to decide what is MOST important in your life right now. Children need you, lots of you, right now, and will for the next 10, 12, 15 plus years, especially if you plan to have more children. Starting a business is wonderful. You are gifted and desire to use your passions to help others. It is alright to do both, but if you first make the decision 'WHAT is the MOST important, and when I have to choose one or the other, which will I choose? Then many of your decisions are made for you. I know 10 plus years seems so far away, but it really is not. Your children will show you that time does fly at a speed faster than we can keep up.”
Even now with one homeschool, high school daughter still at home, doing almost all her school independently, I have decided that when she needs my help with school, I will stop working, usually at the computer, (business stuff) and help her. I want her to know that she is most important, her schooling is most important, her questions, her conversations, they are the most important. (This does not mean that I am at her beckon call for everything : )
When I am discouraged that my business is growing at a snail’s pace. When I feel like giving up, I remind myself that there is a time for everything. My babies have grown so very quickly. I blinked and two of them are married with babies of their own. One will graduate this next spring from college and we will be empty-nesters next year.
Cherish the time with your children!!! Your business will be there for years to come, but your babies will not. Decide what is most important and REST in the fact that when you look back, you know that you made the right decision….. loving those babies that God has given you and investing first in them. Pray continually that God will give you wisdom when you need to decide what to give importance to.
Keep up the good work. Don’t be so hard on yourself! God, plans, and your future.….. He has got it all under control. Rest in that, Mama.
Enjoying the journey,
Michelle Osborn the founder and owner of Yellow House Book Rental, a service to homeschool families. She is a 21-year homeschool veteran of four, two married, one in college, and one homeschooled teenager.
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- Tags: Children, Encouragement, Family, Highschool, Homeschool, Motherhood, Parenting
Yes! 100%, yes. Thank you for writing this, Michelle <3.
What a wonderful post!! I so appreciate the insight and the encouragement that my business/practice will be here for years to come, but my babies will not. They are the most important thing right now & I am seeing the results of not putting them first and foremost the year and a half after I started my business – it’s hard to reign everybody back in and get the routine back to where it should be.
I look forward to the days when our homeschool runs smoothly (or is that just a pipe dream? ;) ) and work/life is balanced in the way that God intends – that doesn’t mean that they will receive equal time from me, but that everything will fit into the time that God would have me give it each day!