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Being an entrepreneur is not for the faint hearted. It's a lot of hard work and when you are trying to juggle business with raising kids it's so easy to be paralysed with overwhelm.

In this free webinar I will share with you my top 5 tips for becoming a happier business owner this year.

Get your free Guide to SMART Goals & the Wheel of Life here.

 

How To Be A Happier Business Owner from Erin Thomas Wong on Vimeo.

 

Transcript

Welcome to How To Be A Happier Business Owner!

Being an entrepreneur is not for the faint hearted. It's a lot of hard work and when you are trying to juggle business with raising kids it's so easy to be paralysed with overwhelm.

In this webinar I will share with you my top 5 tips for becoming a happier business owner this year. Feel free to add your own tips in the comments under the video, and also ask any questions you may have.

First of all – how many of you can relate to some of these challenges faced by Mumpreneurs? (wordcloud slide) When people join Making Mumpreneurs Club I ask them what their biggest challenges are and this is a word cloud of the most used words.

I think it’s fair to say that most of us have started a business because we want a better quality of life, and to have more flexibility around our kids – am I right? Now if you’re finding that your business is all consuming, and actually having the opposite of this desired effect, then you might need to make some changes.

Hopefully, you’ve chosen a business that you love. I say ‘hopefully’ because to succeed in the world of small business it is so important that you love what you do so much that you want to jump out of bed for it. Being an entrepreneur is a rollercoaster, one minute everything is great, the next minute you feel like a complete failure – then you bounce back and feel amazing again – it’s a constant up and down. But if you genuinely love your work, this will help you to recover much faster from these dips.

So who I am?

I left a career in TV production when I had my first son, and have been running my own businesses for nearly a decade. My first business was a franchise of Smallprint Fingerprint Jewellery. I then went on to co-found Ealing Mums in Business and The Kids' Nature Shop, and I am founder of Making Mumpreneurs and Pitter Patter - The Hub for Bubs.

In terms of the word cloud on the previous page - I totally relate to the word cloud too as this has been my life for the last 10 years, so I know how important it is to cut ourselves some slack, otherwise you're in for a very difficult time.

So here are my top 5 tips for how to be a happier business owner this year:

1. Don’t wait for ‘perfect’ 

This is something many of us are guilty of…over thinking, over analysing and over worrying. When it comes to business, it’s all about taking action. Just like with having children, there’s never a perfect time to launch a business or a new product or service, there will always be hurdles to jump. But sometimes you just need to take a leap of faith. Do your research, make your plan, and just go for it. You can also tweak as you go along.

2. Drop the mum guilt

If you’ve planned out your work time well, and realistically, you need to drop the mum guilt. Make sure that your schedule allows quality time with the kids, and enough time for you to be the mum that you want to be. Yes we all suffer from guilt when we are constantly having to check our emails or social media to see if we have any new leads, and I totally get that it’s so hard when you’re in the flow of work and you have to drop everything to pick the kids up, believe me I’ve been there, but please be easy on yourself.

You are setting an incredible example to your child by being an entrepreneur. Showing them that they can be whoever they want to be, they can build a business that they love around their passion.

Now I know it’s hard if you have a baby and you’re trying to work around them – because you can’t negotiate with them and you can’t reassure them that you’re going to be finished in a few minutes. That’s why it’s so important to create a realistic schedule so you can develop this a good work/life balance.

I just want to say at this point too – I think there’s a lot of guilt around putting your baby in childcare while you’re setting up a business, because we’ve told ourselves that we are doing this to spend more time with them, so it would be wrong to put them in childcare. Stop. It is very possible that you may need some childcare. We can’t all be superwoman. It is REALLY hard to make professional phone calls when you have an unpredictable baby on your lap, it is REALLY hard to have to face to face meetings with a toddler in toe. If you NEED to put your child in nursery for a few half days or full days at nursery so that you can get your business off the ground, please don’t feel guilty. And don’t listen to what other people are telling you you should or shouldn’t do.You need to do what’s right for you.

FBad The online members club for mums in business

3. Push yourself out of your comfort zone

In every business there are aspects which are new to us and don’t come easily. Very often this is the sales and marketing aspect, which is crucial to building a financially secure business. Be aware of the areas you need to improve on, and get help. Learn new skills, get advice, speak to others who know how to do it, work on your confidence. With time it will feel less uncomfortable. I love the quote ‘your comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there’ . How true it is. Please do not stay in your comfort zone.

4. Put yourself first sometimes

This may seem counter intuitive. There I am telling you to schedule in time with the kids, schedule in tasks for your business, learn new skills, and then I’m saying ‘put yourself first!’. But… you need to implement some self care. If you don’t, you are likely to burn out and when you burn out it can take a long time to recover…so it’s much better to take small steps to keep yourself well (mentally well as well as physically) so you don’t get to this point.

Meditation is a fantastic thing to do on a daily basis, and it doesn’t have to be a long one. Even if you can manage just 10 minutes, it helps lower stress and keep you grounded. I regularly just search on YouTube for meditations and there are thousands to choose from. Sometimes it can take a while to find one you like but please perservere.

Try to schedule at least one thing a week for YOU. Whether that’s going to a coffee shop (without your work) and reading a magazine for an hour, or going off for a walk in to nature, or having a hot bubble bath in the middle of the day. Do something which fills your soul.

Remember you are building a business AND designing your life – so don’t forget the good stuff!

5. Be realistic

When I speak to mums who are stressed and on the edge of burnout, it’s normally because they are trying to do too much. If you are running a business around your family, please be realistic about what you will achieve in a set timeframe. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not telling you not to reach for the stars, but that you need to be realistic about the time it takes to build a business. If you want to create a good work/life balance around your family, it may take longer than you think. So you need to really think clearly about what your aim is right now – is it to make as much money as you can? to build a business as fast as you can? Or is it to design a business that you love working on everyday, that is stable, financially viable and will give you the flexibility around your kids?

Now is the perfect time to think carefully about what you want in life, and how you’re going to achieve it. I’ve added a free download to help you put things in to perspective which includes a guide to the Wheel of Life and also creating SMART goals.

If you’re listening thinking oh god, I don’t love what I do…don’t worry. You don’t HAVE to stick with a business that’s not working for you – if it’s not working out, be honest with yourself and those around you. Don’t flog a dead horse because you’re scared of failing. FAILURE is the first attempt in learning, and all these learnings can be put in to a new business!

I hope these tips will give you some food for thought about how you run your business this year. If you want to learn more things like this, or would appreciate some support as you grow your business, do check out The Cocoon online members club for mums in business.

Have a very happy and successful new year!

See you soon x

 

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  • The Cocoon was a vital support to me as I got ready to launch my business. Everyone is so supportive and keen to help, not just the panel members (who are great!) but all the members as well. There’s a real feeling of ‘sisterhood’ on there, with mutual encouragement and bags of useful advice and support. Through the Cocoon I was guided through the decision of whether to set up Amazing Futures as a limited company or as a Sole Trader.

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