Are you a parent who recently started freelancing? Do you find yourself literally juggling your work and your kids and praying nothing falls? If you answered yes to both questions, then welcome to the club! You’re officially a member of an elite superhero society of parents who take on the impossible task of running a successful business while raising our future citizens.
Most freelancers work from home. But when you are working from home with kids…it is like the Hunger Games–but instead of fighting to the death, you’re fighting for a quiet space to take a conference call. Freelancing as a parent can be challenging, but fear not – you’re not alone. In this article, we’ll talk all about the top five obstacles you might face and offer solutions to help you navigate through the chaos.
Obstacle 1: Managing Time
Managing time can be a real struggle for parents who freelance. During COVID, me and my husband could not seem to find more time in the day to do all the things we wanted to do. It can be tempting to work your kids around your business’s schedule, but as I learned really early on, that can lead to burnout.
Obstacle 2: Finding a Work-Life Balance
The phrase “work-life balance” might sound like an oxymoron, but it’s possible – even when you’re freelancing with young kids at home. Sure Rihanna says, “work, work, work, work, work” – but that doesn’t mean you should forget about rest and play.
One solution is to set realistic expectations for yourself. Don’t try to do everything all at once. Instead, focus on what’s most important and learn to let go of the rest. And don’t forget to take breaks! As much as you love your work and your kids, sometimes you need some “me time” to recharge.
I found this video on Youtube incredibly insightful and help me with time blocking my calendar:
Side note: While day to day the time in which you are resting and working can very, it is imperative that you work that ounce of rest and play in by any means necessary to allow your to re-energize. As a result you be able to be more productive and overall be a happier camper because you are not sleep, food, and energy deprived.
Obstacle 3: Staying Focused and Productive
As a freelancer with young kids, staying focused and productive can feel like an impossible task. And to be honest, it is very much like the plot of a Mission Impossible movie – you have to be stealthy, strategic, and hope nothing blows up in your face. With distractions everywhere, it’s easy to lose sight of your goals. But fear not, you can do it!
To stay focused, create a designated workspace where you can concentrate without interruptions. I ended up building my office inside a spare closet in my home. If you’re looking for inspiration, here are some examples of home offices built in closets
And use time-blocking techniques to manage your time effectively. Just remember, “if you like it, then put a block on it.”
Obstacle 4: Dealing with Isolation
Freelancing can be lonely, especially when you’re also a parent. It’s easy to feel isolated from the outside world. But don’t worry, you’re not alone! There are plenty of other freelancing parents out there. To combat isolation, try networking with other freelancers and parents. Attend events, join groups, or find a supportive community online.
Obstacle 5: Managing Finances
Money can’t buy happiness, but it can buy you a lot of diapers and baby wipes. Managing finances as a freelancer and a parent can be tricky. As much as we love our kids, they can be expensive! But you can manage your finances effectively by setting a budget, tracking your expenses, and seeking financial advice when needed.
Freelancing as a parent can be filled with trepidation indeed, but it’s possible to thrive in both your business and family life as long as you can set your expectations and stay committed. By managing your time, finding a work-life balance, staying focused and productive, combating isolation, and managing your finances effectively, you can navigate through the chaos and achieve your goals. So keep calm and freelance on!