by Jennifer Tuma-Young,
Illustration by Barbara Hranilovich
Trying to launch a business, but wondering if you’ll be able to do it all and keep your sanity in check?
It can definitely feel like a balancing act, especially when you’re supposed to drive the kids to soccer right in the middle of your first power meeting with potential clients. But don’t worry, the best part of launching your own business is YOU create the rules that work best for YOU. So get ready to take control of your launch, and most importantly, have fun doing it. Here are some tips to help you stay sane while launching.
Launch With Power—Get Rid of Guilt!
It’s natural for moms to feel a little guilty about taking the leap to become an entrepreneur. But nothing good can come from feeling guilty about a choice we know is right. So be proud: Your children will totally benefit from a mom who feels strong, confident, and is following her dreams. This will trickle down to them, and set them up for success, too!
Patience Is a Virtue
When we’re launching, we may have expectations of appearing on Oprah. Anything we see, we can achieve, right? But remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Know that it’s going to take time to launch. You have a lot of things going on in your life, and if you’re scrambling trying to rush your venture, staying up all hours of the night to get things done too quickly, you’ll drive yourself crazy, and most likely be unhappy with the outcome. So be patient, hold true to your vision, and trust that it will all work out exactly as it should.
Create a Clear Vision
Take the time to create a vision for your venture and for your launch. See it unfolding clearly in your mind’s eye. Picture everything, and write it down. This can be your starting point to an action plan!
Figure Out Your Planner Personality
You might not be the business plan type of gal—that is perfectly fine if you don’t need it for investors. But creating some sort of plan, timeline, or goals will certainly help you launch with less stress. Figure out your “planner personality” and set weekly tasks that you’d like to get done, and keep in mind the things that have to be dealt with on your mom to-do list. If you hate technology, you may never use a Blackberry, so purchase a planner system. If you’re an old-fashioned pen and paper person, find a day-timer that suits you. If you don’t like lines and numbers, find a journal that you’ll enjoy writing in. If writing or typing isn’t your fancy, but you love to gab, get a mini tape recorder and speak your plan aloud.
Make sure the action plan for your launch fits as seamlessly as possible into your life or it won’t become a part of your life. If you know something seems impossible to start, skip it or break it down into smaller, more manageable tasks. If you feel like your life is too jam-packed for anything else to fit into it, make room ahead of time. Remember, if we have too many shoes in the closet, what’s the point of buying another pair?
Respect Your Own Priorities
You can launch your business and still be there for your family without driving yourself crazy: It’s all in the priorities and boundaries you set at the start. Create your list of “non-negotiables” and stick to it. For example, if you don’t want to give up seeing your daughter’s ballet rehearsals, schedule the time in your planner, and honor this commitment as you would a business meeting.
Call in the Troops
Our children are happy when we are happy. They love helping out if you include them in things and value their opinions. Make it fun and rewarding for them, and they’ll likely jump on board. If you have a mate then be sure to use them as a sounding board, or find a friend, mentor, intern, or coach who can be your support system. It always helps to have someone to share your goals with and to contact in case of a weak moment.
A Minute of Meditation Goes a Long Way
Launching can be stressful; being proactive by preventing or releasing stress is key. Meditation is proven to be an effective stress-buster, but you may be asking, Who has the time? In reality most of us can find a minute here or there to clear our minds. We can close our eyes in the office or in line at the grocery store and just breathe. This quick and simple relaxation technique is just enough to rev us up. And a clear mind carries less stress, so picture a white light and focus!
It’s Not About the Money
Okay, so we need money to live. But if you’re launching a new business just for the money, you won’t have the same passion for your venture. If you’re passionate about your venture, it will feel less like work! This definitely will help keep you sane before, during, and after you launch.
Jennifer Tuma-Young is the creator of VentureVisioneering services, and founder of Find Balance in You.
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