Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Superwoman Syndrome: Establishing Balance in the Life of a Mompreneur

Whomever said you can have it all lied.  The superwoman does not exist.  We are only human.  In order to survive and thrive we must establish balance in our lives.  The best we can do is the best we can do. 

We all make mistakes.  Today I forgot my daughters' dental appointments.  What was doubly bad about this situation is that I had just taken my younger daughter yesterday and I had the other two to take today.  But this morning they complained that they did not want to miss school.  I made a mental note to call the dentist's office to reschedule.  But, I was driving at the time so this note was not written down.  For me, if it is not on paper it doesn't happen.  

I felt so bad about this because as a business owner I understand that other entrepreneurs depend on their appointments to make a living and this dentist could have arranged for others to be there. But what can I do now other than call them and apologize and maybe even send them a conciliatory bouquet of flowers......yes, that's how bad I feel about this.  But I can't dwell on this particular circumstance or on other mishaps that occur.  I have to learn from this experience and not internalize any negativity.

As a non-superwoman and a busy mompreneur the most important lesson I have learned is the need to establish balance.  Here are the following ways that I strive to maintain balance.

  1. Say no before saying yes.  If by any chance your no can turn into a yes, you will still be appreciated.  But if you say yes then you do a mediocre job, it will inevitably reflect poorly on you. So, say no; but when your schedule permits help as much as you can.
  2. Create boundaries.  Let your employees and or vendors know when you are available and if they call during "off the clock" hours then let the voice mail pick up and check to see if there is an emergency.  Do the same for family and friends.  
  3. Limit multitasking as much as humanly possible. I know,  if mompreneurs don't multitask we won't get much done. But if you can focus on one task at a time you will improve your efficiency and effectiveness.   
  4. Use a schedule.  Plan your day and work your plan.  
  5. Hire a Virtual Assistant who can handle both personal and professional matters. Trust me, as your business grows you will need the extra help.  Both Elance and Odesk are good places to start but you can do your research to find which agencies work best with your specific demands.
In the end, balance is possible if we first understand what we can't do it all; we are not superwomen.  As moms and entrepreneurs we should be there to uplift each other through genuine camaraderie.   

Do you have any of the characteristics of the superwoman syndrome? If yes, what changes are you going to make in order to establish sustainable balance in your life?

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