Let me just go out on a limb and guess that you’re a mom—at the very least a parent—who wants to make a little extra money. You may already work full-time or you may have taken the stay at home route. Whatever your situation, if you want to make a little side income, you’re probably trying to figure out how to make time to make money.
Don’t make the same mistake I did.
Working at home with kids at home (or at school) is not easy. Forget about having hours upon hours to work—especially if your kids are at home. That’s just not going to happen. I wish (UGH) someone had the heart to tell me that. I wish someone could have said,
“Ciara, you have two children, aged two and a newborn, you’re not going to get a huge chunk of time to work. And when you have do have a huge chunk of time, you’re going to be exhausted and not into it.”
That would have been a blessing, but no. I tried to work at night after the kids went to bed. I tried to work during the day for a few ‘hours’ while the kids played.
Nothing worked until I realized that long spans of time were not my reality. Rosemary, over at the Busy Budgeter, taught me about 30-minute increments of work.
Here’s how it works.
First, I take out my phone and set my stopwatch for 30 minutes, and I make sure my kids are all fed, ‘pottied’ and squared away for at least 30 minutes. This can occasionally mean a quick episode of a favorite show but generally, I encourage independent play.
Second, I avoid all major distractions, including my phone, Facebook, and Pinterest.
Third, I pull up my work—whether it’s my blog, a quick turn-around contract project that I’ve agreed to do complete or a new project I’m creating.
Then, I work like a focused woman on a mission until my phone sounds OR until one of my kids has an issue and needs my attention whichever comes first.
Nap Time Entrepreneur
At the moment, both kids are still napping (Godsend). So, I plan—occasionally those go array—for both kids to nap at the same time. That buys me at least one hour of dedicated work time. The youngest will usually sleep for at least an hour and then I can feed him and do a little housework to pull the house back into order. Honestly, sometimes I let the housework slide. I’m on a mission to build a stay-at-home empire.
In the evening
My husband has his own side projects he’s working on. So, during the week, we both agree to work on our projects after the kids go to bed. We reserve our Friday—Sunday evenings as date nights. It makes life easier to have had the discussion with my spouse in advance so he doesn’t feel like I’m ignoring him—or vice versa.
My Choice: Multitasking Mayhem
I chose to leave my career to be a stay at home mom, and I don’t regret it. I was in a career that didn’t really support the family life that I wanted to create for my kids, but I still want to work.
So, I’ve embraced multitasking mayhem. It’s a life of uncontrolled chaos. I no longer have hours upon hours of quiet working time and when I do, I sleep. I learned that I can make time to make money while I’m at home. I just have to weave my work inside of my work as a wife, mom, and homemaker.
Crazy. I know, but that’s my reality. And so far, I have paying writing clients, a growing blog, and (whispering) ….it’s working.