I’m sure many of my fellow work at home mums will agree when I say that being a WAHM is not a walk in the park.
I, myself, am a work at home mum for nine years (and counting).
Even after nine years, I’m still getting curious questions on how I have survived this kind of work setup. With three grade-schoolers, a home to manage together with my husband, and a couple of online clients from different parts of the world— sometimes I asked myself too, “how did I do that?” haha!
It may seem enticing to know how a mum can work at home and earn for her family without leaving their kid(s) in a daycare or to a nanny. In fact, I’ve been approached many times by my relatives who aspired to work at home like me. I answered all their questions and even gave them free online resources where they can learn the ins and outs of a work from home setup.
Not one of them pushed through in working from home.
It can be done though with the help of these tips:
1. Be a self-learner and utilize all available resources online.
I was an accounting assistant in a print and publishing company before I became a work at home mum. We were only allowed to surf the Internet during lunch breaks. While my officemates spent time browsing their social media accounts, I searched for platforms where a person can earn online. I signed up for online freelance platforms. With nothing but my personal blog in my portfolio, I landed my first sideline job as an article writer.
I knew I could do more than writing.
And so I started to learn social media management. With nothing but Google and YouTube, I was able to understand how analytics, metrics, and engagement can help a certain brand in increasing their presence online. Beyond that, I learned how to do basic image manipulation.
Today, I take pride in saying that I am any brand’s one-stop-shop.
However, to be clear, it does take time and discipline to teach yourself all these new skills but it will be worth it in the end.
If at least one of my relatives took the time to teach themselves with the resources that I gave them, perhaps I would not be the only work at home mum in the family now. The worldwide web has a lot to offer, waiting for you to take advantage of the hidden knowledge and skills you can get from it.
2. Get your act together. Know your priorities and boundaries.
“Strike while the iron is hot.”
I was wrong when I used this mantra in my early years of working from home. I got so giddy in having one client after the other. Little did I know, that the more money I earned, the less time I spent with my family. I forgot my main objective in working from home— to be with my family.
So, to avoid making the same mistake that I did before, let me tell you, get your act together. Be organized. Know your priorities and boundaries. I now have a to-do list every day and it helps me get through with my work and home responsibilities. No missed moments with my family and no missed invoices for my clients either, thanks to my newly discovered invoice generator.
3. Take advantage of technology.
Guess what, I strongly believed that I managed to survive working at home because of the advanced technology we have now.
You see, work at home mums can never escape household chores, doing the laundry, particularly. I am not a fan of laundry shops, so my husband bought me a fully-automatic washing machine. There was never a time when we had a pile of dirty clothes, even on my busiest WAHM days!
I took another huge bite on technology when I invested in my MacBook Pro. I had two Windows laptops prior to this, but working from home had never been as much of a breeze as it was with an Apple product.
Innovative products pop up every day and I say, take advantage of them. Of course, it will mean additional expenses for you, but think of how it could help you in the long run.
4. Find your tribe. Interact with like-minded people from time to time.
Isolation is a big challenge for us, work at home mums. Most of the time, people will ask me how I make it through a day, a week, or a month just being inside our home and in front of a laptop.
Remember my tip number one? Utilise all available resources online.
I’m a member of different Facebook groups where the members are work at home mums like me! We talk about how our day was, who has new clients, this newly discovered expense app, what’s for lunch— just about anything! Sometimes, a quick video chat is enough to ease burnout.
5. Disconnect yourself and go out.
Believe me, this will truly save your sanity. Like a laptop that needs to be recharged, you, as a work at home mum, need to disconnect yourself from the technology and go out. Enjoy a walk in your neighbourhood. Read your all-time favourite book. Do anything that will help you get back on your feet for another day of working from home.
Are you a work at home mum? Do you have something to add to these tips? We will be glad to read your thoughts! Come on, post it in the comment section.