You are a mom so you should sacrifice your dreams and ambitions for your little ones to live theirs right?
Where did that even come from?
Let me explain exactly what happens when you give up your dreams not because you want to but because you feel you have to.
You become unfulfilled, have unreasonably high expectations of your child (he has to start reading at age 3), resent everyone when things do not go exactly as planned (after all you gave up your life for this) and maybe even, become a burden to that kid when he grows up (“What will happen to my mom if I do this?”).
How do I know? I was your typical ambitious woman who fell for the “a good mom sacrifices…” trap. I even wrote a quote for it!
It makes for a good laugh nowadays but it was a pretty pathetic story of guilt, anxiety and borderline depression.
Thankfully, I didn’t get to become a burden yet, at least not to my kids, before I realized this was all bull and started searching the internet hungrily for an escape.
But you probably already know that, right? Because that’s why you are here.
- Who Is A Good Mom?
- 5 Modern Myths Out To Crush Your Ambition and Steal Your Soul
- What does this all mean for ambition in motherhood?
- 3 Major Reasons Why Mothers Must Pursue Their Ambitions
- 5 Practical Steps To Help You Balance Ambition and Motherhood
- Ambition vs Motherhood: How These 25 Boss Moms Do Balance
*This post may contain affiliate links at no extra cost to you. See disclosure for details.
Beautiful, smart, and ambitious women like you and I have been told for years to reach for the stars but the minute a baby comes into the picture, a maternal instinct so strong that you want to spend every minute with him kicks in. And frankly, ambition makes you a bad mom in the eyes of society. In your eyes even, until you realize that you are thinking the wrong way.
There is always a middle ground and many moms today are finding this middle ground online. They start an online business or a blog to make money from home.
But even for those moms, the struggle is real.
Let us quickly go over what society, and social media, has programmed us to think a good mother is.
Who Is A Good Mom?
Although no one will say these things to you expressly (hopefully), Instagram feeds and real-life reactions of people to your distress, don’t forget your own reaction to other moms’ distress, will more than show you that the following pretty messed up assumptions are all too commonplace.
A good mom’s children never cry.
Bull! Crying is a healthy way for kids to express themselves. It shows that they have an enabling environment that encourages them to communicate their feelings and that they are not afraid to do so.
The truth is if you are reading this; trying to learn how to balance mothering and your blogging ambitions, you are a really great mom!
Your kid cries for all the right reasons:
- He is loved,
- His feelings are respected and
- He’s not afraid to express them and demand your attention because he knows he’ll get it.
He may be young and silly to you (he can ask instead of cry right?) but let’s face it, would you drop everything you were doing the moment he says “I want to play”?
A good mom’s kids never get sick.
In case you didn’t know, young children fall ill because they have an underdeveloped immune system. Please don’t fall under the pressure to keep a germ-free home for the sake of hygiene. Kids NEED those germs to be healthy not just today but tomorrow as well.
A good mom always has all her ducks in a row.
Where do I even start with this one?
I never had all my ducks in a row even before I had kids.
I never remembered to call and thank everyone for their presence (and presents) at my wedding… I shouldn’t even be boring you with these explanations so let’s just get through the list and move on to more interesting things, shall we.
The rest of it.
- A good mom’s kids never throw tantrums or misbehave.
- She’s always calm and joyful. What was that language again? “Use your words”
- She’s the mom who always sacrifices her needs for her child’s WANTS
- She always knows what her child wants.
- Her kids are always friendly
- Her kids never eat junk or wear mismatched socks.
- Her kids never have screen time. Using Technology in moderation is beneficial!
- She’s always hands-on with her kids.
…instagram feeds, real-life reactions of people to your distress, and your own reaction to other moms’ distress show the anti mom-ambition nature of our society.”
Do you know why this list is so laughable?
It’s because there’s no way on this good earth that any human can do and be all those things even if she weren’t a mom.
Even as adults, it’s healthy to cry when we are sad, to be selfish, and say no sometimes.
To realize that sometimes life is great and other times not so much.
Come on we all fall sick even with the best hygiene practices in place, we throw tantrums in our relationships and it actually spices things up (makeup sex anyone).
In all, I’ve never met anyone who knew exactly what they wanted out of life, was completely organized with an impeccable schedule and always greeted everyone at every time with a smile and hug. Actually, there’s a word for it, boring.
It’s the “bad” that makes the “good” good, the spontaneity of life is what makes it fun! Why on earth would anyone want to take that away from you just because you became a mother?
But it’s not just you that this affects negatively. We talk more why it sucks in the next section.
5 Modern Myths Out To Crush Your Ambition and Steal Your Soul
The number one reason moms feel overwhelmed and mother with guilt is because “ideal mom”.
This idea of her just stands there laughing in your face, daring you to be as perfect as she is.
You bite and the chaotic thrill that motherhood is supposed to be becomes something else for you; a chase for the unattainable.
Even moms who decide to forego workplace ambitions and build blog based businesses still suffer from guilt and self doubt even though they have more flexible schedules.
See if you recognize any pattern below.
Nothing else makes you suck at mothering more than stress levels that are through the roof and constant doubts about your parenting ability.
In other words, when you lack the confidence you need and feel stressed about your parenting decisions, it becomes difficult to be consistent, sensitive and responsive.
There’s also research data to prove that it’s bad when you try to be the good mom as defined by society, or worse social media. You can find all about it at here but since my major goal with this website is to help you, lift you up and empower you to live the life you want, not cause depression, we are debunking the famous myths attached to mothering with ambition.
Psst: Your J.O.B. not allowing it ==> One of the most flexible and fulfilling ways to balance both ambition and motherhood is through starting a blog or an online business, then getting rid of a mindset that says you are not enough. Don’t ever be told that you are not enough, especially by yourself.
MYTH #1 Wanting To Work Means You Don’t Love Your Kids Enough To Feel Fulfilled By Them.
The Truth: Wanting to work means you love them enough to make a concerted effort to create a life that you truly love. Because it’s only when you love your life that you can be the best mom you need to be for them.
You also create a more secure future for them by showing them that anything is possible if you have the drive, faith, and discipline to chase it.
Doing fulfilling work allows you to be an authentic mom not the duty mom. Denying your desires preempts resentment and you know this to be true.
[click_to_tweet tweet=”You a secure future for your kids by showing them that anything is possible if you have the drive, faith, and discipline to chase it. Learn more…” quote=”You a secure future for your kids by showing them that anything is possible if you have the drive, faith, and discipline to chase it.”]
MYTH #2 You can’t be a good mom if you work.
The Truth: Working to earn money is not so different from doing your normal house chores. Your kids can get a chance to help out, learn something new and even try out independence (which is great for them).
Playing with your kids and hovering over them all the time in the name of ‘good’ parenting will not help them neither will it keep them safe and it most certainly won’t help you.
Myth #3 You should feel guilt every time you are away from your kids.
The Truth: We only feel guilt when our mindset is programmed with ideologies of the societal definition of the good mom. It is our number one responsibility to take care of ourselves and sometimes that requires that we be away from them for a while.
Guilt only surfaces when you doubt your heart and the reason why you are doing this.
You are not selfish, you are simply a self-aware woman who has decided to show her children what self-respect, self-love and independence mean.
Myth #4 The Chaos will eat you up.
The Truth: Motherhood is meant to be messy, it always has been.
Dirty kid = healthy, happy kid, it’s as simple as that.
There is joy in finding the lost pair of sock under the couch, there is joy in picking it up and looking knowingly at the culprit who is probably thinking at that moment “mom is a genius”.
Let go of perceptions of perfection, you are building a home not running a hotel.
Do what you can to stay organized but don’t get so hung up on it that you lose sight of the bigger picture.
There is joy in finding the lost pair of socks under the couch, there is joy in picking it up and looking knowingly at the culprit who is probably thinking at that moment “mom is a genius”.
Myth #5 Only Super moms should run businesses.
The Truth: A ‘super mom’ is, technically speaking, a worn out woman, don’t try to be one.
It’s not okay to give, give and never receive.
I say ask for help from everyone who’s willing to help.
Ask your husband, your kids, your mother, inlaws, friends even strangers, ask them all for help.
Two adults WILL find it hard to keep tabs on 1 baby so why shouldn’t moms ask for help? That baby isn’t yours alone, she belongs to the village.
What does this all mean for ambition in motherhood?
This my friend is call for celebration for us ambitious mamas!
It means we can AND SHOULD pursue self fulfillment (it is the same thing as ambition, right?).
Writer Justine Musk in her blog post Why Ambition and Motherhood Go Hand In Hand describes ambition as the greatest form of mothercare and she couldn’t be further from the truth.
There are way too many benefits your child gets from having a loving yet ambitious mother. Developing a parenting strategy that gives room for pursuing your ambitions is healthy and rewarding for you, your relationships, and your children. We talk about this more in the next section.
Yet even without those benefits for your child, you as a mother should fight for a life you love, the only life you truly deserve.
It really doesn’t take as much time (eventually) as it may seem to build a thriving blog based business and the scalability of it is awesome, this is why I advocate starting a blog-biz.
What it takes is drive, discipline and sacrifice which when placed alongside, results in super productivity. Many mothers who decide to go after careers outside the home already know this and that is why they are usually more effective than the average workplace employee.
Remember, balance is doing just enough of the important things to stay centered and afloat. You can get more balance when you have more time and more time is gotten by being effective with the tools and resources you have.
Set your priorities right, use tools, learn from people who have done this before you and don’t try to DIY all the time.
…balance is doing just enough of the important things to stay centered and afloat. You can do it too!
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3 Major Reasons Why Mothers Must Pursue Their Ambitions
Everything they say ambition and motherhood is a lie.
Moms must not dial down their ambitions to accommodate societal expectations. They should create a lifestyle they love and deserve!
Here are some of the reasons why it rocks to be an ambitious mama.
Ambition helps a mother stay fulfilled and happy which is in turn great for everyone.
- You have your own money. As an ambitious woman, you know the thrill of earning for yourself and what it does to your mood as a whole. If you are like me, you do not know how to ask for money so when you don’t have any, you suffer in silence.
Earning money yourself means you can spend on the things YOU want. You can do your hair, buy new clothes, and pay for exciting adventures for your kids without having to worry about your family budget. And you can buy your partner a freaking birthday gift (goodbye compulsory DIY projects).
Earning money yourself means you can spend on the things YOU want. You can pay for exciting adventures for your kids without having to worry about your family budget. And you can buy your partner a freaking birthday gift (goodbye compulsory DIY projects).
- You have a creative outlet. Doing something other than changing diapers and baby talk all day will help relieve stress usually associated with raising little kids. You get to do what you love and help other people with your business which brings us to the next point.
- You feel like an active participant both in your own life and in the society. You are contributing to society with the special gift or passion that you have. If you want to look at it squarely, it’s actually really selfish to bless only your child with your love. What would become of society if every mom decided to unnecessarily sacrifice their ambitions, dreams and passions for their children. Note I say unnecessarily.
I’m not saying all moms should get a job or start a business, it may be your neighbor’s ambition to have kids and live a peaceful life as a farmer’s wife and that’s cool. But I’m talking to you.
If moms like you and I who go surfing the internet for thoughts on pursuing ambition in motherhood were to give up our dreams, we would be miserable. You know why? Because it takes a longing to start searching, the desire to be something more than just mom is already there and eating at your soul.
- Less time to spend begets quality relationships. You spend time with the people you love not because you have to but because you want to and that desire to be there shows in that time you actually spend there. You make a conscious effort to enjoy yourself and make that period memorable. You focus on the things that matter like hugs, and joyful noise and forgo things like building picture perfect sand castles for instagram stories (I don’t even know what that means).
- There is less pressure to have a perfect child. You are living a fulfilled life (or at least a semblance of it), everyone is happy and you begin to understand that your worth as a mother is not tied to how well mannered your child is.
- Without money arguments, your relationship thrives. It’s no longer a case where you resent your husband for not giving you the life you think you deserve when you are giving him the best family in the world (clean house, kids in line that’s all there is to it right?). You take responsibility for yourself and for your own happiness which is good for everyone.
Having an ambitious mother who crushes her goals helps set a child up for good success.
- Your kids will realize that they can be anything. Having so many important commitments yet finding the time to chase and actualize your dreams will help you kids remember that where there is a will, there is always a way.
- He realizes he doesn’t have to step on toes to win. One special effect motherhood has on women is that it makes us brim with love and that love transcends into everything we do. As a loving mother, you can’t imagine using someone only for your own gain and your kids start to pick up on that. You also don’t do anything unethical because there are standards you are modeling for your child.
Having an ambitious mother who crushes her goals helps set a child up for good success.
- Having ambition means better facilities and resources for your child. Mark Zuckerberg wouldn’t be the facebook guy if he didn’t have access to a computer he could tinker on. The best minds in tech go to MIT not some local college, they got the best environment, education and connections from there. A lot of truly successful people have one thing in common, they piggybacked off their parents success no matter how small. It’s much easier to go from middle-class to upper class than it is from lower class.
But it’s not just so they can be rich and have fancy cars, it’s so they can live a life where they actually have choices, where they can choose to not have a fancy car because they don’t need it or even don’t want it rather than just because they can’t afford it.
Where they aren’t afraid to take risks. That is the life I want for my kids.
- Children with loving and ambitious moms will learn self-discipline and time management. He’s seen you several times opt out of a Netflix session to work on your project. He’s seen you value time as the most expensive commodity and it becomes ingrained in him too. Your values become his values, there’s a lot to learn here. How to wait for a better bargain (2 cookies tomorrow vs one today), how to do things quicker and smarter.
- Your child will feel free to pursue his passion. The reason most people end up in a boring 9 – 5 is because of the perceived security therein. A child with an ambitious mother will know that it’s ok to follow his dreams even if there is a chance it will fail. Because he’s seen her take risks and he’s been affected by her enough to know that if he didn’t at least try, he would end up with regrets.
A child with an ambitious mother will know that it’s ok to follow his dreams even if there is a chance it will fail. Because he’s seen her take risks and he’s been affected by her enough to know that if he didn’t at least try, he would end up with regrets.
Having ambition means that you never become a burden to your child.
- Financially, you should have enough saved up that your kid doesn’t always need to sacrifice cash he’s saved up for something else when you fall sick or need surgery. Even though they should totally pay if they can afford it, it becomes a choice they make. You also have enough to spoil your future grandkids with. Yay!
- Your child feels no guilt about choosing things he wants. His decision to move to New York for a job with less pay or to choose a career he loves but you don’t will cause him less guilt. I’m not saying he’s going to be totally inconsiderate or “blast it all”, only he wouldn’t be hindered when he thinks of you.
- You don’t live your ambitions through your child. There are no unreasonable expectations like reading before age 3, or getting scholarship offers from all 5 Ivy league colleges on your list so you can justify your choice to stay home with him.
This all sounds good in theory right?
You pursue your ambitions, start an online business or blog that rocks, and spend leisure time with your kiddo who, by the way, gets all these amazing benefits of having an ambitious mom.
But the reality of it, the one that is keeping many women like you from chasing their dreams is that it doesn’t work that way, at least not exactly.
Online businesses while they give you the chance to stay home with your kids are not necessarily easier to run than an actual physical business.
There’s a lot of time commitment and if you are really serious, a bit of financial commitment as well.
If you do it the usual way, you spend months or even years of donkey labor without any real guarantee of success.
Even my way takes up to 2 – 3 months of hard work upfront before you’ll be able to start hiring any outside help (you need to completely know your business first).
I don’t say all this to discourage you, I just want you to understand that I don’t discount the struggles of the ambitious mom.
Actually, findingbalance.mom is only here because of those struggles.
I think moms should be able to stay home with their kids while living out their ambitions so I test out strategies, find the ones that work best, and share them with you, voila!
Psst! Want to start a blog? You don’t have to waste a year (that you don’t have) chasing your own tail like I did. If you would like to start a blog and run it like a business from day one, use this free guide and checklist.
Whatever you decide, I don’t want you languishing in depression as I did, you deserve to have a life YOU love, a life that’s centered on you and the things you care about.
Don’t just choose to be a stay at home mom because your children need you. They also need you to be happy, to chase your dreams and show them that anything is attainable if you want it badly enough.
Please consider pinning this post. Thanks, you’re awesome!
5 Practical Steps To Help You Balance Ambition and Motherhood
How do you actually find time to do the thousand and one little things that your online business requires of you, and not leave out the million and one things that need to be done at home?
Have we even gotten to self care yet?
It’s quite simple really, balance + a mentor who has all the answers (still searching for that one).
A few points I would like to raise in regards to balance.
- Balance is not some elusive magical power to do it all and have it all.
- Balance is doing just enough of the important things to stay afloat.
- It’s about priorities and determining what to sacrifice.
Unlike the other parts of this post, this is a numbered breakdown of the practical things you can do to attain balance and the freedom to pursue your ambition. This list is ordered according to importance.
#1 Start With You
If you are a sleep deprived, maybe hungry mom, it’s not your hustle that’s making you an angry mom, it’s your lack of love and respect for yourself.
Stop with the tasks you hate doing, and that includes your ‘freelance’ job, endless house chores… Stop with anything that gets your stress levels up.
Eat well (little bits spread out add up) and eat first, drink lots of fluids, sleep just enough (you can do that even when baby is awake). Then sit down, or lie down, and ask yourself one simple question, “WHY?”.
Why do you do what you do? You are not working a freelance job, you are raising money for a business you love, to build a life you love. You are not doing endless chores, you are filling your house with your love. You are teaching your kids how to take responsibility, and above all, you are teaching them self love.
#2 Evaluate Your Parenting Beliefs
Everyone, even the ‘friendly’ stranger at walmart, has had an opinion of your parenting choices since you remember and it’s probably gotten to you overtime. But it’s time to challenge what you’ve come to believe.
I will ask the same question again, why?
If you are attending every soccer event at school because every other mom will be there then your ‘why’ is wrong.
Kids don’t need us as much as we think they do. In fact, our absence sometimes helps them develop valuable life skills. Our over interference on the other hand can turn our kids into entitled and demanding little people (trying to be nice here).
Don’t get me wrong, I hug and kiss the hell out of my kids countless times a day, take quick breaks to play with them, but I also give them the chance to be independent –and I wasn’t always like that.
I also teach them that mommy has things she loves to do and not all of them is playing peekaboo and riding imaginary horses. My 10 month old has taken to joyfully kissing my computer screen lately, something she only does to people and things that are important to us, she understands!
#3 Close Your Eyes And Ears
Pinterest, facebook, instagram… shut them out. If you are having trouble with this, there are several apps that help you become more productive online by blocking your internet rabbit holes.
Many times when we complain of a lack of time it’s actually that we spend time on the wrong things. Just installing two of those apps without actually using them has upped my productivity 10x.
Many times when we complain of a lack of time it’s actually that we spend time on the wrong things. Just installing two of those apps without actually using them has upped my productivity 10x.
You’ll also want to close your ears to what people think of your parenting choices. Whether you choose to send your kid to daycare or have a private babysitter is no one’s business. You make the best choice for you and your child and don’t listen to what someone in an entirely different situation has to say about it. Just make sure your kid has a secure attachment with you.
#4 Prioritize and Sacrifice
Mothers can have it all, what we can’t do is do it all.
‘All’ here is really subjective. If my ambition is to have a business bringing in $4000 a month, that I run from home with my kiddos under my desk and I have that, I have it all.
It’s no different for mothers than it is for any other group of people in the society.
Life is all about choices. My choice is to sleep less to get more done, believe me when I say this is a huge sacrifice for me because my middle name is sleep. But is it worth it for me to sleep 4 or 5 hours less than I normally would. Totally.
What do you want? What is important? What is inconsequential in sight of the big picture?
The key to balance is doing just enough of the important things.
Your kids don’t need to eat 3 wholesome organic meals and 2 protein rich snacks a day, you would like those things. If that’s way up on your priority list, kudos! If you can give yourself a little wiggle room today so that you can do those things comfortably tomorrow why not do so.
What do you want? What is important? What is inconsequential in sight of the big picture? The key to balance is doing just enough of the important things.
You probably already knew this was coming since I said “can’t do it all”. Anyways, it is true.
Somewhere along the line, when your business gets too large for you, you’ll have to delegate anyway so why not start now.
Your one true goal should be to find ways to get the best possible value out of your time but that doesn’t mean cramming everything together. It simply means doing only the things that you can’t absolutely get away with not doing yourself.
Let your kids clean up after themselves even if it takes all the time in the world.
Use tools. Don’t invest in strategies like manual pinning for example (this one truly drives me crazy) unless you really really can’t afford a scheduler. Come on let technology do some heavy lifting for you whenever possible.
Make use of templates for repetitive tasks like designing your graphics (this also helps with branding). Your time is your most expensive commodity, decide what it is worth.
When balancing ambition and motherhood, your time is your most expensive commodity, decide what it’s worth, delegate.
How have you managed to balance ambition and motherhood? We’ll see how 25 boss moms do it. Don’t forget to share your tips so everyone can learn.
Ambition vs Motherhood: How These 25 Boss Moms Do Balance
I saved the best for last!
If you’ve followed the post this far, thank you.
To conclude, I decided to bring you tips from real life moms rocking it at home and biz because 25 is better than 1!
These power moms are Consultants, Bloggers, Coaches, Authors, Artists, Woodworkers… and they all took some time off their busy schedules to answer the question “How do you you balance ambition and motherhood?”.
Read on for their insane tips.
1. Tiffanie Plummer (HR Consultant)
It takes support and help. I sit on a few boards, run my business, have a full time job and a 6mth old baby boy.
The transition in to motherhood was tough. I was forced to slow down and focus on just being a mom. Once I got the hang of it, it was time to immerse myself back in my former life.
Balancing all that I was doing and being a mom rocked my world for a month or so until I enlisted help.
I hired a mothers helper to come to my house and watch my son so I could work a few hours a day and be productive. That turned into 3 full days of care outside my home so I could meet with clients, go in to my office, and maybe have time to do a few things around the house. We have been going strong with this for 3 months and it works well.
Tiffanie Plummer is a Senior Human Resource Professional whose passion for helping people led to her thriving Consulting Firm Crown Consulting Service
2. Dominique Burleson (Brand Coach)
Early mornings. Late nights. Working with a sleeping babe in your lap. Saying no to mindless Netflix binge fests.
But it’s equally as important to have days of REAL rest. Time to recharge for the upcoming week.
I’m all for the sacrifice, but if you burnout what have you gained?
So just as important as the hustle, is the getting our cup refilled with real rest and for me that looks like church on Sundays (spiritual recharge), lounging/snuggling with my babies the rest of the day (mental recharge), and a good nap (physical recharge).
Dominique is a Digital Marketing Consultant/Brand Coach/Blogger whose focus is helping other mamas discover their brand & slay the social media beast, all without sacrificing what’s truly important you can find her at www.dominiqueburleson.com.
3. Adriana Locke (Best Selling Author)
Be present in every moment. If I’m working, I’m working. If I’m at a wrestling meet or baseball game watching one of my kids, I’m doing that. I’m not editing a book between innings or half-listening to them when I’m supposed to be writing. Wearing ONE hat in the moments that matter allow me to be more efficient, passionate, and helps me to enjoy MY LIFE.
Adriana is a USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance, you can find her work at www.adrianalocke.com.
4. Maureen Riley (Health & Wellness Coach)
By the grace of God! My 4 A.M. wakeup is non negotiable in order to delve into prayer and the Bible for wisdom about how to proceed in my business.
I pursue and maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating clean, taking supplements, getting regular chiropractic adjustments, minimizing environmental stress, exercising, and staying connected to God throughout the day. Without joy, it’s just work!
Maureen is a single work from home mom of a 6 and 8 year old just starting her new business, focused on helping others achieve health and wellness, whatever that looks like for them you can find her at www.maexclusives.com/joyproject
5. Nicole Santer (Empowerment Coach)
The two don’t have to be an either or – I think that’s the problem most people have. You can be ambitious and laser focused on reaching your goals AND be an incredible mom! I focus on being the role model I want for my kids and drop any guilt about not being there for them 100%. I have support because it really takes a village!
Nicole works full time in a demanding corporate job and is building a business as a women Empowerment Coach on the side. She has two kids (4 and 6), find her here www.nicole-santer.com
6. Jenn Oginsky (Woodworking Mogul Mom)
I work a few hours straight on weekends when the hubs is home. Most of my work I do during the day. When I’m sketching or painting, my kids paint too. When I’m outside woodburning, they play outside nearby in our yard.
I keep them around and do the stuff like staining and sealing for the weekends since that’s not safe for them to be around. And then at night I will sometimes work i.e ordering supplies, budgeting etc. stuff I can do while sitting next to the hubs. I like to keep my family around while working.
Jenn is owner of Ashen Oak Designs, a thriving woodworking business. Her etsy shop can be found here
7. Elizabeth Sarah Northrup (Artist)
I am an artist and my husband is a concert lighting designer on tour with Luke Combs, and we have a two year old daughter. One thing that really helps us is cooking and freezing meals ahead on the days when he’s home. That way, when I’m working and caring for our daughter by myself, I don’t have to worry about cooking healthy meals every single night. The other thing is, on the days when he’s home, we make sure to do something fun as a family. Otherwise all three of us end up totally burned out and miserable.
When he’s not home, I just try to keep our schedule consistent. We have meals together and in between, she’s playing and I’m working. I work from home so I take care of her, but she has had to get used to the fact that Mommy is working from after breakfast until dinner time, and I have to focus and work around constant kid noise. It’s tough, but that’s life, and she is a happy, healthy, smart little girl. It’s totally doable!
You can find Elizabeth’s work here.
8. Waynna Nichols LeBrija (Blogger)
I wake up early, exercise & eat right .. it’s not bullet proof, but it sure does help!Simple as that Waynna has mastered her busy mom schedule and talks about busy mom essentials in this post.
9. Danielle Pientka (Blogger)
I have baby proofing setup in the areas I work. This allows the baby to play independently while I work. I don’t always get a lot of time in, but I can work in short spurts if I need to.
Danielle blogs over at Diydanielle.com
10. Mary Ware
I try to set a Top 3 list of what blogging tasks I need or want to accomplish that day, recognizing that some days they just may not all be accomplished- and on those days I give myself some grace!
Mary’s blog Themomfriend.com is a lifestyle blog giving guidance to new moms.
11. Lauren Tingley
To create balance I focus on minimalism so that I am not spending a lot of my time cleaning and organizing my home. Instead I use that time to work on my blog or relax with my family.
Lauren blogs about simplifying motherhood and homemaking at Simply-well-balanced.com
12. Holly Witmer
Decide each day on one task that you want to complete to work toward your ambition. Then work toward that task in any small intervals that you get throughout the day while kids are napping, away, or after they are in bed.
This is sort of how I mentally approach my blog each day. Some days I don’t get to the task at all so then I push it to the next day to try again.
Holly blogs about pregnancy, babies (schedules, organization, common issues), toddlers, and all things for mom and home at Www.learningmomma.com
13. Keyona Grant
I actually struggled with this in the beginning. Now I make every minute count.
I make to do lists and set daily, weekly, and monthly goals. I further break those goals down into steps.
Once I pick my daughter up from daycare, I focus on her and her needs until bedtime. We play, eat, bathe, and snuggle.Once she’s asleep I focus on me and my goals. I use the weekend to prep for the week so I have more time for me. I’ve seen great results!
Keyona is the mama behind www.professionalmomma.com
14. Autumn Colon
Motherhood NEVER stopped my ambition. If anything it’s one of the driving forces that keep me going and doing what I do. Preach mama!
I know that in order to be where I want in my career, have the home of my dreams and provide the kind of life for my children I want I must keep on keeping on.
My children’s well begin motivates me and that’s the back bone to my motivation and ambition. I’m a full time blogger but for the last 7 years as a mom I worked outside the home only to find that I was not giving my family or myself the kind of attention that was needed for my own mental and professional well being.
Choosing ME, choosing this path has been the greatest decision I’ve made for not only me but my family as well.
Autumn is a motherhood and lifestyle blogger at shesawreck.com with a focus on practical parenting and mental health and launching in September a consultation biz for new bloggers and business owners.
15. Mychelle Fernandez
To balance ambition and motherhood, I started a morning routine to align my energy and give me clarity. When I forget to do it, chaos takes over and little gets done!
I wake up earlier than the kids, pray and meditate for about 15 minutes then “write my reality” which consists of listing out what my life would look and feel like when all my goals are reached. For example, “I am wealthy, I am productive, I am unstoppable, I am fit, I am happy, I am rich, I grateful, etc.” Usually when I’m done, it becomes clear exactly what I should work on and spend my energy on that morning/day.
Mychelle blogs about family life, mindset, and empowering women, particularly mothers. On her blog, Let Love Shine , she also focuses on encouraging people to just be kind and positive in general.
16. Megan Brown Fioto
I like to use my lunch hour (while baby is with the sitter) to check stuff off my to do list. I always have a to do list and prioritize everything that needs to get done with the important items at the top.
Megan blogs about being a full time working mama and balancing home/work life. She’s got a good guide for new moms looking to be more efficient here.
17. Melissa Johnson
As a mom of 3 littles (soon to be 4), waking up before my kids do is the best advice I have for living an intentional life. That means having a bed time routine for them AND me! And it means having intentional time blocked out so that I am motivated to stay on track.
Melissa talks more about having a daily routine in her post.
18. Jen Kohorst
I think balance is sooo important! While I strive to always be better for of my family (ambition), I know how important it is to be really present in the moment with them. I only work on my blog when my little one is napping or in bed. One of my favorite daily tricks I’ve learned is to take the one task that seems the biggest/the highest priority and get that done first. Even if it means breaking it up into small parts! This way I’ll always get the most reward and productivity from my working time!
Jen blogs about pregnancy, parenting, and lifestyle at www.mnmomma.com
19. Frances Farac Vidakovic
I believe it’s important to chase your dreams and set a good example for your kids that if you want something bad enough you need to be willing to work for it. That being said I think that at some point you need to put work aside for a bit and make a conscious effort to spend some quality one on one time with your kids and family.
Switch off your laptop, put away your phone, engage with your family and HAVE FUN! Kids grow up way too quickly and you don’t want to find that you succeeded career wise but that your family suffered as a consequence.
Frances is a parenting blogger who inspires both moms and kids to dream big and live more passionate, purposeful lives. In a post, she shares the 10 things to do in the morning.
20. Tammy Bowen Buchnoff
Well, my babies are all old (my youngest is 20). 2 of my kids still live at home, 2 moved out. I don’t feel I have to balance motherhood and much.
Still, we do have family dinner every Monday night to keep things balanced.
Tammy writes to encourage women in any life stage, parenting (especially teens and young adult children), marriage, Jesus, books, love & kindness, relationships, and laughter! She’s at Coffeemugsandbighugs.com
21. Dana Thompson
Finding a balance is hard. Somedays I feel like I fail terribly at it.
We homeschool/unschool, so the kids do a lot of their own thing. But I try and keep Mondays, Fridays and most evenings for blogging. This leaves Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday to head to town and socialize with the kids friends, and weekends to have family time.
I think scheduling time to do certain things, and not feeling guilty about missing out on all the things that aren’t scheduled for then is key. So during scheduled blogging time, I try not to feel guilty about not doing family time and visa versa.
Dana runs the parenting website Naturalearthymama.com
22. Jen Ropson
I would say my best tip (i work full time and I’m a single Mom) is to involve your kids on your blog. I don’t mean blog about them but show them what you are doing, have them help take photos or research topics for you.
My 9 year old has learned to love my blog and work with me on it…. so when I spend time blogging at night, I’m not ignoring her, we are doing it together.
Jen is a parenting lifestyle blogger behind See Jenny Go where she focuses on bringing fun back into moms lives.
23. Sharon McCaskill
I balance ambition and motherhood in 2 main ways.
1. I set aside specific time for my blog AND specific time for my kids. This way I can pay attention whole heartedly to one or the other, so if a kid wants me to see something or play, they KNOW that when I say “mommy’s working till 3” that at 3 my attention is 100% theirs!
2. I try to include them in the blogging process when I can: I review lots of gluten-free foods and restaurants. They get to bake the food with me, taste test, and go to restaurants with me and give me their opinion. They also get to ‘help’ pick out the final pictures and stuff. They like that, PLUS they get to understand what mommy is doing when I’m working.
Sharon is the founder of thehelpfulgf.com,a blog on gluten-free living. In addition to working on her blog, she also works a full-time job and is the mother of 2 toddlers (3&4).
24. Stormy Stevenson
It’s so hard to blog full time and be a stay at home mom to little ones. The most important thing is finding designated times for blogging, mommying, and the rest of it.
For example, I make breakfast for my kids and then they have free play time. This gives me a good uninterrupted hour, so I use this time for the most crucial stuff. Then I spend an hour focusing only on them.
They know I have work time, and time for them specifically. I also use housework as a way to spend time with them by having them help. We talk and play games while doing it so it seems more fun. This allows me to feel less guilty about working.
Stormy blogs about parenting, making money at home and some miscellaneous stuff at funthriftymom.com
25. Audrey Marshall
My best tip is to leave the house to work when you can. My partner is extremely supportive of my ambitions and so when he gets home from work, I leave the house to go get my work done. I have 2 girls under 3, and so I am not very productive when I try to do work at home.
You need some distraction-free time on a weekly basis so you can hash out the work you need doing. You need to look at your ambition as a real job, and people can’t perform their best work when they are chasing around toddlers. If you don’t have a partner, try and get family or friends to help you out once a week.
Also, setting a schedule of what you need done and try to keep a week ahead of what actually needs doing. Sometimes life happens and you want to be sure you are prepared if there’s a family emergency or just want to take some time off.
Audrey is a parenting blogger who focuses on helping women be their best selves in pregnancy and parenting babies and toddlers. She can be found at Mommyenlightened.com
Phew! There you have it. Which tip did you like best? Which will you be implementing? Let us know or share your own tip in the comments.
Thanks for sticking through till the end, and for sharing this post!