Becoming a parent while having a business

becoming a parent while having a business

These past weeks, we’ve looked at why running your own business gives you the flexibility and freedom you want to plan around young children, how to set it up in the right way, how to prepare for maternity leave, and, last week, how to manage your business once you’re ready to get back to work. To wrap it all up, I want to consider what it’s like becoming a parent while having a business, and the advantages that having a baby will give you when it comes to running your business.

Here are 5 things you’ll learn becoming a parent while having a business:

1.   Getting out of your comfort zone

By the time you’re in your thirties or so, you’re most likely well established in your career, respected by your peers, and operating within a comfortable space where you know what you’re doing and you’re not taking too many risks. The problem with that is that you’re not really learning anything, as you stick with what’s familiar, and you’re missing out on all sorts of learning and growth opportunities. Stepping into your new role as a parent, you’ll suddenly be thrust into completely unfamiliar territory and you’ll be learning new things every day.

In business, you need to be getting out of that familiar comfort zone on a daily basis as well, to keep learning new things and developing both yourself and your business. Continuously trying new things and challenging yourself will help you stay relevant in a fast-moving industry and will make sure that you stay ahead of your competition rather than resting on your laurels and sticking with what you know. Yes, it can be scary to get out of that comfort zone – but it will also be exciting, and rewarding.

2.   Letting go of trying to be perfect

A lot of you will self-identify as a perfectionist, an alpha, an achiever type: constantly pushing yourself, putting pressure on yourself to do everything just right, and getting frustrated when you don’t do as well as you had expected. Well, get ready to let go of all of that as you embrace parenthood and discover that perfection is an impossible (and even undesirable) goal. Trying to be the perfect parent, especially when you’re trying to be the perfect business owner at the same time, can only lead to stress, burnout and misery.

This is not about lowering your standards and giving up all your ambitions – as a parent or as an entrepreneur – but recognising what really matters, focusing on doing your best when it comes to those things that truly will make a difference, and being satisfied when something is ‘good enough’. In your business, the incremental gain that your attempt at perfectionism will bring is not going to have much of a positive impact on your business – but will likely have more of a negative impact on your wellbeing, and your sanity! So do what needs to be done, and do it well… and then move on to the next priority.

3.   Being ruthless with your priorities

Speaking of focusing on what really matters: as a perfectionist, and as a professional operating in modern society, you almost certainly have an endless list of ‘to-dos’ and, no matter how many tasks you tick off, there’ll always be more to be done. Once you’re juggling your business with a young family, you’ll have even less time in which to complete your mammoth list and, more to the point, it won’t seem nearly as important any more as you have other more important things (or, rather, people) in your life. When saying “yes” to something that’s actually quite trivial means saying “no” to time with your baby and partner, you become very good at making those choices upfront.

When it comes to your business, you’ll need to get super clear on what is actually going to make a difference – and then let go of the rest. As we discussed last week, this will mean saying “no” to clients, prospects and personal requests that don’t match your priorities. Identifying the two or three things that will create real movement in your business, and being disciplined with focusing your limited time and energy on those things, will bring you better results as you learn to live by that cliché, “working smarter, not harder”.

4.   Trusting your intuition

In a corporate job, you have a boss, a team, a whole company to refer to when making an important decision. There are senior directors who have decades of experience and well-established processes and systems that will tell you exactly what to do next. As a parent, while there are books to read and experts to consult, no one can tell you exactly what to do: there is no roadmap, and it’s down to your understanding of your child and your own preferences as to how you decide to move forwards.

In business, too, while there are experts and coaches you can consult and work with, ultimately, it’s your business and you need to make the final call. That means trusting your intuition about what your priorities should be and what are the right action steps that will get you there. This is a skill that will be honed with time and experience, but having had to trust yourself when it comes to your baby’s survival and wellbeing will definitely stand you in good stead for your business decisions as well.

5.   Being flexible

I’m always talking about the “freedom and flexibility” that we all desire in our work and personal life – well, this is your chance to really embody that flexibility! A baby is never going to stick to the schedule you set, there will always be ups and downs, and you have to expect the unexpected. If you try to control every aspect of your life and your baby’s, you’ll end up miserable and frustrated. Instead, you’ll need to learn to go with the flow, taking each day as it comes and being open to shifting your plans.

Likewise, in business, however much you plan you can’t control what the market, or your potential clients, will actually do. Having a vision, putting in place a strategy and having the discipline to take consistent action will all set you up for success – but the reality is that you’ll need to adapt to what you see actually happening in order to stay relevant and effective.

So, there you have it, things that you’ll learn as a parent that you can apply to your business. But there are many more, of course – comment below with the lessons you’ve learned as a parent that you think will make you a better entrepreneur!

If you’re striving for a better balance between work and family and want to make sure you’re focusing on the right things in your business to really get the results you’re after, then get in touch to book a free consultation with me. We’ll look at where you are today in your business and your family situation, where you can make some shifts, and how I can support you in creating better business results AND more time for your family.

Apply for your session here >>

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Facebook
Pinterest
Twitter
LinkedIn
Email

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

You might also be interested in these articles

“Everything you’ve ever
wanted is one step outside
your comfort zone.”

Book a free consultation

If you’re feeling a bit stuck and not sure how to move forward, let’s get on the phone to explore how we can work together to help you achieve your goals, and which option is the best fit for you.

Explore a broader definition of success

Download this free assessment to consider what ‘success’ means to you across different areas of your life, evaluate where you are today, and prioritise the right goals to get you to where you want to be.

We will use and protect your data in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

Explore a broader definition of success

Download this free assessment to consider what ‘success’ means to you across different areas of your life, evaluate where you are today, and prioritise the right goals to get you to where you want to be.

We will use and protect your data in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

Outside of the 9 to 5

Anna continues the journey in her new book, where she details what’s needed to sustain your initial escape from the 9 to 5 in a guide to designing and building a profitable business that gives you more freedom, flexibility and fulfilment.

We will use and protect your data in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

Privacy Policy

This privacy policy sets out how One Step Outside uses and protects any information that you give One Step Outside when you use this website (https://onestepoutside.com/).

One Step Outside is committed to ensuring that your privacy is protected. Should we ask you to provide certain information by which you can be identified when using this website, then you can be assured that it will only be used in accordance with this privacy statement.

One Step Outside may change this policy from time to time by updating this page. You should check this page from time to time to ensure that you are happy with any changes.

What information we collect and why

We only ever collect the information that we need in order to serve you.

Generally, this just means collecting your first name and email address that you enter, for example, when you request a resource, register for a webinar, or submit a message via a contact form.

If you are a paying customer, we also collect your billing information including your last name and your postal address.

Comments

When visitors leave comments on the site we collect the data shown in the comments form, and also the visitor’s IP address and browser user agent string to help spam detection.

An anonymised string created from your email address (also called a hash) may be provided to the Gravatar service to see if you are using it. The Gravatar service privacy policy is available here: https://automattic.com/privacy/. After approval of your comment, your profile picture is visible to the public in the context of your comment.

Contact forms

We use Gravity Forms to allow you to contact us via the website. We will use the information you submit for the sole purpose of that specific form and will explicitly ask you to provide your consent to allow us to do so.

Embedded content from other websites

Articles on this site may include embedded content (e.g. videos, images, articles, etc.). Embedded content from other websites behaves in the exact same way as if the visitor has visited the other website.

These websites may collect data about you, use cookies, embed additional third-party tracking, and monitor your interaction with that embedded content, including tracking your interaction with the embedded content if you have an account and are logged in to that website.

Advertising and Analytics

Google

We use Google Analytics to track and optimise performance on this site as well as embedding video content from YouTube, and this means that your web browser automatically sends certain information to Google. This includes the URL of the page that you’re visiting and your IP address. Google may also set cookies on your browser or read cookies that are already there. Apps that use Google advertising services also share information with Google, such as the name of the app and a unique identifier for advertising.

Google uses the information shared by sites and apps to deliver our services, maintain and improve them, develop new services, measure the effectiveness of advertising, protect against fraud and abuse and personalise content and ads that you see on Google and on our partners’ sites and apps. See their Privacy Policy to learn more about how they process data for each of these purposes, and their Advertising page for more about Google ads, how your information is used in the context of advertising and how long Google stores this information.

Facebook

We use the conversion tracking and custom audiences via the Facebook pixel on our website. This allows user behaviour to be tracked after they have been redirected to our website by clicking on a Facebook ad and enables us to measure the effectiveness of our Facebook ads. The data collected in this way is anonymous to us, i.e. we do not see the personal data of individual users. However, this data is stored and processed by Facebook, who may link this information to your Facebook account and also use it for its own promotional purposes, in accordance with Facebook’s Data Usage Policy https://www.facebook.com/about/privacy/.

You can allow Facebook and its partners to place ads on and off Facebook. A cookie may also be stored on your computer for these purposes. You can revoke your permission directly on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/ads/preferences/?entry_product=ad_settings_screen. For more guidance on opting out you can also consult http://www.aboutads.info/choices.

Who we share your data with

We use a number of third parties to provide us with services which are necessary to run our business or to assist us with running our business and who process your information for us on our behalf. These include a hosting and email provider (Siteground), mailing list provider (GetResponse), and a payment provider (Stripe).

Your information will be shared with these service providers only where necessary to enable us to run our business.

How long we maintain your data

If you leave a comment, the comment and its metadata are retained indefinitely. This is so we can recognise and approve any follow-up comments automatically instead of holding them in a moderation queue.

For users that register on our website, we also store the personal information they provide in their user profile. All users can see, edit, or delete their personal information at any time (except they cannot change their username). Website administrators can also see and edit that information.

The main reason for collecting this information is to be able to send you resources, updates and, sometimes, information and products and services, as well as for internal record keeping.

The rights you have over your data

If you have an account on this site, or have left comments, you can request to receive an exported file of the personal data we hold about you, including any data you have provided to us. You can also request that we erase any personal data we hold about you. This does not include any data we are obliged to keep for administrative, legal, or security purposes.

How we protect your data

We are committed to ensuring that your information is secure.

Where we have given you (or where you have chosen) a password that lets you access certain parts of our site, you are responsible for keeping this password confidential and we ask you not to share a password with anyone.

Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although we will do our best to protect your personal data, we cannot guarantee the security of your data transmitted to our site; any transmission is at your own risk. Once we have received your information, we will use strict procedures and security features to try to prevent unauthorised access.

Links to other websites

Our website contains links to other websites. This privacy policy only applies to this website so once you have used these links to leave our site, you should note that we do not have any control over that other website. You should exercise caution and look at the privacy statement applicable to the website in question.

Changes to our privacy policy

We keep our privacy policy under regular review. Initially created on 18th November 2016, it was last updated on 23rd May 2018 to be compliant with GDPR.

Contact information

If you have any questions or concerns related to your privacy, you can get in touch here >>