Working from home is a great perk, but it can also be a sizable challenge for busy moms like you and me.
Running a work from home business means that you need to make it a priority, even when life gets in the way.
If your day is already filled with feeding kids, doing laundry, cooking dinner, and running errands, it can be hard to stay motivated enough to also get your work done.
When you work from home, motivation is key for long-term success. Here are some of the top tips for moms who need a little work from home motivation.
Create a Morning Routine
I can’t stress enough how important it is for me to start my day off right. This includes showering, brushing my teeth, and getting dressed right away. Many experts agree that this is one of the best ways to get yourself prepared and productive for the day ahead. I know my day never starts off on the right foot when I try and tackle it in my pajamas.
I also try and wake up before the kids so I have time to drink my coffee and collect my sanity before the chaos of the day hits.
I’m more motivated to get my work done when I know that other aspects of my home are not falling apart. When I start the day behind the eight-ball, I also find it harder to catch up.
Stick to a Schedule
Getting up early is just part of my daily schedule. When you’re planning your day, allow plenty of time for playing with your kids, doing housework, running errands, and the other things you need to do.
That’s said, it’s important to carve out dedicated work time as well. If you don’t put it in your schedule, chances are it’s not going to happen.
When it’s not “work time” on your schedule, step away from the computer entirely so you can give your complete focus to the tasks at hand.
There are definitely times that I try to multitask and work while doing other things, but I can tell you that I’m not as productive on these days. And when I’m not productive, I quickly lose motivation to keep going.
Create a Designated Workspace
If you are someone who needs to use a laptop or computer, set up a home office space so you can do your work. You don’t need an extra room in your house to make this happen (I don’t have one).
My article here details ways you can set up the perfect home office anywhere, even if you’re in a small space.
It’s easy to get frustrated and unmotivated when you aren’t being productive in your work, so it’s best to set yourself up for success every time you sit down to get something done.
As soon as it’s work time, close those social media tabs on your computer and set your smartphone aside. You may want to set up your computer screen to block out the allure of your browser tabs find some other way to eliminate all the distractions surrounding you.
See if there’s a time you can work when your kids will be otherwise occupied. I work in the afternoons when my youngest is napping and the bigger ones are (usually) able to entertain themselves for an hour or two.
Make a Plan
It’s really hard to stay committed to a work from home job if you don’t have a plan. For anything to be successful, you need to have a roadmap to follow when the going gets rough.
If you haven’t already, take the time to sit down and figure out where you’re going with your business. Ask yourself the big picture questions: Where do you see yourself at the end of this year? How about 5 years?
Give yourself permission to dream, and then plan out the way you’re going to make that dream a reality. It’s so much easier to work when you have an end goal in sight.
We’re all a little more motivated to do hard things when we know there’s a reward waiting for us at the end. If you have a big work task in front of you, don’t feel bad about rewarding yourself when it’s complete.
This can be as simple as a trip to your favorite coffee shop or settling in and watching an episode of your favorite TV show. It doesn’t have to be big, but it should be something you enjoy doing that you consider a treat after a long, productive day.
Take Care of Yourself
When you’re a mom, it can be isolating to work from home, If you were used to playdates, lunches, or trips to the library, it’s easy to become down when you realize there’s no longer time in your schedule for these things.
When you’re lonely or down, it’s often easier to fall into a slump. Combat this as best you can by doing everything you can to take care of your mental and physical health.
For me (and most people), this boils down to three things – sleep, exercise, and food.
If you’re having trouble staying motivated, analyze these three areas. Are you getting enough sleep at night? Are you eating healthy food and making time for exercise each day?
This doesn’t have to be anything crazy. Sometimes even taking a 30-minute brisk walk outside and eating a nice salad works wonders and helps me get back on track and ready to work.
Get Out of the House
Piggybacking off the last tip is this next suggestion – get out of the house.
Seriously, if you’ve gone a few days without speaking to another person over the age of 5 (except maybe your spouse), it’s time to get out.
Take the kids on an outing, head to the library or park, or even go and walk around Target for an hour. When you remove yourself from home for a bit, it’s easier to find the motivation to go back and get to work when it’s time.
Continually Challenge Yourself
It’s easy to become bored if your work isn’t stretching you. Challenge yourself to reach a little further, learn something new, or land that client that you thought was out of reach.
Setting goals for yourself will keep you productive. When you’re productive, you’re more motivated to stretch your limits and reach for your goals.
Listen to Podcasts
If I find myself in a slump, I’m usually able to put a little pep back in my step listening to podcasts. Between podcasts aimed at moms and those aimed at entrepreneurs, the choices are endless. I find many of these inspiring when I feel like its impossible to juggle all my duties.
Hearing other people’s struggles and success stories often propels me to keep moving forward. Plus, I’ll often glean bits of useful wisdom and information I can apply in my own business.
Remember Your Why
If you find yourself in a work slump, it might help to have visual cues reminding you of why you want to work in the first place. What is your reason for pursuing this work at home job? Maybe you’re trying to get out of debt or save up for a vacation. Whatever it is, place it front and center so you never forget.
I have a bulletin board on the wall in front of my desk that provides helpful reminders for me. On there I’ve posted a target income goal for the month, pictures of my kids, and other motivational quotes that keep me going.
When you need the motivation to keep going, remind yourself why you started in the first place. Often, remembering that we’re home with our kids (and the high cost of daycare) is motivation enough to keep going.
When you work from home, motivation to complete all of your tasks can be hard to come by. Follow some of these hacks to keep your head up during the tough times, and you’ll find yourself in a better, more successful place as you work to achieve your goals.
Do you have any favorite motivational quotes or inspirational podcasts? I’d love for you to share them with me!