Summer Advice From Your Favorite Boss Moms!
Summer is a bittersweet time for most work at home moms. We get to see our little cherubs all day long. All. day. long. We are also trying to concentrate, focus, and work. The deadlines, bills (!), and appointments do not magically go away in the summer. How do we find the energy to spend quality time with our kids, while keeping the passion alive in our business?
We asked some of the top women entrepreneurs and mom bosses to share their favorite summer survival tips, schedules, and tech tools that keep their biz and household running over the summer months. These are worth the read all the way to the end! There are some fantastic ideas and definitely some new tech tools to check out.
Dana Malstaff of Boss Moms
- Summer Scheduling: The best thing I can do is to be super present with them in the morning, and then when it is time, to set them up with an activity, or show, and let them know mom needs to work. It’s not fool proof, but I agree with my podcast co-host NJ that it’s important to show them the distinction between play time and work time.
- Summer Tech Tool: Trello is usually my tool of choice. We plan our vacations, parties, meals, and cleaning there.
- http://losethecape.com & http://writepublishsell.co
- My daily schedule: I get up early and go for a walk, which gets my creative juices flowing. I will work until they get up, fix them breakfast, and let them watch tv for about an hour. After that, we get outside, do something fun, go someplace, whatever. When it gets hot in the afternoon, they either have reading or movie time… and I’ll work during those times. I also have hired a part time nanny so that a few days a week I can work for 3-4 hours with no interruption.
- Favorite Tech Tool: I couldn’t live without Insightly. It’s a free CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool and the task list feature saves me. Every day.
Carrie Sharpe of He Says, She Says
- Summer Hack: I work early morning hours during the summer months so I can get a lot done before the kids are even awake. Social media is crucial to my communications business, so it is especially important for me to schedule my social media posts in advance. That way I can spend more time with my kids during the day and less time behind a screen.
- Favorite Tech Tool: I use the Buffer app to schedule all my social media posts in advance. I can load posts into my Buffer and have several days covered. I love Buffer!
Renae Gonzalez of Little Miss Everything
- Summer Schedule: Plan your kid’s day out just like your work day. I schedule different ideas and activities to do throughout the day so they are entertained but still as independent as possible. When I run out of ideas, my kids get free play with the iPad, but I try to limit screen time throughout the day and stick to arts and crafts and imaginary play.
Tori Tait of Thoughtfully Simple
- How to find quiet: We have a busy neighborhood filled with kids, so when I am on a call or need quite time, I put a “Please Don’t Knock” sign on our front door!
- Summer Tech Tool: Headphones! They help me tune out the cartoons and background noise from my older kiddos.
Nicole Almanzor of Theit
- Favorite Tech Tool: My top ‘can’t live without’ app is called IFTTT. It helps me streamline my tasks, social media, and daily everyday things. You can automatically program a lot of your everyday programs/apps by using a few of their ‘recipes’, like Instagram post to your blog, update your calendar, and sync directly to your dropbox. You name it, they can integrate it!
Samantha McDonald of Living With Real Joy
Summer Scheduling: My 3 kids and I sit down together and create a daily/weekly flexible schedule. This helps my kids know what to expect each day (chores, rest time, read time, electronic time) and also lets them know I still have a work schedule even though they are home with me.
Favorite Tech Tool: I love Google Drive. Sometimes I work from my husband’s office or from my personal laptop at home. Either way I always have access to my schedules, content planners, and planning spreadsheets. It’s great!
Sarah Fluckiger of Course Creation Coach
- Summer Scheduling: I try to spend a bit of time with my kids when they first wake up and then we call it “work-time” for everyone. I set up stations that they rotate through while I work. The stations are listed on our message board and will include things like: workbook, computer time, reading, outside play time (trampoline, bikes, rip-sticks), art project, tv show, piano practice, snack and color, Legos, etc. (adjust per age and have any necessary materials ready). We set a timer (20-30 minutes per station) and they choose 4-5 stations to go through. I also keep a piece of paper taped to my door so they can write down any questions or things they need to tell me but that can wait until after work-time. The stations help give them purpose and structure so they aren’t constantly coming to me saying, “What can I do?” And the paper on my door helps them not feel ignored because they know I will get to their concerns, thoughts, and questions as soon as work-time is over.
- Favorite Summer Tool: A good Slip N’ Slide! My kids will play on it for hours while I work outside on my laptop and watch them.
Robin Walker of Women’s Business Workshop
- Summer Scheduling: I have a daily outline for each day. I try to alternate large motor and ‘sit down’ activities for the kids. If they color or play Legos for a while, then next is going outside or playing nerf in the basement. We always do ‘rest time’ in the afternoon. Older kids get a movie, younger kids have quiet time in their bedroom. That is my time for client calls or focused writing because the house is quiet.
Victoria Berg of The Nurture Collective
- Favorite Tech Tool: Hootsuite really is a life saver! I take an hour out of my day and schedule posts for my social media, so that I don’t have to worry about it again and can be present with my kids.
What helps your day run smoothly? Do you have systems or activities that help you find time to work?
Post a comment here or join us in our facebook discussion!