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25 Amazing Productivity Tips From Successful Mompreneurs

25 Amazing Productivity Tips From Successful Mompreneurs
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Becoming an entrepreneur is a lot of work. Just like being a mom. So why would any sane person do both and become a mompreneur? Don’t worry, you don’t have to be sane. But you do have to be productive. That’s why these 25 amazing and successful mompreneurs are sharing their favorite productivity tips with you. Here’s our countdown:

25. Let it go

CorpNet-NellieAkalp-2012-HighRes-1

    Nellie Akalp, mompreneur founder of CorpNet and mother of 4 children, a set of boy/girl twins ages 13, a boy age 10 and a girl age 3, says you have to be willing to let some things go.

    “Let it Go.” Yes, this is my youngest daughter’s favorite song from the hit movie Frozen, but it’s also a saying I tell myself about five times a day. Set your perfectionist self aside, and let it go. If you try to focus on all of the little things every day with kids, you won’t get anything done. I focus on the big picture and plan ahead to keep my business successful and my family happy and healthy.

    24. Pre-cook a week’s worth of meals

    Ksenija

      Ksenija Rostova, mompreneur CEO and co-founder of inSelly and mother of a 5-year-old, says you have to cook meals in advance.

      My ultimate productivity tip is to partially pre-cook dinners for the entire working week on Sundays. I plan a weekly menu and do all possible preparations: cook and freeze grains/beans/broth, prepare sauces, slice vegetables and pack them in portions, roast or boil meat, mix spices etc. It helps to save a lot of time on cooking after work.

      23. Be present

      rsz_osgood_192_dark_hair

        Heather Osgood, serial mompreneur and business coach at How to Quit Working, and mother of 3 kids, ages 18, 6 and 3, says you always have to be present.

        Be 100% Present. Your attention is a precious commodity. Whether you are with your kids or working in your business, be present with your full attention. Multi-tasking isn’t effective for success. If you aren’t focused on your kids they’ll know it and fight for your attention. Your business also deserves your full focus. Create a schedule and stick with it to ensure that no one gets the short end of the stick, or the short end of your attention.

        22. Put the kids to work

        Debra Cohen with Children

          Debra Cohen, mompreneur President of Home Remedies of NY, Inc., and mother of two kids, Emily (18) and Sophie (15), says you should put those kids to work.

          When my kids were little, I put them to work with simple jobs like stamping or stuffing envelopes to keep them occupied. I used a trip to the park, baking cookies or some other fun activity as an incentive. As they got older, they handled bigger jobs like data entry and filing and now that they’re teenagers, they are my social media gurus and I give them shopping and gas money. Soon, I’ll be working for them!

          21. Make your desk a learning station

          familybusinessdaphne_casualphoto

            Daphne Mallory, mompreneur family business expert and business owner and mother of 4 kids, ages 3, 5, 7, and 15, says you should convert your desk into a learning station.

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            When kids wake up early or if they’re with you during the day, they can learn on websites like starfalls.com while you get some of your desk work done. They’re close enough to keep an eye on them, and they have your attention—well sort of.

            20. Know who your real boss is

            stephanieadams

              Stephanie Adams-Nicolai, mompreneur Founder & CEO of GODDESSY, and mother of a 4-year-old son, says you have to know what your real motivation is.

              Remember the real reason you are in business is personal. Everything I do, any business I create, all the money I make, is inspired solely by my son and my desire to provide the very best for him. That said, he is my daily and lifetime motivation to be a success and never give up, as not only am I inspired by him, I am his inspiration to someday become the best he can be as well.

              19. Outsource meals

              nicoledavis

                Nicole Davis, mompreneur Certified Public Accountant and principle of Butler-Davis Accounting and mother of 4 kids, ages 1, 2, 14, and 16, says you should get someone else to prepare your meals.

                Outsource meal planning and do meal prep on Sunday. I love to cook but I find myself creating more recipes for success in my business than creating healthy recipes for my family. So, I signed up for 1-year meal plan with a company (Me and My Kitchen). The plans come with delicious recipes, a categorized grocery list, and cooking tips. And I consider Sunday a rest day if resting is such a thing with four kids. When I prep everything Sunday, we eat for another week which is always a benefit and I can focus on growing my business the rest of the week.

                18. Flip your days

                  Naomi Hattaway, mompreneur Owner of 8th & Home Real Estate & Relocation, and mother of 3 “kiddos,” ages 19, 11, and 8, says you should flip your days around.

                  Go to bed 45 minutes earlier than normal and wake up 45 minutes earlier in the morning. Chances are, even if you think you function best at night, you will get MORE done in the morning. Can’t fathom an alarm clock waking you 45 minutes earlier? Gradually increase your flip… start with 15 minutes, and then power through your least liked task in those 15 minutes. It’s like a gift from the productivity gods!

                  17. Don’t be a “shero”

                  ShaylaandChildren

                    Shayla Boyd-Gill, mompreneur CEO and Founder of LABOR Business Coaching and mother of 6 kids, ages 8 months, 4, 7, 11, 14, and 17, says you don’t have to be a hero.

                    Decide not to be a super independent “shero”—ask for help. Pay people to do tasks that are not in your zone of genius. Let your children reap the rewards by hiring them to do work in the business and home

                    16. Make it fun for the kids

                    ericaZidel

                      Erica Zidel, mompreneur CEO of SittingAround and mom to 8-year-old son Gavin, says you should keep things interesting for the kids.

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                      I often find myself working from my home office on days where Gavin is home, too (e.g. school holidays, etc.). Taking phone calls with lots of noise in the background is not ideal, so I invented a lip-reading and charades game. When I am on a call and he needs something, he has to find a way to communicate to me as silently as possible. He can mouth it, act it out (no sound), or write in on a piece of paper. It entertains him and allows me to parent during business calls without interruptions—usually!

                      15. Focus on A+ business problems

                        Irina Jordan, mompreneur Founder and Owner of ARTISURN and mother of 3 kids, ages 2, 6, and 9, says you should focus on the most important things first.

                        Tackle one A+ business problem before you get to anything else, the one that makes a critical difference in the success of your business. Resist temptation to start on easier “B” and “C” ones—stay with the “mother of all problems” and experience a great sense of accomplishment. Plus you get to tell your kids you’re getting A+s at your work.

                        14. Get results

                        DavisFamilyNovemer2013

                          Kathy Catlin Davis, mompreneur owner of Inspired Abundance and mother of two boys, ages 2 and 5, says you should focus on the things that are going to get you the results you need.

                          Focus on money making and network-building tasks first—so for me, fiddling around with where a graphic goes on my website is last, after finishing projects for clients and doing networking activities.

                          13. Bribe yourself

                          allafeldman

                            Alla Feldman, mompreneur Co-Founder of Live Like You’re Traveling and mother of 2 kids, ages 1 and 3, says you should bribe yourself, just like you do your kids.

                            I bribe my ‘inner child’ with a reward for staying productive for a 2 hour work stretch. I then give myself 15 minutes “playtime” like having a coffee break or going for a brisk walk outside. I learned this from my kids, if they have something to look forward to like a playdate or going to the pool, they are much more likely to be perfect angels that day! It works for their mom too.

                            12. Lock the door

                            satsuma designs about

                              Jennifer Porter, mompreneur president of Satsuma Designs and mother of two kids, ages 5 and 8, says you need to get away from your kids and focus sometimes.

                              “Lock the door” sounds a little draconian, but as a practical tip and a philosophy, it has helped me find the work/life balance to achieve my business goals since my kids were toddlers. As a business owner and parent, you have to let yourself commit to business success. And doing that means to stop multi-tasking and get the work done without the distractions of others’ immediate needs (diapers, food, snot, and soccer pickups). Of course, as a mom you will always come to the rescue, but remember you can rescue yourself, too! And that’s a powerful feeling, Mom.

                              11. Know your “why”

                              jillfarmer

                                Jill Farmer, mompreneur author of There’s Not Enough Time…and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves and mother of two kids, ages 14 and 18, says you should focus on what you do want instead of what you don’t want.

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                                We say things like, “I’m doing this project so I don’t get in trouble with my boss,” or “I’m trying to sell more so I don’t miss my goals.”  It’s extremely powerful to turn your why’s around into something you DO want. “I want to finish this project so I can help the organization move to the next level and increase my chances for upward growth.” Or, “I would like to increase my sales to grow our family’s income and opportunities for travel.” You get the drift. Getting really clear on your why (and having it connect to your values) is rocket fuel to get moving on doing your best work.

                                10. Raise entrepreneurial kids

                                tanja

                                  Tanja Diamond, mompreneur Founder of Learning Tantra and mother of one 9-year-old, says your kids will understand better if they are also entrepreneurs.

                                  Raise an entrepreneur. Engage your kids in what you do. Write a book together. Build a website. Help them start their own brand. You will find they are more understanding of the time you need to take to succeed and you will inspire them and their friends to go out and follow their passions.

                                  9. Get really creative

                                  kathrynhawkins

                                    Kathryn Hawkins, mompreneur founder of Eucalypt Media, and mother of 2 kids, a 5-year-old girl and 10-month-old boy, says you can get very creative with how you get work done.

                                    Neither of my kids started going to daycare until after they were 6 months old. While they were at home, the best strategy for getting work done was to sit in a comfy chair with a nursing pillow and baby on top in front of my laptop at the kitchen table; nurse the baby to sleep; and then work on my laptop during the hour or two that the baby slept there. Bathroom breaks were a challenge, however…

                                    8. Sleep in—sometimes

                                    shannonbattle

                                      Shannon Battle, mompreneur President/Owner of Family Services of America and mother of five children, ages 19, 16, 11, 10, and 7, says sometimes you should sleep in.

                                      Start early and reward yourself with sleeping in on your off days. Get up early enough to get yourself together before everyone else. Never say yes unless you can plug it into your calendar.

                                      7. Keep your chin up, girl

                                      graninekelly

                                        Grainne Kelly, mompreneur founder of BubbleBum and mother of two kids, ages 14 and 11, says you must always have a positive attitude.

                                        Maintain a positive attitude, because that is essential for success. Energy is the fuel that feeds our attitude and it needs to be replenished on a daily basis. Having a positive attitude is a conscious choice, so when negative thoughts creep in, stop them in their tracks and replace them with positive self-talk. Repeat words or phrases that focus on affirming truths about you. Surround yourself with like-minded women who are an inspiration and who will provide encouragement. Positivity allows you to see the potential that lies within you and gives you the faith to step outside of the box to achieve your dreams.

                                        6. Drop the guilt

                                        Joanna & Jared Strober (1)

                                          Joanna Strober, mopreneur CEO and Co-Founder of Kurbo Health and mom to three children, daughter 15, and sons 13 and 7, says you don’t have to feel guilty.

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                                          As working mothers, we can be really hard on ourselves. We may have conflicting feelings, including guilt, anger, fear and helplessness that we can’t do it all. And guess what, no one can do it all—not even Superwoman.

                                          5. Bring back date night

                                            Dorothee Fisher, mompreneur Co-Founder & CMO of nousDECOR and mom of a 2-year-old and a 7-year-old, says you deserve a night of fun for yourself.

                                            When you’re working as many as 80 hours per week, you need time to recharge. Being a mom and entrepreneur can often feel like having three full-time jobs. And finding a last-minute babysitter is not a task you want at the end of a hard week. It’s no wonder date nights are a thing of the past. You need to take a load off. I recently tapped into UrbanSitter.com, rebuilt my network of sitters, and feel like I’ve been liberated. It’s like a mini-vacation at the end of every week.

                                            4. Use countdown timers

                                            SherlynLuedtkeandKids

                                              Sherlyn Pang Luedtke, mompreneur founder of Present Parent Training and mother of two kids, ages 5 and 10, says you should use countdown timers.

                                              When I use countdown timers, my pace speeds up because I want to beat the clock. The timer also brings me back from being immersed in creative flow in between client sessions. My kids and I use timers to play at work. For example, how fast do you think you can put all your toys away? It also keeps play in check and us on track, as in, “Would you like to set the timer to play for 3 or 5 more minutes before your bath?”

                                              3. Muti-tasking is a must

                                              Deborah Sweeney, mompreneur CEO of MyCorporation.com and mother of two sons, ages 8 and 10, says you have to do more than one thing at a time.

                                              Combining two things at the same time is a great way for mom entrepreneurs to get things done. If I didn’t find a way to work while I exercise, I’m afraid I would not exercise. When I exercise on the weekends, I always make sure one of my sons is with me. We ride bikes, I run while they ride their scooters and we try to get about town with less car use and more leg use. It’s a great way to get fresh air, to talk and catch up and to incorporate a healthy activity.

                                              2. Eliminate distractions at all costs

                                              jessicawyman

                                                Jessica Wyman, mompreneur Certified Nutrition Coach and Yoga Teacher at Wildly Vibrant Living and mother of 2 kids, ages 12 and 13, says distraction must go.

                                                You must know your pockets of productive time and be absolutely committed to no distractions even if it means locking yourself in the laundry room to get it done. The only distractions allowed are trips to the E.R. because someone swallowed a dozen quarters (or similar). The family must know that this is work time and then in return be fully committed to quality family time when it isn’t your work time.

                                                1. Put your health first

                                                michellelaver

                                                  Michelle Laver, mompreneur Co-Founder of Kate Farms and mother of four kids, ages 8, 17, 21 and 22, says your health is the most important thing.

                                                  I believe that good health is at the root of productivity, both in the workplace and in life. Good health starts with food, and since kids can be picky eaters, if their meals are healthy and taste great, it is a win/win for moms and their kids. Everyone feels better and is healthier! With healthy eating habits, I am able to go to work with a high level of energy and can tackle everything that needs to get done, and am safe in the knowledge that my kids are healthy and happy.

                                                  Featured photo credit: Reconciliation of family and work life: Attractive blond woman in business attire proudly carrying a small boy in her arm in office environment via shutterstock.com

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                                                  Last Updated on July 21, 2021

                                                  The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

                                                  The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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                                                  No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

                                                  Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

                                                  Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

                                                  A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

                                                  Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

                                                  In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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                                                  From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

                                                  A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

                                                  For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

                                                  This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

                                                  The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

                                                  That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

                                                  Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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                                                  The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

                                                  Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

                                                  But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

                                                  The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

                                                  The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

                                                  A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

                                                  For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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                                                  But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

                                                  If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

                                                  For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

                                                  These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

                                                  For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

                                                  How to Make a Reminder Works for You

                                                  Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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                                                  Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

                                                  Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

                                                  My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

                                                  Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

                                                  I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

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                                                  Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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                                                  Reference

                                                  [1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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