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25 Amazing Productivity Tips From Successful Mompreneurs

25 Amazing Productivity Tips From Successful Mompreneurs

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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                                                  Published on January 16, 2019

                                                  How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

                                                  How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

                                                  We’re all busy, but sometimes we go through periods where the work piles up and it seems like it might never end.

                                                  You might have such a heavy workload that it feels too intimidating to even start.

                                                  You may have said yes to some or too many projects, and now you’re afraid you won’t be able to deliver.

                                                  That’s when you need to take a step back, take a deep breath, and start looking at what’s working and what’s not working.

                                                  Here’re 13 strategies you can use to get out from under your overwhelming workload:

                                                  1. Acknowledge You Can’t Do It All

                                                  Many of us have a tendency to think we can do more than we actually can. We take on more and more projects and responsibility and wear numerous hats.

                                                  We all have the opportunity to have and take on more work than we can reasonably expect to get done. Unfortunately, our workload is not static. Even now, while you are reading this article, I’m guessing that your inbox is filling up with fresh new tasks.

                                                  To make real, effective progress, you have to have both the courage and resourcefulness to say, “This is not working”. Acknowledge that you can’t do it all and look for better solutions.

                                                  At any given time in your life, there are likely many things that aren’t going according to plan. You have to be willing to be honest with yourself and those around you about what’s not working for you, both personally and professionally.

                                                  The more you exercise your ability to tell the truth about what’s working and what’s not working, the faster you’ll make progress.

                                                  2. Focus on Your Unique Strengths

                                                  Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a leader or working as part of a team, every individual has unique strengths they can bring to the table.

                                                  The challenge is that many people end up doing things that they’re simply not very good at.

                                                  In the pursuit of reaching your goals or delivering a project, people end up doing everything themselves or taking on things that don’t play to their unique strengths. This can result in frustration, overwhelm and overwork.

                                                  It can mean projects taking a lot longer to complete because of knowledge gaps, or simply not utilizing the unique strengths of other people you work with.

                                                  It is often not about how to complete this project more effectively but who can help deliver this project.

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                                                  So, what are your unique strengths that will ensure your workload is delivered more effectively? Here’re some questions to help you reflect:

                                                  • Are you a great strategist?
                                                  • Are you an effective planner?
                                                  • Is Project Management your strength?
                                                  • Is communication and bringing people together your strength?
                                                  • Are you the ideas person?
                                                  • Is Implementation your strength?

                                                  Think about how you can bring the biggest value to your work and the projects you undertake.

                                                  3. Use the Strengths of Your Team

                                                  One of the simplest ways to manage your workload effectively is to free up your time so you bring your highest level of energy, focus and strengths to each project.

                                                  Delegation or better teamwork is the solution.

                                                  Everyone has unique strengths. It’s essential to think teamwork rather than working in isolation to ensure projects can be completed effectively. Besides, every time you give away a task or project that doesn’t play to your unique strengths, you open up an opportunity to do something you’re more talented at. This will empower both yourself and those around you.

                                                  Rather than taking on all the responsibilities yourself, look at who you can work with to deliver the best results possible.

                                                  4. Take Time for Planning

                                                  “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe”. – Abraham Lincoln

                                                  One hour of effective planning could save hours of time. Rather than just rushing in and getting started on projects, take the time to map everything in.

                                                  You can take the time to think about:

                                                  • What’s the purpose of the project?
                                                  • How Important is it?
                                                  • When does it need to be delivered by?
                                                  • What is the best result and worst result for this project?
                                                  • What are the KPIs?
                                                  • What does the project plan and key milestones look like?
                                                  • Who is working on this project?
                                                  • What is everyone’s responsibilities?
                                                  • What tolerances can I add in?
                                                  • What are the review stages?
                                                  • What are the challenges we may face and the solutions for these challenges?

                                                  Having absolute clarity on the project, the project deliverables and the result you want can save a lot of time. It also gets you clear on the priorities and timelines, so you can block out the required amount of time to focus and concentrate.

                                                  5. Focus on Priorities

                                                  Not everything is a priority, although it can often feel, in the moment, that it is.

                                                  Whatever you’re working on, there is always the Most Urgent, Important or Most Valuable projects or tasks.

                                                  One tool you can use to maximize your productivity and focus on your biggest priorities is to use the Eisenhower Matrix. This strategic tool for taking action on the things that matter most is simple. You separate your actions based on four possibilities:

                                                  1. Urgent and important (tasks you will do immediately).
                                                  2. Important, but not urgent (tasks you will schedule to do later).
                                                  3. Urgent, but not important (tasks you will delegate to someone else).
                                                  4. Neither urgent nor important (tasks that you will eliminate).

                                                  James Clear has a great description on how to use the Eisenhower Matrix: How to be More Productive By Using the Eisenhower Box

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                                                    The method I use with my coaching clients is to ask them to lay out their Top Five priorities for the day. Then to start with the most important priority first. At the end of the day, you review performance against these priorities.

                                                    If you didn’t get everything accomplished, start the next day with your number one priority.

                                                    If you are given additional task/projects during the day, then you will need to gauge their importance V the other priorities.

                                                    6. Take Time Out

                                                    To stay on top of a heavy workload, it’s important to take time out to rest and recuperate.

                                                    If your energy levels are high and your mind and body is refreshed and alert, you are in more of a peak state to handle a heavy workload.

                                                    Take time out of your day to go for a walk or get some exercise in. Leave early when possible and spend time with people who give you a lot of energy.

                                                    In the background, it’s essential to get a good night’s sleep and eat healthily to sharpen the mind.

                                                    Take a look at this article learn about The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

                                                    7. Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance

                                                    Maintaining a healthy work-life balance can be tough. The balance we all crave is very different from one another.

                                                    I’ve written before about 13 Work Life Balance Tips for a Happy and Productive Life. Working longer and harder doesn’t mean achieving more, especially if you have no time to spend with the people that matter most. The quality of who you are as a person, the relationships you have, the time you spend in work, deciding on what matters most is completely within your control.

                                                    Work-life balance is about finding peace within yourself to be fully present, wherever you are, whether that be in the office or at home, right now. It’s about choosing what matters most and creating your own balanced life.

                                                    If you feel there is not enough balance, then it may be time to make a change.

                                                    8. Stop Multitasking

                                                    Multi-tasking is a myth. Your brain simply can’t work effectively by doing more than one thing at a time—at least more than one thing that requires focused attention.

                                                    So get your list of priorities (see earlier point), do the most important thing first, then move to the next item and work down your list.

                                                    When you split your focus over a multitude of different areas, you can’t consistently deliver a high performance. You won’t be fully present on the one task or project at hand.

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                                                    If you allocate blocked time and create firm boundaries for specific activities and commitments, you won’t feel so overwhelmed or overworked with everything you have to do.

                                                    9. Work in Blocks of Time

                                                    To keep your energy up to produce your best results it’s essential to take regular breaks.

                                                    I use the 60-60-30 method myself and teach it to my coaching clients.

                                                    Work on a project for a sustained period of 50 minutes.

                                                    Then take a 10-minute break. This could be taking a walk, having a healthy snack or just having a conversation with someone.

                                                    Then continue to work on the project for a further 50 minutes.

                                                    Then take another 10-minute break.

                                                    Then take a complete 30-minute break to unplug from the work. This could be time for a proper lunch, a quick bit of exercise, reading or having a walk.

                                                    By simply taking some time out, your energy levels stay up, the quality of your work improves and you reduce the risk of becoming burned out.

                                                    10. Get Rid of Distractions

                                                    Make an estimation on how many times you are distracted during an average working day. Now take that number and multiply it by 25. According to Gloria Mark in her study on The Cost of Interrupted Work, it takes us an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to return to the original task after interruption.[1]

                                                    “Our research has shown that attention distraction can lead to higher stress, a bad mood and lower productivity.”

                                                    Distractions don’t just take up your time during the distraction, they can derail your mental progress and focus for almost 25 minutes. So, if you are distracted 5 times per day, you could be losing almost 2 hours every day of productive work and almost 10 hours every week.

                                                    If you have an important project to work on, find a space where you won’t be distracted, or try doing this.

                                                    11. Commit Focused Time to Smaller Tasks

                                                    You know sometimes, you need to simply tackle these tasks and take action on them. But there’s always something more pressing.

                                                    Small tasks can often get in the way of your most important projects. They sit there on your daily To Do list but are often forgotten about because of more important priorities or because they hold no interest for you. But they take up mental energy. They clutter your mind.

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                                                    Commit to spending a specific period of time completing all the small tasks you have on your To Do list. It will give you peace of mind and the space to focus more on your bigger priorities.

                                                    12. Take a Time Audit

                                                    Do you know exactly where your time is going each day? Are you spending too long on certain projects and tasks to the detriment of bigger opportunities?

                                                    Spend a bit of time to analyze where you are spending your time. This insight will amaze you and give you the clarity to start adjusting where you focus your time and on what projects.

                                                    You can start by taking a piece of paper and creating three columns:

                                                    Column A is Priority Work. Column B is Good Work. Column C is low value work or stuff.

                                                    Each day, write down the project or task and the time spent on each. Allocate that time to one of the columns.

                                                    At the end of the week, record the total time spent in each column.

                                                    If you are spending far too much time on certain types of work, look to change things so your focused time is in Column B and C.

                                                    13. Protect Your Confidence

                                                    It is essential to protect our confidence to ensure we don’t get overwhelmed, stressed and lose belief.

                                                    When you have confidence as a daily resource, you are in a better position to problem solve, learn quicker, respond to anything, adjust to anything, and achieve your biggest opportunities.

                                                    Confidence gives you the ability to transform fear into focused and relaxed thinking, communication, and action. This is key to put your mind into a productive state.

                                                    When confidence is high, you can clearly see the possibilities at hand and create strategies to take advantage of them, or to solve the challenges you face each day.

                                                    Final Words

                                                    A heavy workload can be tough to deal with and can cause stress, burnout and ongoing frustration.

                                                    The key is to tackle it head on, rather than let it go on and compound the long-term effects. Hopefully, you can take action on at least one of these tips.

                                                    If it gets too much, and negatively affects your physical and mental health, it may be time to talk to someone. Instead of dealing with it alone and staying unhappier, resentful and getting to a point where you simply can’t cope, you have to make a change for your own sanity.

                                                    Featured photo credit: Hannah Wei via unsplash.com

                                                    Reference

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