How to juggle motherhood and freelancing? by Ksenia Larina of @lemoneyeo

by Ksenia Larina

Being a mother is an important part of a woman’s life. But what to do if you want more than just switching diapers and cleaning toys the whole day? Some moms find themselves in new hobbies. Others prefer to conquer the world with a baby in arms by switching to freelancing.

First, don’t think that freelancing means sleepless nights, neverending migraines, and uncontrollable coffee consumption. If you manage your time correctly, you might be surprised how much you can do in only 24 hours.

Freelancing has become a lifeline for mothers who want to see their kids growing from day to day but are not ready to give up their careers. If you are one of them, here are a few tips from a mother of two little boys & a full-stack freelance dev who balances these two spheres of life for years.

Photo credit: Lemon.io

Create a comfortable workspace

Significant changes start with little things. Therefore, don’t underestimate the power of a sturdy work desk and a comfortable chair with good back support. Working in bed or the kitchen is admittedly possible, but your back won’t thank you.

Another thing to do is to move your kid’s play area within your peripheral vision so that you can keep an eye on them. Put your child’s favorite toys in easily accessible places, so they could choose which one to play with without distracting you from work.

Try to follow the same daily routine

This point is easier said than done. However, both you and your kid will be happier if you know when it’s time to wake up, watch cartoons, and have a walk outside.

This way your child will be more organized and easier to manage, and you will have more than ten minutes to work. From experience, the best ‘time blocks’ to work are:

  1. With the rise of the sun (if you are an early bird);
  2. During your kid’s daytime sleep (the golden hour for freelancing moms!);
  3. After the nighty fairytale (at 10 p.m. the freelance watch begins);
  4. A couple of hours (in total!) during the day while the kid is distracted with toys and cartoons (if you are lucky).

Have one-on-one time with your child

Probably, you chose to freelance because you wanted to be around your kid more often. So, don’t neglect the importance of your time together – no phones or other distractions for an hour. Just you and your kid.

Talk with your child. Show what you are doing at work. For example, as a freelance developer, you can change colors on the website or switch the website’s logo to Piggy Peppa. You will see how surprised and proud your kid will be! This way you develop an interest in your profession and make your child understand what mommy is doing all day long next to her laptop.

The more kids – the better

Yes, you understood me correctly. It’s much easier to deal with two children at the same time than with one. Kids play with each other, create new activities, and occasionally argue about who plays with a blue car and who gets the green one.

Arrange babysitting with other working mothers once in a while. Make sure to return the favor. Your kids will be happier among their peers, and you’ll save each other’s careers.

Besides that, in the spotlight of the global pandemic events, all parents who usually work from offices know how it feels to work surrounded by children.

Transform your work into a play

Does your child require your full attention all the time, even when your deadlines are pressing? If yes, there is a way not to lose the project.

Apart from the parent’s attention, kids also love games. Anything can become a toy, anyone can become a player. Propose to play the game ‘freelancing mom’. Prepare a working area for your child next to your working space and give him or her a ‘serious job’: to make a house from lego cubs, to pour cereals from one bowl to another with a teaspoon – use your imagination.

Don’t hesitate to ask for help if necessary

When nothing seems to be working, you turn to plan B – ask grandparents to help or find a nanny for a couple of hours per day. There is nothing wrong with asking for extra help. Yes, you are a super mom and a super freelancer, but you are also a human and need breaks.

If you work on a freelance platform, it is important to be open about your work schedule with your clients. This will help to regulate force majeure situations that might occur.

Whatever you do in life, always listen to yourself and your desires. If you can’t multitask, do meetings with the kids’ noise in the background, or work outside the office, maybe freelancing is not for you.

However, if you are ready to sacrifice working in comfort for the sake of your child’s happiness, give freelancing a shot. Start from small things – search for a freelance platform to collaborate and register there. Working through a platform saves a lot of time as they deal with the client’s search, sales, matching procedure while you simply do your work.

Overall, there are no magic recipes for the mother-freelancer balance. All you need is patience with children’s whims, support from your family, and much love for your freelance job.

Ksenia is Lemon.io Content & Brand Owner by title and a devoted writer by nature – it has been Ksenia’s passion for her entire life.

6+ years deep in digital marketing, Ksenia loves being a part of the team that’s building something from scratch. This is why her job is to basically start early-stage companies up.

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