Here we go ladies! We’ve just arrived at the biggest challenge many of us will face in our business year. SUMMER SCHOOL HOLIDAYS! Cue horror music.
For some of us, it’s a joyous time. We can take time off with our little ones and be fully present with them. No lunchboxes. No routine. No obligations. For others, there is no choice but to continue the juggle. So we do the best we can and that’s all anyone can expect!
I’ve had a few goes at it now, and I’ve got a bit of a formula worked out that works for my four little ladies and I. So here is my ultimate school holiday survival guide for Mums in business!
1. First and foremost, enjoy your little people while they’re still little
Not to get all emo on you, but those sweet little babes won’t be so little forever. So consciously enjoy the pudgy fingers, little hands finding yours, cuddles on the couch and their constant pleas for help. Never will you be more loved!
2. Forward load, if you can
Try to get a bit ahead, if that’s possible for you. If it’s not possible from a work perspective, batch cook dinners and pop them in the freezer. Plan your social media content and schedule a few posts so that you remain present without the pressure. Basically, brainstorm how you can throw your future self a bone.
3. Sacrifice the small stuff for the important stuff
I don’t know about you, but Mum guilt can be a nasty beast. You feel guilty for missing the little things, right? But to sacrifice an hour or two in front of Bananas in Pyjamas so that you can keep your business on track is not a game changer. Accepting this will allow you to be there for the memory-making stuff, like a trip to the zoo or an afternoon at the beach.
4. Manage expectations
This applies to both your clients/customers AND YOURSELF. Create an auto response on your email to let your customers know your situation and when they can expect a reply. Keep the communication open with existing clients and let them know where you’re at and when they can expect to hear from you. The other key thing to remember here is that you are HUMAN. You are building a killer business AND raising an awesome, well rounded family. Isn’t that part of the reason you started this business in the first place? Nobody expects you to be perfect, so release that expectation of yourself!
5. There is magic in this one, I swear: Spend quality time, THEN set time for work
Fill up their little love cups, THEN get your task list sorted. Mornings are a sweet spot for spending quality time with little ones. Make your first priority to spend time with them. Eat breakfast, play games, do craft, swim in the pool… whatever it is you love to do together that makes you all feel fulfilled and happy. I honestly can put my hand on my heart and say, they will then be happy for you to turn your focus onto work oriented tasks because their hearts will be full and they won’t be vying for your attention. Sometimes it doesn’t work so well, because well… kids are unpredictable after all. But it’s a good, solid game plan and works for me most of the time!
6. If you work at home, get out of the house!
Give yourself a brain break. Delete your social apps from your phone and get out of the house so you’re not tempted to slide into your inbox for ‘just a second’.
7. Get your craft on
There are so many ways to set up activities or craft sessions that keep little ones occupied for hours! I shared my super easy peasy play dough recipe recently. Find it here. There are also many free ideas or low cost downloadables available online.
Here’s a few gems:
Last but not least…
8. Schedule in a really fun, quality family activity for each week
This gives everyone something to look forward together. It’s not a bribe, promise. Although if that works for you I’m not judging. 😂 Here’s a few ideas I’ve thrown together:
- Art classes – If you’re in Adelaide, try Little Picassos
- Picnic in the botanical gardens
- Breakie at the beach – find a beach that has a community BBQ and have pancakes at the beach!
- Library (ALWAYS a winner here)
- Sandcastles and ice cream at the beach
- Nature playground
- Visit to the zoo or aquarium
- Kids cooking classes
- Take a drive to explore a part of your city you haven’t been before
Basically, the key here is to commit to quality time with your little ones so that they feel seen, loved and attended to. THEN you’ll be surprised at how much work you can get done. Give it a go and let me know how it works for you!
One more thing before you go. I have a gift for you. A gift to say thank you for being a part of my Hopscotch family this year as we tackle biz-life together. I’ve created a free Summer Holiday Gif Challenge template for you to share in your Facebook or Instagram stories. There’s no catch. Click on the thumbnail below to download the image. Tag me @hopscotchbrandingstudio when you share it so that I can see how your school holidays are going!
Enjoy those little people and remember to BREATHE!