A little over a year ago, I took the big decision to quit my full-time job and take the freelance route (you can read more about what I do here). For most people, freelance life is crazy, careless and risky, but I knew it in my heart that I couldn’t survive in a corporate environment where you had to stay put from 8 to 5. Determined, I set my mind up to it. I decided I could do it. That I could match my income and that it wasn’t impossible. Then I vowed to never think otherwise. If I were to cave into negative thoughts and the influence of conventional people, I would not be where I am today.
FREELANCING AS A MOM
Freelancing as a mom however, is no piece of cake. This summer, I found myself trying to work freelance with a toddler on vacation! In our family, staying in the city during summer is out of the question. Add to that the fact that Alex had caught all possible viruses during the year, it was time to take a long summer holiday. So at the end of June, we moved to the mountains for 2 months of fresh air and no routine (panic!).
FREELANCERS ARE NEVER ON VACATION
The thing is, I wasn’t on vacation. I still had clients piling up, tons of things to do, and no one to babysit full-time. So here are a few things I did to manage finishing everything on my to-do list:
- PLAN. Plan your day really really well. As a freelancer, what helps is to know what to expect and let your clients expect when it comes to timing. Even if it’s the holidays, set a routine for some things and do not move from it. Note that some days, routine and timing will all be out of hand and that’s okay.
- EXPLAIN. If something urgent comes up, sit your toddler down somewhere they can play and explain you have to work for 5 minutes but that you’re next to them and will be done shortly. You’ll be amazed how much they’ll respect that, plus they’ll see you working and grow up inspired maybe?
- SCHEDULE. Set one day per week for meetings and book a sitter your toddler knows well or ask a relative if they can babysit. Lots of people offer, so take them up on that. Your child will be happy to play with someone new for a change. No guilt.
- USE NAP TIME. If your child still naps, there’s your chance to get some work done!
- LISTS, LISTS, LISTS. Take 5 calm minutes a day (I do it in the early mornings before anyone is awake) to make a clear, step-by-step list of everything I have to do. This way, when you’re busy chasing your toddler around, you know your to-do list is written down somewhere safe for you not to lose track or forget anything.
Moms who work freelance with a toddler on vacation, PLEASE do share your tips on how to get things done and keep your clients AND your kids happy!