Having a baby is not easy. Infants require full time attention and looking after them can quickly wear you out (especially if you’re a first time mom adjusting to parenthood).
Starting a business is also not easy. It can be viewed as a second baby – in the beginning, it needs your constant attention and it can be equally draining in some cases.
So is raising a baby and starting a business really possible? Yes, but expect it to be very challenging! If you’re eager to start a business, it may make sense to strike when the iron is hot. And there may be advantages to starting a business with a baby – if you’ve been granted time off work, you may in fact have more time to focus on a new business venture (although much of this time will of course be spent on your baby). This guide explains some tips on how to successfully launch a business when looking after a baby.
Follow your passions
Following your passions is so important after having a baby – becoming a mother can take away a lot of freedoms, but you still need another purpose beyond being a parent. Continuing a hobby or interest that you enjoyed before becoming a mother can give you this added purpose and can provide a break from parental duties. These are the types of passions that are best turned into businesses while raising a baby.
For example, if you love baking, making jewelry, playing piano or exercise, try to set up a business around these passions (for example, selling cakes, selling jewelry, selling piano-based stock music or setting up an exercise class for fellow moms and babies). You don’t want to be setting up a business that you don’t have a strong interest in – even if you’re certain it can make money, it could feel more like an added chore rather than an outlet for your passions, and it will only make you yearn for freedom more.
Do your research
It’s so important to do your research before starting any business. Dedicate a few weeks to doing market research and understanding the business stuff such as how to file taxes and how to get an FEIN. You can do all this research on your phone while looking after your baby. This leads to the next important point…
Take advantage of the internet
Getting out and about with a baby (especially a newborn) isn’t always easy. Meeting certain professional people in person may be difficult – you may not always want to bring your baby with you as it may affect your professional reputation or simply serve as a distraction.
Fortunately, there is so much you can do nowadays online. From seeking out legal advice to shopping for business supplies, it’s possible to do most of it on the internet from your phone. And of course, much of your marketing can be done online too. This allows you to more easily juggle starting a business and being there for your baby.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help
There will be times when you need to focus all your attention on your business. During these times, it’s important to have someone you can depend on to look after your baby. Make sure that you give people warning and that you’re not having to constantly rely on childcare (such businesses may not be appropriate to launch with a baby unless you’re willing to constantly be away from your child).
When you need to look after your baby, it’s also important to have people you can rely on for professional help. Setting up a business with someone else could be a great way to help share the duties and give you time to look after your baby. Alternatively, you can consider hiring someone or outsourcing various duties to free up time (such outsourcing all your marketing or accounting).
Schedule time to rest
Both a business and a baby can take up a lot of your time and both may reduce the amount of sleep you get. Make sure that you’re scheduling time to catch up on sleep or to simply relax so that you don’t burn out. You can ask a partner or loved one to babysit for a couple hours each week while you relax or take a nap. Try to schedule this time so that you can look forward to it and plan around it.
Consider starting it before or after the baby phase instead
If starting a business with a baby seems too challenging, you could always plan to wait until they are in daycare or school. This does mean putting off your business plans, but it could also give you more time to prepare and you’ll be able to dedicate more attention solely to your business when launching it.
Another option is to start a business while pregnant. The whole startup process could be quite time-consuming in some industries and could be difficult with a baby – getting things started before the baby arrives could allow you to get the hardest step out of the way. Just make sure that you don’t put too much stress on yourself while pregnant and that you can get your business fully launched by the time the baby arrives.
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