Recently I’ve been struggling with niching a new company I’m setting up. You see, although I did set up my company from scratch and have done all the hard work and grind involved in getting a start up off the ground, I started from the “fortunate” position of not actually needing to work to help to support the family. I say “fortunate” because although this position would seem to be a blessing, and certainly it did relieve much of the financial pressure upon me, it maybe wasn’t quite for fortunate for other reasons.
The Carrot or the Stick?
It is claimed that people are motivated either by the carrot or the stick. With the carrot it is a motivation toward something pleasurable, whereas the stick involves motivation away from pain. Often times the motivation towards the carrot just isn’t strong enough to get us off our butts, and if there isn’t enough pain (ie stick) involved in NOT doing the thing that is good for us, we end up staying exactly where we are and our dreams and desires stay firmly in our heads.
A life of comfort
The problem therefore in leading a life of comfort is that it can be very hard to find the motivation to get up and do the thing you know is good for you. Aspiring Stay at Home Mum-Preneurs are unique in that we have more time and money when we start up our own enterprises, and therefore less risk. Our household is not generally dependant on any income we make.
But yet our positions also come with responsibility and obligation. Generally our husbands (and us) feel like if they pay the bills, then we should do all the work, so understandably they are not filled with joy at the thought of a new business venture that will take us away from tending to the needs of the family. We also suffer the mindset that because we don’t pay the bills, we should take on the responsibility of all the household chores, which we forget is basically a minimum wage task. Many of us are educated and intelligent people who enjoyed successful careers before we became mothers. In effect, we have accepted demotion and a pay cut.
The modern mum’s struggle
Most mums I know don’t want to leave their kids after they are born, but yet there are many who just don’t have the option of not returning to work. A woman’s basic instinct when her child is born is to want to be with them. However, we also want more than to just be a mother. We want to earn our own income and be financially independent, or at least have enough spare cash to buy that new pair of shoes without having to explain yourself to your other half. The balance is extremely hard to strike.
I have worked for years with an incredible coaching program founded by Keith Raniere which has enabled me to work though my personal limitations that stopped me from making a success of myself. I’m certainly by no means there yet, but I get closer every day.
How to start
My advice? Deciding what you want is the first step to having it. Even if you don’t take any action further than this, if you can figure out what your ideal situation is you can begin to make small steps towards getting it. Don’t overwhelm yourself by over analysing everything. Remember baby steps will get you closer to running than dreaming ever will.