My Life with 2 Kids and a Business

I was talking to a friend the other day and she asked, “how do you do it all?” She was amazed by how I juggle my business, being a mom, and feeding a family with a special diet.

Honestly, I was surprised to hear this particular friend’s question, because I’m in awe of everything she does. I’m not any more amazing than you or anyone else.

Let’s face it – whether you’re a mom or not, we all have a lot on our plate that we juggle. Some of you have full-time jobs and are growing your health coaching business on the side. Some of you are taking care of young children full-time, while building your business.

Sometimes it feels impossible to do it “all” and do it well…

  • Running your business
  • Working another job
  • Parenting
  • Making time for a significant other, friends, and family
  • Eating well
  • Exercising
  • And getting a good night’s sleep!

Like I said, I’m not any more amazing than you are, but I have put some systems in place that make juggling everything feel doable (at least on the good days :).

Here’s what a typical day looks like for me…

I wake up around 6am, nurse my 18 month old, and get my older daughter (she’s 6) ready for school. My husband helps with our little one. We all walk our older one to school (seriously one of the best parts of my day!).

We get home at 8am, I quickly nurse the little one, and then go to exercise. My husband hangs out with the little one until our wonderful nanny arrives at 9am.

I get home around 9am, shower, make a little snack, and nurse (my little one is still very attached to nursing!)

I start working around 10am. This usually means doing a quick email check to see if anything needs my urgent attention. I then move on to my priorities for the work-day or have calls with clients.

I take a break at 12pm to nurse and put our little one down for a nap. I then make a big salad for lunch and eat while responding to emails. (I’d love to tell you that I take a leisurely lunch away from my computer, but that honestly rarely happens.) I continue working until about 2:15pm.

I then get ready to pick my 6 year old up from school. I walk to pick her up so we get some 1:1 time. Once we’re home, I help get snacks ready for the girls and nurse the little one.

I work for another hour (from 3:30-4:30pm) – either calls with clients or wrapping things up for the day.

I stop working at 4:30pm, nurse, and get dinner ready. I’m usually just warming food up, so it’s fairly quick.

We eat dinner at 5pm and get the girls ready for bed. I pack lunch for my older one and get things organized for the morning. At this point it’s about 7:30pm

I often do a quick check of email and take care of non-work things.

Starting around 8pm (sometimes later), I take some down time, which usually means connecting with my husband (often this is brief because we’re both tired), 5 minutes of journaling, and then lying in bed and watching something fun on Hulu for an hour. I usually go to sleep around 9:30pm. Going to sleep at 9pm is ideal, but it rarely happens.

There are some things you may have noticed…

  • I have full-time childcare. We are incredibly lucky to have our amazing nanny. She not only helps with the girls, but she also helps with laundry and dishes – which means there’s less for me to do at night. It’s definitely expensive, but I love having my little one at home, and there’s no way I could do everything I do without full-time help.
  • I’m non-negotiable about my self-care. I prioritize getting exercise, eating healthy, and getting to bed early. I know I wouldn’t be nearly as productive (or happy) if I skimped in these areas. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not perfect. Sometimes I don’t get to sleep until 11pm or I may skip a yoga class I was planning on, but that’s not the norm.
  • We eat dinner early (and the kids go to bed early). Both of our girls start to meltdown around 5:30pm, so we’ve adjusted our schedule to make our evenings a little easier for everyone. This also means they’re both usually asleep by 7:30pm.
  • I don’t spend a lot of time cooking, even though everything we eat is homemade (except maybe Applegate hot dogs and mustard). My secret is that I have a lovely woman (who I found on craigslist) come and help me. She comes twice a week for a total of 6 hours and does about 90% of our cooking for the week. It’s not as expensive as you might think, and it makes it much easier for me to focus on the other areas (my family, my business, taking care of myself, and staying sane – at least most of the time.)
  • I don’t actually work 40 hours per week. The first 2-3 years of my business, I worked more than 8 hours a day, but now I get in anywhere from 4-6 hours per day.

It’s not as easy as it seems.

Some days things feel manageable and calm. Other days are more stressful, and I still have moments where I feel behind on any number of things, and wonder how it’s all going to get done. Figuring out the right schedule and the right balance is a constant work-in-progress.

Now I’d love to hear from you.
What are your secrets to juggling everything you have on your plate? What’s one tip you have to share? And, what’s one area you’re struggling with when it comes to balancing it all?

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