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Focus, Focus, Focus – The Balancing Act of a Mompreneur

By Dawn Berryman

I got myself and two kids up and dressed, blogged, tweeted, worked seven hours, attended a business lunch meeting, answered countless e-mails, prepared and cleaned up dinner, fed the dog, wrote the grocery list, updated Facebook, bathed one Great Dane and two kids, read bedtime stories, soothed a grumpy three-year-old to sleep, wrote another blog post …

And, this was just on Tuesday. How do we do it all and manage to maintain our sanity?

For me, it’s focus.

I keep a running list, or I should say lists. I have work lists, personal lists, grocery lists, to-do lists, honey-do lists, pretty much a list for any occasion. But, this keeps me focused on what needs done and helps me prioritize effectively.

When I’m asked for suggestions on how to keep things organized, or how to get things accomplished more quickly, I always suggest lists. It’s a visual way to see what you need to get accomplished, but it’s also a visual way to see what you’ve already done. To me, the feeling of crossing things off of my to-do list is reassuring. I can, and will, get all these things done. Generally though, crossing a few things off just makes room for that many more. I’m sure you can relate.

I also try to focus on one thing at a time. Admittedly, I’m not the best at multi-tasking, so I try to do one thing at a time and do it well. Focusing my energy on one task at a time makes me more efficient.

It’s easy to get distracted, especially in this world we live in today. We are pulled in so many different directions and wear so many different hats. But, if you can focus on one challenge at a time, you are more likely to accomplish that goal quickly and move on to the next. This is especially important, I think, when it comes to separating business from parenting.

When I have a rough day, which happens more often than I’d like to admit, I refocus on what’s important. That is always my husband and my children. My work, my business, my volunteerism, my friends, my hobbies, they are all important, but not as important as the family we’re building. That’s what I’m most proud of at the end of the day anyway.

When the extra-stressful, busy days hit, it’s easy for our vision of what is truly important to get hazy and blurred. That’s when it’s the most important to take the time to refocus and perhaps make that list to prioritize everything.

When you lose focus it’s easy to become distracted and overwhelmed. When that happens, try to zero back in on your motivation and your main personal focus. For each of us it may be different, but for each of us it’s equally important.


Dawn Berryman is the founder of MarketMommy.com and Market Mommy:: The Blog, online marketing resources for mom entrepreneurs. Market Mommy shows moms how and where to market their businesses. She holds a B.A. from Indiana University and has worked in the marketing/communications field for more than 8 years. She resides in rural Ohio with her husband and two young children. For more information, please see: Market Mommy.

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4 Responses to “Focus, Focus, Focus – The Balancing Act of a Mompreneur”

  1. 1
    Carmen Cardoza says:

    Where does the husband fit into all these lists? I’m with you on the Focus, Focus, Focus, but I’m also learning to Delegate, Delegate, Delegate.

  2. 2
    Dawn says:

    I definitely didn’t write this post with the intention of making it look like my husband doesn’t do anything! We are partners for sure. I probably could have written a list just as long of the things he had done the same day. He helps me enormously! He doesn’t necessarily help with my business, but he’s a very hands-on dad and most nights we do the whole evening routine together. And, by the way, it takes both of us to bathe the dog :)

  3. 3
    Rosemary Nickel says:

    I love your honesty. It’s so true that the lists go on forever. It’s also amazing moms have the capability to pack an unbelievable amount of things in to one day!

    Just like you Dawn, my family is my first priority, but I have to admit that I allow my self to get all consumed with business ideas, blogging, social media sites, etc, that I slack off on my duties as a wife and mother.

    Thankfully my kids have ways of reminding me that I need to refocus! :) They don’t allow me to slide too far down that slippery slope!

    The guilt that goes with this “balance” of building a business, while raising a family is heavy. The typical guilt trips that moms go on.
    * “Am I doing the right thing?”,
    * “Maybe I should get a regular job?”
    this one is followed up with a real quick…HECK NO!
    * “Am I paying enough attention to my children”
    * “Will they hate me for being on FB, twitter, blogging, etc.
    instead of playing with them?”

    you know what I mean…
    * “Am I scaring them for life?”

    However, the single biggest thing that never fails to remind me of what’s most important is when I am away on a business trip or away on vacation spending time with my children. It never fails that I re-adjust my priorities and refocus on what is truly important.

    I am building my business so that I can have more time with my family. Thus I need to stop and do just that!

    Thanks for the reminder!!

    Rosemary Nickel
    Motivating Other Moms (working on the website)

  4. 4
    Tanya says:

    I am a huge list maker! I don’t know how to function without one! I have to remind myself of focusing on one thing at a time, thanks for the reminder.

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