Updated: Jun 4, 2020
Today we're looking at strategies for being an intentional mom and income provider. Now it just so happens that I love business, so this is a super fun topic to me!
Most moms have to at least contribute to the family income. Whether single or married, the cost of living these days demands a lot of creativity in making enough money to pay the bills. Even most stay-at-home moms and homeschool moms I know are making some type of income.
What's On the Podcast for this Topic:
The first half of today’s podcast, I share a list of tips and tricks that I have done to make income while momming. Then the second half of the podcast, we listen to the last part of the conversation between one of my grown daughters, Becca, and me, as we discuss juggling an at-home business and raising kids.
What Making Money and Being a Mom has looked like for me
I have had to help our family financially for all the years I’ve been a parent, up until recently. But, wouldn't you know it, when we finally are at a place where my making income is optional, God calls me to do more with my Practically Speaking MOM ministry. In fact, I am spending more time than ever "working from home."
I had a college degree in speech communications but once I had kids, I wanted to be home with them. So, first I kept other children in a home daycare. That was definitely the most difficult of all the forms of income I've tried. Then I started selling things – first it was Usborne Childrens Books and I adored every minute of that because I love books, especially children's books. But, I spent more buying the books than selling them. I still love Usborne Books!
Then I found Mary Kay. I was not the girly type, I hardly ever wore makeup and when I did, I didn’t wear it well. I certainly was no one that women would want to take image advice from. But I fell in love with the opportunity it created for me to help women in such impactful ways, because I figured out that when women take off their makeup in front of you, they tend to open up about their life. I loved being able to bring them hope from God's word for their life stuff. I loved inspiring them to let God lead their life. I loved sharing financial hope with them too so I began building a team and, before I knew it, I had earned my first free car and the income that comes with it just by loving on people. Not by looking perfect or knowing everything about glamour, but by genuinely caring about women's self-perception, confidence, and offering them a way to stay home while still making money.
Learning Customer Service Skills taught me how to be a good friend & taught me how to visit with people (the art of making a friend)
To be perfectly honest, before working in sales, I didn’t really know how to be a good friend and I also was very uncomfortable in one on one settings and in small groups. Oh, I could speak in front of large crowds, no problem. I was occasionally speaking to women’s ministry groups or at Christian women's retreats as the Practically Speaking MOM, as I had always been called to minister to women. My makeup business was another opportunity for me to encourage women, motivate them to choose to have a standard of excellence in their actions and in their decisions because their family deserved both a good role model in their mother and they deserved the ripple effects of being led by a person who was making wise choices in their life. I absolutely loved inspiring women to do this. And over time, I earned three more cars.
I was especially drawn to moms and wanted to help them in every way I could to grow a strong family while growing their business. I wanted them to see that they were setting an example for their children in how to live life. I just was hooked on helping them straighten out their lives financially and relationally, by getting straightened out spiritually.
I was discovering, through this time, that most moms passionately desire to have a strong family, but just don't know where to get solid parenting principles, nor how to apply those principles to their specific situation. God was increasing in my heart a passion for giving moms hope and guidance utilizing a combination of my education in communication along with what the Bible teaches us about how God demonstrates His love to all of us, His children.
Each step along the way I have been surprised by the next step God would ask me to take in my Practically Speaking MOM ministry.
He inspired me to write the four books I have so far: Wearing All Your Hats without Wearing Out
When Littles are Loud
Clash in Your Home
And then He asked me to take the step of being a blogger and then the crazy step of being a podcaster! I wonder what He may ask of me next. I have no idea. But I have come to love listening for His voice and taking leaps of faith with Him!
Tips for Making it all Work
I want to share some specific things I did to make it all work - raising seven children, homeschooling, and earning income.
#1 Allow God to be the CEO of your business
By far, this is the most important step in juggling income and parenting. Let him lead your income. Follow his gentle voice speaking to your heart. He knows better than we do on whether to make income, what income to make, how many hours to spend a week working, and when it’s time to cut back (because there are absolutely times when you need to drop work like a hot potato and focus only on your family). Let God guide you through all of it. He is our source for all we need from direction, to energy, to income - He provides it all. Let your family see that you are always following His lead.
#2 Get your household systems in place.
We can’t thrive in chaos. I know it takes extra time to get a laundry system or a meal system or a chore system running smoothly, but do you know what takes more time? Trying to thrive when you don’t have systems in place. that takes a lot more time and costs a lot more frustration and exhaustion. Even more than that, if we don’t get organized with these have-tos, we aren’t freed up to focus on the hearts of your children and that simply must remain a top priority. I would encourage you to go back and listen to the episodes on Time Saving Strategies for busy households or I also have it as a download all the parts of it as one complete workshop on my website, www.PracticallySpeakingMOM.com. It’s a $4 download & also in my Resources section of my website are the power point slides that go with that workshop, those slides are there for FREE. You want your systems to be on autopilot as much as possible so that your focus can be on relationships – relationships in this order: God, marriage, kids, others. These are foundational building blocks for a solid family life and if you don’t get these relationship cornerstones in place, above everything else, your house will start to crumble.
There's one more "system" that is essential to have in place for your family to thrive even while you are working. This is a bit different of a system - it's the system of shaping your child's character. For my kids' future, for their peace, for their favor with professors and employers, for my peace, for our home to function, we needed to have a relationship where I have character standards for the kids and they are open to growing. Responsibility, honesty, follow-through, respect... if you get your children on a trajectory of personal growth (see Raising a Luke 2:52 Kid) then you will be amazed at how your family can thrive. But, you have to commit to the time and consistency that it requires to get this system going.
#3 Focus on People over Profit.
We spend most weeks on this podcast learning about the relationships within our family, because that’s the key to a strong family. And it is no different with your business. Learning to love people sincerely & valuing them is the key to a strong business as well. My mom and I began our MK businesses at the same time. We both earned cars pretty quickly and grew lots of other women to have successful businesses, not because we were good at makeup and skincare (although we did take learning our business seriously) but because we put people ahead of profit. My mom is a fun-loving, carefree person who never was one for being organized in her business and yet she was successful. She actually has gone on to earn over ten free cars and has made a good income for decades from her business. I was the opposite – very organized and rather boring. Two opposite people who both achieved success in an organization because of one main focus – love people consistently. I would recomme