I was sadder than usual about back-to-school this year. I’m always a little sad because it marks another year of time marching on, but there’s usually a heavier dose of feeling relieved to have more focused work time and a family routine.
The best summer ever!
I was very intentional about how I spent my time this summer. I’ve been at this for 15 years now – both parenting and consulting – so I have some experience under my belt on both fronts. I prioritized my work carefully and I was more realistic about what I could accomplish. It’s a paradox but planning less allowed me to accomplish more. I didn’t spend time feeling frustrated by unrealistic goals and I was always clear on my #1 priority.
We took several small trips instead of one big one. Our youngest is four so this worked better for him and allowed us to spread the fun over the entire summer. Although I did plenty of planning, I was also flexible and stayed open to opportunities as they came up. My brother spent a month in Park City and invited us to visit. My daughter had volleyball commitments, but I grabbed the little guy and went for a few days. We had the best time ever! I’m so glad I made that happen. It would have been so easy to let it go.
The Eiffel Tower is amazing but now I crave family.
I lost my Dad almost four years ago. I am stunned by how much I still miss him every day. I’ve seen the Eiffel Tower and it’s amazing but now my travel focus is family. We’ve had the best time visiting small towns in Minnesota, Nebraska and Utah.
The luxury to move beyond survival.
Have you ever thought about what a privilege this is to even entertain? Having the luxury to move beyond survival? Do you realize it is a uniquely human? To move beyond subsistence day to day? To move beyond safety, food, shelter and clothing? To have the audacity to pine for a bucket list?
What is your why?
I’m not really asking about your life purpose, but rather, why do you want to work for yourself? Have you ever noticed how often small children ask why? Constantly, right? Why are you thinking about starting your own consulting business? Or why did you start your own consulting business?
“He who has a why can endure any how.” — Frederick Nietzsche
Why did I start my consulting business?
I am usually all about how. I have built my entire career on implementation and execution, better known as getting things done. It’s a departure for me to ruminate about the why. It would be easy to say I’m doing it because of my kids, but I actually started my consulting business before I had kids.
Even before I had kids, freedom and flexibility were important to me. I clearly remember a woman who spoke at my high school for career day. She worked with computers and did it from home even in those days (pre-Internet). Freedom and flexibility were key reasons why I chose to major in Computer Science (along with Music and French). At the time my plan was to live in Aspen, ski all day, and work at night. I always hated cubicles and especially hated sitting in one at 8:00 in the morning.
Freedom to choose the what, when, where and how I work is my core why. Here is a great article that really covers all the bases 27 Things That Are Far Better About Working For Yourself.
Why am I still doing it after all these years?
Freedom is still the underlying why. I would still want to be working for myself even if I didn’t have kids. But the kids are the motivator that make me stick with it even when the going gets tough. I can work when I want, where I want and how I want. I work half my workday during the day and half at night. I can go on every school field trip if I want to. I am able to have more impact on my clients as a consultant than I could as a full-time employee and I make more money. It still takes some juggling, but I truly have the best of both worlds.
If I can do it, you can do it.
It’s shockingly easy to get started.
The mission of Billable with Baby® is to help you find the courage to start your own consulting business so you can have the freedom and flexibility to raise your children the way you wish. You can replace the full time pay your family needs.
The best way to get started as a consultant is to dive in. Land a Project NOW! gives you clear action steps to secure your first client and put a check in the bank. It’s easier than you think to start consulting. It includes an online course on the Teachable platform and a pop-up Facebook group with loads of personal support. We will have weekly live calls and unlimited access to our group of ambitious mothers starting and running successful consulting businesses. We empower working mothers to have meaningful careers with the flexibility to raise their children the way they wish.