7 Steps For Building A Solid Support System As A Busy, Working Mom
In my last post, I wrote about how important it is for you to learn to say no, so that you set healthy boundaries, always honor yourself, and never do things out of a feeling of guilt or obligation. Today, I want to delve a little bit deeper into this concept of putting yourself first, by offering you some valuable tips for creating your own support system.
First and foremost, I have a question for you:
Do you have a support system?
No matter who you are, you need a support system. The truth is, we were created to be in community with each other, and we need each other. No man or woman is an island. Socialization is a huge part of the equation.
I hung out with my @wellvyl_tribe for a few hours the other night, and it was amazing! What a great night of friends, family, conversation, and inspiration. We get together to learn and expand with each other.
These moments with friends rejuvenates my spirit. It energizes me. It lets me know that I’m not alone. We all need that. But here’s the issue…
Your tribe, your support system, and your team must be created and cultivated by you!
If you’re sitting around thinking about how stressed, overwhelmed, and lonely you are, but you’re doing nothing about it, what’s the point? You have to create the support system that you need. It won’t just create itself.
Some of you are blessed to have close family members and friends who are there to help you and support you when you need it. But sadly, for most people, this is not the case. Most people have to build their own tribe, and create a strong support system from scratch.
Here are 7 Steps For Building A Solid Support System As A Busy, Working Mom:
1. Recognize that you need help. It’s mind-boggling to me that so many people really believe that they can make it through this world alone. Some of you feel like it’s an honorable thing to try to go through life doing everything by yourself. You’ve convinced yourself that you don’t need help, and that no one can do it as good as you do it. This is a dangerous way to live. You do not want to burn yourself out. Remember, you have people depending on you. So you need to ensure that you have the proper support to manage all of your responsibilities well, and also have balance in your daily life. So bite the bullet, recognize your humanity, and accept the fact that you need help. We all do! That’s the first step to building a solid support system: recognizing that you need one.
2. Prioritize getting the help that you need. The truth is, most of you already know you need help, right? Duh! So what have you done about it? Have you just been complaining to your spouse, family, and friends about your lack of support, while simultaneously doing nothing to build that support system? Probably so. Well, that ends today! Let’s make this a priority this week! Stop putting it off, stop complaining about it, and get to work. The longer you wait to put your support system in place, the harder life will be for you. You will continue to feel stressed, fall behind in your work or personal responsibilities, and not be your best self for your spouse, or your children. So what are you waiting for? Make it happen!
3. Make a list of the main areas you need help with. Now this will vary for everybody. But until you write it down, and actually see it on paper, you won’t be clear about where it is exactly that you need the most help. You may need to take laundry off of your to do list, and use a laundry drop-off service, in order to free up some of your time and energy. You may need to hire someone to come clean your house, once-a-week, or twice-a-month. You may need to hire a VA to handle some of your e-mails, administrative tasks, or customer service. Maybe a meal-prep service would be helpful to you, or a personal trainer, or a babysitter on the weekends. Write down those areas where you’re really struggling, and need support, so that you can clearly see where the problem lies, and get started on creating the solution. Which leads me to point number four…
4. Start your search. Now that you’re clear on exactly where you need help, it’s time to start searching for the person or people you need to hire, barter with, or partner with, to get the help that you need. If you’re looking for childcare, or help with taking care of a parent, or a pet, Care.com is an excellent resource! You can find quality childcare providers, house cleaners, nannies, babysitters, etc. on this website, and all for a very reasonable price. If you need help with your work, or with your business, you can go to Upwork.com or Fiverr.com to find people with the exact skill sets that you need to hire for, and negotiate the best rate that works for your business. On these sites you can find everything from web designers, to social media managers, graphic designers, copywriters, and more. Check these sites out, and start exploring your options today.
But let’s not forget one obvious thing though. You live in community with people, right where you are. So you may want to start there. Reach out to some of the other moms from your kids’ school, reach out to your friends from the church you attend, your neighbors, etc. Let people know what you’re looking for, and start putting the word out there.
You might be able to exchange some babysitting hours with one of your neighbors, or hire a high-school student from your church to babysit for you, a few times a week. There may be a College student, whose family lives in your building, or neighborhood, whose coming home for the summer, and looking for an internship. Start conversations with the people who are currently in your circle, and see what recommendations they can offer you. You may be surprised to learn that the help you needed, was right in front of you all along.
5. Get some back-up. So you’ve found the person, or people that you’re looking for, and you’ve started creating your support system. But then, BOOM! You get hit with something unexpected like; someone moves, gets pregnant, gets sick, gets a new job, or has a family emergency, and now you’re back to square one again. Your solution: Have some back-up.
When creating your support system, make sure that everything isn’t riding on just one person. Because if anything happens to that one person, you’re in trouble. So make sure you get more help than you think you need. Don’t just hire one babysitter, hire two. If you’re going to hire a VA, hire them through a VA company, versus just hiring an individual. VA companies provide back-up support, if your normal VA is unavailable for some reason. You get the idea. Put this back-up system in place BEFORE you need it. Thank me later.
I had an incredible time at the Self Soul Sport event (pictured above), as we discussed collaboration vs competition!
6. Build your tribe. Alright, so you’ve gotten your personal and business support system in place, now it’s time for you to get your tribe together. Your tribe is the people that motivate you, encourage you, and challenge you to go to the next level in your business or career.They’re there to help keep you accountable, and ensure that you follow through on what you’re supposed to be doing. One of the best ways to connect with these people, and build your tribe, is through Facebook groups, and attending live events. There is literally a Facebook group for any and every niche, topic, and industry that you can think of. Do your research and find some Facebook groups that you can join, and start networking.
Start making new connections, and building relationships with the people in the groups. I’ve made many beneficial connections with people online, that have turned into great business relationships, or even real-life friendships, so don’t sleep on the power of Facebook groups (and social media in general). You can join my Facebook group for busy, working moms, trying to stay fit here.
But don’t get it twisted, social media can never replace real-life interaction with people, so push yourself to attend live events happening in your area, or industry. Every time I attend a live event with people from my industry, who I respect and admire, it pushes me to go harder, and stay focused on my goals. You need your tribe if you want to start thriving in your career or business.
7. Get a Coach. Every professional athlete that you can think of, has a coach. Every successful entrepreneur, has a Mentor, or Business Coach that helps push them out of their comfort zone, and keep them on track and focused to perform at their best every day. Whether you connect with a fitness coach or personal trainer, or get a business coach, life coach, or a mentor, you need a Coach. You need to have someone in your life whose sole purpose is to make sure that you are being the best that you can be, and pushing you forward to move to the next level. When it comes to jumping rope, I’m your Coach! You can get my 30-Day Getting Started with Jump Rope Guide, or join me in person for one of my Jump Rope classes in NYC. But for those other very important areas of your life, don’t neglect to reach out to someone to get the help you need. Every successful person has a Coach of some sort in their support system. Now it’s time for you to get one too!
Lastly, I want to add something very important. Your mental health is vital! Please don’t ever hesitate to connect with a Therapist, or to seek out Counseling if you need it.
There is nothing to be ashamed of, afraid of, or to feel guilty or awkward about. Get the help you need so that you can be your best, most fabulous self, each and every day.
You will start to enjoy life to the fullest when you have a strong support system lifting you up, and your mental health is on fleek!
Make yourself a priority, and know that there are people who are ready and willing to offer you the support you need. But you have to ask for help first, and make it happen.
So let’s talk about this! Do you have a support system in place? Which of these components are you currently missing? Where do you need more help?
Tell me in the comments below, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Let me know if I missed anything too!
Post a comment below, and be sure to share this post on social media to help spread the love!