Being a stay-at-home Mom is a full-time job. However, it may also present opportunities to pursue long-held interests. What have you always wanted to do but couldn’t because of a demanding career? Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to pursue your dream.
Create a Plan
Perhaps the dreams that you had before motherhood have changed. Going skydiving, backpacking across Europe or pursuing an advanced degree may be on the back burner right now, but there are plenty of other things you can do to pursue your passions from home. Here are some questions to get you started:
- Do you need to take a class or pursue further education to reach your goal?
- What experience do you need to get started?
- What steps can you take to make the most of the time you have right now?
Make a Schedule
Being an at-home mom is extremely rewarding and invaluable to your child’s development. Between school, baths and trips to the grocery store, your day can fill up quickly. Pencil in time to work toward your goal. Perhaps you can find online tutorials, mentors or a support group. For example, if you want to become a teacher, you can join a forum that covers teaching topics and includes an active community of inspiring professionals. You may have to do this late at night or in 20-minute intervals during nap time. The most important thing is to make a schedule and stay true to your own ambitions.
Get Help with Your Kids
Maybe your goal is to lose weight or learn pottery. In order to take classes outside the home, don’t be too proud to barter with other moms for babysitting time. You might even encourage other women to follow their own dreams. If your goal involves significant time away from home, you may need to hire someone to watch the kids for short intervals so you can study or pursue a degree. If you have several kids living at home, your goal may be simply to find time to exercise or rest. Work out a time each day that your partner can watch the kids while you take a few minutes to meditate, walk around the block or go to aerobics. You may be surprised how quickly friends and family get on board when they see how much it means to you to pursue your own goals.
Build Emotional Support with Other At-Home Moms
Pursuing your dream of running a half-marathon or becoming a commercial pilot may seem too difficult to even think about at this stage of your life. Some days you’ll want to give up — and some days you will give up! Those are the days you need your friends to straighten you out and keep you from feeling too discouraged. Whether it’s your spouse, best friend or neighbor, surround yourself with supportive people and consider cutting out people whose negative energy brings you down.
Resilience Is the Key
When you face obstacles to achieving your goals, dig deep to find the resolve to continue. Work on your dream every day. Eventually, you’ll have a notebook, vision board or spreadsheet with a step-by-step plan to achieve it. If something comes up to derail you, try to take it in stride and make up the time the next day. If your goal is to pursue a black belt in karate, it may take several years to achieve that, but it happens one class at a time. Whatever your goals are, success is a journey not a destination. So, be sure to enjoy the ride.
You become an at-home mom to put your family first, so don’t compromise on the lifestyle you have chosen. It may take a little longer to choose a goal to pursue, but the experience is very freeing. Your kids will see you going after what you want and will eventually learn to appreciate the sacrifice you’ve made for them — and respect you for having your own life.