Friday, April 07, 2017

Mom & Blogger: Finding The Balance To Maximize Both Roles

Hi, dear Loyal Readers! I know I've been missing from this blog for a few weeks now (I blogged just twice last month!). I'm busy with my job as consulting editor for beauty website,, and also with my new column about work-at-home moms at parenting website, Between these two new projects, home management, mothering and blogging, I didn't realize that I'll have such a hard time juggling! Life was much easier when I was just a mom blogger!

I'm not complaining, though. It feels good to be writing regularly for a publication again (and about parenting, too!). I'm also grateful for Calyxta because I got to experience corporate life again without the full time commitment. I still work from home and only check in at the office three times a week. It's helped me and my family adjust our expectations for when I go back to the corporate world. The Calyxta project ends this April so I can blog regularly again in May! I'm so excited. I miss blogging so much!

If you're a mom who wants to stay home with your kids and yet earn money, too, do try blogging. I know the web seems overpopulated with mom bloggers but believe me when I say that all mom voices are welcome here. We all need a community and it's so nice to find similar voices and feel comfort knowing you're not alone with your parenting struggles. If you don't want to be a mom blogger, that's great, too. You can write about your hobbies and interests instead. If you can earn from your blog, that's even better!

Blogging for business is an attractive career choice for any mother. Not only does it present the potential to earn good money from doing something you love, but it also offers versatility and control. Ultimately, that means you can build a work schedule on your terms, enabling more quality time with the children.

Juggling the two roles of mother and blogger isn’t an easy task, though. Frankly, failing to manage your time in an effective manner will cause major damage to both. As I've proven myself recently, I failed to juggle. Thankfully, it was my blogging that suffered—not my kids! This made me think of how I can keep things under control. Here are a few tips I found:

1. Build an organized workspace. 
The toughest challenge facing any home-based entrepreneur is finding a way to use the property as both a home and a workplace. Building a quality home office should be top of the agenda. It will help separate the two elements of your life and is also a clear indication for your family too. If you’re in the office, you’re at work. My friend, personal branding coach Martine de Luna, says in my Juana article, 5 Tips to Battle the Cons of Working from Home, "When I have to work at home, I separate myself from the kids and go to my workspace on the second floor. When they see me at the desk, they know it’s [do not disturb] time."

Speaking of workspace, my husband moved my desk to our bedroom so I can close the door when I work. But as a mommy of little kids, I haven't been able to do this yet haha. Another challenge I have is organizing my paperwork. Running a business from one small room can feel daunting, so going paperless is key. Fortunately, being a digital operation gives you a great starting point. Meanwhile, an online p.o box address can save you from facing huge amounts of paperwork. Either way, finding the right balance in this arena can only work wonders for your aspirations. 

2. Know your blogging goals. 
While I started blogging more than a decade ago as just a hobby, I've turned blogging into a business because of my work with many brands. Of course, since it became a business, I've had to be more serious about blogging. I had to set goals beyond just sharing my stories.

Many people scoff at it but blogging is a serious job. It requires a lot of time, hard work and money. Without a sense of direction, though, you’ll find that you'll falter on the job. Unfortunately, the productivity and outcomes will be far worse, too. So as a businesswoman, know why you're blogging, who you're blogging for, and what do you want to achieve through your blog.  

Planning ahead to ensure your blogging platform grows in the right way is essential. You can schedule posts regularly, make sure you share your posts on every relevant social media account, engage your readers on your Facebook page, use the right hashtags. This will help grow your blog and your influence, which will get the interest of sponsors. 

3. Consider letting your family play a role. 
Because mommy blogging is so lucrative these days, mom bloggers usually get accused of exploiting their children. Mining their kids' lives for entertainment, they say. As any proud mommy will tell you, sharing our kids' adorable photos and telling stories about how wonderful family life is is not about entertainment. We genuinely LOVE our kids and we're so proud of our happiness! We want to share away—whether we get paid or not! 

Readers also love having that insider's peek into the blogger’s life—and nothing is more authentic than a mommy's stories on her parenting adventures. Motherhood is just so huge, demanding, surprising and profound that it's impossible to fake. Plus, everyone loves kiddies. As many readers have oh-so-honestly told me, they don't read my blog because of me; they read it because they love my kids! And it's always so amazing when a parent feels the love of people for her kids. Mommy blogging is the best!

Now, as the kids get bigger, I do believe they need more privacy. But they can still be involved in your blog. Technology plays a huge role in modern society, and today’s youth probably know more about the internet than most adults. Once yours are at the right age, it could be worth giving them a little job within the work. Whether it’s writing, building SEO, or managing your blog's Instagram or Pinterest accounts doesn’t matter. It’s a great way to bond together while they develop skills they'll need for this social media-obsessed world. 

4. Invest in ideas that benefit both worlds. 
If your blog is about parenting, then virtually every day doubles up as content for the blog. But as you may know by now if you've been following my blogging adventures, there will come a time when you'll want to give your kids privacy. So what will you blog about then? I've chosen to blog about being a working mama. It's still about my insights on motherhood but my kids aren't as exposed. 

Many mom bloggers have transitioned successfully from baby stories to niche interests but still within motherhood. A music blogger might review the instrument that they’ve just bought their child. A food blogger may discuss family recipes. I love how my friend, Denise Rayala of Royal Domesticity, found even greater blogging success when she started her #Baonserye, where she showed the packed lunches she made for her daughter. It's brilliant really—she moved the focus away from her daughter but her mother's love is still so evident through the lovingly made lunches, plus she offers priceless tips and ideas for other moms! Squeezing great content out of your everyday life will reduce your research time and just be more fun to do. 

As a blogger, you should have a creative mindset. Use it to find ways of merging blogging and mom duties, and you’ll save loads of time and effort. Good luck, mommies!

*photos by Mark Yao for Biogenic

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