“So when do you find time to work?”
The question is a simple one, but for some reason it always makes me want to laugh, perhaps even chortle (though I’ve never quite figured out what a chortle sounds like).
The phrasing of that question is spot on, because the time to work truly has to be found – it rarely ever finds me.
Since bringing two of our children home to homeschool, my time has been more limited than perhaps ever before. Homeschooling requires me to be fully present for several key hours of each day, which I don’t mind because I’m shockingly enjoying the process. But it does mean that I need to be strategic with my time.
Lately I’ve taken to getting up early to work. Early morning has always been my favorite time of day. I love the hum of the settled house, the smell of coffee, and the buzz I get as my brain starts churning with creative juices.
Getting up early means fatigue, though. Sometimes I’m so tired that by the time we get through our school day, and I get the toddler down for her nap, I have to lay down myself, which cuts into some of my potential work time.
Truly it’s all a dance.
Some days I wake up bursting with energy and manage to get a ton of work done. Other days, I drag myself from my bed only to stare at a blank screen in a sleep deprived stupor.
The final, and perhaps trickiest, component to turning your creative hobby into something more is designating the hours needed to work your business.
Whether you have kids in school all day, grown children who have left the house, or still have small people home with you at all hours, finding the time to work takes effort and discipline.
There isn’t a formula for this part of the equation. I wish it were that easy. But each of us has to manage our time within our own unique circumstances.
I know women whose creative minds come alive at night. They knock out mounds of work as soon as everyone in the house is settled and then go to sleep fulfilled.
Some women, like me, thrive in the quiet, early mornings. As the sun thrums just below the surface of the horizon, we early birds find our worms and gear ourselves up for the long days ahead.
Perhaps you have some time in during the day while kids are in school, which you can earmark as your creative hours.
Or maybe you hire a sitter to come in a few afternoons a week so you can sneak off to a local coffee shop and knock out projects uninterrupted.
The point is it will look different for all of us, but one thing remains consistent across the board: All working mothers must find the time. It doesn’t appear magically, but rather has to be mined from the insanity of each changing day.
Making a business of your art requires tenacity. You have to know what you’re working for and why, and then you have to believe in what you’re doing enough to make the sacrifices necessary to do it. And make no mistake, when you take your creative hobby to the next level, you’re taking your family with you, so let them in on the journey.
[Tweet “”Making a business of your art requires tenacity.” #lifecreative”]
Let the people closest to you in on what you’re working toward so that they can be a part of the journey. Don’t make them watch from the periphery, wondering what’s going on and why you’re suddenly a little more dependent on coffee.
Let them become partners in your journey, helping you find the time to chase after your passions. Because there is no more beautiful sight than that of a Renaissance Mom who indulges in the art of life with her little ones by her side.
This concludes the five parts series on making a business of art. It’s been a brief, but I hope helpful, glimpse into the ways that busy moms can take their creative hobbies and turn them into something more.
What steps will you take today?
This series is inspired by my upcoming book Life Creative: Inspiration for Today’s Renaissance Mom. *
Co-authored with Wendy Speake, this book is specifically for the creative mom who wonders why on earth God designed her creative, and then gave her children. It’s full of encouragement and stories of renaissance moms who are impacting the world with their art, oftentimes with little ones by their side.
As a special incentive, if you buy your copy by the end of September you will receive a free pdf downloadable that expands more on how to turn your creative hobby into a thriving business. Offering practical tools that will help you take your art to the next level, this is the encouragement you need to move forward toward your creative pursuits.
Purchase your copy of Life Creative now, then come back and fill out the form to receive your free pdf downloadable.
Join the mailing list
and be the first to receive posts and updates from Kelli.
You'll also receive a FREE excerpt from the award winning Like A River From Its Course!
My word, this is my BIGGEST struggle. My original plan for this fall was to earmark 2 days a week to do nothing but work on my book while all three kids were finally at school everyday. But, governments and visas and the Lord don’t ever work according to our timetables, so now I find myself sitting not in a rooftop Viennese flat, but just a couple of miles down the road from where I went to elementary school, working an amazingly cool job from home. But, that means no daytime hours in which to write while everyone is out of the house. I’m NOT a morning person, and afternoons I’m dedicating to the kids, and evenings to the hubs. I’m truly, truly struggling to make this work but I know I just have to….well, DO it. Maybe I earmark one evening per week when the kids are in bed and my husband is watching football to go write. Or maybe I get up early on Saturday and go to the coffee shop. I don’t know. What I DO know is that I’ve neglected this calling far too long, and if I’m going to reach my goal of finishing the first draft by December 31, I have to do SOMETHING.
Man, do I understand everything you said! It’s so hard. I’m a morning person, but only to a degree. My body forces me to slow down eventually…like right now, I’m getting sick. Not an ideal time for me to be feeling crummy because I could use those early mornings. But maybe it’s better that I just sit back and enjoy this week.
Sometimes finding time works out consistently. And sometimes it doesn’t. I’ve found that when I get really stressed about the lack of time, if I go to my husband and tell him what I need, he’s more than willing to help me make it happen. A Sunday afternoon at a coffee shop, or Saturday morning at the local library while he handles soccer duty. He’s even sent me off to a hotel for a night alone so I can finish a project. Sometimes we simply have to force the escape and utilize those precious hours.
Praying for you right now, Jen. Praying you find the time to devote to that book!