I have been a stay-at-home-mom, I have worked outside the home, and now I work from home. There are pros and cons to every scenario, but regardless of where you are in life, it is so important to share your dreams and hearts desires with your kids, right where you are. Especially if you're just getting started.
I worked in the fast-paced local news industry for 10 years before slowing down to be at home with the kids full-time in 2013. I knew I wanted to be at home, but it was difficult to transition from a life that was very busy and structured, to a life with a very different pace and no income.
In those two years, I truthfully fought depression. In 2015, I decided that I needed to make a change. I wanted to continue my time at home, but I wanted to make an income with my gifts and life experience and my all-time hearts desire: writing. So I launched a freelance writing business from scratch.
They are still young, ages 8 and 3, but they are plenty old enough to recognize when mom is happy and fulfilled. Which is a big difference from how I felt when they were a lot younger, which they hopefully won't remember much. I functioned in the day-to-day, but I wasn't living with passion.
No matter how you slice it, we are our children's greatest example in life. That is both heartwarming and frightening, but we have the most influence in our children's lives, and you can inspire them no matter where you are in accomplishing a dream.
In my opinion, the best place to start with them is at the bottom, when you're starting to build something. And here's why:
1. They Can Cheer You On
Kids are great at this. Anytime I have a win, I am enthusiastic when I share it with them, and we all clap and cheer and yell "Yay mommy!!!" and it's the greatest feeling.
I keep a list of goals taped to the outside of the pantry door in the kitchen, and we cheer when I highlight another goal reached. Even my toddler knows that's "mommy's homework" and we all look forward to the yellow highlighter.
Even if you have a teenager that is less than enthused to hear it, it's still important to show them. Deep down, they will hear you.
2. They Can See What You're Working Towards
Dreams take time to achieve, and if you are working hard, invite them to sit next to you and see what you're working on. I show my kids what I'm writing as it's in progress, and after it's published.
Take a break and spend a little quality time with them and ask them what they think about it or what they might want to achieve when they're older, and truly listen. Their gifts might be different than yours. But get those gears grinding early.
3. They Feel Included in What's Important to You
It means so much to a child to be included in what you're doing. Our work lives take up a lot of our time. Even if it's something they don't grasp or understand in the moment, making them a part of it will mean a lot to them and is something they would always remember.
4. They See a Strong Female Climbing the Success Ladder
I'm not leaving you out, dads you certainly matter too. It's important for kids to see either parent working hard to achieve success, but even more so for mom.
You can never have too many strong female role models. It's also great for kids to see that you have another identity and other passions.
5. They Feel Encouraged to Chase Their Own Dreams
This is why I think it's so important to include them in the drawing board stage. If they see a real-life example in their environment of someone that took nothing and made it something, they will know that there is a huge world of possibility out there when it's their turn.
There has never been a better time to create an income based on your natural talents, and it just opens up the world and makes it bigger and brighter.
6. It Will Come Naturally to Support Their Own Family's Dreams
Not only will they know that they can achieve great things, it will come naturally to them to support their spouse in the same arena. My husband has supported me every step of the way, and that is also another important example for kids to see.
It will also drive them to encourage their own children down the line and show them the ropes as they were shown when they were young. That's a great legacy to leave with so many possibilities.
I think I've found a great balance in working from home. I am here for my family, and I get to live in my gifts. Mom gets to have a little something for herself now, and that makes all the difference. As I fill my own cup, I am able to positively fill theirs, and we all win.
I don't know how far I will go up the success ladder, but I will tell you that having the support of my family is very empowering. They saw it happen from the very beginning. I'm passing on hope and possibility, and even if I never rise any higher than where I am now, in that I count myself a success.
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