It seems like this hashtag is all over my social media feed lately. (Usually accompanied by #FinancialFreedom, #JoinMe, #KillinIt, or my personal favorite, #WhatIfYouFly).
I’m not here to bash direct sales, fitness coaches, makeup distributors, or the like. Because first of all, let’s be honest: I love Agnes & Dora as much as the next girl, BeachBody produces my absolute favorite workout programs, and while I’m not much of a lipstick wearer, even I can appreciate the awesomeness of color that stays on for 12 hours plus.
And second, I’ve got nothing but mad respect for moms who realize a dream, discover a passion, need to help support their families, or simply desire an outlet beyond playdates and Mommy & Me classes. We live in a generation where we are blessed with unprecedented opportunities to generate income from the comfort of our homes. So you want to be a mom AND a boss? Get it, girl. I will cheer you on and support your business when my budget allows.
No, I’m definitely not here to bash the #MomBoss. I’m actually a big fan of mom bosses – so much so, in fact, that I’ve tried to become one on multiple occasions.
I first ventured into the world of direct sales just a few weeks before my second daughter was born. I had recently been informed that my part-time corporate position was being dissolved, and a lifelong friend of mine had just started selling home decor items from a faith-based company. I attended a party, fell in love with the products, and signed up to be a distributor myself.
This is perfect! I thought. I can host parties in the evenings, set up booths at craft shows over the weekends, and bring in an income while earning cute decor for my house!
My mom hosted my launch party (thanks, Mom) and I sold enough product that evening to recoup all of my initial investments in the company. (In retrospect, I’m pretty sure everybody pulled out their wallets because they felt sorry for the jobless, large-with-child woman waddling around and displaying items like a Price is Right model.)
And after that party, I just couldn’t do it anymore. I soon had a toddler and a new baby to care for, the evenings and weekends found me utterly exhausted, and worst of all, I hate selling.
I’m the worst salesperson on earth. And the ridiculous thing is, I KNEW THIS when I signed up for direct sales. But I somehow managed to convince myself that because the opportunity in front of me offered benefits I thought I needed, it would be irresponsible not to jump right in.
In other words, because we are blessed with unprecedented opportunities to generate income from the comfort of our homes, I grew to believe that I should be generating income from the comfort of my home.
My husband and I have managed to trim our expenses and sacrifice enough extras over the past 2.5 years for me to stay home full-time; but I find myself constantly researching every new business opportunity that presents itself.
A few months ago I came *this close* to becoming a LuLaRoe consultant. And before that it was Arbonne. And Ruby Ribbon, Agnes & Dora, Usborne, BodyPump, etc.
I love all of these companies and all of these products, but at some point, I just had to admit that I am not cut out to be a #MomBoss.
I have plenty of friends who need to stay busy. They are multi-taskers extraordinaire and go crazy when there’s not enough on their plates.
But I go crazy when there’s more than a few carefully selected morsels on mine.
I often find myself completely overwhelmed with the daily demands of raising children, managing a household, homeschooling, and writing an article here and there. In other words, I’m maxed out “just” being a mom; how in the world could I possibly add “boss” to that title?
I used to feel guilty for my perceived weaknesses. I used to fear that I was lazy, or selfish, or wasting valuable opportunities by not helping to support my family. I used to fear that maybe, just maybe, I was a lesser woman for admitting that adding a home-based business to my daily responsibilities is something for which, at least in this season, I am completely ill-equipped.
And then I read an article excerpt that stopped me in my tracks:
“Our values make it very easy to see the merit in those high-energy achievers whose packed schedules allow them to accomplish what seems like everything at once. It is often harder for us to admire those who delve more deeply into only one or two things. After all, their list of what they do each day seems short. To people who do not understand, their daily activities might even sound trivial.
“Yet society needs deep-focus people as much as it needs multi-talented, multi-tasking people… These people do their work just as faithfully as those who juggle a greater variety. In fact, they do it in a unique way that requires sacrificing variety.” – Anna Mussmann
I am the way I am for a reason. I am not a lesser woman for purposely keeping a schedule that affords plenty of breathing room, that allows spontaneous zoo visits, that allots a few evenings each week to “me time” (a luxury this introvert desperately needs), and that ensures I have plenty of calendar space for things like puzzles and tea parties and hobbies and home cooked meals.
I may not be doing all the things, but I am delving deeply into the one thing that currently requires all my time and attention: *just* being a mom.
So while I am a huge fan of all the amazing #MomBosses out there, maybe we should stop reserving the term only for entrepreneurs. Maybe we should start using it for every woman who recognizes her weaknesses but chooses to embrace her strengths; who creatively cares for her family in a way that honors her own natural bents; and who simply climbs out of bed each day and does the best job she possibly can for those in her care.
Because if we do that, my friends, we will all be #KillinIt.