Working from home and being your own boss may sound like a work/life balance dream come true but, in reality, having no official home time and a business that’s entirely your own responsibility can make striking a balance even harder.
We spoke to the inspirational mummy blogger–turned–entrepreneur Cassandra Michelin of Choose Life, Live It, Do It about how she manages to run a business, look after her young daughter and make time for herself.
RESCU: Running your own business can be tough – how do you find the right work/life balance without compromising the success of your business?
Cassandra Michelin: It is hard, especially with a toddler at my feet most of the day. I think the key is to decide on what is the most important to you. My main focus is my family. I have created my business so I can be with my family so I allocate myself work and play time and I try to make this quite strict. If my family is happy, that makes me happy and that makes my business run better!
RESCU: What are the biggest challenges you’ve had to face while establishing your business?
Cassandra Michelin: My business has grown quite quickly and at times I have found it overwhelming. I find that giving myself “me time” where I can switch off helps me to get back to the real world and back into work with a clear mind and more great ideas.
RESCU: In the early stages, did you find working from home to be a challenge? How do you ‘switch off’?
Cassandra Michelin: YES! YES! YES! I have loved working from home from the first minute that I started my business. I loved it a bit too much and this took a toll on me as I was on the computer every waking minute and half the night. I couldn’t stop, as I couldn’t switch off.
It got to a point when I took a look around and my house was a bombsite, the laundry basket was overflowing, my family was suffering and I was so tired. So I turned off the computer and the phone for a few days and made a promise to myself to make some boundaries.
RESCU: What advice would you give a woman who wants to start her own business?
Cassandra Michelin: Love what you are doing and set your goals high! Have patience and be flexible. Having the opportunity to stay at home is a gift in itself; dream big and work hard and you can do anything.
RESCU: You’ve managed to turn something negative into something positive – how has this shaped your business mind in the long run?
Cassandra Michelin: In life you can choose to be happy or sad – I truly believe this. I have seen so many family members pass away from lifestyle diseases, young and old and they died happy. Even if the end was hard, they loved the life they had and I have chosen to love mine. I want people to not only have healthy, long lives but happy lives. Do things that make them happy and surround themselves with people that bring the best out in them. After all, that is half of what being healthy is!
When my father passed away, my life didn’t stop. It had to go on so I went and did things that make me happy. I went to the amazing Australian College of Physical Education to learn about something I loved; sport, dance and educating children. Then after becoming a mum, I wanted to educate parents on how they can better their growing families, as that’s where a healthy lifestyle begins. I love learning and having the opportunity to learn from home by distance education at the Australian Institute of Applied Sciences gives me flexibility to do what’s important to me. I love what I am doing! I am totally inspired to be the best mum I can be which inspires me to inspire others and that’s what my business is all about!