We all want to be money making moms, right?
The whole reason we work is for income. Even folks who live their passions make decisions based on income. And I think that’s a good thing.
The need to feed and shelter ourselves and our family drives us to try new things and grow as people.
Lots of artists would draw in sketchbooks all day and never show anyone their work if they didn’t need to buy groceries.
In this article I’m going to talk a bit about being a money making mom, but I’m not going to list out a billion ideas – there are lists all over the internet. Instead, I want to highlight the things that you’ll need to think through when you make your decisions. And I want to talk about what it will take to really succeed.
Why is this even a thing – wanting to be a money making mom?
It’s because it’s really hard to split your focus and do a great job at multiple things at once. And many of us moms need or want to be both great mothers and great earners.
We went through having a child because we wanted the experience of raising children.
We also feel the need to achieve and fulfill our potential through a career.
The big challenge is that many of us took corporate jobs out of school, and corporate careers rarely allow for enough family time. Even if you can put the required hours in, many places require you to be onsite, or online 100% during business hours. I remember being shamed for wanting to take personal time.
And then, if you live in any sort of city, you have to factor in commutes that can take hours away from family time.
Have a job or be a stay at home mom – I don’t buy it
I know for a fact that I can be a money making mom and still have time for my kiddo. I’m doing it. I just don’t think I could have done it with a traditional job.
Since I was in a male-dominated field(IT) where “work-life balance” meant you had time for work and time for beer at the end of the day, a corporate job wasn’t going to work for me once I had my son.
I have explored a few different ways to be a money making mom, and I’ll probably keep evolving. As my son grows, he’ll have different needs. As I grow and gain more experience, I’ll have new opportunities open up for me. And as my clients grow, they will need new and different services.
If you can embrace a constant state of change, then you too can be a money making mom. I know you can do it – you pretty much have to as a parent! So you might as well apply the same attitude towards making money.
Just in case you haven’t really thought about what your options might be, here are a few to get your started. Again, this is a high-level, what to think about article, not a bullet list of ideas. Google, “jobs for moms” for those.
Continue with your pre-kid career
If you have some seniority and can call the shots, you love your job, or your company is pretty progressive, you may not even consider leaving your pre-baby career. Fantastic – you have something many moms dream about having. The downside is working out childcare.
Investigate family-friendly jobs
If your pre-kids job isn’t going to work for you & your family, but you want to stay in your career, you can look for jobs with things that can make a mom’s life easier.
Find a job closer to home. If you reduce your commute, you gain time with your family. In a lot of cities, this is enough to make a job family-friendly!
Find a job with on-site child care. These aren’t everywhere, but if you look around, you’ll find more and more companies that have a child care facility. If you can have your career and eat lunch with your kiddo, that can be a great win.
Look for jobs that allow work from home days. I really believe that after this pandemic we’re in clears up, many companies will finally realize that working remotely is a viable option.
Get a part time job
This sounds like it will be the perfect solution. Work just some hours, and you’ll earn and still have time for family. The trouble is, you’re not likely to find many part-time jobs that pay enough for child care, so you’ll have to either get creative with the job or creative with the child care.
I tried this out for a while, and I worked at my church’s weekday Parent’s Day Out program. Because I was an employee, an inexpensive child care solution was even cheaper at half price. This worked out well for me, and I made enough to pay for groceries, but not much else. You’re not going to get rich this way, but if you can find a child care solution for the hours you’re working, this can be a good option.
“Work from Home” quick money tasks
You can try these out, but I don’t recommend them as a replacement income. But if you want to do some of these for fun, and collect a few cents along the way, go for it. I just don’t think most moms can make much money doing these, especially for the time put in.
Surveys – Survey Junkie
Mystery shopping – Best Mark
Commercial watching – AdWallet
Tracking your purchases – Rakuten or ibotta
Mobile phone games
Contests & Sweepstakes
Doing various odd jobs can actually be quite lucrative. But it’s going to require a constant hustle to find your next opportunity until you have some regular customers. When you do have regular customers, this moves from odd jobs to starting your own business.
Some idea for finding odd jobs include:
Watching other people’s children
This can be great because every family needs child care. Your children can benefit from playmates coming over. But, often, other people want child care when you want to be free. If you like kids and you can find a family with a timing need that works for you, this can be a great way to make money.
Are you into yoga? Backpacking? Baking cookies? Do you craft?
If so, you could teach a skill or lead a group. You could make things for sale or make how-to videos. Look to your hobbies to see what you could make or teach. If you’re a photographer, you could sell stock photos. If you enjoy digital art, you could make printables for journals. You could back and decorate cookies for birthday parties.
See a need and fill it
You don’t have to do the same odd jobs all the time.
Look for needs around your community and fill them. Bulletin boards at libraries and coffee shops often have areas people can post needs and services.
Look on freelance job boards for ideas of quick services you can do. If you have a quickly repeatable skill, small jobs from job boards like fiverr.com could be just the way to earn money. Small tasks can be done during naps, school, and play dates. I’ve seen a lot of moms try this out.
Other ideas – pet sitting, house sitting, dog walking, house cleaning, handy-woman services, quick easy graphics.
Start a business
Apart from hanging on to your original career, starting a business is really the only way to become a money making mom with high earning potential. And many of the ideas from above can turn into a full-fledged business.
I’ve worked with many moms who have taken their experience from their corporate jobs and built businesses that allow them to be moms and businesswomen. If you do start a business, you get to set the policies, work hours, and vacation schedule. The downside is that you don’t have a boss to remind you to get back to work. You have to fulfill that role yourself!
Pin this so you can come back to it!
How to be a success as a money making mom
Any of these options can work, that’s the secret. The real decision isn’t what “framework” you’re going to use.
It’s fun to read through all the get rich quick, make $35000 overnight, have people pay you to go about your daily life articles.
The secret sauce is the un-glamorous stuff. The hard work.
And, the hard work isn’t ditch-digging or having to cold call. The hard work is showing up each day. Finishing up a blog post during your daughter’s gymnastics practice. Researching vendors while you wait at the dentist’s office.
If you can show up and do the tedious work, you can be a money making mom. (and of course we can, we’re moms! ) But you have to decide if you’re willing.
You need some goals to keep you motivated. I don’t think the same kinds of goals will work for everyone. They’ll work for the same person all of the time either.
I alternate between three types of goals to keep me going.
The first is a numbers goal. This is great for folks who are competitive ro driven to quantify success. I don’t like to focus on the outcomes. I focus on the actions themselves because that’s what I have control over. Examples include – Reaching 100 blog posts, calling 10 people every day, and reading 4 business books this month.
The second is a benefits goal. How will I benefit from doing the work? This can be something I’ve constructed, such as, “When I finish this client project, I’ll buy a new camera.” But more often, I focus on longer term benefits like, “This project will get us to 50% of our vacation savings goal,” or, “Three more sales and I can pay the mortgage this month.”
And finally, if neither of those are motivating me, I get out my long-term goals. The “why” behind running a business in the first place. Everything from, “I never want to work in a cubicle again,” to, “I’m saving up $5 million so we can retire by age 50.” You should have these and think about them often, even if you don’t need to call on them to finish up your next task!
Plan of Attack
AKA a business plan or strategy. Unless you’re headed to the bank for a loan, you don’t need a formal, structured business plan if you don’t want one. But you need something. (Formal outlines can help you know what to include though!) You need a roadmap or a plan of attack. Figure out what you want your outcome to be (those long-term goals), and write down what you think you’ll need to do to get there.
If you don’t have a plan, then you’re just doing odd jobs or hobby jobs. I think a lot of freelancers fall into this category.
Having a guide can help you when you’re not sure what to do next, or wondering if you’re on the right track at all. The plan will change, too as you go along and learn more.
You have to know how to implement your plan.Think of your plan as “what to do,” and tactics as “how to do it.” This can mean that you’re building on skills that you already have, or that you’re willing to do some training to acquire skills. Tactics can also include delegating and outsourcing tasks, especially as your business grows.
If you’re going to succeed at any of these, you’re going to have to have the right mindset. And the right mindset will depend on which option you select. Think about they types of people who win at the type of money making option you pick. How do they act? What type of person are they?
Then think about whether or not you could adopt that same attitude. For example, an employee who really thinks she should be the boss isn’t going to thrive in a corporate job. And a business owner who acts like an employee is likely to fail.
How are you a money making mom?
If you’re on my website, you’re likely already a mom, and trying to earn money while still having family time. Are you doing odd jobs or starting a business? Or are you trying to find that perfect job that’s family friendly?
You're a business-owning mom, so you use this guide to prioritize your tasks in 2 minutes, and have 41 minutes left to knock out a task.