5 Reasons to Freelance After Becoming a New Mom

I'm a freelancer. It's what works best for me. Many moms find the same thing- working for yourself simply opens up many more doors of opportunity than having a standard 9-5 job, especially as a mother. Here's more about that, from a reader.

Having a baby changes your entire life. As a new mom, your priorities will shift overnight. While you bond with your little one, you may view your world differently. This may include rethinking your career. According to the research done by global business news company Quartz, the debate of whether or not to go back to the office is more common than you think. One-third of American moms won’t return to their old job after having their child. Some of these women plan to work remotely or become a stay-at-home mom, while others decide they want to make a job switch in the months after giving birth.

If you are one of the many moms who enjoy having their career but want to be there for baby, consider freelancing. Not sure if it’s right for you? First, you may want to know what distinguishes this type of work from other jobs. The online career website FlexJobs defines freelancing as working for yourself, rather than for a single company.

Some of the most popular freelance jobs include copywriting, virtual assisting and tutoring, but you can find work in nearly any industry. More jobs are available now than ever, including rewarding roles for accounting associates, registered nurses and event coordinators. As you begin your search for the ideal openings, let us explain a few of the biggest benefits of freelance work for you and your growing family.

1. Flexible Schedule

One of the most practical reasons to become a freelancer is the flexible schedule. Since you become your own boss, you’re free to work during the day or night. Complete your projects when baby sleeps or focus for a couple of hours while a loved one babysits. You can also choose to work certain days of the week, as long as you meet your client due dates.

Take time off whenever you want. All you need to do is keep your customers aware of your availability. You’ll be free to vacation or enjoy personal days at any time of year. If your little one is sick or needs to visit the doctor for a checkup, clear your schedule without any guilt. Flex hours make it easy to set appointments and prioritize your child’s needs.

2. Room to Grow

When baby is little, you may decide to work a part-time schedule. Once you develop a routine, it’s possible to scale those hours to make more money. Freelance work allows you to start with one client or project and then grow your business as you see fit. You’re in total control of your load and schedule, so you won’t have to feel like you’re stretching yourself too thin.

When your child grows and starts school, you’ll be able to develop your business even further. As you gain a reputation and garner more clients, you may even find you can set aside money for your little one’s future. Should your family circumstances change, you’ll always be able to ramp your work down again.

3. Skill Development

There’s nothing wrong with taking months or even years off work to raise your child. It’s important for you to care for your baby, but you may want to return to your career in the future. Freelancing can help you meet your needs to stay current in your industry while being a stay-at-home mom.

You don’t need to pressure yourself—just commit as much time as you can. Spend a few hours on the weekend working on small, simple projects or complete your consulting work in the evenings. While you’ll always be there for your family, you’ll also be earning money and keeping up with the latest standards in your field. The skills you develop will allow you to maintain a strong resume, so you’re prepared when baby gets older. As a bonus, you’ll also stay competitive if you need to re-enter the workforce.

4. Professional Freedom

When you own a freelance business, you can be as unique and creative as you’d like. Name your company anything you want. Design your own logo and website. Engineer a culture that your clients will appreciate. If you don’t like sitting at a desk, take your laptop or smartphone to the park. Baby can play on a blanket or have a sunlit snack while you catch up on emails.

Freelancers can choose their clients, so you’ll never feel pressured to work with someone who doesn’t fit your style. If a relationship is causing you stress or anxiety, you can walk away—provided you’re respectful and have satisfied all project requirements. Offer all your services online or agree to see clients in person. No matter what schedule or work style you choose, you’ll be empowered to create an environment that works best for you and baby.

5. Extra Money

While some new moms focus on childcare, their partners work full-time to support the family. If you and your spouse have decided on this option, you can still make a little extra money with freelancing. You don’t have to freelance every day to contribute to your household’s bank account.

Try taking on projects when you have plenty of energy or when you have family in town to help with feedings and naps. Even if you make a modest amount of money, you’ll enjoy a larger budget for baby supplies, mom activities or savings for college. Plan seasonal work with your partner or a nanny to earn extra cash for the holidays. Some freelancers like the additional money when they take vacation or to supplement baby’s birthday.

Freelancing: An Excellent Career Choice for New Moms

If you’re a new mom who’s never thought of freelancing, now is the time to explore your career field. A variety of companies and clients are looking for skilled and responsible independent contractors. As you browse for your ideal position, be honest with yourself about your limitations. Start with a minimum number of hours or projects and give yourself plenty of time to make your due dates.

Whether you decide to freelance day or night, you’ll learn to multitask. Having a laptop or tablet by your side can help you to complete errands during your workday. After taking a break to eat or rest your eyes, take a moment to order groceries or shop for baby clothes online. You’ll have your to-do list done before you meet with your little one, which means you’ll be able to focus on every precious moment.

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal

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