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Parents The labor force participation rate--the percent of the population working or looking for work--for all women with children under age 18 was percent in , up percentage point from the prior year.
In my pre-kid life, I never imagined that someday I'd be a stay-at-home mom—hey, I didn't go to grad school to spend my days changing diapers. But when I held my first baby, Mathilda, I had a complete change of heart. As soon as we locked eyes, all those career and financial worries faded. They didn't disappear, but they certainly became secondary. I have tons of friends with similar experiences. They're not clones—today's stay-at-home mom SAHM may be a tattooed rock singer, the CEO of her own company or a green-living activist—but they all have something in common: If you're considering life as a SAHM, both sweet rewards and tough challenges await.
Read on for insight and advice from experts and moms who've been in the trenches. No firm statistics exist on how many are run by stay-at-home moms, but it stands to reason that the percentage is increasing in the Wi-Fi age. In the past, moms have been reluctant to tell clients they work from home. Now it's commonplace, even respectable. Web design, attorney, marketing guru, social media coaching, you name it. Plug "mom bloggers" into a search engine and you'll come up with thousands of SAHMs who chronicle their daily lives online.
Moms share stories and tips about single parenting, adoption, home schooling and more. The most popular blogs, like the Pioneer Woman and Dooce, turned their authors into celebrities who rack up book and movie deals.
Jen Singer, the New Jersey mom of two who created mommasaid. Making a living from a blog is tough, she adds, but there are other perks. A Pew Research Center survey shows that more at-home moms today 48 percent consider being home full time the ideal situation than they did 10 years ago 39 percent. Inversely, just 21 percent of working moms say working full time is ideal, down from 32 percent in Many of these young women look at their baby boomer moms and question why they'd want to be them.
Some of those moms struggled in their marriages and had a tough time balancing work and family, she says. That doesn't mean today's SAHM has abandoned her career aspirations or traded her BlackBerry for an ironing board, just that she's more concerned about living a balanced life than proving she's Superwoman.
The landscape has certainly changed; now, instead of "Work versus staying home? It can be a crazy juggling act on some days, but most WAHMs say the multitasking is worth it. Working at home is still work, there's just not someone else telling you what to do and when to do it. The key to success is being self-motivated to haul youself out of bed at dawn and get cracking before the baby wakes up—or stay up past baby's bedtime, when you're likely tired too. Crossing your fingers and winging it is not enough.
Since my husband, Tony, works nights, he was often able to take the babies when I had phone interviews or pressing deadlines. I've also done swaps with other moms, hired baby sitters to fill in during crunch times and kept a stash of exciting new toys to pull out when necessary.
A crinkly orange caterpillar once bought me about 15 minutes of quiet time. Nap time is almost always work time for WAHMs. Even if it's a tiny corner of your dining room, you need a physical space devoted to work. Being an at-home mom allowed me to take advantage of opportunities that would have been difficult in the 9-to-5 world.
If I wanted to have coffee with a nearby mom friend, for instance, we broke out the strollers and went. If I felt like taking the baby to the park for an afternoon and playing peekaboo in the grass, I didn't have to clear it with anyone. At-home moms don't have to worry about toting the industrial-strength breast pump to the office or pumping in the bathroom.
Parents may receive compensation when you click through and purchase from links contained on this website. Negotiate with Your Employer Thinking about working from home? If you've already got a good job, make that your starting point. Does anyone in your company telecommute? If so, ask them about what they do and how they negotiated the deal. Are there any components of your job that can be done from home?
Write a telecommuting proposal that gives clear reasons why and how you can do all or part of your work from home, and submit it to your supervisor. If your company is not amenable to such arrangements, it may be time to look elsewhere for better opportunities.
Explore Your Options Could you do your current job on a freelance basis? Review your current workload. Talk with freelancers in your field. How did they set up their practices? What advice do they have? Make a Change If you're computer-minded, or just developing an interest, this may be the way to go. Consider the following career options: Computer engineer Computer support specialist Systems analyst Database administrator Desktop publishing specialist Webmaster Web designer.
Even if you haven't been bitten by the computer bug, there are many work-at-home or flexible job options available such as: Paralegal or legal assistant Writer, proofreader, or copyeditor Bookkeeper or accountant Loan or mortgage processor Data entry person or word processor Market researcher or telemarketer Salesperson or recruiter.
Do Your Homework Doing your homework is very important if you want to work at home. Tarcher, by Paul and Sarah Edwards, to help you identify what kind of home business or telecommuting career is right for you. Network with people who run their own businesses or work from home. You'll need job leads, financing ideas, and survival strategies -- who better to provide these than someone who's traveled the same path you're considering?
Talk to others in similar professions to get an idea of the market. Check your local listings for associations and organizations related to those fields to find out more information.
Assess what you'll need to get going. Ask yourself questions like: What kind of financial outlays will I need to get started? Are there grants or loans available to help me, and how can I get them? What resources space, supplies, equipment do I need to start my new career?
Do I need additional training or education before I can get started? Will I need additional support to care for my children and take care of household responsibilities after I shift gears with my career? It Is Real Work! Set up a schedule and try to stick to it. Set up a specific work space or if you can, a full home office with all the necessities. Establish rules about interruptions. Don't allow family interruptions unless it's an emergency or you're on a scheduled break.
Stay on task -- don't stop to do the dishes, run an errand or fold a load of laundry unless you're officially on lunch or coffee break. If you can afford it and have young children, you may want to consider babysitting help or asking friends and family to pitch in.
Separate Mom and Business Roles
One major benefit of freelance work is that you stay in a profession in which you have a track record. That may make the transition to working at home somewhat easier. Jun 11, · Going to work may be the way many women make a living, but if staying home to work sounds good to you, you're not alone: About 21 percent of employed adults did some or all of their job at home, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor todojuegos.ga: Brooke Lea Foster. In Close to Half of Two-Parent Families, Both Mom and Dad Work Full Time Family life is changing, and so, too, is the role mothers and fathers play at work and at home. As more mothers have entered the U.S. workforce in the past several decades, the share of two-parent households in which both.