The life of a blogger seems to be a bit of an enigma in so, so many ways. While that’s nothing I care to get into much here, there is a part of this life that has stopped me in my tracks in recent months. Self-employed maternity leave is so undefined and therefore there isn’t really a norm to follow.
I’ve been thinking about what I’m going to do almost since we learned I was pregnant. But about a month ago, I started asking some mom-friends for their advice. After hearing them out and giving it some thought, I have most of my plan in place. . .
The thing about being self-employed and/or being the face (literally) of your company and brand is that there aren’t people to cover for you while you’re away. Your presence really can’t be replaced. At the same time, your income is dependent on maintaining your company. So even if you are comfortable with just taking a break from running your business, you’ll also have to figure out the income component.
Being married, I have another income on which to fall back, but that doesn’t mean that we won’t be affected by my taking a break from blogging for a while.
So while I was sure I wanted to schedule out content before our little guy arrived, my questions were how far out should I schedule and how often should I post. . .
What My Friends Said about Going Back to Work…
The first friend with whom I spoke had her little girl last summer. She planned a month away from blogging/content creation. When she came back to work on the sponsored content creation she’d agreed to, she felt it was far too early. She really encouraged me to take more than a month. She said you’ll come back to work and you just won’t be ready to be creative and/or to create that content I want.
I felt good after talking with her about doing just that – planning to take at least the four weeks off. I also decided to post on Instagram not just about self-employed maternity leave, but maternity leave in general. Your responses were overwhelming and quite helpful…
Every single mother who responded said to take as much time as I could. Many self-employed woman said they went back to work far too soon (for understandable reasons). And almost every woman noted that they (and I) will always try to do too much, so make sure I’m conservative in my plans. It was all so, so helpful in a very pragmatic and inspiring way. These women are mostly who I write and create for. They were telling me to learn, rest, and enjoy the time with our new little one.
My Self-Employed Maternity Leave Plan…
So. What did I decide? Our little guy is expected in just over four weeks – mid-June. Of course I have no idea when he’ll come exactly. The first part of my plan is that as of June 1, I’m going back to three blog posts per week – Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. With far fewer outfits to share and little to no travel during the period, this makes the most sense.
My goal is to have at least 6 weeks scheduled out before he arrives. Of course, I’m hoping for more. At the same time, I have to be realistic about what I’m capable of in the coming weeks.
I should add that I have people helping me through all of this. My former intern will be helping me with newsletters and sharing new posts to Instagram stories. I’ve also asked a few women to be a part of a series about which I’m super excited.
The only part I haven’t figured out is social media – namely Instagram. I will have some content scheduled, but I have a feeling I will want to share along the way. But I don’t want to feel as though I have to share at any point in there. So, I don’t have a set in stone plan at the moment.
I complained in my pregnancy realities post that people have many unhelpful things to say to you. But that isn’t always the case. I found that if you ask the right questions, to people in similar circumstances to yourself, you’ll get some SUPER HELPFUL information. If it weren’t for all those lovely mamas out there who gave me so much good feedback, I don’t know that I would have felt comfortable with my plan. So, thank you, thank you!!