Let me show you how
This post has been written from the heart, I want to help mums in business because I am one too and I know how hard it can be juggling your business and your children in the summer holidays. This year though I am on a mission to find the balance that my family and I deserve and I invite you to join me.
Together, ladies, we can do this!
The Four Month Recovery
Last year I started the summer holidays with a bang. I was determined to do everything, I was ready to have my cake and eat it. The problem was I hadn’t done any organising or planning and simply jumped into the summer, both feet first.
Looking back, the first three weeks were a total blur. I tried to be the perfect mother, taking the children here, there and everywhere, doing crafts with them, and playing whatever crazy games they concocted. I spent the evenings working till the early hours, determined not to fall behind with my work. After all, as a self-employed mother, I rely on my income and couldn’t afford to let my business slip.
Suddenly, I hit the Mumpreneur wall.
I had literally burnt myself out. The last three weeks were a complete contrast to the first. I felt physically ill with exhaustion and stress so much so that I hardly did any work and even found playing with the kids difficult. I was afraid to go anywhere because I was panicking about money and the heavy feeling of guilt was dragging me down.
I had tried to do everything, but without preparation, I ended up achieving nothing.
What made this experience so much harder was it didn’t end it September. I started the new school year on such a back foot that I spent 4 whole months catching up! In my line of work January is always busy because it’s the month my clients compete have to complete their tax returns, this year I had to work incredibly long hours to get the job done and this was all because of my summer holiday fail!
I cannot and will not let this happen again but I know now that good will alone will not make this summer any easier. I have to take control and organise myself before the final home time bell rings so I have spent the last month researching and preparing and I want to share with you what I have learnt. With this new knowledge and the right tools, I feel empowered as a mum and a business woman and you can feel this way too.
To help both myself and other women like me, I have created The Mumpreneurs Guide to a Business Savvy 6-week Summer Holiday with 6 golden rules to follow that will enable you to have a fun, balanced and productive holiday so when September comes you are ready to get back on track and hit the ground running.
My number one golden rule is planning. Being organised doesn’t just mean planning your day, it means planning it realistically and efficiently. One of my biggest mistakes last year was over stretching myself; I didn’t plan for any balance. This is what led to burn out and my intention to not lose any business actually became counter-productive as all work was lost in the last 3 weeks!
This year I PLAN to work only between the hours of 9am – 1pm. This will give the kids the chance to have lazy mornings and then give us all a stress and guilt free afternoon. I may not be working my full hours throughout the holidays but organising myself this way will give me the opportunity to be consistent and long term I will get more done.
I have also created a holiday planner that I have already started filling it, I have blocked out my holiday days and marked off the time my youngest is in childcare plus my partner’s shifts so I know when he is available to ‘babysit!’
Keep Your Clients Happy
My 3rd golden rule in the guide is to keep your clients happy. Obviously, as a self-employed mum, customer care is essential. Retaining customers can make a difference between a successful and failed business. This pressure can cause stress and anxiety and is what leads us to work until we burn ourselves out.
The truth is though; we deserve a holiday just like anyone else. Giving ourselves a break and a chance to refresh makes us better at our job. Most clients will understand this and those that don’t are not worth worrying about.
Even though they will understand you still need to manage your reduced hours and holiday time and make your clients aware well in advance so they can adapt their expectations of you. I created a template letter that I personalised to my clients to inform them of my plans over the holidays. This has worked a treat and the response I have had back has been really positive.
We can do this
I had been feeling anxious about the holidays but as the summer holiday fast approaches, taking action has made me feel empowered. I have everything in place and have carved out time for everyone including me!
For just £4.99 you can be empowered too. My Mumpreneurs Guide to a Business Savvy 6-week Summer Holiday which is the result of hours of research and organisation.
What will you receive?
– A 22-page downloadable guide and workbook
– 6 golden rules to creating a stress-free and efficient summer holiday
– Summer holiday calendars
– Our best-picked childcare choices
– Email templates
– Checklists and summaries
– Weekly schedules and to-do lists
– Lots of fun ideas
My 6 golden rules are bitesize chunks full of advice, hints and tips and are all accompanied by a worksheet to complete so you put some structure into your summer.
For a limited time only as a launch special all of this can be yours for a small price of £4.99.
I had big plans for April being the start of the new tax year, new software, new financial goals in place and some amazing blog ideas!
It started off so well but come the weekend of Isla’s 3rd birthday party things started to slip!
If you know me through social media you may have already picked up on my month long April bad mood – I felt over worked, over tired, over-stretched and basically just over crappy! And cash flow was non-existent just to add to the pain. This put me under immense pressure and my bills were bouncing back left, right and centre.
I’ve been a HUGE fan of Denise Duffield Thomas for nearly 2 years after reading Get Rich Lucky Bitch.
For those of you that haven’t heard of DDT, Denise is a well-known money mindset mentor.
The book Get Rich Lucky Bitch gives you an insight into how to become an amazing manifester just like Denise herself. It guides you through setting goals, clearing away bad money experiences and habits, feeling good about money and upgrading your life.
I’ve tried on so many occasions to put everything into action but failed miserably. So it was without a doubt that when DDT announced in February that she was doing a live event in London in April I immediately booked myself a ticket and arranged travel arrangements.
And the excitement didn’t stop there either – I was also crazy enough to join on to her Lucky Bitch Bootcamp!
So back to my bad month, the event was on the last Saturday of April and come the Friday I spoke with my mum about childcare arrangements to find out we had crossed wires and she couldn’t have the kids overnight for me to catch my coach first thing Saturday morning! I was gutted, I had no one else available and spent the entire night crying, I felt like I was at rock bottom.
Saturday morning came and my Facebook news feed was jam-packed with so many amazing women all excited to be heading to London, Again non-stop tears!
I don’t know what made me check my bank balance after such a bad month for money, but I did and to my amazement, I’d been paid £45 – Not a huge deal but after some googling was the exact amount I needed to get a one-way train ticket to London! Within the hour I’d managed to brush myself off, get the kiddies ready and off to my mums and found myself clutching my book as my train left for Paddington!
Had I really just manifested something?
The event was amazing, So many inspiring women feeling empowered by Denise’s talk! And it keeps getting better, I had the opportunity to meet DDT, have a photo and she signed my book!
I came home on the coach as originally planned and I could feel a huge shift in my energy! Even though I was absolutely exhausted, I felt a huge relief and I just needed sleep (I did actually drift off and woke myself up snoring – Oops)! May was going to be a new month for me and I was determined to leave Aprils troubles behind me.
Late afternoon on bank holiday Monday – May 1st, The long anticipated welcome email for bootcamp came through! I was officially in and so excited…
In the introduction video, DDT quoted
“Some people start learning lessons the day they start bootcamp” This hit a real nerve and I straight away opened my lucky bitch money tracker app and set myself an income goal for May!
And what can I say, by the Saturday – May 6th for the first time ever I hit that income goal, in less than a week!
All I had done in those 6 days was listen to the money mantra subliminal meditation each night as I fell asleep.
Had I really just manifested something? Again?
I really couldn’t tell you for sure, I think I did, I hope I did.
This week I’ve pencilled in some time to start the weekly bootcamp exercises, I will keep you updated throughout the process and will share with you all of my money wins and successes!
I’m planning on conjuring up an iPad Pro, gold addition to match my iPhone! I would say wish me luck but I’m going on the assumption I’ve already got it – just call me Lucky Bitch!
If you fancy joining me on the above journey you can find more information on the Lucky Bitch Money Bootcamp here https://yu103.isrefer.com/go/lbb/IvyWood/ Please let us know in the comments if you sign up and how you are getting on.
Until next time, Happy manifesting, Iona Xx
Oh and P.S Did I tell you Isla’s birthday was the weekend of April 9th! Coincidence or what that my entire crappy few weeks was the exact dates of the second mercury retrograde for the year? Now that’s another blog post in its own right! Argh!
Time flies – 5 reasons you should file your tax return early
Can you believe that we are already over 1 month into the start of the new 2017/18
tax year? The saying ‘time flies’ has never been truer. Unfortunately, that
means we are also 1 month closer to the filing deadline for our 2016/17 tax returns
and you may have already received your annual reminder from HMRC.
Tax returns dated 06 April 2016 to 05 April 2017 are due for electronic filing no later
than 31 January 2018, the penalty for late submission (up to 3 months) is currently
We are all tempted to brush our accounts and tax returns to the side whilst we
concentrate on the running of our businesses day to day… after all, it is the easy
option BUT I am sure you can agree there is always that one niggle in the back of
your mind that gets bigger and bigger as we get closer to the 31 January deadline.
Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a stress-free couple of months knowing you are all up
As a business owner, and it has taken me a long time to realise this myself BUT
sometimes we have to give ourselves a break. Instead of feeling stressed and
anxious for 9 months wondering what your tax return will be, why not do it now and
release yourself of that tension? Your mind will feel much better for it allowing you to
concentrate on more important things like business plans for future growth. I like to
think a clear mind is an exciting mind.
If that doesn’t tempt you here are a few further advantages of filing your tax returns
So you are in a position where you do have a tax liability payable to
HMRC, by preparing and filing your tax returns sooner rather than later you are
giving yourself more time to plan, save and budget your cashflow accordingly (and
no last minute surprises). The payment deadline will remain at 31 January– It will not
trigger an earlier payment date and maybe depending on individual circumstances
you might even be able to have any tax due collected via PAYE through an adjusted
tax code (providing your tax return has been filed by 31 December).
If you are lucky enough to be due a tax refund, the sooner you file the tax return, the
sooner you will receive the amounts due, you do not have to wait until the 31
January before repayments are released. HMRC are fairly reasonable and refunds
tend to get repaid in a matter of weeks upon receipt of the tax return.
By preparing and filing your tax return early you are effectively creating
yourself more time to gather all of the necessary information required instead of
rushing around last minute ploughing through draws, cupboards, piles of paper,
carrier bags, etc. There is also less time to lose important documents and forget
what happened that 1 day back in April 2016 that your accountant is now querying
It will also give your accountant more time to identify and investigate any errors and
or discrepancies within your accounting records.
Tax Credits –
If you are currently in receipt of tax credits your deadline for renewal is
31 July. Although at this date you are able to provide HMRC with estimate figures
wouldn’t it be much more efficient to be able to give them actual figures?
By providing HMRC with actual figures you can ensure you avoid the HUGE
It is also worthwhile remembering if you do see a sudden change in your income
throughout the tax year to inform them as this can also have an impact on your
HMRC Enquiries –
HMRC currently have 12 months from the date you file your tax
return to raise any queries they may have. The sooner the return is filed, the sooner
this period will close. Which goes back to my initial point, an HMRC return can be straining,
the sooner the 12 month period has passed the sooner your mind can be at ease.
Of course, I’m sure everything will all be OK if you are chosen by HMRC, especially if
you have the helping hand of a reliable accountant.
So what are you waiting for? – Get in touch today to see how we can help you.