There comes a time in every mom’s life when she feels like she is not keeping up. It’s easy for twitter to lead you to think that there is a big party going on and you are not invited. Instead, embrace it, leave the doors open for opportunities and set boundaries.
Caution: I have been guilty of breaking many of these rules. But I think that I have finally figured out the whole “balance” thing or at least found a happy place. This list is for entreprenerial moms or anyone who just wants a little balance in their life.
1. Don’t miss out on using Twitter. I hear this all the time. I don’t have time. I am too busy. Face it, we all are. Do what you can. Check in once a day if that is all you can do and don’t compare yourself to others who can be on twitter more times a day. Are you really prepared to miss out on a way to connect with people in the comfort of your own home? It’s free advertising.
2. Use lists to follow more people. Find other moms with the same interests, now follow their lists. Complicated? no, Time consuming? yes. If you meet three people that you really enjoy the relationship with, then it was all worth it.
3. Keep the baby poop to a minimum. Yes, we get it. We love everything about our babies. The poop, the ear wax and those creepy faces they make at you when they are learning to smile. But let’s be realistic, we don’t love those things about other people’s kids and for the same reason people who don’t have kids and those with older kids don’t need to hear it. It’s okay to share the occasional cuteness story or the ocassional poo-pee story but let’s make sure people don’t think that is all that moms are about. Don’t ruin it for the rest of us.
4. Engage. Do you know the best places to take your toddler and let them run wild? Have you mastered the art of cooking with two screaming kids and “Yo Gabba Gabba” in the background? Be on the look out for people asking questions and engage. Tell your story. Remember, you have been there and done that so now share.
5. Be professional. If you are all about making friends on twitter and you don’t care about work, then forget these tips and do whatever you want. But if there is a business behind it, remember that you are representing your business. Don’t tweet about your messy house or the mold in your fridge. You are closing doors to potential jobs and opportunities. Would you hire someone that can’t get their life together? Me neither.
6. Keep it positive. I am not asking you to fake it and run around with a smiley face humming to the “Sound of Music” or to pretend that you live in a perfect world. Admit it, bad moods are addictive on twitter. If you complain and rant every time something goes wrong, you are spreading negativity. Yes, it’s okay once in a while to look for support but when twitter becomes your punching bag, it’s time to log out.
7. Don’t try to keep up! All moms are guilty at one point of trying to keep up with everyone else. Yes, you would love to go to five events that week. I am sure dinner out every night sounds tempting and falling asleep with a book in hand after a glass of wine sounds super sexy but reality is, you are probably re-tucking your child in for the fifth time or reciting ” Good Night Moon” in your sleep. Your situation is different. Remember that. Learn to love what you have and appreciate it. You would be devastated if that was gone.
8. Let your true colors shine through. Face it, this world is interesting because we are different. By asking you to be positive, or to refrain from tweeting about feces, I am not asking you to be someone else. Let the positive parts of you, shine through. What do people like about you? When do people come to your for advice? This is what you want to share.
9. Be useful. You can’t be useful a 100 percent of the time. But you can try to be at least 70 percent of the time. Share useful information. Tweet about things that are interesting. Retweet events and articles that are helpful and people will come back to you.
10. UNPLUG. Yes, you need boundaries here. We all need them. Teach your family that they are important to you. Set your own rules. No tweeting at the park, no tweeting after 7pm or even when the kids are up. Be present in the moment and you will enjoy twitter more. And when you need a couple days off. Take them.
Don’t want to tweet on the weekend? Then don’t. You are not missing anything. Life goes on and twitter will be there tomorrow.