I just finished reading through a bunch of Frank McKinney’s websites launching his 3 new books ( biz book, spiritual book, kids book). Then I watched his video compilation of all the tv shows he’s been on and his many successes in real estate. And I find myself wondering yet again: How do these people accomplish all this whilst raising children??

Now you can tell me all you want about working hard vs. working smart, and delegating. But here’s the thing: you’re preaching to the choir. I am the Queen of time management and outsourcing. And at the end of the day, there are only so many hours and so much energy available in that day.

So call me judgmental, but if you’re raising young children (before school babysits them for a nice 6 hour chunk each day) and accomplishing monumental work successes, then something is suffering – and it’s obviously not your work stuff. Now, keep in mind I said, MONUMENTAL work success. Certainly it’s possible to build a business and generate good money whilst raising your family and nurturing yourself. What I’m calling out is the SuperParents who say they are travelling all over the country/world speaking, making TV appearances, writing books, running 25 staff, merchandising their own line, AND raising/nurturing their own babies and toddlers.

I figure people who are seeming to “do it all” with young children around probably have very little downtime in their lives. And they’re cutting corners in their child-raising.

Because my main business is natural health, I know how extremely important nutrition is. Both to the growth and development of a child and to the long-term health of all family members. So are you telling me that “do it all” moms like Carrie Wilkerson are cooking organic, unprocessed food from scratch for their 4 children every single day? Have they breastfed each child for at least 1-2 years? Have they been there for the child at night, or have they let the child “cry it out” and gone to sleep themselves, thereby preserving their energy for the next day’s work?

Or, the other thing I suspect, is that these have-it-all powerhouses have a spouse who is completely dedicated to them and the children and that is the person who is putting in all the work on the home front. Or, their business was cemented and generating a high income before they had their kids. Because, as we all know, most of the work is in the set-up.

My husband and I each have our own business and we each parent our children and suffer sleep deprivation and a crushing work load from just meeting the children’s needs. And these needs range from the emotional to the spiritual to the physical. My husband volunteers at school to help kids learn to read, he coaches soccer, he drives for field trips, and he’s done all the nights and night feedings (I pumped the breastmilk into bottles) with our youngest.

I did the all the nights and nightfeedings with the first two. I did not sleep more than 3.5 hours in a row for three years. You tell me how you can do all that (whilst breastfeeding day and night) and simultaneously be hosting teleseminars, going to conferences, marketing consistently, coaching and doing speaking engagements? It’s simply not physically possible. You can do some of those things, some of the time, but not all at once.

So I’m here to stand up and tell the truth: Yes, you can have it all. But not all at the same time.

it’s simply not physically possible to “have it all” when your kids are small. And personally, I’m getting a bit miffed at listening to all these people purport that they are doing and having it all and there’s something wrong with me that I’m not! So to all those “I’ve got it all: family, multi-million dollar business, spiritual growth and purpose, community involvement and charity” people. I have six questions for you:

  1. Do you parent your children yourself? Or does your spouse, daycare, nanny, etc. do it for you?
  2. Do you breastfeed each child for a minimum of one year, and preferably two?
  3. Do you prepare 3 meals a day of organic, unprocessed food, cooked from scratch?
  4. Are you available to nurture your children and show them compassion when they are upset or crying, day and night? Or do you leave them to cry it out on their own while you get your sleep?
  5. Do you spend time every day connecting with your children and teaching them the important things of life: spiritual, business, health and nutrition, etc.
  6. Are you doing some form of exercise every day (this could be with your kids – doesn’t have to be going to the gym on your own) to preserve your own health?

I would really like to hear from anyone who really and truly is doing/having it all whilst raising young children (on their own), so they can explain to me how it is physically possible.

In my experience, all you can do is your best. And that’s really going to vary depending on your personal energy levels, work habits, functionality, etc. It’s also going to depend on whether your work is “work” or something you love, that provides you with a break, stimulation and enjoyment. If it’s the latter, then obviously, you’re going to get a lot more done in your business. Because although it will still use up energy, it’s also giving back to you in various ways. That’s what my ‘work’ has always been for me – just a seamless part of my life and something I look forward to, so yes, I get a lot done and I’m certainly successful – but not without the juggle and struggle that goes along with having young kids (or a chronic illness, or any other major time-sucker)

It’s also going to hugely depend on whether your business is generating enough money for you to hire a housekeeper/cook. Of course, if you can do that, then entire chunks of time will open up for you and your parenting won’t suffer. But if not…

Until you get that last child full-time into school, there’s a definite limit on what you can accomplish in your business. And all of us active, compassionate, nurturing parents need to stop feeling guilty that we’re not doing better financially during this difficult time! We need to challenge all these “have it all” gurus and say, quite bluntly, “You’re lying!”

And on that note, I think I’ll go get the porridge soaking for breakfast tomorrow, and the meat marinating for dinner tonight!

My Young Family in Playa del Carmen, Mexico

The Work-Kids Dilemma
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