CWAHM Devotional

Do Life DifferentDo Life Different
Work-at-home mom: take a deep breath and Do Life Different as you allow these devotions for work-at-home moms to fill the vacuum of your needy heart in the chaos of your busy world.
 
Order Your Copy!

CWAHM Video Devotions

Get Our Updates!

Join our monthly newsletter!

Archive for CWAHM Blogs

Feb
01

3 Ways to Streamline Customer Support on Your Website

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on 3 Ways to Streamline Customer Support on Your Website

As a work-at-home-mom or dad, you’re excited about the launch of your new company and website. You have done your homework and know you’re offering great products and/or services at reasonable prices. Now, you need the customers and orders to start rolling in.

In order to assist as many potential customers as possible, it’s important to find ways to streamline customer support to your new website and company. While some of your clients may want to call you directly, others might prefer live chat, and others may love reaching out via social media.

With these important ideas in mind, consider the following tips:

1. Consider Using a Cloud Call Center

As you’re likely already well aware, juggling a new company with your family out of a home office can be both exciting and challenging. After all, while you’ll want to devote as much energy as possible to your new venture, it can be difficult to focus at times when the phone rings every few minutes.

To help deal with this challenge, you may want to consider using a cloud call center to handle customer service calls for people who prefer to use the phone.

For instance, the marketplace is saturated with a number of stellar of cloud center solutions that will allow you to optimize workflows, avoid fragmentation and allow you put your energies toward other company-related tasks, all while providing a superior customer service experience with less hassle.

2. Harness the Power of Social Media

In order to reach and connect with as many customers as possible, it’s important to create and be active on social media. Make it as easy as possible for customers to connect with you by including your company’s phone number and website on your social media platforms, and also link to your social pages on your website. Read More→

Categories : Articles, Jill's Blog
Comments Comments Off on 3 Ways to Streamline Customer Support on Your Website
Jan
30

The end of all nonsense and other practical jokes

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on The end of all nonsense and other practical jokes

Rev. James Snyder, Out to Pastor bloggerWhen it comes to practical jokes, Yours Truly is always on the ready. Throughout my earthly passage, I have perpetuated my share of practical jokes. I will not enumerate them here, the simple reason being, I might want to bring one out of retirement.

I must say that most practical jokes are neither practical nor funny. However, I operate on the biblical premise, “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones” (Proverbs 17:22). With the high cost of medicine these days, I will take a merry heart every time. Just call me Dr. Merry Heart, and I will dispense some good medicine to everybody who needs it.

Now, the practical joke I am thinking of has to do with New Year’s Resolutions. I always look forward to the last week in January for this very reason. For the first several weeks of January, I am nervous and sweating over those lousy New Year’s Resolutions I am forced to make. Pardon my French.

Somewhere there is someone laughing at all of those stupid enough to make New Year’s Resolutions. It is probably the quintessential practical joke played on all humanity. Is there a culture anywhere in our world today that does not fall for this practical joke? If there is, I want to move there.

The first week in January is probably the worst week when it comes to these New Year’s Resolutions. They are fresh in our mind not to mention fresh on our lips. A New Year’s Resolution would not be so bad if nobody knew that we made one. The problem comes when somebody knows what our resolution is and constantly reminds us, “How’re your New Year’s Resolutions coming along?” Read More→

Comments Comments Off on The end of all nonsense and other practical jokes
Jan
29

Decluttering For Spiritual Space

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Decluttering For Spiritual Space

If we’re honest with ourselves our lives are jam packed full. From work, to family, church and social commitments very often carving some time out for peace and solitude is next to impossible.

But finding this space is important and not just because it gives us a moment’s rest from the hustle and bustle of daily life but because it gives us time to focus on the bits that are important. This might be your prayer life; it might be taking time to read up on your faith or your job or something else that brings fulfillment to your life with a little concentration and effort.

So how do we go about finding this time? The answer is that we don’t. It won’t be found but it can be created. We take a look at how to create time in the midst of a busy life.

 

Say no

A small but extremely effective word when used at the right time. Of course we’re not advocating being rude or aggressive but being firm? Absolutely. It’s very easy to get drawn into everyone’s problems and circumstances and give and give and give of your time but if you’re burnt out, spiritually hungry and stressed, you won’t, in the end, help anyone.

That’s why putting boundaries in place is the key to protecting your mental, physical and spiritual health and why you should put yours in place today. If you don’t want to take phone calls after 10pm, then let people know and don’t answer. If you don’t have the time to pick up some groceries for someone, suggest home delivery or another person who can help, but say no.

 

Make a routine

The easiest way to make something happen regularly is to do it regularly. If a Tuesday morning is your quiet time, then it happens every Tuesday without fail and it becomes your priority. Your friends and family will soon learn that there’s no point trying to get you to commit to something at this time as you always turn it down.

Don’t feel guilty about putting this routine in place; cultures and religions across the world from Buddhists to Lay Cistercians recognize the importance of a spiritual routine.

 

Cut out the clutter

And we don’t mean just the clothes and books you no longer use but the clutter that distracts us such as social media, Netflix and even working that little bit longer each day to meet deadlines we’ve more often than not created for ourselves. By all means, have these in your life but think long and hard about how much they really mean to you.

You don’t have to be a lifestyle guru to make a few significant changes, you just need to take time to start putting your priorities first and that should include your own time and space and not just those of your friends and family. Creating your own Sabbath is healthy, it’s Biblical and ultimately it will help you to be more effective in the life you lead.

 

Categories : Jill's Blog
Comments Comments Off on Decluttering For Spiritual Space
Jan
28

Juggling Work & Family When Working at Home

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Juggling Work & Family When Working at Home

jill-new14HiResMany a mom longs to work at home so she can spend more time with her kids. But there’s a catch: actually getting that work done requires time away from your kids. Here’s advice on how you can work more efficiently and reduce frustration when have young kids and work at home.

QuestionI have been having my home based business for three years now and I still am struggling with how to juggle business and being a mom, wife and housekeeper. How do you juggle these? I want to make this a success, but so far it’s only been frustration.

My children are four and two years old and they are more challenging than most (not as in spoiled, but as in needing more time than the average kid). Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated!

Answer: GREAT question! My kids are now seven and four, so I now have a little bit of help in my seven-year-old. But, I found something that I had written a few years ago. In it, I listed my kids’ ages as four and one. I could tell when reading it that I had been very frazzled. I think I lived in a state of frazzled during those years when they were both so small.

My main advice would be to cut yourself some slack. Things will get easier and more manageable as your kids get older.

My practical advice is this:

1. Plan out menus each week.

I literally spend about two minutes on this. I have a small magnetic dry-erase board that I keep on my refrigerator. Each Sunday, I write out the days of the week and what we’ll have for supper that day. (Lunches almost always consist of sandwiches or something easy like that since it’s just me and the kids.)

This makes grocery shopping a breeze because I know just what ingredients I need. It also alleviates the nagging thoughts of “what are we going to eat tonight?” If possible, have one or both of your kids help you decide what to put. You’ll be surprised at how much they like having a say in what goes on that board!

2. Set a day for everything.

My days look something like this:

Mondays – Housework and laundry (and business tasks as time allows)

Tuesdays – Grocery shopping and business tasks (this used to be during naptime, but is now during preschool time)

Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Juggling Work & Family When Working at Home
Jan
25

5 Fun, Creative Ideas to Inspire Your Next Blog Post

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on 5 Fun, Creative Ideas to Inspire Your Next Blog Post

Michelle Shaeffer - Making Business Simple bloggermichelle-ideasReady for a little creativity boost to help you write your next blog post?

Try one of these!

1.  Share “Behind the Scenes” in your life or business.

Let readers catch a glimpse of inside your life or business.

Share your office and a few tips about creating an inspirational space, staying organized, or whatever ties into your expertise.

If you sell a physical product, you could create a photo tour of your studio or workspace including details about the tools you use and your favorite work tips.

2.  Build on someone else’s words.

Be inspired by a great quote!  You could share a quote from someone famous or someone less-than-famous (like your kid, spouse, neighbor, or friend).

Quote inspired posts can be inspirational and motivational, funny or sarcastic.   There are quotes for every mood and theme.

Try these great sites for quotes:

3.  Play “Dear Abby…”

Do an advice column. You can make up your own questions for this or invite subscribers to send you their questions.

Or just pick a question that you get asked frequently, or one that your customers should be asking and answer it.

4.  Get controversial and dive into a hot topic.

What topics or posts have worked to get your readers talking?  Write about the 3 or 4 blog posts that you have received the most comments on.  Were those comments positive or negative?  Were the posts controversial?  Is there a theme of some sort?  Will you be writing more on that subject?

If your blog doesn’t have a post you’d consider “most popular” yet, then check out Facebook or Twitter to see what’s a hot topic and blog about that.

5.  Share your inspiration.

What inspires you?  Share a photo, quote, video, or something else that’s helped you stay motivated or get through those tough times.

Who inspires you?  Share someone who you admire, respect, or who you’ve learned from by profiling them on your blog.  Might be your favorite author from childhood.  Or a teacher who cared and made a difference in your life.  Maybe it’s your coach or a mentor. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on 5 Fun, Creative Ideas to Inspire Your Next Blog Post
Jan
23

Why childhood is better the second time around

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Why childhood is better the second time around

Rev. James Snyder, Out to Pastor bloggerThis week the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and Yours Truly had the privilege of attending our youngest granddaughter’s second birthday party. I wanted to go to her third birthday party but she was not old enough yet. So, I will have to wait another year.

On the way home we sat in silence thinking about the party we had just attended. It just does not seem possible that we have eight grandchildren. I broke the silence with a little comment along this line. “I’m just not old enough to be a grandfather of eight grandchildren. I don’t feel old enough to be a grandfather”

From the other passenger in the car came a rather sarcastic snicker, if I say so myself.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” I retorted.

“Well,” she said rather slowly as if she was trying to collect her thoughts and use the right words, “believe me, putting all feelings aside, you’re old enough.”

I did not quite know what she meant by that, and I was afraid if I ask she would tell me. I quickly changed the subject and said, “Didn’t Jordin look cute with birthday cake all over her face?”

She laughed.

Then, I thought I was talking to myself but apparently, I said it aloud, a least loud enough for my wife to hear. “I wonder what it’s like to be two years old?”

“Get ready,” my wife said with a laugh in her voice, “you’re about ready to enter into your second childhood.”

At the time, I rather resented the comment, but upon further reflection, I do not see anything wrong with that. After all, what is wrong with enjoying childhood the second time around?

I really do not think it is possible to enjoy childhood the first time. There are so many things to interfere.

First off, are parents constantly telling you what to do or not to do. Telling you when to go to bed. Telling you when to get up in the morning. Telling you when to eat. Telling you what to eat. Telling… telling… telling…

How in the world can anybody enjoy life when people are always telling them what to do? The problem is, when a person is two years old they have absolutely no leverage against overbearing parents. The only thing the two-year-old can do to get the upper hand with his parents is to wait until they are in the supermarket with lots of people around and then throw a temper tantrum.

Here is the advantage of entering a second time into your childhood. Nobody is around to tell you what to do or what not to do. You are on your own, at least in this area. Of course, in your second childhood it is not possible to throw a temper tantrum in a public supermarket and get away with it.

The advantage of having a second childhood is that you have all that experience behind you to use to your advantage that a two year old could not possibly have. This in itself covers a multitude of sins.

“What’s wrong with your husband?” Somebody may ask my wife.

“Oh,” she responds quite mechanically, “he’s into his second childhood.”

“I understand, my husband’s there too.”

And all is right with the world.

In a person’s first childhood, he is quite limited in his outlook. He does not know what he is missing. But during the second childhood, he has the benefit of knowing this and using it for his own personal profit.

For example, when the parents of a two-year-old take him out to a restaurant he is completely at the mercy of the parents.

“Eat your vegetables,” the parents demand, “then you can have dessert.”

There is nothing the two-year-old can do at this point. After all, the one who pays the bill gets to say who does what.

Now, as I enter my second childhood I have the advantage of knowing that all that malarkey about eating your vegetables first is just that… malarkey. And, since I am paying the bill, I will eat the desert whenever I want to eat it. In fact, I will start with dessert and end with dessert. And while I am on the subject, if I do not want to order vegetables, I will order no vegetable.

Many has been the time when my wife and I are out to a restaurant and she will order a properly balanced meal, while I order dessert.

“You do know vegetables are good for you?” my wife will insist.

“I know no such thing,” I reply. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Why childhood is better the second time around
Jan
21

Still Standing Still

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Still Standing Still

Joy Jochems - Single Moms Blogger“Are we there yet?” It’s the mantra of the road-weary, the song of the sojourner who’s been sitting too long. Those very words have undoubtedly slipped past your own lips at some point in your life’s journey. long travelsIt’s the impatient whine of waiting for the current road to end, the jittery anticipation of the “reachless” horizon. In short, it’s the waiting.

In Numbers 9:18 it says, “In this way, they traveled and camped at the Lord’s command wherever He told them to go. Then they remained in their camp as long as the cloud stayed over the Tabernacle” (emphasis added). If anyone knew the monotony of travel and the ringing of “Are we there yet?”, it was the Israelites! For some, the stop-start/camp-pack life was the only one they knew. Here’s what else they knew: obedience. They moved when the Lord said, “Move,” and they stayed still when He said, “Halt”… and they camped and waited until He designated otherwise. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Still Standing Still
Jan
18

Why a Brand Audit is Necessary and How to Do One

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Why a Brand Audit is Necessary and How to Do One

3 business womenVisual and brand audits. It’s one of those fancy words graphic designers use. Why do you need one and how do you do it?

A brand audit is a careful analysis of every marketing material you have, from signage to business cards to your Website.

I like to call it an Identity Hunt. That’s what I call it in my branding courses and curriculum. This is a quest and you are trying to find what’s missing, what’s confusing, and what’s inconsistent so you can refine and define your identity.

Why is this important? Because the key to successful branding is perception meeting reality. Because perception IS reality. If there is a disconnect between what you think you are offering and what you’re prospect thinks you’re offering, than you are most likely losing clients. And that costs you money.

So here is how to conduct a visual audit:

Imagine you are a prospect that never heard of your company. What do they see when they go to your Website? If you have an office or a brick and mortar store, is your signage recognizable to them? When you give them a business card, is it consistent with your signage, Website, brochures, etc.

And here’s an often overlooked point-of-contact—when your customer calls your phone, what voice mail greets them? Have you clearly identified your name and business?

You want to notice inconsistencies. Are you confusing your audience? Are you telling them one thing but providing another?

You might use Facebook to get some objective opinions. Ask in a Facebook group what a certain logo or marketing piece is communicating.

Is it the same as what you intend on communicating? Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Why a Brand Audit is Necessary and How to Do One
Jan
16

It Was An Apple Fritter Kind Of Week

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on It Was An Apple Fritter Kind Of Week

Have you ever had a week where everything went exactly as planned? Neither have I. Every week I start out believing this week is going to be different from all the other weeks of my life. If this has ever occurred, I cannot recall it.

Take last week, please! I start every week about the same. I meticulously prepare my weekly to-do-list. This is not to be confused with the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage’s honey-do-list. Her list, and I learned this by experience, takes precedence over every other list in the world.

My weekly to-do-list is a very important part of my week. I chronicle everything needing accomplished during the week along with appointments with people that I need to see. With the religious ferocity of the Pharisee, I follow this list throughout the week and dutifully check off each item as it is completed. Then, Saturday evening I can look back with a great deal of satisfaction and see what I have accomplished.

Unfortunately, I can also look back on my list and see what I have not accomplished this week. With a deep sigh, I carry these items over to next week’s to-do-list. Just between you and me, some items I have carried over for 36 consecutive weeks. By this time, I usually drop the whole notion and get on with my life.

My philosophy is, if you aim at nothing; you will hit it every time. I’m not exactly sure what that means, but what I take away from it is simply that if I do not aim to do something I probably never will do it.

I live day by day by this weekly to-do-list. If it were not for this marvelous tool, I would never get anything done during the week. It is my great joy late Saturday night to work out the following week’s to-do-list.

Sometimes my wife will look at me, sigh and say, “You’re not working on your to-do-list, are you?” Then she says something that actually irritates me. Not everything she says irritates me, but this one does. “You know, if you would spend as much time actually doing those things as you spend planning to do them you might actually get something done during the week.”

I developed this to-do-list so I would not have to keep trying to remember what I was supposed to do during the week. They keep me free to think more creatively about things that need that kind of attention. All I had to do was consult my to-do-list and find out what needed to be done. After all, I don’t want to tax my brain too much. Who do you think I am? The government?

Then last week it happened. Something I had feared for many a year. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on It Was An Apple Fritter Kind Of Week
Jan
14

How to be the Favorite

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on How to be the Favorite

I was the favorite once.  Then I wasn’t. Then I was!  But then . . .

There is some, of what I will affectionately call ‘loose,’ science on birth order and affinity toward a certain parent.  In general, firstborn kids are more ‘like’ (have personality affinity toward) the Mom.  Second-born share a preponderance of personality traits with Dad.  Generally they even resemble (have more physical characteristics in common) these respective parents; first-born will get a lot of, “you look just like your mother,” etc.

Subsequent kids are a crap-shoot on looks and personality.

But this is all lumped into “loose” science.  Which means that it happens a lot, but, there is not a lot of empirical data to birth order ‘psychology.’

Here’s a fact though that you can count on: kids go through stages of closeness and affinity with either parent as they grow up.

I was the ‘cat’s meow’ for a while

My wife stepped in as ‘the bomb’ at some point.

Then I was the ‘wizard’

My wife took over as the ‘awesome-blossom’ . . . 

Many times I had flexibility to be home with the kids when they were little.  We did some fun things, and I was also ‘the disciplinarian.’  So you’d think that I’d be at the top of their favorites.  But, the truth is – don’t get offended until you read further – kids were created to have both parents.  So my boys missed their ‘mom time’ and were super-excited to have interaction with her when she was home.

If you’re a single parent though, this concept on how to be their favorite is especially important.   It’s not loose science that kids need parents.  In fact, kids will subconsciously seek out what they ‘need’ from parenting.  I’ll explain:

Society is built around children growing up to be successful members of the populace, so there are objectives that kids need to learn.  If they aren’t getting a skill, then they have to find it someplace.  So kids will gravitate subconsciously toward ‘parents’ modeling or offering the skills they need.

Example:  You might be a total introvert with no viable social skills (commenting on the Do the Dad Thing Blog might be the pinnacle of your social interaction).  But kids need to learn how to interact socially, so they might parrot the used car salesman they see on TV, or mimic the next door neighbor talking with their hand motions to the mailperson, etc.

So don’t worry if your kids have a favorite outside of you, or model someone else they see, or idolize an attribute in someone that is not exactly idol-worthy.  They are following the natural desire to grab the skills they need from the surrounding world.  This becomes more and more pronounced as your kids grow up and our accumulated set of skills gets more and more limited for their growth.  I.e.  I used to be the favorite to help my boys with math, but as they entered high school, suddenly my skills were sorely lacking. . .

–Warning– most sexual abuse is committed by family members or extended family; especially, for some reason, by uncles and aunts. So make sure there is adequate supervision and safety protocols for kids spending time with other adults.

The good news is, no matter the outside influence and modeled skills, your children always have the desire and need to find their ‘home’ favorite in a parent (yes, even if you are secondary care giver adoptive parent or foster parent).  The concept of ‘home’ and ‘family’ is core to people, and  children will always treasure the link they have with you as their safe place for understanding and acceptance. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on How to be the Favorite

About CWAHM:





** Disclaimer **
The views expressed by the bloggers on this website are not necessarily the views held by CWAHM.com or it's owners. Please see our Statement of Faith for details on what we believe.

About Us | Privacy Policy