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Yup, you read that right. It might surprise you that being a stay-at-home mom can help you in your career even though you aren’t in one at the moment. I know not all SAHMs want to return to the workforce and that’s perfectly fine. I’ve been a SAHM/WAHM for the past five years, and I never expected that this gift of being home with my children would give me the time, motivation, and experience to finally achieve one of my life-long goals of writing a book.

For the longest time, I used working outside the home as an excuse not to pursue my passion of writing. I did plenty of writing as a Marketing Coordinator,but it never fulfilled me in quite the same way. I wrote what other people wanted me to write, which was sometimes really hard to do. I spent more of my energy trying to channel and deliver on other people’s expectations of myself than I did figuring out what I really wanted to say to the world.

After some time at home, I picked up my old blogging habit. I connected with Terrie Goldstein, publisher of Hudson Valley Parent, and expressed my interest in blogging for the magazine. I became a regular contributor and have enjoyed writing for this wonderful audience.

Eventually, I began writing a book about saving money based on my experience living on one-income as a SAHM. Two years later, I finished, So, You’re Broke? 18 Drama-Free Steps To A Richer Life and published it on Amazon and it’s been an eye-opening experience. I could never have achieved this goal if I were still working outside the home. If I can follow my passion, you can too.

Here are five ways, you can achieve your career goals right now as a SAHM.

  1. Go Back To School – Now is a great time to think about what you want to do with your life, if and when, you go back to working outside the home. If you didn’t love your former career or if you never had one before, this is a perfect opportunity to explore your career options. There are an enormous amount of options when it comes to education or career training and you can pursue many of them online in your spare time.
  2. Pursue Your Dreams – Maybe you’re artistic and enjoy writing, painting, crafting or jewelry making. Whatever it is, pursue it while you have the chance. Even if you can’t make a career from it later, your soul with thank you. You never know if you might end up teaching classes, opening your own Etsy shop, or starting a blog.
  3. Start Your Own Business – When you pursue your passion, you might not want to put it on the back burner to work for someone else. You could use your skills and talents and turn them into a business that fulfills you.
  4. Volunteer – Being at home gives you the flexibility to volunteer your time and talent to local non-profits. While this may not lead directly to a job in the future, you’ll get valuable work experience you can use on your resume. Volunteering also offers opportunities to network with people in your former or future career field. One day you might find yourself sitting in an interview with someone you met at a charity function.
  5. Freelance – You can use your skills to work freelance. You can pick and choose which jobs to take and work on your own schedule. Sometimes you can charge higher rates for the same work you did as a staff member at your former job. Sometimes companies don’t have the budget to hire someone full or part-time, but can pay for a particular project that needs to be done.

I’ll never look back at this time at home with my kids with regret. Not only have I had the honor of watching them grow up before my eyes, but they have been my inspiration to find my voice and pursue my dreams with reckless abandon.

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Staying home with my kids and living on one-income gave me the time and experience to write and publish a book about living frugally.

I have no idea if I’ll end up going back to a traditional job once my youngest child is in school, but either way I know that I’ve used this time wisely, building skills that will help me later.Staying home with kids is not a vacation by any means, but you can use whatever spare time you have to pursue the career you want down the road.

What would you like to do in the future?

Erin Johnson a.k.a. The No Drama Mama is the author of So, You’re Broke? 18 Drama-Free Steps To A Richer Life. She can be found writing for The No Drama Mama and Hudson Valley Parent when she’s not busy caring for her three adorable kiddos. Her work can also be found on The Huffington Post, Money Saving Mom, Mamapedia and Worshipful Living.

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