Starting a business when you are pregnant is not the most ideal situation. It would have been a lot easier had we planned for this more ahead of time.
Ironically, I always knew I was going to quit when we had kids, but for some reason, the lost income from quitting my job didn’t hit us until we ran the numbers. In any case, the startup phase of our business was characterized in 3 distinct trimesters.
The First Trimester
You are going to feel like shit. This is the period where you’ll need the most support from your husband because you’ll be either too dizzy or nauseous to get any meaningful work done. Try to pick a time of day to work on your business when are feeling the best. In my case, I felt my strongest a few hours after dinner.
Keep a Trash Can Nearby At All Times
Inevitably, you’re going to hurl at some point during your first trimester, so its important to keep that waste basket handy. There were a few occasions when I was working on our business plan when I got nauseous and couldn’t make it to the toilet in time.
My trusty plastic garbage can with a lid (the lid is key) was right there beside me when I needed it. After you are done vomiting, yell for your husband to take out the garbage.
On some rare occasions, you won’t have your trash can next to you and you’ll have to make some difficult decisions. One time I was sorting through our most expensive linens and I felt stomach acid welling up deep inside of me.
There was no place to vomit in sight and I had to make a split second decision. Saving the merchandise should be your number one priority. Throw up on your husband if you have to but keep your revenue stream safe.
Keep Hydrated and Eat Well
To keep a clear head, always make sure you are constantly drinking to replace your lost fluids. If you have the appetite, try and eat well and keep your body healthy. Take advantage of your hubby to cater to your every whim. If you feel like chili cheese fries, then damn it, have your husband go out and get you some chili cheese fries. Working on your business requires a clear head.
The Second Trimester
By the second trimester, you should start feeling much much better. Hopefully, your morning sickness will have subsided at this point, but its important to still maintain the nauseous guise. Now is the perfect time to go on vacation and visit your vendors.
Plan Your Vacation Around Your Business and Expense It
In our case, we took a 2 week vacation to visit Japan and Hong Kong. While the bulk of our vacation was in Japan for pleasure reasons, we took a detour to Hong Kong to visit our vendors in person.
Its always important to speak with your suppliers face to face. By getting to know one another in person and being able to place a face with a name, you will establish a sense of loyalty with each other.
In many cases, your vendors will show you new products that they haven’t started advertising for yet. They will also be able to provide you with a roadmap for products that will be coming out in the future. Also take this time to become friends with your supplier liaison.
You will get much better service if they like you as a person. Once the trip is over, expense it as part of your business!
The Third Trimester
At this point, you will be tired and often grumpy because quite frankly, you just want the baby outta there. This was the period of time when my husband and I had the most disagreements regarding the future of our online business. Remember though, that you have been carrying your husband’s child for a long time now and you deserve a lot of credit.
Use Your Trump Card
Whenever you feel like an argument is coming on, lift up your shirt and say “You aren’t going to yell at baby are you?” Most likely, this will shut your husband up immediately because he won’t want to upset his child. Remind your husband that excessive stress is not good for the baby.
Warning! Don’t use your trump card too often otherwise its effectiveness will diminish rapidly. Hopefully at this point in time, your store will be close to getting off of its feet. Have your husband do most of the heavy lifting and hope for the best.
(In case you couldn’t tell this was written from Steve’s point of view)
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