As a family child care provider, you care for your own children, your spouse, and the children from other families.
Think of all the many children you’ve cared for in the past and the many more you will care for in the future!
You are a generous, loving, responsible, and often self-sacrificing person. I admire the work you do and your commitment to helping others.
However, as you look ahead to the new year, I think it’s time to think more about caring for yourself.
Invest in Yourself
The most significant asset you have is your ability to earn money by continuing to care for children.
Are you doing everything you can to improve your skills and set yourself up to be successful going forward?
Here are three areas to consider investing in yourself:
Investing in education will improve your ability to care for children and make more money.
* Obtain accreditation from the National Association for Family Child Care.
* Participate in the Quality Rating and Improvement System in your state and work towards the highest level of quality. (Currently, 39 states have launched QRIS programs.)
* Take classes to get a college degree in Early Childhood Education.
* Achieve the Child Devel0pment Associate (CDA) credential.
If you have already accomplished one or more of these goals, congratulations!
2) Seek Out Expertise
Running a family child care business is not easy. Improving your business skills is probably near the bottom of your priorities.
However, you can get help from experts to make your job easier:
* Make sure your taxes are done properly.
Use a professional tax preparer – My tax preparer directory is somewhat outdated, but contains names of professionals who are experienced doing family child care taxes. My Family Child Care Tax Companion can help ensure that your tax preparer is not making mistakes.
Do your own taxes – My Family Child Care Tax Workbook and Organizer will tell you how to fill out each business tax form, line by line.
* Use Minute Menu Kids Pro Software. It’s a comprehensive record keeping system that will save you time and money on your taxes. To get one-on-one technical assistance from me on how to most effectively use this software, join The Child Care Business Partnership for $15 a year.
* Join the National Association for Family Child Care and your local family child care association. Members of NAFCC receive a variety of benefits, including access to my monthly business webinars sponsored by NAFCC.
* Read the many articles on this blog or read my books: Family Child Care Record Keeping Guide, Family Child Care Contracts & Policies, Family Child Care Marketing Guide, Family Child Care Legal & Insurance Guide, Family Child Care Business Planning Guide, and Family Child Care Money Management & Retirement Guide.
3) Save for Retirement
No matter how little you may be earning today, you always want to try to save something for your retirement.
Here are some key articles to help you get started:
What’s in Your Way?
You probably already know that investing in yourself can have a big payoff.
What’s in your way to make this happen?
“I’m not worth it.”
“I’m here for others, not myself.”
“It won’t make any difference.”
These words imply that you are not important and that doing something for yourself is selfish, and therefore wrong.
But it’s not true!
Your work is important and you should want to be the best you can be.
So, go ahead and invest in yourself. You are worth it!
Tom Copeland – www.tomcopelandblog.com
Image credit: www.iaam.com