By Denise Willms
There are hundreds of online WAHM forums designed to help work at home moms just like you. They can be a valuable resource and help you build long-lasting relationships with other moms in your same situation. They can also be a big drain on the time and energy you have for your business.
I haven't participated in WAHM forums as regularly as many other moms I know, but I have still benefited tremendously from the time I have invested in some of the high-quality forums.
Here are some of the criteria I use to determine if a particular WAHM forum is the right place for me to spend my time.
1. Is the forum owner active on the boards? I prefer to frequent WAHM forums where the owner is visible and makes herself available to the members. Not only does the forum reflect her personality and style, her involvement tells me that she is committed to her forum and her members.
2. Are there moderators to start conversations and keep them moving? Discussions and relationships don't happen by accident. Good moderators help them develop, and also keep an eye on spam and abusive posts.
3. Does the forum have a welcoming atmosphere? Something I look for is how new members are welcomed and how their questions are answered. The response they receive tells me a lot about the people who are involved in the forum, and if they are people I want to know.
4. Is there any negativity on the forum? I know we moms all have to vent sometimes, and a good forum can be a safe and supportive place to do so. But if unchecked, a negative attitude can take over the forum discussions.
5. Can I help the members on the forum? That's what it's really all about, isn't it? If I have information that can solve the members' problems, I like to get involved and try to help them out.
6. Can the members help me? Do they offer information, resources, and relationships that will benefit me in some way? That's another sign that this forum is a good fit for me.
7. Do I feel encouraged when I visit that forum? If I feel motivated and uplifted when I read the forum posts, this is probably a forum I should return to. If I feel drained and frustrated by what I read, even if I can't put a finger on the exact reason why, I know this is a forum that I don't need to frequent.
Join the Christian Mommies Forums to participate in our friendly online community, and have grown-up conversation with other Christian moms. As an alternative try our "Mom Site" Affiliate Moms of Faith's online community.
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