Posts tagged Healthy Living
No Nude Bras! A Confidence Revelation

At first glance, the statement “NO NUDE BRAS” might seem unreasonable. What have I got against the seemingly sensible, attracts-no-attention, modest undergarment?

The answer is QUITE A LOT.

It’s not a personal vendetta against the color or a piece of fashion advice. I’m against nude bras because of what they symbolize. I will give its inventor the benefit of the doubt and say that maybe their intentions were pure. Maybe beige bras were supposed to be helpful in the cases of thin white shirts and bright lights. I’ll accept that, seeing as I’d hardly consider myself an exhibitionist. But I can’t ignore what nude bras really stand for overall, when you take a good hard look.

They’re about hiding yourself and any glimpses at or traces of your femininity, in a way that’s more suited for our grandmothers’ generations. Times have changed and we are now women in business in a way earlier generations could only dream of. Hiding and toning down your impact aren’t strategies that you want as an entrepreneur, bra-wearing or otherwise.

Nude bras try not to be seen. They don’t want to disrupt or draw attention. They’re never memorable.

Ask yourself this: on the day of a big interview or meeting, do you pick your boring nude bra– even when there’s no chance of it being seen because your top isn’t sheer? Does it somehow just feel more professional? It kills me to admit but it took a long time to realize how WRONG that is! That’s a leftover idea passed down from when women weren’t allowed to start their own businesses; when sexuality was too threatening.

There is nothing wrong with enjoying bright, beautiful colors and patterns– and allowing yourself to do so can do wonders for your work life and personal life. But you don’t have to take my word for it. A study conducted by Harvard found that confidence is a key factor for career success, where the less confident people, usually women, don’t reach their full potential because of it.

“From a young age, women appear less confident than men. This confidence gap has been argued to play a key role in explaining differences in academic success, occupational choices, and career progression.”

Knowing that, wouldn’t you do all that you can to feel more confident? Why let yourself be held back by something you can actually change starting right this second?!

I hear so many women say they save their exciting, fancy bras for things like first dates, anniversaries, and parties. For every other day, which is most of them unfortunately, we repeat the same bland bras until they’re dingy and worn out. Why is that??? Why do we think we only deserve a confidence boost and, hey, maybe even a cleavage boost, on special days and celebrations? A cardigan and underwear suitable for the 1950’s won’t automatically command respect in the workplace. Feeling good shouldn’t be an indulgence; it needs to be rebranded as a daily investment in your overall quality of life.

When I need to crush a big meeting now, I want the bright red bra or the hot pink that makes me feel like a powerful boss lady. I never thought a nude bra was hurting me, since it’s marketed as being so neutral and demure, but wearing one almost edged me towards taking on those qualities. I would never reach my audience if I was content to be the quiet, “well-behaved” woman in the corner who hopes to go unnoticed. I want BOLD, colorful, fun, and brilliant– for my clothing, my personality, and my first impressions.

If you’re confident in yourself and love who you are, then why wouldn’t you want to be noticed? Even if no one is going to see your pink, mint, neon, striped, plaid, polka-dot bra, they will notice the attitude it gives you. And not attitude in a bad way, as the term is so often used, but the swagger and confidence that other people can pick up on the second you enter a room. It’s the invisible ingredient that guarantees you will be noticed, paid attention to, and remembered because you will stand out. People don’t respect the wallflowers that quietly tread in others’ footsteps; they respect the wave-makers who insist on being heard and confidently present the new ideas they believe in. There is, after all, a reason why the phrase “Well-behaved women seldom make history” is so frequently referenced.

Everyone knows Steve Jobs’s name. No one knows the Microsoft engineer who worked tirelessly and never dared to think outside the box and build a newer, (arguably*) better technology system like Apple.

Work hard. Question tradition. Value yourself. Go far.


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How to Crush Your 2017 Goals with Visualization

So you’ve done it. You’ve taken the first step to success by allowing yourself to believe you can do it. You’re taking your dreams seriously. You feel confident that big things are coming your way. Sometimes I think that’s the hardest part, because we might’ve spent years pushing aside our actual goals for the things that seemed more realistic or easier.

ASHLEIGH BLATT

This post may contain affiliate links. 

Now that you are ready to go after your passions and get more out of life, it’s time to bring in a few key strategies that will actually help you get from point A to B and all of the letters that are sure to come after that!

It all comes down to visualization.

Ever heard the phrase, “I’d have to see it to believe it,” ? It usually takes on a skeptical vibe.

That’s where visualization comes in. The point of visualization is to harness the power of positive mental imagery, so that happy daydreams aren’t just a lack of focus, but a motivating factor and a roadmap to real, tangible success.

With these three visualization techniques, you’ll allow yourself to picture the outcome of your hard work and all of the progress you make along the way. It’s so incredibly inspiring and motivating for the initial push you need to get going, and will act as reassurance in times of doubt. As cliché as it sounds, the more you’re able to see yourself succeeding, the more you’ll believe in your own ability– with each one fueling the other.

A month of 2017 has already passed, but you can still crush all of the goals you have for this year by taking advantage of visualization from this moment forward!

1. Vision

The overall goal in all of this is to make our dreams a reality, and a vision board does that in the most basic sense. You start by printing, tearing out, and collecting all of the visual representations of what you want your life to be or include– a mix of things that haven’t happened yet and the happy moments we’d like to have more of in the future. Include images, words, quotes, and colors– anything that makes you feel inspired. This is for you and you only, so don’t worry about what others might think of your goals. Your vision board is a daily reminder of all the things you’re working so hard for, so holding back or censoring that is holding back the amount of motivation you’ll get out of the process.

If you’ve always dreamed of owning a red Mercedes convertible, stick one onto your board. If your dream is to travel as often as you did in your twenties, dig out a picture from one of your favorite adventures and use that to represent that specific goal. Life is made up of material items, emotions, and abstract ideas, so your vision board should as well.

And don’t be afraid to have some fun with the process of making the vision board! Turn on your favorite playlist and pour a glass of wine like the ultimate adult arts-n-crafts. Instead of flipping through magazines or Pinterest pages with envy, peruse like a serious shopper. Which parts of those photo shoots and inspo pages interest you the most? What would you be willing to work for? When it comes to your dream life, there is no wrong answer.

2. Meditation

There are so many wonderful effects that come from taking the time to meditate, and some of the best fall under the visualization umbrella. Meditation is a way for us to organize our thoughts, set our intentions, and gain some mental clarity, but we can also use that time to envision our goals being realized.

Have you ever spent hours playing out potential scenarios and conversations in your mind the night before a big event? It’s usually out of anxiety and prevents you from getting the restful sleep you need to perform the next day– not to mention, it hardly ever proves useful in terms of preparation. Mom life can be stressful, for sure! Meditation, on the other hand, is a way to walk yourself through a situation without stress to cloud your judgment. Because it’s a relaxing process, since it incorporates deep breathing and a designated time set aside, you can work through a solution with a clear head. You are essentially practicing for how you’ll handle the conflicts and interactions that may come up as you work on your goals, which is a crucial next step after the vision board. Whereas the vision board is an unfiltered look at the “why” – why you’re working so hard–, meditation is a technique for visualizing the “how” – how you’ll accomplish all of these goals. While you meditate, you can not only practice scenarios, but will these outcomes into being. You can become a self-fulfilling prophecy in the best way, by focusing so intensely on your goals that they have no choice but to come true.

My favorite meditation is this one! It's something you must listen to.  It will lift you right and and ramp you up for the day1

3. Bullet Journaling

The feeling you get when you see your own progress is worth all of the stress, doubting, fear, and time that went into making that happen– which is probably a big part of why we keep going and refuse to give up. I love working with planners and making lists, but when it comes to visualization, there is a specific journaling method that really encapsulates the ideas behind visualization best.

It’s called bullet journaling.

Bullet journals are a slightly eccentric but highly visual combination of goal planners, to-do lists, diaries, and sketch pads. They can be made from any type of journal or notebook, lined or unlined, depending on your preference, and the contents are made as you go. The first few pages are where you’ll make an index over time. Just like the table of contents in a book, you can reference the index to find the page number of whatever you’re looking for, whether it be your long-term goals or books you’d like to read.

Bullet journals keep track of things you’ve done, things you want to do, and all of the ideas in between. The point is to keep your text concise and include plenty of visuals, whether that be a hand-drawn calendar, symbols to designate the status of a project’s components, or a page full of doodles. You can set aside a page for the sole purpose of listing your little daily “wins,” and another for the larger accomplishments. A bullet journal grows and evolves with you as a tangible representation of your progress, and a sneaky excuse to invest in some really, really great colorful pens!

Let's not forget that you have DO THE WORK required to "crush your goals".  But that said these 3 tools can help you stay focused and on course!

Good luck!


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These 5 Work Habits Are Holding You Back! How to Say No

We care about our work. We are the proud, huddled masses (huddled in front of our computers, that is) who use our free time to read blogs, listen to podcasts, and search for whatever else will make us better at our careers. The dedication is there. What happened to balancing work and family? In all of our well-intentioned professional development, we still have not mastered the art of saying no– or at least of saying no and not feeling like a complete jerk for doing so.

Ashleigh Blatt - 5 Work Habits

We know we deserve more recognition, higher pay, and above all, not to feel guilty about it. And yes, there are factors beyond our immediate control– but there are also some habits you can choose to say no to every day that make a huge, noticeable impact.

What am I talking about?

I’m referring to the little choices we make on a daily basis in our work lives that hold us back and stress us out. The incessant emails we grudgingly reply to, despite their lack of importance, because we want to be helpful and accommodating. The lunch hours we work through because asking for help would mean interrupting someone else’s schedule. You can chalk it up to perseverance and a rare work ethic, or you can come to terms with how stressful it can be to put your foot down and refuse.

I won’t tell you it’s not. I will, however, tell you how you can say no to five of these common work habits without any need to feel guilty, selfish, or GASP! “mean.”

1. Working Yourself to Exhaustion

One of the biggest risks of enjoying work is letting that ability to work harder and longer than other people be taken advantage of. Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should– a phrase to remember the next time you have to decide between staying late on a Friday or spending time with your kids.

Maybe you don’t even realize you’re taking on too much at once, and that’s something we can fix. The key to gauging your work limits is getting organized ahead of time. Instead of accepting every extra project that comes your way and realizing later on that you don’t have room for it in your schedule, plan out what you need to accomplish this week so you can see what you have time for. Set a measurable work goal for each day, and allow yourself to go home and reset once you complete it. You can say no to working overtime, even when you have to say it to yourself.

2. Answering Every Call & Email

Technology is supposed to make communication more convenient and more readily available, and I think that has subconsciously carried over into us thinking that we have to be readily available anytime our iPhones buzz, ping, and light up. Instant communication is an option, not a mandate! It’s a little insane how much power that little red notification over my inbox icon has! But hey, you’re not Siri and you’re not a concierge. Unless it’s your kids calling, you can let voicemail serve its purpose until you have time to respond. Sometimes I think that making myself available to every text, email, Facetime, G Chat, Skype, etc. will make me seem like I’m completely on top of my stuff– but I’ve found it’s better to finish the task at hand and respond when I can devote my full focus to the conversation. Besides, you set the tone for how others will contact you. Answering every call and email right away may cause your coworkers to expect that kind of immediate response every time!

If you feel obligated, there are so many explanations you can give as to why you weren’t available right at that moment, from being on another call to being so wrapped up in a project that you didn’t notice the notification right away. But when it comes to the not-so-pressing messages, you don’t owe anyone an excuse for having other priorities.

Ashleigh Blatt - Work Habits

3. Discounting Your Services

Money is a sensitive topic for many people, but you can’t be sensitive about your worth or your livelihood. Payment is a part of doing business, so don’t be nervous to bring it up to your employer. They know you are working in exchange for a profit, but they may not realize you’re unhappy with the size of that profit. If your time and effort aren’t being accurately or satisfactorily compensated, what’s stopping you from negotiating a raise? Maybe you’re worried you’ll seem greedy or be turned down– but it’s more likely that you’ll be respected. It shows you feel confident, value your work, and you’re not afraid to make sure your client or employer values it fairly too.

Decide on a figure that makes sense for your time+the raw materials+your experience level and consider that against the going rate for that service/product.  That way, you don’t start deducting and adjusting based on how much you like the client or what their budget is, and you have a logical breakdown to explain that you didn’t just pluck a price out of nowhere.

4. Not Asking For Help

I’ll be the first one to admit guilt with this one. I just don’t like the feeling of realizing I can’t always do everything myself. It turns out, the feeling of being so overwhelmed and helpless because I should’ve asked for help is way worse. Don’t let your pride get in the way of progress! You won’t seem weak for asking a coworker to lend you a hand on an assignment– it’s just the opposite. You’ll seem resourceful and insightful for knowing when you’re in over your head. Sure, you could let yourself struggle through it on your own… but that means taking longer to get to the finished product. If you work with a team, the beauty of that is being able to reach out to the other team members when you need to.

5. Being Late

Despite what you might think, being late is not an irreversible character trait. You weren’t born with an inability to get to work on time! Even if your boss hasn’t commented on this little habit, being late means not getting started on time, which means not getting as much done as you’d like to or need to… and inevitably working later into the evening to finish your tasks. It’s a slippery slope, and a habit that becomes harder to correct the longer you let yourself feel okay with it. In truth, you’re holding yourself back. So start saying no by packing yourself up the night before, waking up a little earlier, and leaving the house with more time than you need.

 

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5 Places to Live Actively + 5 Places to Live Passively in the New Year

You can focus on creating multiple streams of income or waking up early to finish the laundry. While both need to happen at some point, they are not both a priority. Your to-do list is long, and time is limited. Make the most out of each day by knowing where to spend the energy and when to let things slide. 

ONLINE BUSINESS MANAGER

You can’t force motivation. It’s just not realistic to expect yourself to wake up each day with a laser focus on being productive, and the energy to follow through. But your heart is in this, and you can retrain your brain little by little until being your best self is only a matter of “I woke up like this.” 

When?

Even if you’ve struggled to stick to New Year’s resolutions in the past, the fact remains that this is an incredibly opportune time to make a change. We’ve been told over and over that this is a chance for starting over and bettering ourselves, so the perception is already ingrained in our psyches. It’s not a date you can push back and put off, and the aura of change will be all around you. Plan to start making little changes on January 1.

I changed my life January 1, 2016 and you can plan to do the same in 2017.

How?

You know how they say it only takes 21 days of doing something until it becomes a habit? It’s like that. You make the change. You fight for it. Every living day. And to start you can majorly change your life by making minor adjustments in how you approach the different parts of your day to day.

It’s all about active vs. passive.

These are terms you’ve heard a million times before, but did you ever consider redefining your life with them? You can’t resolve to be on your game, 100%, every day, but you can change how you approach your day to start getting the most out of it. As a working mom, you can do this by organizing the parts of your life into active or passive categories. What deserves your full attention and engagement, and what is better being overlooked?

You want to live actively in the parts of your life that call for it most-- the activities that benefit your mental health, wellbeing, and financial success. Dedicate your time and attention to the things that have the greatest positive results. Anything that doesn’t move you forward or positively affect your life should be regarded passively, with little acknowledgment and even less emotional significance.

Here’s where to start:

5 PLACES TO LIVE ACTIVELY:

1. Getting Out of Your Routine

There’s much to be discovered when you deviate from the beaten path, especially when the beaten path is the one you travel day after day, without much enthusiasm. Boredom and apathy come when you know exactly what to expect, so even if your daily routine isn’t horrible and painful, you’re still doing yourself a disservice by repeating it for too long. Stimulate your creativity and curiosity and make a change. I did things that freaked me out. Scared me to tears - before and after the activity. I fell and was foolish. I was embarrassed and I was terrible. But then guess what happened - I created some successes too. How did you start a podcast? How did you get so many listeners? How did you put yourself out there? How do you earn money from it? Do something that freaks you out. The mere fact that you will survive it - is eye-opening and can be life-changing too!

Even if it’s just trying a new restaurant for lunch, or going to the grocery store on a different day of the week. You never know who you’ll meet or what you’ll see, and that’s exciting all on its own. If you could choose, wouldn’t you want your life to be more Alice in Wonderland than Groundhog Day? Good thing you can choose.

2. Driving Sales

Boosting sales is a cause and effect type deal. Do what you haven't done before. Hello! Put yourself out there in a new way. Every business owner has to play an active role in accomplishing this, or sit around and hope a celebrity gets photographed with your product in US Weekly. Devote more time to researching marketing trends and implementing launch strategies. Start implementing ideas for multiple streams of income. Set up social media accounts for your business and go after meaningful business connections Reaching out to customers and influencers online is one of the easiest, cheapest methods of becoming active in this category.

3. Reducing Wasteful Spending

Ignoring the pile of receipts won’t make them go away, but actively addressing your spending habits will. Take a look at your spending history and see how many of your purchases were for essentials, and how many were a matter of impulse. What items could’ve been avoided if you had planned ahead? Even downloading a spending analyzer app is an active step toward cutting back on wasteful spending.

4. Being With Your Family & Friends

This is dual-sided, because it takes a deliberate effort sometimes to not only set aside time with your loved ones, but to be actively engaged when you do. If your life is so regimented and busy that it means scheduling family time in your planner, then so be it. Just make sure you can commit to a few hours of being there mentally in addition to physically, aka setting aside your phone. Family time is an important investment that can be overlooked without a little effort.

5. Living a Powerful Life Everyday

Fake it ‘til you make it, believe it until you achieve it. You can be wealthy without trying, but you can’t live a powerful, impactful life without actively pursuing one. Wake up everyday and tell yourself that you are powerful!

Then reinforce that mantra by living actively where it matters. Make choices that you can feel good about, and always look to move forward.

5 PLACES TO LIVE PASSIVELY:

1. Technology

For all of its benefits, there are just as many downsides to technology. It’s necessary for running a business in the 21st century, but that doesn’t mean you need to invest your personal life in all of the online happenings. Adopt a passive, almost uninterested approach to the internet and all of its trappings (see: the phone glued to your hands at all times). You don’t need to get involved in the comment war on Facebook or check Instagram/Twitter/Snapchat every hour on the hour. Contrary to popular belief, you can go to sleep without scanning social media for everything that happened online that day- and will probably sleep better because of it. You don’t have to cut yourself off from the outside world, just make sure it’s not on your priorities list.

2. Laundry

Disclaimer: please do not give up on your hygiene. But is forcing yourself to wake up early on Sunday to fold socks going to better your life? Let chores like laundry fade into the background instead of taking center stage. It will get done, just not before the things that help you reach your goals. You’re much more than a housewife, so think beyond that. You have much greater priorities. Besides, if you have school-age children or adult family members, the role doesn’t even have to belong to you at all.

3. Grocery Store

If you go to the grocery store because it’s Sunday, and not because you actually need anything, then you’re not living passively in this area. I know that most people make trips to the supermarket based on a schedule, but think of how much time that wastes! Grocery shopping doesn’t have to be a weekly outing that must be done above all else. Let it become a part of your life that you treat passively, meaning it gets attention only when warranted… such as when K-Cups go on sale.

4. Returning Every Email

I know how powerful the Pavlovian response to that little red notification box can be on your mail app. Maybe if it was a different color, we wouldn’t all be so anxious about opening and responding to emails as quickly as possible- I’ll write a letter to Apple. But in the meantime, decide to live passively in this situation. Having email capabilities on your phone is supposed to be a convenience, not an obligation. A powerful life is not one bogged down by tedious email responses. Your time is important, and you only need to give your time to the important emails.

5. Watching Every Show

It’s nice to be up on the latest pop culture trivia, but it’s better to feel accomplished in something with real value. Passivity here means watching TV when you have time and want to decompress, instead of blocking out your entire weekend to binge Orange is the New Black. There are too many streaming services and recording options to justify putting off something important in order to catch an episode. Besides, we all know it’s never going to be just one episode- not with THAT cliffhanger! Make a list of the shows that have piqued your interest, and catch up on them on your sick day, long weekends, or flight (Netflix now lets you stream offline!)

These past few weeks we have talked about doing work that is important to you, finding out what is important, how to make such decisions and why you need to. Today is just the beginning for creating space and making room in your life for achieving these things that you are deciding to work on. There IS room in your life for all these things - you just have to decide what you want and actively go for it.


What It's Like to Work with an Online Business Manager

An Online Business Manager (OBM) is your partner-in-crime and your second set of eyes on your business. Sort of your entrepreneur mentor, if you will. They help you travel the muddled road of stuck to un-stuck. An online business manager helps get you to that promised land of doing less and making more. I bet you're wondering why you haven't you heard about this before?

Mompreneur on Fire - OBM

What is an Online Business Manager?

They help you accomplish the things you don't have time for anymore. In order to grow your business, and add multiple streams of income you have to work in the big picture and out of the weeds of your business.  Yet, how does one do that when they ARE the business?  An online business manager will keep you focused on operating your business as a business.  Growth, revenue, profits and efficiencies are the only focus.  The OBM is the one to work with you, in your business, to help you specifically grow your business and to take advantage of all the opportunities coming to you.   Period. 

Does that make sense?  They help you maximize the opportunities in front of you, eliminate the waste and things always on your shoulder, eliminate the hold-ups and then also generate more revenue.  More and more revenue.  You get your shop set up so you can maximize.  

Where Most People Have Fears

It can be scary to hire an OBM.  All sorts of questions immediately arise when you think about bringing someone in to work with you.  

Most people have fears and don't know what to expect.

How will they really help?  Will this add more work for me? Is this another scheme?

Are you ready?

Are you organized enough to have someone come in? Will they really help?

Or will they make it worse? 

What if they want to tear apart what you have built?  What if they want to change ... well ... everything? Change who you are?  

What if they see what a terrible job I am really doing?

The fears are valid.  It would be scary to have someone come in and tell you all the things that you did wrong, are doing wrong.

Where Most People Fall Down

Just like my kiddo learning to ride her bike, she is going to fall.  And you are too.  That's how you grow.  You fall.  You fail.  And you get up as fast as you can and try try again.  

So let me tell you where most people fall down in their business.  

1. Not taking advantage of real multi-income stream opportunities.  This happens all. the. time. Admittedly, it's kind of an easy oversight since you are often busy running your business and running your own life.  Adding more work doesn't sound like it's worth the extra effort.  Yet, effort is only temporary.  With the right team and system in place, the effort is minimal and the revenue potential is endless. 

2. Wasting so much time.  You're busy.  I get that.  So is Beyonce.  So is Bethenny.  So is Glennon.   So are Mariah and Ruth and Rosemarie.  It's hard to know where to focus sometimes. It's hard to know how to focus sometimes.  How did they choose?  How do they handle all of the same things coming at them as you have?  How do they cut the waste and hyper-focus on the the revenue and goals as they do?

3. Wasting so much money.  It's easy to throw money at a problem especially when you are out of time.  You just want it to work.  I get it.  So if you can throw money to help solve a problem, then you're going to do it!  I get it.  Absolutely get it.  But then... you realize that just throwing money at the problem won't change things. 

Truth be told most people fall in their business.  Being an entrepreneur, being a business owner is the hardest of hard and isn't for the weak.  The roller coasters are real.  Instead of merely surviving, how do you grow in such a way that you are thriving??

How I Work

I first get to understand the big picture.  What is happening.  What is slow to happen.  What are the dreams.  Then, I talk with your team to really understand what's going on.  No judgement. Just work.  This helps to create and then clean up your big picture.  

I take you out of your weeds and together we work backwards to "make it happen".   I cut the time wasters, return intention to conversations and hold people accountable.  Yes, I babysit too.  

Let me repeat.  I cut the time wasters, return intention to conversations and hold people accountable.  

I keep you focused and moving.  It's that simple and that hard.  

If it were really that simple, you'd already be doing it.  Your business would be generating revenue through multiple streams in an effective and efficient manner. 

That could all sound generic and "yeah yeah" but if you are not doing the work you want to do or if there is room for growth in your business, then you need to work on this here too.  In fact, I would argue you need to work on this first and foremost otherwise you are going to be spinning your wheels.  

You may say "I don't want to do that" it's wish-washy.  And haven't I already created the "big picture"?  

Thing is, you are not at your big dream goal because you want to be because you haven't done this work yet.  It's not easy.  It's not wish-washy.  It's specific work.  Direct and intentional.   Do you want to add multiple streams of income?  Do you want your days to be easier and your time to be used more efficiently?  Do you want to do the work you want to do?? 

What does it mean to "return intention to conversations"?  We are going to cut the email in half.  And cut the reliance on Slack.  Cut the IMing on Skype and texting - oh my!  We are going have real conversations.  Real conversations that will have a purpose behind it.  (Wait, what?) The conversations will either teach, inform or problem solve.  

And then guess what will happen after that conversation?  You will work.  Your team will work. And guess what else.  

You will accomplish.  

Why I Work This Way

For me, this work is a two-step process.  The first step is to understand what you are doing and why.  Once I know your WHAT and WHY, then the next step is as simple as implementation.  And remember implementations are my expertise!  

Just wanting exposure is not enough.  Just having an online presence is not enough.  What are you trying to accomplish?  For what purpose?  Once I have a clear understanding of the what then like a chess game I am a master at I see and know the steps it takes to get there.  Period.  

After I know what we want to do, I have conversations.  I hold and host the most effective conversations out there.  I like conversations, real, live conversations because I get to know you, I get to work with you and together we get to make promises to one another from which we will keep.  

Truly, this is how and where the magic happens.  Conversations, commitments and promises is how the work gets done.  

With that, anything is possible. 

I have only 3 spots available for the New Year.  Click here to secure your spot to add additional revenue streams to your business next year.

Making the Shift Leave Corporate for Your Side Hustle: Interview with Monica Froese
Mompreneur on Fire - Monica Froese

Do you love listening to Podcasts?  Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you.  It’s perfect for you -- the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones, and listen as you work out, do your errands, or even the dishes late night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast is via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

This post may contain affiliate links.

When I shifted the mindset, things just changed.
— Monica Froese

There is something that happens when you have kids that is inexplicably, irrevocably different in you.  Yes, yes, you love like you never thought possible.  There is also this change in the value of your time.  Your time away from your kids, your time with adults, family, and friends.  Everything is looked at with a new lense.  The meaningless become important.  Things you didn't mind before become important choices in your life.  LIKE that corporate job.  Sure in your twenties you could go into an office, do your thing and hit up happy hour in the evening.  Then you become a mom, a busy mom and your corporate job becomes a means to an end.  And you start a side gig.  You are working for everyone else, your boss, your clients, your family but how - oh - how do you work for yourself??  My conversation with Monica Froese from Redefining Mom was about just this story.  How do you leave your corporate job for you side gig?  Monica's story is pretty amazing and now she's helping others make the shift too!  You are going to love this story.

The Interview:

We talked about so many different things:  

  • Started not intending to have a business
  • Her visit to the White House
  • Passive Blogging
  • Her bridge into working full-time
  • Busy Moms Building book
  • Multiple Revenue Streams
  • Going from Information Overload to her Tipping Point
  • Bringing in Revenue Streams
  • When I shifted the mindset, things just changed.
  • Fear of Missing Out
  • Learning Overload
  • Having to get over the skeptical-ness of myself
  • Her mentors & business coach
  • Her deep thinking moments
  • Her 90-Day plan
  • Her next time-management hack
  • Her thoughts on Perfectionism & Entrepreneurship
Mompreneur on Fire- Monica Froese
People can make a business out of anything.
— Monica Froese
I was expecting some momentous things to happen where somehow I was going to walk into my corporate salary by doing one thing. That is how you are trained. You do this one job and that’s how you make your money. You can’t be an entrepreneur and thing that way.
— Monica Froese

More From Monica

  • What did you want to be when you grew up?
    • A lawyer.
  • What was your first job?
    • This one is gross! My dad got me to work in a butcher shop at 14. It was owned by a distant family member. I am an animal lover and it was not a fun thing to do but it did teach me to appreciate jobs later on.  
  • What are your go-to books and apps?
    • I track all of my morning walk/jogs using the app RunKeeper. It gives me a look back of all my runs for the last 5 years! I can't live without my Podcast app. My absolute favorite book of all time is The Notebook. I read it while I was working on the alzheimer's unit of a nursing home when I was 16. It's a very touching story. My favorite recent reads have been Big Magic and #GIRLBOSS.
  • What are your favorite gifts to give?
    • I love giving meaningful gifts. I like to think outside the box and get something meaningful for the person I'm buying for. I tend to do a lot of my gift purchasing on Etsy these days.


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The Evolution of Your Business: Interview with Malea Anderson
Mompreneur on Fire - Malea Anderson

Do you love listening to Podcasts?  Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you.  It’s perfect for you - the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones and listen as you workout, do your errands or even the dishes late night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

This post contains affiliate links.

Having other women entrepreneurs you can connect with is quite powerful.
— Malea Anderson

I am always curious how people get into their businesses.  How do they start? How does one decide they are going to create a fitness apparel company?? To me, that would never ever cross my mind.  But when you talk with Malea Anderson from Moxie Fitness Apparel, you see how it fits, how it makes sense, how she created a business and sales off of the things and needs happening in front of her.  In our conversation, she talks about each year, every step, and how she and her business have evolved.  Have you not yet taken "the leap" and want to know how another woman (and mom!) did so?  Have you taken the leap and are still thinking about your own evolution and growth?  Malea talks with me about all these steps, her 3 steps forward, 2 steps back.  Quite frankly, it's inspirational to hear what and where she's going. 

We talked about many things including: 

  • Taking what's natural to you and turning it into a business
  • Creating additional revenue streams
  • Creating relationships with people in the industry
  • Evolution of her businesses and sharing her passion
  • Primary driver of sales
  • Importance of defining your customer and how (in nitty gritty details)
  • Process of educating herself during business growth
  • How her business has evolved over the years
  • Developing relationships with influencers
  • Evolving her business whole fit lifestyle
  • HOW to live the whole fit life
  • Adding more resources
  • Mentors
  • Loneliness in being a entrepreneur
  • Benefits of a mastermind
  • How she guards her time
  • How she wasn't an entrepreneur herself and became one
Mompreneur on Fire - Malea Anderson 2
All the awesome education is out there. It’s so neat that we have so many ways to learn right at our fingertips but it can be a little bit overwhelming. You can overload on all of these cool ideas and then run out of time to implement them.... I ahve been on a self-imposed hiatus. No more courses until I implement more.
— Malea Anderson

Links

More from Malea

What did you want to be when you grew up??

  • When I was a kid I wanted to be a teacher, a doctor or a veternarian.

What was your first job?

  • Ocean lifeguard.

What are your go-to books and apps?

  • I love personal development books.  My all time favorite is You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero. I am also LOVING Gabby Bernstein's new book The Universe Has Your Back. As for apps, I am usually listening to podcasts or Audible, and I've recently gotten more organized using Evernote.

  • I love personal development books.  My all time favorite is "You Are a Badass" by Jen Sincero.  I am also LOVING Gabby Bernstein's new book "The Universe Has Your Back." As for apps, I am usually listening to podcasts or Audible, and I've recently gotten more organized using Evernote. 

What are your favorite gifts to give?

  • I love to give cute, girly gifts like fun jewelry, a cute trucker hat, or a fun water bottle.  Something personalized or motivational is always fun to give too! 


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Run Your Business On Your Timeline: Interview with Rachel Reeves
Mompreneur on Fire - Rachel Reeves

Do you love listening to Podcasts?  Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you.  It’s perfect for you - the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones and listen as you workout, do your errands or even the dishes late night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

 Processed with VSCOcam with m3 preset Processed with VSCOcam with m3 preset

This post contains affiliate links.

I think you sometimes hit your stride a little bit quicker if you jump in and start.
— Rachel Reeves

Rachel Reeve's is a mom of several, a homeschooler and a business owner.  She's a badass chick with contentment seeping out of her and the conversation was unreal.  Her businesses, Declaration Learning and Attic 17, both celebrate history and are as unique and inviting as she is.  

I do have this entrepreneur inside me that wants to “push push you can make this bigger, you can grow this, you can reach more people” I also have to be realistic because if I try to do that in my season of life right now I will only be disappointed and it won’t get the results I really want which is to love what I am doing and enjoy it at every step... I am still really satisfied and am doing what I can and am enjoying the process.
— Rachel Reeves

We talked about many things including: 

  • Taking what's natural to you and turn it into a business
  • Expanding on your loves
  • Turning a stale subject and making it  come alive
  • Just jump in an do it
  • Businesses she's given up 
  • Priority and her time
  • Keeping expectations clear
  • Her specific time management 
  • How she skips past the learning curve
  • Her thoughts on Perfectionism
  • Her mentors
  • Where her caution lay with online business
There is a time for everything but I can’t do everything all at one time.
— Rachel Reeves
Mompreneur on Fire - Rachel Reeve Family
No is just as good of an answer as Yes.
— Rachel Reeves

Where You Can Find Rachel

More from Rachel

What did you want to be when you grew up??

  • I had always wanted to be a Broadcast Journalist.  I even began taking courses during my first year of college.  Who knows... maybe I'll still be on CNN one day.

What was your first job?

  • My first official job was working at a candy counter in a mercantile.

What are your go-to books and apps?

  • "My Utmost for His Highest" by Oswald Chambers is a daily devotional that never, ever gets old.  My favorite work of fiction is "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" by Betty Smith and my favorite history book is "The Reagan Diaries" by President Ronald Reagan.  My favorite app would have Five Star because my husband and I love to eat out and you can earn points by eating at your favorite local joints!

What are your favorite gifts to give?

  • I love to give candles to everyone because they are one of my favorite things.  I also enjoy finding the perfect book and almost always give a vintage photography instead of a greeting card.


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A Meal Plan That Won't Break The Bank: Interview with Samantha Rodgers

Do you love listening to Podcasts?  Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you.  It’s perfect for you -- the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones, and listen as you work out, do your errands, or even the dishes late night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast is via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

Good food should not (just) be for the wealthy.
— Samantha Rodgers
Mompreneur on Fire - Samantha Rodgers

Imagine knowing what you and your family are going to have for dinner tonight.  

You are going to know tonight and tomorrow night and the next night too. 

Imagine knowing that when dinner time comes by all you have to do is open the fridge and prep the meal for about 20 minutes.  

20 minutes until dinner is done!  What?

Sure there are expensive delivery plans that can take care of your meals but, again, they are really expensive.  These meal plans add up!  And I still have to go to the grocery store!  

I loved talking with Mompreneur Sam Rodgers about her new business Eating Clean Cooking Dirty.  Not only is the subscription meal planning a helpful idea to us busy moms, I love how she offers a personal touch with group coaching.  You can connect with her, including text with her if you have questions or need to substitute out some foods!

I love it!  And I loved talking with her about her business.  There are several points that stand out for me from our conversation but mostly I think I loved how she created the business and why which is not quite what you think!  And how she wished she would have started sooner!

Mompreneur on Fire Listeners & Readers get a 30-Day Free Trial!

For someone who doesn’t want to think about the food part of their life, I can help them.
Mompreneur on Fire - Samantha Rodgers
I wish I had started sooner.
— Samantha Rodgers

The Interview:

We talked about so many different things:  

  • Monthly subscription - meal planning
  • 30 Day program - group coaching
  • Transitioning a natural habit to a business
  • good food should not be for the wealthy
  • Her big moments in the business
  • How her subscription & group coaching business model works
  • Where can she connects with people
  • How she makes her business work when she's horrible with social media, 
  • Managing her schedule in building a business
  • Finding time on her own
  • Her favorite series to settle her time
  • How her upbringing helped her in today's business

Links

More from Sam

What did you want to be when you grew up??

  • I wanted to be a fashion designer.  Coco Chanel was my inspiration.  I did go to design school in London right after high school, but decided to switch to a business degree with emphasis in entrepreneurship after a year.  I realized that my true goal was to be an entrepreneur.

What was your first job?

  • My first job was in a pet store cleaning up after the animals.  I was 15.

What are your go-to books and apps?

What are your favorite gifts to give?

  • I love to give the gift of food.


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Turn Your Hobby Into A Business: Interview with Kate Casey
Mompreneur on Fire - Kate Casey 2

Do you love listening to Podcasts? Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you. It’s perfect for you -- the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones, and listen as you work out, do your errands, or even the dishes late at night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast is via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

I think sometimes women hit a wall. You have to say to yourself, ‘Do I completely switch directions or do I give this up?’
— Kate Casey

Kate Casey hit the nail on the head when she said she was a disruptor. She’s a disruptor for women who are under tremendous pressure and need an escape. Those women like me. I relate to that and I go to her for those reasons. 

I have been a fan and follower of Kate Casey from Love & Knuckles for years now. We have mutual friends and I’ve seen her around in town, but I have always felt too shy to talk with her too much. It even took a while for me to invite her on the show, to be honest. But I bit the bullet, and like she says about other things, I wish I hadn’t wasted that time.  

Kate, with four kids, did full-time work in PR and had her comedy hobby blog. This year, she gave up the full-time gig to really make “a go” at her hobby! She seems to be very conscious, intentional, and doing quite well at her new full-time gig!

Today, Kate is doing stand-up comedy, she’s writing all over the place, including doing reality show recaps on her site, writing for the Fashion Police in US Weekly, writing for several other publications, and doing seriously funny parodies on Instagram. (Some of my favorites are below.)

Unless you take the leap, you can’t give yourself that challenge. You may say to yourself, ‘Why did I waste so much time?’
— Kate Casey
Mompreneur on Fire - Kate Casey
It’s a hustle. I’m a one man band.
— Kate Casey

There were so many good nuggets of information and moments of inspiration from this interview - a few of my favorites are below:

On Building a Business

  • She’s a hustler. Never took a maternity leave and never told anyone she was pregnant. That’s the problem with consulting. If you are not available, they will find someone else.
  • No matter what you are doing, you have to look at the business side of things. Nicholas Sparks determines what he writes next by what’s missing in the market. 
  • The business you need to start is the disruptor. Are you disrupting the system?
  • Be more than one thing.
  • If you paint yourself in a corner, you're going to come up short.
I am writing. I take my computer everywhere I go. If I am waiting in the carpool lane, I have my computer with me.
— Kate Casey

On Life

  • Unless you take the leap, you can't give yourself that challenge. You may say to yourself, why did I waste so much time?
  • People need to be more mindful of how easy it is to help someone. It's so easy to help someone. Your little introduction could be huge for them.
  • We are all too hard on ourselves.
  • If you love something, you can make time for it.  

The Interview

  • Problems with consulting
  • Transitioning her hobby into a full-time job
  • Internal struggles of taking the leap
  • Business side of comedy
  • Her career advice from Travis Kalanick - Founder of Uber
  • The real side of blogging and what people don’t understand
  • Hustling
  • People need to be more mindful of how easy it is to help someone
  • Her hardest client
  • 2 mentors - I am so grateful. I've got to pass that on.  
  • Her Sh*t or Get off the Pot moment
  • Logistics of having 4 kids and hustling
  • Some frustrations
  • Time Management
  • Helping people - again

Kate does a parody on of Celebrity Moms often with the title "Same Thing, Right?" (Below are a few of my favorites from her Instagram account.)

Links

More from Kate

What did you want to be when you grew up??

  • I always envisioned myself either being a cast member on Saturday Night Live or a politician. 

What was your first job?

  • My first job was filling folders at a small investment banking firm. 

What are your go-to books and apps?

What are your favorite gifts to give?

  • My favorite gifts to give are books, monogrammed lucite trays, and photos. 

PS: You May Also Enjoy These...

Move Better Throughout the Day: Interview with Erica Ziel
Mompreneur on Fire - Ways for the Busy Moms to Move Throughout Her Day

This post may contain affiliate links.

Do you love listening to Podcasts?  Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you.  It’s perfect for you - the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones and listen as you workout, do your errands or even the dishes late night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

Today’s conversation on the podcast was with Erica Ziel from Knocked Up Fitness.  I always love to talk with health professionals, to hear their niche and where they think our focus should be.  THEN of course you know that I love to hear all things on how they build their business.  Erica specifically focuses on working with and helping the busy mom move better through the day!

Erica has written a book, produced video content in the form of dvds and digitally.  She consistently working to help the busy mom live a healthy lifestyle be it through easy recipes, exercise moves or ways to create balance in your life.  Having lived the country and beach life her perspective is unique too! 

Now she's focusing on CORE Rehab a program that will help us moms, postpartum strength our core and move better throughout the day!  I especially loved her tip where she references using the high ponytail to help strength up. 

ERICA'S TIP -Walk As though you have a high ponytail to Help You Move Through Your Day

Mompreneur on Fire - Erica Ziel
Figuring out what to say no to and priorities are a big part of figuring out balance.
— Erica Ziel

We talked about many things including: 

  • CORE Rehab Program
  • Every year for the last 5 years she's created a new product
  • How her upbringing prepared her for entrepreneurial life today
  • How she gets help
  • Her Mentors 
  • Her Training
  • How she manages between the kids and building her business
  • How she works at balance
  • Figuring out what to say No to and Priorities are a big part of figuring out balance
  • How she manages when there's always something to do
  • How with growth you have to change your mindset and how she does that
  • How they handle bumps in the road with raising the kids
  • Little Kids - Little Problems, Big Kids - Big Problems

Links

More From Erica

  • What did you want to be when you grew up?

At one time I wanted to be an architect, and go to the Art Institute of Chicago. Then near the end of high school health, fitness and nutrition became a big part of my life {in some aspects probably too much, but I’ve learned to balance over the years}, and started Iowa State University to double major in Dietetics and Kinesiology but came out with my Bachelors just in Kinesiology and have since added nutrition certs rather then going the RD route.

  • What was your first job?

Well I grew up on a farm so I guess you could say it was just working for my dad and maybe got paid a little here and there once I was older, but my first ‘real job’ was crop scouting - yes I used to be able to identify weeds easier then flowers ;-)

  • What are your go-to books and apps?

Anything about nutrition, health, fitness. The last book I read was “FASCIA” - yup, your heard me right. Apps, well I don’t really do fitness apps, so it’s more just social media...

  • What are your favorite gifts to give??

I love giving practical gifts, things that I know people will use. So if it’s for a pregnant mama I’ll give her a Moby baby wrap or Aden + Anais lotion, for others my favorite candle or chocolate/treat, things that will get used rather then just stuff that sits around. 

 

PS: You May Also Like ...

30 Things To Say No To Without Feel Like A Jerk

Between servicing clients, attracting clients, taking care of the home, the kids, the laundry, the dishes, the dog, the homework on and on and on and on I go, OH MAN life is full.  It's not easy balancing work and family. If you're going to keep your sanity, something has to give.

Mompreneur on Fire - 30 Things You Can Say No To

Oh man - my life is full. 

Yeah, yeah I am grateful and blessed and sooo thankful for all of the things I have in my life but

OH MAN, my life is full.  

Between servicing my clients, attracting new clients, taking care of my home, my kids, the laundry, the dishes, the dog, the homework on and on and on and on I go, OH MAN my life is full. 

And I know I am not alone with this one.  

This past year I declared it as the "THIS IS MY YEAR" year and I'm not going to lie.  As good as it has been, it's been tough too. 

I have my eyeballs filled to brims with commitments.  

And then I just broke. 

I am not going to Costco every week. 

I am not going to the grocery store every day. 

I am not doing laundry all the time.  The girls have enough clothes that, yes, that can pile up and they can wear what they don't wear.  (SHOCKING, I know.)

There is no need for me run around and bust my butt for these silly things.  

I don't want to be in the grocery store every day.  

And when I started to say NO, guess what happened.  I didn't need to do these things that often anyway.  

Guess what.  We survived not going to Costco.  We have eaten pretty fine without me stopping in the Grocery store every day.  

We are just fine.  Actually, we are doing great.  

And then I was talking with others and they needed to say no too.  So I created a list.  You can print it.  You can print your favorites only.  You can take one or two a day.  

You can say NO without feeling like a jerk and get control back. 

You've got this.

Be Busy & Mindful with This Overlooked Tool

As moms, we experience days when we're severely lacking in sleep, the house is a disaster, and some disgusting smell is lingering from the kitchen. It's especially difficult when you work from home and find that your office has fallen into a black hole. So how can you re-focus on what's important and maximize your time?

Mompreneur on Fire - Busy & Mindful

This post may contain affiliate links.

By Ty Schmidt

It’s one thing for us to embrace the concept of cherishing the little things and living in the moment.

It’s something else entirely when you have one of those days. You know the ones – the days that are etched vividly on your memory despite you wishing with all your heart they weren’t.

Especially as moms there are the days when you haven’t slept (or showered) since sometime last week and you watch in horror as your house (which, for me, is also my workplace as a work-from-home-mom) just morphed into something that would evoke nightmares in the minds of nannies and maids everywhere.

The days when canned goods from the pantry are scattered in every room of the house, and when you smell like a mixture of sweat, some sort of baby food goop and a diaper you changed only a few minutes (or maybe it was an hour) prior.

The days when glass was just shattered all over the floor and the garbage was tipped on its side and you think your beloved dog just ate what was left of a chocolate chip granola bar (doesn’t chocolate kill dogs?).

Those are the moments when living in the moment seems about as plausible as finally figuring out how to convince Starbucks to deliver a skinny vanilla latte to your doorstep.

Meditation Means Focusing

There are those moments we could all afford to just pause. To take a breath. To live in the moment.  We need a moment to focus.

Meditation is a great tool to help you learn to embrace these moments and live a more balanced life. I know what you’re thinking? What working mom or mompreneur has time for this?  I know it sounds impossible and that you’re too busy and all that glass you need to pick up before the barefooted children cut up their feet is desperately calling your name.

Who has time to sit down and empty their mind?  But that's not what meditation means.  It is not emptying your mind, it's focusing your mind.

But experts say that is where meditation practices are at their strongest. That is when taking five to 20 minutes to try guided meditation can really make a difference for you, by helping you learn to gain control over those chaotic moments. By helping you remember to breathe.

Mompreneur on Fire - Busy & Mindful

An overlooked tool to a healthier, happier you

One example I have personally found helpful is from Dr. Joe Dispenza’s “Change from the Inside Out” series.

The “Morning & Evening Meditations” download offers listeners the chance to get to know themselves better, and ultimately notice positive changes to their mental and physical health.

Available for download or on CD, the series begins by getting you in the right mindset to tackle the day and ends with a relaxing opportunity to ease your mind and body into restful sleep.

“It all sounds so simple but it can be really hard,” said Diane Sutrick, a mompreneur of three adult children who owns Peace Yoga Studio in a suburb of Milwaukee, Wis. and has been practicing yoga and meditation for more than 10 years. “In a world where our culture does so many things that are bad for the body and embraces multi-tasking like it’s the best thing in the world, we are losing ourselves and the ability to find balance.”

Meditation means teaching your body to heal

Research shows that meditation, which is a practice that helps calm yourself by quieting your mind, has many physical and mental health benefits that can aid in dealing with stress and anxiety, but also help keep you more focused and present in your daily life.

“I know the struggle for a lot of people is time – there is never enough time,” said Sutrick, who opened her yoga studio about five years ago. “Yet it is in learning to get into the moment and teaching your body how to flip the switch from using the sympathetic nervous system to using the parasympathetic nervous system that we train our body to get the rest and relaxation it craves.”

The ability to fully relax doesn’t come easy to everyone, despite the health benefits research points to in favor of taking some time to regularly reboot.

While cynics and skeptics alike may question the impact meditation can have on one’s daily life, finding a way to maintain balance by whatever means necessary sounds pretty good to a work-from-home-mom like me who all too often puts literally everything and everyone else ahead of simple things (like that yoga I’ve been meaning to pick back up for the last seven years).

Meditation means thinking about yourself and others

It sounded pretty good to Sutrick as well, which is among the reasons she wanted to find a way to help others find peace.

“I’m not an expert meditator by any means, but I am an advocate for moms who I support as they carve out the time to do something for themselves that ultimately benefits the whole family,” she said. “It’s easier for some people than it is for others, for a whole host of reasons, but meditation pairs with yoga to help you find a place to be quiet with yourself and reflect…and find your center.”

Despite the cliché that all moms live in yoga pants, not all who wear yoga actually practice yoga.

“Ultimately all that matters is that you are finding time to think, breathe and simply be in the moment,” Sutrick said. “You can meditate any time – it doesn’t have to be in a class or at yoga or what have you – in fact, it’s almost a sign you’ve learned the practice well when you can apply it to your everyday life.”

Meanwhile, doubters of the practice will try to make the case that busy people (i.e. mompreneurs on fire) don’t have time to get into lotus pose and clear their minds. Believers like Sutrick have these words of advice for them.

  1. The benefits of meditation are endless. Meditation is considered a highly effective relaxation technique, and relaxation is linked to a number of proven health benefits. Less stress means a healthier immune system more capable of fighting off all those germs kids are prone to bringing home, helps keep you focused and aids in retaining memory and decision making.

  2. Meditation can happen anywhere. Whether you’re wearing yoga pants or not, you can meditate almost anywhere at almost any time to help refocus, clear your mind and be present in the moment.

  3. Time is of the essence. Meditation is a practice that helps you let go of the past, live in the present and be ready for tomorrow all at the same time. By clearing your mind and learning to simply be, you are more capable of finding peace amid the chaos.

Because let’s face it. The life can be tough. And not just ‘oh my goodness, I miss happy hour and mani-pedis with the girlfriends tough.

It can mean admitting that yes, you’re having one of those days when you haven’t slept more than an hour or two in the last 72 hours and you can’t keep up with the mess and you really kind of just want to drink an entire bottle of wine when no one’s looking (because that won’t give you a headache or make waking up and doing it all again tomorrow that much more trying).

Maybe we should all just try meditating instead.




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5 Ways the Working Mom Can Also Take Care of Herself

A stressed mind isn’t receptive to the flow of creative thoughts– thoughts which may stem into new business ideas or solutions for your current company. Even if you feel that you work best under pressure, that’s a talent that has its limits as well. Constant pressure without release is the makings of a burn out or blow out, and a boss lady CEO has time for neither. 

Mompreneur on Fire - 5 Ways Mom Can Take Care of Herself

Entrepreneurs have a special drive and motivation. It’s the reason you couldn’t settle for an uninspiring career path, and why you’re working toward those big ideas that keep you up at night. It’s a blessing, but it can also eat up your free time– if you even have any of that left.

Most entrepreneurs put in much more than the 40 hours of a standard work week, so we know you dont have a problem committing to the grunt work, but how often do you make time to simply do nothing?

Seem counterintuitive to growing a business? Think again.

Instead of waiting for that one straw to break your back and delay your progress, build some “me time” into your week to offset the stress of mompreneur life and take care of yourself. In this industry, an investment in yourself is an investment in your business. I know you’re busy, but here are 5 easy ways to take care of yourself that every mompreneur can make time for.

1.      Exercise

Not all of us are the type to set a 5am alarm to head over to the gym for a few hours, and we don’t have to be. To reap the benefits of exercise, the Anxiety and Depression Association of America says a little goes a long way. According to their research, “even five minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects.” That means even a quick game of backyard tag with your kids could bring on the calm you need to breeze through your 9am conference call with investors.

 What’s more? Do this regularly and the benefits extend even further, from reduced tension levels to better sleep, self esteem, and overall mood. In other words, you should probably be able to add a gym membership or a new pair of Nike’s to your expense write-off’s, considering how powerfully beneficial exercise is to your business.

If heading to the gym isn’t your style, consider taking your dog or kids for a brisk walk each night after dinner, swimming laps in your pool (if you have one), or following a 30-minute Youtube workout tutorial in the comfort of your living room.

2. Establish your own #TreatYourselfTuesday

Okay so maybe you need to bump it back to Wednesday– you’re a busy gal, after all. Whichever day of the week works best for you, decide to treat yourself to that one item, service, or guilty pleasure that would really brighten your week. You don’t have to wait until your empire is built to celebrate all of your accomplishments thus far.

For me, it’s the 45 minutes I set aside for the blow dry bar on Sunday mornings. Before the chaos of Monday morning sets in, I indulge in a complimentary mimosa and set myself up with good hair for the rest of the week (thank you dry shampoo). Sometimes I flip through magazines, sometimes I watch whichever rom-com is being screened in the salon that day, and on busier weeks I will answer emails or jot down notes and ideas in my planner.

 For you, treating yourself might mean splurging on steak instead of chicken, getting the gel manicure instead of a regular one, or finally giving in to that super-soft leather purse you always walk by that never goes on sale. Whatever it is, let this be something for you and you alone. Running a business and a household is a lot of doing for others. It’s not selfish to set aside some time for personal enjoyment on a consistent basis. You need to feel confident in all aspects of life.

Mompreneur on Fire - Zen

3. Sleep

Being exhausted is a special kind of torture. One of the most important ways to take care of yourself is avoiding that sluggish feeling altogether and getting better sleep more often. For many of us, sleeping in late is just not in the cards, so I approach it from the other side: by going to sleep earlier when possible. To snatch up some extra snooze time, try to go to sleep an hour earlier than usual or more if you can manage it.

Even if a full 8 hours isn’t possible, you can still improve the quality of the sleep that you do get. Sleep with your phone on silent mode, or remove it from your bedroom completely and let it charge in a separate room. You might be waking up more often throughout the night knowing that your phone is right there beside you, just waiting for you to check what texts and emails have come through.

If you really want to pamper yourself, try these quick fixes for your sleep space:

•   Take a shower or bath right before bed. Use lavender or chamomile scented shower gels or moisturizer post-shower to help bring you into a restful state.

•   Put fresh sheets and pillow cases on your bed.

•   Shut your shades and block out all sources of light, which inhibit the body from entering into those coveted deep sleep cycles.

•   Turn on your air conditioning or fan to ensure your room stays cool all night long.

•   Try an essential oil diffuser to keep you calm and relaxed. They run about $30 online and in home goods stores.

4. Girls’ Night Out

Because sometimes you need to step away from your role as commander in chief and just be one of the girls.

It will do you wonders to change out of your work mode/mommy attire and put on those heels you worked so hard to afford. You love your family dearly, but we all know there are some topics that you can’t talk to your partner or children about. Vent to your friends like the unpaid therapists they are, and get out of your own bubble by hearing about their own dilemmas and triumphs. The best part is you don’t even have to go anywhere if getting all dolled up doesn’t appeal to you this week. If one of you has a quiet house for the night, sit around in cozy clothes, sip wine, and reconnect over adult coloring books. Now wait. Before you become skeptical, know that this is a real thing. Adult coloring books have become a major hit in the world of trendy relaxation. They’re inexpensive, you can borrow your kids’ crayons, and you’ll be amazed at how quickly you mellow out. I’m starting to think that those kindergarten teachers know more than they let on…

5. Kids’ Night In

Kids can sometimes get a bad reputation for causing chaos, but I find that when my world is off-kilter and too hectic, spending time with my kids can really center me. You’ll feel better by giving back to them and alleviating some of that working mommy guilt that can invade your subconscious. Kids really do say the darndest things– things that make you genuinely laugh and forget about your stress. Let your hair down and bounce on the trampoline with them, or get competitive in that new Wii game your son insisted upon at Target. Let me tell you, those little guys really know how to have a good time and they’ll be thrilled to have you join in.


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5 Ways You Can Take Care Of Yourself - Interview with Josephina Santiago

Do you love listening to Podcasts?  Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you.  It’s perfect for you - the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones and listen as you workout, do your errands or even the dishes late night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

Time for me. I take that very seriously.
— Josephina Santiago
Mompreneur on Fire - Josephina Santiago 2

This post contains affiliate links.

I was in a particular space where I said I could drift or I could design.
— Josephina Santiago

Ever wonder how people get it right? How do they do all this work and live with peace?? Live a settled life? A happy, peaceful life? There are people out there, real people, who live the same experiences we do, but they are doing it better. I dream of the other side. I actually, actively, work to get to the other side. The side of life where I move forward with confident decisions and peace. Peace. I dream of peace. 

Today’s conversation is with my personal mentor and coach, Master Coach Josephina Santiago. When I met her almost ten years ago, I was at the lowest point in my life. Most people hugged me and told I was too young to be so heartbroken. Josephina skipped past that and worked to empower me.  

She worked to empower me. 

I was stuck in the muddiness of my life and she helped pull me out. That's my truth. At the end of last year, she announced she would be accepting new coachees and I recommended her to everyone I knew. This is an amazing woman with an amazing opportunity! You would be crazy not to take her up on it. Then weeks passed, and I thought, "hmmm...I am going through a few things myself, I will call her, too."

And my life changed. Lifelong learning as she says.

This woman has power and grace and works to help you find yours. Words would never do justice for how wonderful, knowledgeable and wise this woman is. Not only do you need to meet her, you want to learn from her, my dear Josephina.

I loved our conversation. Below are a few great takeaways you can start immediately.

5 Ways Master Coach Josephina Takes Care of Herself (& You Can Too!)

  1. Self-care is a priority

    • She intentionally slows herself down. One example of how she does this is by writing as she journals. 
    • She commits to listening to her soul. She makes that commitment.
  2. Community is important

    • Community -- we don't do this alone. She encourages us to open up and expand our community.
    • She surrounds herself with a network of support, and learned to let go of people "with lots of opinions."
  3. She's a commited life-long learner

    • "Learning didn't stop once I graduated."
    • Vacations from her "9-5" have always been opportunities to continue learning.
    • She is always learning, every moment of every day.
  4. She's a decision maker 

    • At one point she realized she could be a "drifter or a designer" and had to make a decision.
    • "I was living from the stories of my past... 'I can't do that,' but we can change our narratives."
    • From a space of awareness, she notices what's going on! But then KEEPS GOING. From this space of awareness you can make a choice to stay in the way you have been if it serves you (or even if it doesn't), or to begin to put your attention onto the practices for being what you choose.
    • How going back to a "9-5" gave her what he needed at that moment -- grounding -- but it didn't stop her from dreaming. 
    • "When people said you can't open a public school, we said 'watch us.'"
  5. She Practices. 

    • Create a space of awareness, notice what's going on, then make a choice
    • Ontological Body Learning
    • Body movement through music
    • Go to your edge -- step into your vulnerability in the presence of others
    • Understand what your inner critics are telling you and to help you move past it
    • Meditation
    • Commitments
Mompreneur on Fire - Josephina Santiago
In terms of busy... I am creating a space where I take care of myself.
— Josephina Santiago

We talked about many things including: 

  • Being busy in a space with ease and grace
  • Committing to listening to her soul
  • Community & how we don't do this alone 
  • How she learned to let go of people with lots of opinions
  • How we don't see us as others see us
  • Drifting vs Design
  • Learning to listen within
  • Closing the door and allowing the next space to open
  • Trust 
  • Inviting others to the edge
  • How being in a 9-5 didn't stop her from dreaming 
  • Ontological Body Learning and how to use music to continue your growth
  • Understand what your inner critics are telling you and how to move past it
  • Go to your edge; step into your vulnerability in the presence of others
  • How one can create a space of awareness, notice what's going on, then make a choice
  • New learning takes place with commitment
  • It's not enough to say, "I am going to do this." Then you haven't done it. You need practices.
  • Learning didn't stop once I graduated
  • I was living from the stories, of my past "I can't do that"
  • I was able to be a better mother. It was learning for a lifetime. 
  • We can change our narratives
  • When people said you can't open a public school, we said "watch us"
  • Yes, you have insecurities, you acknowlege them, and then find the way
  • Finding mentors and recurrent learning
  • Tapping into the other creative possibilities
  • Being called to other ways of learning. "My experiences matter." 
Beyond the degrees I had gotten, I was still learning. I could declare myself a beginner in one area and be confident and a master in other areas.
— Josephina Santiago

If you want to connect further with Josephina, you can find her on Facebook, email her at somalearn@gmail.com or call her at 917-202-2975. 

Josephina can also be found as the Director of Somatic Learning Designs & Senior Faculty at The Institute for Generative Leadership

Books By Josephina Santiago

Links

More from Josephina

What did you want to be when you grew up??

  • In middle school (I wanted) to be a flight attendant. In high school, I switched to want to be a mid-wife. 

What was your first job?

  • My first job was when I was 16 -- Cashier at a local department store. 
  • At the age of 18 -- Summer job at a NYC municipal hospital as a Licensed Practical Nurse in the department of Gynecology.  

What are your go-to books and apps?

  • Spiritual inspiration book, Apps: Calm, Shazam ( Always looking to expand my musical library)

What are your favorite gifts to give?

  • Books, incenses, unscented candles, and words of inspirations


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Organize Your Life in 1 Single Afternoon

When you work from home, your office can go from clean and tidy, to disaster in about 8 seconds. You know what I mean. The kids come in and dump crayons, legos and anything else they can find... and well, now your head is a mess too. Every Sunday I get prepared for the week and this is how I do it.

OMGoodness - Are you so overwhelmed sometimes that you just want to throw up your hands? You don't know where to begin? 

I know the feeling. 

I have to fight living in and becoming a complete and total mess every. single. day. Since I work from home, my office (fancy word for room above the garage) is my haven.  I have casually and quietly decorated it.  It's a work in progress but it's mine. 

And then my girls come in and the room explodes with markers and coloring pages and food everywhere!  Then in a heartbeat they take off and run to the next thing!  Sometimes, most of the time, with me running after them!  What happened to my office?? 

It was so nice before...

Honestly, this was a metaphor for my life. 

It's clean, it's messy, it's clean, it's messy.

Total mom life! Total woman life.  Total entrepreneur.

There are a few things that help me get motivated.  You may agree or not but once in a while a girl's just gotta do what a girl's just got do.  

Sundays I prepare for the week ahead and this is how it goes. 

1. Get Caffeinated. 

Yep, I said it. 

Drink a cup of coffee or have some iced tea.  Black tea.  

I am a zombie many afternoons but I don't have time to lay low.  

I don't have the desire or ability to crash on the sofa as if I were a 22 year old with all the time world.  I don't have that luxury.  So Starbucks here I come.  

Tejava - sets me straight.  

Revolution Teas too. 

Maybe for you it's better to get those endorphins going and you need to take a brisk walk.   Skip the caffeine.  Skip the sugar (and I really mean that) and go for a walk.  Do some jumping jacks!  Get yourself energized for a productive afternoon.  

2. Let the Kids Watch Cartoons

Yep, I said that too.  

I know who I am talking to.  

I am talking to that mom who wants to do the right things for their kids, the mom that wants to have a neat house and dinners on the tables.  

She wants to have her side gig, her successful side gig.  

She wants it all or at least a little bit more.  

And here I am saying it is okay to put the tv on and put your kids front of it.  

(Now, I can't guarantee how long they will stay there but a few minutes with their attention elsewhere is the point.)  Get your kids in a position where they are focused on something besides you and where they are not making more of a mess.  

I know that's easier said than done.  But our goal here is to prepare you (energy) and your family for a productive evening.  

3.  Straighten Your House.  Don't Clean It.  Straighten It.

I'm a modern woman and a modern mom.  A modern business woman.

I can't believe I am actually telling you not to clean up!  My mother would fall flat on the floor with that advice coming out of my mouth.  

(You'll understand more with my most popular post about my relationship with my mom.)  

Here's the things about cleaning up.  It clears out your mind too.  It clears out the clutter of your house and your mind. 

Truth be told.  I hate cleaning.  I LOVE TO straighten!

Frankly, you feel better with a straight room or house.  

Here's what I do to power through and straighten up as quickly as I can without just moving piles from one place to another.  

  1. Start with the kitchen.  Clean out the sinks, load the dishwasher and clear the counters.   Phew! Once you have done that you have made it through the hardest part!
  2. Clear out the toys and the random items in your family and dining rooms.  Move anything that doesn't belong in these rooms out.  Move them to the stairs to go up if that's where they belong.  Don't move them upstairs at this point, just put the stuff on the stairs for now!  Clear out the family room of anything that doesn't belong there and put that stuff in piles to go where it does belong.  Make sense?  If it goes upstairs, put the stuff on the stairs.  If it goes in the garage, there's a pile by the door to take to the garage.  Focus on cleaning out one room at a time. 
  3. Fluff pillows. Wipe tables clean.  
  4. Once the family room and dining rooms are straight, you are ready to move to another room that is downstairs.  Move that pile for the garage into the garage and put away what you need to.   So on and so on and so on until that floor is straight. 
  5. Now it's time to move upstairs.  Here's where I recruit my kids to help me.  All they need to do is help me move the stuff I have piled up on the stairs up.   
  6. Now that we are upstairs, the clothes go in the hamper.
  7. The beds get made if they aren't already.  (I love to make my bed in the morning.  It makes me immediately feel as if I am in nice surroundings and I am productive within minutes of waking!)
  8. The piles get distributed to the place they belong.  

Phew!  You did it!  You should be proud and happy to have a straight home again! That part, admittedly, is the hardest part sometimes.  Honestly, I throw my headphones in and listen to a book on Audible or a great Podcast!  (Ummm hellooo of course!)

4. Feel Good About What You Are Doing. 

Listen, you're making progress already.  

When you clean up and clean out you are doing good things for your family and your soul.  

It's time, now is the time, to feel good that you are actively taking steps to get organized.  

Setting the intention and following through is something you are doing right now.  

This is it.  This work is what makes the difference.  

Feel good about it and carry on. 

Mompreneur on Fire - Black Desk

5. Next Make Your Lists.

I love lists.  Don't you love lists?  I also need them too.  If my list is too much of an 

  • Meals - what and where are you and your family going to eat.  It doesn't have to be elaborate, you can eat out every night.  The answer doesn't matter but oh-my how helpful it will be to know what you are having for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 
  • To Do - Do your brain dump here.  Now.  Let it go, let it all out.  Don't worry about doing any of that now, just get your list pulled together.  
  • Follow Up - Who is waiting on you to respond?  Who needs what from you? 
  • Phone Calls - What phones calls do you need to make and follow up on?  Who have you been meaning to call and haven't done quite yet?
  • Preparation for Tomorrow - This list is often my life saver.  I write out what I need to remember for tomorrow.  What the needs to be packed for the girls, what needs to be pulled aside or does anything need to be completed.  I am constantly forgetting different things for the girls whether it is homework or flip flops or money for ice cream.  It's always something but when I plan it out ahead, I have a better shot of getting it right. 
  • What you need to do this week - Pull together a list of things that need to get done this week. Period.  Star or highlight the important ones from your original to-do list or create a new list.  

Now you are probably feeling a mix of accomplishment and overwhelm.  Don't let the overwhelm stop you from taking the next steps.  

Often times we create our lists to get the things out of our heads.  

If you take one (or two) final steps, you will be further than you have been before. 

6. Calendar Blocking

Calendar blocking is a funny beast.  There's not an exact science to it but there are some real benefits of taking a look at your scheduled calendar and then filling in your To-Do List items during your open time.  

  1. First thing you want to enter into your calendar is your appointments and activities that are non-negotiable.  Do the kids have basketball practice?? Do you have work meetings?  Or a Moms Night Out?  All of that goes into your calendar, first and foremost. 
  2. Once you have all of your appointments in your calendar you can now see where you "free" time is.  There's not a lot of it I am sure!  In your open spots, enter in when you are going to do what.  Use the lists you created earlier to fill in the things you need to do this week, the phone calls and preparation you need to complete.  Fill in your calendar to the best you can. 

Now you are set for the rest of the week.  You have a solid idea what is going to happen and what needs to happen the rest of the week.  

Your life is organized to point where you are starting off on the right foot.  Clean, ready to go, knowledgeable. 

Be kind to yourself, allow that things are going to change and work your schedule. 

Good luck!! Let me know how it goes! 

When you're ready you can add on too!  

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Mompreneur on Fire - 6 Steps to Organize Your Life
Too Busy/Tired/Anxious/Annoyed for Quality Time with the Kiddos? 5 Things to Do Right Now

I can see it coming.  I can see my patience thinning out before my eyes.  My girls want my attention and I just want help.  Or I just want to be left alone.  Or I just want them to play on their own. If you're going to keep your sanity, you need to learn how to balance work and family. Your needs are important.

I see it coming. I lose my patience far more quickly than I wish for.  I yell or raise my voice.  I see my mom in me.  She was tired.  She far more tired than I ever knew.  She would get upset and frustrated.  But I also see, she didn't take care of herself, in the ways we now know we need to.  Times are different now.  

I see my frustration grow as I get more and more tired.  In my heart, I want to soak up the precious time with my girls.  Yet there in the day as we run from one activity to the next, the quality time becomes survival time.  When this happens, when I see that part of my mom in me, that tired part. I know it's happening.  I know I need to make a change.  

Below are a few thoughts on what changes help me.  Maybe they will help you. 

 

1. Don't Worry About Them. Worry About You. 

I know that's harder said than done but now is the absolute most important time to start thinking about you again.  

Take a deep breath.  

Give yourself a break.  

Give yourself a moment.

Put the cartoons on and leave the room.  

Tell your kids you will be back and to focus on... anything else.

I know I am no good to be around when I am over tired.  This is when I am my most cranky and most frustrated.  This is when I yell.  This is the most important time to take care of myself.  To treat myself.  If I don't take care of myself, I can't do a good job of taking care of the family.  If I don't take care of myself, how are my kids going to learn that they need to take care of themselves too?  If I don't take care of myself, what example am I setting? 

I not only need to survive the day but I really want to thrive in it.  

And that starts at home.

2. Get Rest.

For me, I know I need rest.  I need more and more rest.  Rest is what refreshes my body and soul.  It's amazing how good you can feel with a good night's sleep.  It's that thing that you must fight for.  This is where you make good choices for yourself.  I know I have to go to bed by a certain time to get my ideal amount of sleep in.  There are periods of time when I go to sleep late because we have friends over or I want to spend that extra time with my husband or I have work deadlines coming.  We all have busy seasons and slow seasons.  The point is that with rest, you can manage through the easier.  With rest, you a making a conscious decision to take care of yourself.

As a matter of fact, Arianna Huffington, you know as in THE HUFFINGTON POST,  wrote The Sleep Revolution countering the age old thought that sleep was a time waster.  Where studies show it (lack of proper sleep) hinders our health, growth and even sex lives.  

Here's the other thing, if you are actually going to try any of these recommendations out then let me also add in that you (at least) fall asleep to this evening guided meditation.  It is such a wonderful way to end the day.

The guide, Dr. Joe Dispenza, helps you settle down on the day, reflect on the day, get excited about tomorrow and forgive yourself for the errors in your day.   I started with this twice a day guided meditation at the beginning of the year based on a recommendation by my beloved coach and haven't looked back since.  LOVE LOVE LOVE it.    

 

3. Move. 

When you move, your body releases energy.  When you move, your body creates endorphins.  Endorphins talk with your brain and tells it to reduce the pain.   When you move you shake off the things that are stuck within your body.  When you move you change your present self.  Take a walk.  Do some jumping jacks.  Or do what I do and throw on some good music!!

When you dance you change your energy!  Allow yourself that!

It should come as no surprise to you that one of my go-to songs is Girl on Fire by Alicia Keys!  

 

4. Do One Fun Thing.

Set the timer for 5 minutes.  And then go!  

Race down the hall with your kid!  Blare the music!  And do some funny dance moves!  Jump out of your comfort zone.  Let yourself have fun.  You're exhausted, I know, let it. go.  Let them play with you how they want.  (You can set the timer here too.)  Make up funny words and meanings with them.  

Say YES! and let yourself enjoy it!   Whatever is fun or funny or easy.  Have dessert before dinner.  Connect.  5 minutes will be good for your soul. 

 

5. Try Again Tomorrow

Give up.  Tell the day - you. are. done.  

My husband has certainly come home from his work to a dark, disastrous house.  My mother liked to put lipstick on for her husband before he came home from work.  I sometimes think it's a miracle I survived the day, especially when the girls were little.  There certainly have been times when my husband has come home and I am sitting on the sofa with no lights on, trash tv in the background and I was just done. 

That's okay too.  Get your rest, take care of yourself.  Do what you've got to do. No one said balancing work and family was going to be easy.  Give yourself that permission and try again tomorrow!

Good luck!  

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Why You Should Start Podcasting Today

Do you love listening to Podcasts?  Or do you not really know what one is quite yet?? Let me make it easy for you.  It’s perfect for you - the super-busy-always-running-around woman that you are.  Pull up the podcast on your phone, plug-in your headphones and listen as you workout, do your errands or even the dishes late night!  

CLICK on the LINK Below & Go!

OR another easy way you can pull up the Mompreneur on Fire podcast via the Podcast App that is already. on. your. iPhone.

Mompreneur on Fire - Why You Should Start Podcasting Todasy

I met Veteran Blogger and Podcaster Jane Maynard from This Week for Dinner at the Mom 2.0 Summit this year and loved her immediately.  She is a mom, a mompreneur, a podcaster (!) and blogger. I knew immediately I wanted to talk with her on my own podcast and she didn’t disappoint.  Several things from our conversation stood out for me.  She talked about how her blog was her base or resume for getting her work in other areas.  How podcasting is at the ground floor of entry and why it’s got such huge potential.  Imagine what will happen when cars easily access podcasts?  Then, I loved, how she talked about Scruffy Hospitality, and where and how she prioritizes things for her family.  

Jane helped frame how the blogging world was shaped.  I have no doubt she’s “in” on how podcasting will be framed out too.  Actually, she helped me without even knowing it with her How to Start a Podcast post!

Networking is really key to whatever business you want to start and tapping into the people you know and they know.
— Jane Maynard
Mompreneur on Fire - Jane Maynard
It’s work, right? It’s work and pounding the pavement. That’s where the success comes from.
— Jane Maynard

We talked about many things including: 

 - How she started out freelancing.
 - The power of networking
 - How you can still reach out and people *will* respond
 - How and why she started her podcast
 - How Storytelling Podcasting is "where it's at"
 - What will happen when technology and podcasting catch up with one
   another
 - Bloggers vs Podcasters - what the difference in followers means
 - Building good content on the ground floor
 - How she's a little more strategic with her podcast than she was with her blog
 - How she manages the different relationships
 - Where and how she spends her focus in terms of time spent
 - Why there's such a differentiation in time spent
 - Her upbringing and how that prepared her for her work today
 - How she manages her time, projects and family
 - Here's how I'm failing! - Ann Miura-Ko
 - Scuffy Hospitality

I find I need to be flexible in my approach to make income.
— Jane Maynard

Links

More from Jane

What did you want to be when you grew up??

  • My dad had me trained to say "astrophysicist" when I was really little, which is pretty darn funny. I actually always wanted to be a teacher, from when I was tiny right up through college. I'm actually surprised that it never happened in the end. Maybe one day!

What was your first job?

  • Boston Chicken, which is what Boston Market was called back in the day. I think more than anything I learned that I didn't ever want to work in restaurants ever again, but I sured did love easy access to mashed potatoes.

What are your go-to books and apps?

  • Books? The ever-classic "How to Cook Everything" by Mark Bittman is the book I pull out most often. As for apps, I use IMDB all the time (embarrassing!). Podcasts, of course! Shazam gets a lot of use on my phone, too. What else? PhotoForge2 is my favorite photo editing app, although it is sadly no longer available for purchase. Oh, and Spotify! It's funny, I don't have any cooking or recipe apps on my phone!

What are your favorite gifts to give?

  • Le Creuset butter crock is my go-to gift. I love that thing and love spreading its wonderfulness to others. High quality chocolate for baking is another favorite, usually Guittard products.

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In full disclosure, this blog post contains affiliate links which means if you make a purchase from any of these links, I may make a little money. So thank you in advance for using these links as it adds a cushion in my accounts too! 
5x Bad Parenting Turns Out To Be A Good Thing

I don't think Bad Parenting is the end of the world.  I don't even think it's that bad.  I'll admit it.  Bad parenting can actually turn out to be a good thing. Mom life can be overwhelming, it's okay. You don't need to be perfect all. the. time.

Mompreneur on Fire - Bad Parenting

But before I get into why I think bad parenting could even offer some benefits, yes, benefits, I have to put out a few disclaimers.  

First and foremost, what I am about to say in relation to the normal, average parent.  We try to parent well but we also make big, huge mistakes.  We have failures too.  This justification is for those who intend to do what is right, what is best, what is most appropriate but just as we are humans, we slip and we make mistakes too.  

If you are abusive, mean-spirited or just plain, deeply and emotionally troubled, I am sorry about that.  You should do what's best for you and your family and seek out professional assistance.  There is light at the end of every tunnel.  This is not for you.

But if you are the normal, everyday mom or the normal everyday parent then I am here to say: Bad parenting is okay.  

In fact, bad parenting is more than okay, it's likely to be a good thing!  And yes, that's okay. 

My kids are young, they are 4 and 5 1/2.  I try my best.  I try to teach them proper manners and fun play.  I try to teach them lessons and consequences.  I try to teach them about love, unconditional love and putting your energy to good things.  Helpful things.  I try.  I can honestly say I try.  I do good things I know.  I do regular good things for my kids.  

Yet, I know, I have epic failures too.  Goodness, I point my finger at them when I am really angry.  I count in a voice so firm that when I get to whatever number it is, there will be consequences if need be.  And my kids know it.  

I fly off the handle.  I hate to admit that.  I am embarrassed it happens.  But it happens.  

There are some tense moments in the house when my husband is around.  

There is crying on other occasions.  Geez, there was real, heart-breaking sadness, that I just couldn't hide from them when my Dad passed.  

And just the other day, I am ashamed to admit, my daughter had been "mom mom momming" me and then stopped in her tracks and said in her beautifully strong voice "Mom taking care of your kids is more important than work."  Ouch, that one hit a nerve.  Wonder where she learned that adult statement from...

Did I drop my non-work email and hug her immediately?  No, maybe another bad parenting moment came after that. Because I then proceeded to tell her how I had taken care of her all day long, in excoriating detail, and to not ever talk to me like that again.  

"Did you like that camp you went to today?  Which I found.  Which I convinced Daddy was the right camp to attend and pay for.  Which I coordinated friends to go along with you.  Did you like the lunch you ate with the hearts, fruit and your favorite snack, which I purchased, made and packaged for you..."

I went through the entire day from start to present moment with her about how I had taken care of her bit by bit.  You can imagine how long that digest was if we were having the conversation in the early evening.  I was not happy, she hit a nerve and had to listen to my firm, stable voice about the day's activities. 

Almost immediately I felt bad I got so upset.  (Can we say she hit a nerve?)  We hugged it out and my sweet darling responded as she does.  "It's okay Mom."

But here's the thing.  Bad parenting has its' moments.  These moments bring forth emotions, moods, and lessons. 

Because we, as moms love lists, here are few ways bad parenting is not so bad. 

1. The Kids Experience Mistakes 

It's important that kids experience mistakes.  I would also argue it's important them seeing you make mistakes too.  Now you don't have to go overboard.  I want my daughters to look up to me but I also want to them to see that when I make a mistake, I take action to correct it. When I make a mistake, I work to improve from it.  When I make a mistake, sure it hurts, but I will survive.  They will survive too.  When kids experience mistakes, they learn that mistakes are part of the natural learning journey.  When kids experience mistakes, they learn that a mistake is just that, a mistake.  Nothing more, nothing less.  It's something that happens and it's something they can move on from.

2. The Kids Experience That The World Is Not Always Rosy

Omgoodness.  Do you know where I live?  I live in one of the most beautiful towns by one of the most beautiful beaches in the country.  The homes are literally the most expensive homes in the country.  The shoes these women walk around in are jaw-dropping gorgeous and expensive.  The clothes are seemingly perfect.  Their health is seemingly perfect.  That's where I live.  It's 70 degrees and sunny everyday.  

All that said for what purpose?  Even if your surroundings are rosy, your kids need to experience life that is not rosy.  Life is not rosy.  I did not grow up where it's 70 degrees and sunny everyday.  I grew up in Upstate New York, in New Hampshire and Virginia and Washington, DC.  

Just like you would take your kids to the carnival, to the park, to the beach, to Disney World, to Europe and Mexico you want to have your kids experience the days that are not rosy.  Dare I say dark? 

Here's my reasoning.  Life is not going to be rosy for them always.  Don't you want them to experience the dark days when they have the comfort, support and encouragement at home?  Don't you want them to learn that when the dark days come, they are still loved and capable?  Let them experience the dark days while they are still at home, that way they can get used to the experience and can come out of it thriving with a strong support system around.  When they are older and on their own, the dark days won't be so hard, right?  Because they know they can not only survive it but thrive from it. 

3. The Kids Bond Together By Their Experiences

I was talking with another family recently about their own parenting mistakes.  My friend was telling me how she felt regret that her kids had seen some fighting between herself and her husband.  She wished she could have handled certain situations better.  She was talking about how she had this specific conversation with her 20 year old daughter.  Sure, mistakes were made, sure we wish could have done better.  Her daughter is very close to her brother and said the parents fighting was a bonding experience for the two brother and sister.  A bonding experience for the brother and sister that are the closest of friends.   While my friend did not intend to do some bad parenting, a positive did come out of it.  

4. The Kids Learn From An Early Age How To Deal With Mistakes

Imagine down the road your kiddo gets caught with their hand in the cookie jar.  Their first big mistake.  They took an action that was not worthy of them, they made a big mistake.  What will happen? How will they deal with it?  How will they move forward?  Will they even learn from it? Grow from it?  It's best to lay that foundation when they are young, right?  Ensure they learn about actions (positive and negative), about consequences now, right?

5. The Kids Learn From An Early Age That Nobody Is Perfect

Needing to be perfect is a growing problem in our society.  I do think we are more aware of our imperfections but with social media so prevalent there's some hypocrisy happening too.  We present on social media the good, the pretty and the planned out.  Only.  That's okay, I accept that. I don't want my Facebook feed filled with woes.  I enjoy cheering on the good things in my friends and families' lives.  Offline, if they discuss with the hard stuff.  But I am a confident adult with emotional development and stability.  

When perfection is always presented to them, when only the good is presented to them how are they going to learn that they themselves do not have to be perfect?  That they should and can embrace those imperfections within themselves.  

We are not perfect and that is okay.  Wouldn't it be wonderful if children learned at an early age that everybody has individual flaws. Nobody is perfect.  When they see that nobody perfect but we are still wonderful, lovable beings. Wouldn't that be wonderful?


Yes, I am actively trying to build a well-rounded child and I believe that means my kids fall, they see the good but also some of the bad.  I try to protect them, absolutely, but I don't lie to them either.  I respect them, even from an early age, and firmly believe (pray) that together we create a great meaningful life. 


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15 Work Things To Do When You Only Have 15 Minutes

I work from home.  My kids are around and are always asking for something from me.  I know I am supposed to be focused and totally present with them but the truth of the matter is if they are watching a cartoon, why can't I do some work too?  Or if they are at swim lesson, do I have to be 100% present?  Reality is, for better or worse, I am dying to get a few more things done when I am sitting and waiting.    

Mompreneur on Fire - 15 Things

This post may contain affiliate links.

Don't shoot the messenger but here are a handful of things you can do to get more work done when you only have your phone a limited amount of time. 

1.  Make a quick phone call.  Seriously.

It's hard to make a phone call these days, right?  We are always so distracted and then as more time goes by we think the conversation has to be longer and longer.  But I find, I am actually making more phone calls now that I have in years.  It's easier and faster than texting or shooting a quick email.  It's okay if we haven't talked in a while, who said we have to stay on the call for a long while anyway?  We don't have to make up for lost time. 

So really, you can call your client, your co-worker, your mentor and say:

"Hey! I have 5 minutes to talk and wanted to get your input on XYZ.  Do you have time now?"  

Certainly the person on the other end will tell if you if it's a good time for them and then, take that moment.  Have your call.  Discuss your thoughts and ideas.  Right now.  

Plus, I truly think phone calls these days are "back".  It's easy to avoid and write.  Phone calls build relationships.  Relationships build businesses.

2. Edit photos for social media postings.

No one said the photos on social media had to be from that exact moment always.  Do we always live in these picture perfect environments?  And if you are a mompreneur, then I know you know about social media.  And there's probably always this feeling that you have to have more out there.  

So while you are sitting and waiting, go through and edit some of your photos.  Brighten them up.  Make them square.  Heart them.  

Mompreneur on Fire - Desk Layout

3.  Comment and connect with your people.

Review and comment on social media platforms that you are attracted to.  Comment and connect with the content creators that you admire and aspire to be like.   I know I want to build my tribe with like minded women.  I love it when people connect and comment on my work.  It's feedback and connection.  It's crazy to think that real relationships can develop over social media but the fact of the matter is not only is it possible but it's happening time and time again.   Imagine connecting with your people.  All it takes is reaching out...

4. Review your monthly / weekly goals.

I am going to assume you have goals well-established.  You have things you want to accomplish this month and you are actively working on them.  Right?  If not, then spend the 15 minutes or call me.  (Like now.)  

If you DO have your goals set then take a look at them.  Now.  The work that you are doing, the place you are spending your time, is it here?   Are you actively working to achieve them?  Where and how can you spend your time better?  Where and how can you be more efficient?  What needs to shift?  Where do you need help in order to get to your goals?

Do that.  Write that down.  Make your changes.

5.  Update Your To-Do List. 

Don't you just love a good to-do list?  Do you use Evernote?  I live and breathe by Evernote.  I can create, review and update my to-do lists on the fly.  They've even got checkboxes so when I am done, I can check my box and move on.  When I am sitting I like to go over and figure out what's next.  Is the work? Is it the grocery store? Is it the next kiddo activity?  Geez, even what's for dinner is always on the list!  Update your to-do list, figure out what's next. 

6. Calendar Block.

Yes.  Now is the time to put in your calendar when you are going to do those important, high priority tasks.  Block out the time.  Even if you don't use it as an exact science, it's helpful to see and know just what activity you have to do and what timeframe you have to do it in!!

7.  Pin Strategically. 

Followers and value count.  I hate to admit that and even say it out loud.  Well, the followers part, not the value part. But it's true.  If social media is a part of your business (and I almost can't imagine what business would be without it) then you must be online.  Pinterest is far more important now than it ever was and there is no better time than the present than to make your Pinterest profile that much better.  Pin pin pin.  

There's a whole lot more to be said about Pinterest and a whole lot of learning to be had!  I, personally, am following anything and everything The Busy Budgeter does!  (Remember her from one of my first podcasts?? She is making well over 6 figures on her blog in less than 2 years time!  Here's that podcast interview with Rosemarie Groner.)  And while we're at it, her working with me and her Pinterest Strategy CheatSheet has helped this site get tons and tons more traction.  

8. Email an old client. 

I have said it before and I'll say it again.  Following up and keeping a relationship going is what will keep you in mind.  Everyone loves to be thought of and you need nothing more than a quick email saying 

"Saw that XYZ was happening and it made me think of you.  Hope you guys are doing well and pressing forward.  Let's connect again soon."  

You have kept your conversation and more importantly, your relationships going.  That was 3 sentences that ultimately told your old client that you still cared.  What better way than to spend a few minutes of your time?

9. Read. 

You don't have to read a book.  You can if you want but you can also start reading more about the business things you want and need to do.  I cannot even begin to tell you how massive Pinterest is and how it truly is not just for pulling entertaining ideas together anymore.  I have learned and learned and learned so much, business-wise, from reading about what other people are doing from reading and researching posts on Pinterest.   

10. YouTube. 

If you want to learn anything and I mean ANYTHING YouTube is the place to go.  I literally learned how to physically podcast from YouTube videos.  When I talked with Deva from My Life Suckers, (you know the awesome viral video maker), she said she learned about video editing through YouTube too!  Want to learn anything - YouTube it!

11. Meditate. 

I love to meditate.  It has such a bad rap.  People think you need to sit there and magically make your mind go empty but it's simply not (always) the case.  I don't even know how one would begin to make their mind go empty.  I think my skin would start crawling and I'd have a panic attack or something!  Much less, if I was able to find a time for no interruptions, now I have to figure out how make my mind go empty?? 

Okay - so I get it.  I'm not interested in making my go empty.  Truth is that is probably for the expert mediators.  That's not me.  What does the beginner meditator do?  Someone like me? You get these amazing meditations that guide your thoughts in a positive uplifting manner.    Think about your dreams.  Think about your power.  Think about forgiving yourself.  Think about how this world is there for you to bring your best foot forward.  

My favorite meditation is this one.  It's 20 minutes and I will admit, I sometimes (cough) fast forward right to the good stuff around minute 8.   But imagine being guided to your best self??  Seriously what better way to spend 15 minutes?

12. Sit down and do nothing. 

You heard it.  Your body needs to rest.  Your mind needs to rest.  How can you be your best self if you are constantly running?  Put on some music and rest.  Sit down and do nothing! 

Wooops. I know I said I had 15 great ideas for working while the kiddos are distracted but truth is - this is where and how I focus my time.  I could make up another 3 more ideas but that would just be fluff - right.  When I have a moment to sneak a peak at my phone - here i my focus.  Truly.  


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