Mom, Mommy, Mama, Mamama, Honey, Babe, Wife, Mrs., Candice, Marketer, MBA, Entrepreneur, Designer, Business Owner, Investor.
These are names I go by, or titles earned throughout my career and education that are parts of my identity. Mother, Wife, Marketer, Entrepreneur, these are all such different parts of me that pull at me and energize me in different ways. I love each of these parts of myself, but I would be lying if I said it’s not a challenge.
People often ask me how I do it all, well I have some hacks to try and be the best at everything I do, but a day in a life of a mompreneur (who still works full time too) is hectic. Here are a few ways that I stay focused and grounded:
- No matter what, my family always comes first. My supportive husband ensures that not everything falls on me, but when Adalynn, our daughter is sick, I stay up with her, and I’m the one who stays home from work. The guilt can set in, when I feel like I am not there for my team, but caring for my child is the priority.
- Create boundaries. It’s hard to do this 100% of the time, but when I am at work, I try to focus on work, checking in periodically on the amazing app PreciousStatus which keeps me informed about Adalynn’s day. When I pick Adalynn up from school, and first get us settled at home, that’s her time. We play for a short time, then bedtime routine: dinner, bath, books, songs, tuck her into bed. I will not answer work pings or emails at this time. It’s just an hour and a half of time, and that’s for Adalynn and my husband Ben.
- Be flexible. Counter to the point before, I am extremely flexible about when I work. My job is not a typical 9-5, but requires rigor, and a great deal of meetings and collaboration. I often pop open the laptop at 6:30AM, answer a few emails, but myself in order for the day, and work in the office from 8:45AM-4:30PM. After Adalynn goes to bed, I finish up anything time sensitive needing my attention. This also means that I am not 100% tied to a schedule. If I can tell Adalynn needs more sleep, I let her sleep and I work from home a bit longer in the morning and take a later train. This only works if I don’t have early morning meetings, but it helps to give myself and my family some flexibility.
One last tip on flexibility: be flexible and easy on yourself when it comes to the housework. People ask how you do it all, well you can’t. Something has to give. For me, it’s letting our house be in a constant state of slight disarray.
- Maximize extended windows of time. To pursue any of my entrepreneurial projects, I look for longer stretches of time: After bedtime, nap time, weekends. I do try and spend the weekends with our little family, but I try and focus on knocking out a few items on my to-do list for Mod + Ethico and Woolly Roo.
- Self-care. I am admittedly terrible at this one, but working on it. I try to think about this in little steps: 1) I started cooking for my husband and I more. I used to love cooking, but stopped when I got busier post-baby. 2) We try and do date night every few weeks. 3) I went to yoga today for the first time since January (nearly a year!). 4) Having a home spa day every weekend. I take a long bath, during nap time. It’s a glorious ritual. 5) Reading. I have finally picked reading back up. I was using the train commute to Instagram, and to do work (which I normally do), but I have started prioritizing reading, and writing.
There are often days when I feel like I am not doing enough. Days when I feel deflated, and like I am failing: I’m not moving fast enough; an email I forgot to send; Adalynn gets a naughty report from school. Then, I take a moment, I realize all that I have accomplished in the past year. I think wow, “I did that?” It’s been a crazy past year, and while I wish I were moving faster, I cannot believe the ground I have covered. The feeling of failure motivates, it creates a sense of drive that propels me into action. Taking on the many titles that I own is chaotic, and fulfilling. The roles of mom, wife, marketer, and entrepreneur. At the ends of the day, Adalynn is thriving, my marriage is happy, and my work challenges me and I am growing creatively and intellectually. It’s a wild ride, but I’m glad it’s mine.