motherhood

Big News & A Personal Note About The Future Of Blog Society

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Let's talk about change shall we?

Firstly, let me say that it's been a long while since I've posted here and today I'm doing so with a bit of a personal update and also a call to action for those that might feel aligned with the updates below.

As you may or may not know things have changed quite drastically over here at Blog Society HQ and as with any big life change, it comes with a renowned sense of clarity and focus. My son, Finn, was born in July and I've since been consumed with cuddles, endless coffee and the inherent desire to ensure my business truly felt aligned to this new chapter in my life.
 
*WARNING* This is a loooong post so stay with me.
 
Earlier this year I felt the strong need to create space in order to truly FEEL what was next for myself and Blog Society. Truth be told I'd felt a bit lost, unattached and probably disheartened with the digital space. A piece was missing. I found myself seeking out new projects to sit alongside my existing course, events and clients that would deepen, evolve and better align my business with what was happening in my heart.
 
Put simply, somewhere along the way in my biz journey I'd lost myself - or perhaps I was just afraid to share the 'real' me, instead held down by what I thought was expected - the 'perfect' Instagram pic, the ‘right’ business model or chasing the next big thing.
 
I felt disillusioned with my newsfeed. In an effort to remain 'professional' I seemed to have lost my sense of self and I was craving to be heard. Craving to share with you more honest, real, raw, vulnerable and passionate posts.

To pull back the curtain on what's happening behind the scenes at Blog Society.
To share more personal updates and celebrate the unpolished. 
To have fun.
To post with my heart and head - and truly speak about what's lighting my fire and sparking those creative flames.

 
I was craving clarity, more time to focus on self-care, soul-care, shift my mindset, focus on my health and well-being and realign myself to the very principles Blog Society was founded on -community, collaboration, connection.
 
And so during my pregnancy and subsequent 4th trimester, I dialled things back. And it felt glorious. 

By shedding expectation, I allowed myself to mentally, physically and emotionally recharge. During this process, my health improved and my creative drive returned tenfold. At the centre of this shift was a product that I fell in love with wholeheartedly: essential oils.

This coupled with a hunger to birth new projects, led me to a new business opportunity and...

Today I'm proud to share that I’m building a global doTERRA team as part of Blog Society.
 
I've teamed up with Alice Nicholls of The Whole DailyTara Bliss and a tribe of other kick ass women to help others not only experience the magic of these oils but also help bring a powerful business opportunity to women ready to rise up.

I’m currently building my doTERRA team and reaching out to my tribe to see if you feel called to join me? You can be anywhere in the world, with a business, without, a blog or no blog. This is open to ALL (yes I'm looking at YOU).

This is an opportunity to work directly with Alice and I so if you're curious about learning how to use essential oils, ordering these beauties for your own use, want to attend a class with me or are interested in receiving a sample, simply reach out and say hello.

As I wrap up this post I'm signing off as a braver, healthier, stronger, happier more courageous version of me. Ready to bring my tribe the creative events and courses you've come to know and love but with the addition of a brilliant new biz opportunity empowering women to fearlessly build a business they love while prioritising their own health and well-being.
 
To rising up together and great things ahead.

x Jaclyn

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Biz Mama Series // Remote-Controlling Our Kids

By Ximena Santibañez

Do you ever wish your kids had a pause button, an on/off switch, or a mute button? No guilt or shame, it does’t mean you are a bad mom; nor does it say anything about how much you love your children. There is an explanation behind it.

We are the first fully technologically immersed generations that see TV, the telephone, computers, and electricity as something normal. We were nannied by TVs. We played with computers and video games. We are the generation that added motors to bikes, skates, scooters, and nearly any tool we can think of. 

If we cannot imagine life without electric appliances, the truth of the matter is that our kids may not imagine life without the internet or digital technology. 

But what does this really mean to us? It means that our capacity to wait, endure, and tolerate is diminished. That is why we look for things to stop whatever might disturb us, including a crying baby or the traditional “are we there yet?”. We are used to getting "there" faster and  getting "that" done easier. However, the generations before us did not let us get away with that so easily. The fact that we had access to a dishwasher didn’t stop us from learning how to do our dishes. Nor did we get away with not learning how to do many other manual labors or chores. We had to sit at the table with everyone else, eat what everyone else ate, watch what everyone else watched; and even share not only one phone line, but also a family computer! 

That allowed us to wait, to negotiate, endure, persuade, communicate, and develop more skills that children today don't get a chance to obtain. 

Human beings cannot create and innovate unless we are lacking amusement, fulfillment, supplies, etc. Scarcity and lack are our incentives to make things work and happen.

Just imagine and step into your kids’ shoes for a little bit. What is their incentive to learn if they can Google? What is the incentive to learn Math if they can use an app? Why should they create and imagine when they see that everything has been done and said before? Their incentive is someone so loving that will allow them to be bored. Someone so strong that will rather deal with a messy kitchen and a loud backyard than with her kids being diagnosed with ADHD or depression before reaching their teenage years. Someone so brave that she'll say "no" even though it breaks her heart to hear "I hate you" or see them cry. Someone who will be tough enough to let them experience the world first hand now and then, even when that means some scratches and bruises.

Just like we had those previous generations who taught old rhymes, games, and traditions; now is the time for us to share ours. 

We can share the stories that no video or photo could capture, so that they'll learn some things do not need to be recorded to be remembered. We can introduce them concepts like "friends" and "groups" that you cannot just add or block. The type that you actually need to create and maintain throughout the years, not just when there’s “activity”. We can remind them of the value of "private" and "unique" by sharing with them secrets and deep conversations.

Then, once we have done all of that, there will come a time when we will need to hold their hands and guide them as they start taking photos, and communicating online. We will need to be there when they are joining and downloading, and setting up profiles. We will need to learn about the digital world and new apps with them, as they learn about them.

In the end, we will not be able to block or shut down the digital world that is developing around them. Just like we weren’t able to pause, mute, or turn them off when we were overwhelmed. But we can be present, keep learning, be patient and loving; not only with our kids, but with ourselves as parents.

You can find more of Ximena's work here.

Biz Mama // Maternity Photoshoot

Maternity Photoshoot

I don't often post too many deeply personal updates here on the blog - but with the impending arrival (any day now!) of our little bub I have a feeling that is all about to change. As I begin to shift and transform into the role of business woman and mother I find myself re-examining how best to forge this path for Blog Society and I'm excited about the prospect of change.

While I don't know exactly what this new direction will look like I do know that I will continue to be here to help support, guide and nurture other women along their own business journey, specifically as they navigate the marketing world.  I also am feeling called to be more personally present and to share more openly this journey as a new biz mama and the challenges that unfold over the coming months/year.  I've always been a fan of learning from each other and feel that sharing this new adventure is another way to dispel the often unrealistic expectations that women are held to.  

So to kick things off I wanted to share a little behind the scenes update on what's been happening in my world.  This pregnancy has been a joyful and gratitude filled 9 months, one that I'm personally sad to see go but at the same time am so excited for the chance to finally meet this little soul earth side.

We were so grateful to be able to capture this moment in time when Nikki from The Milk Teeth stopped by our house a few weeks back to snap some maternity photos.  I've always been one to feel extremely shy in front of the camera but Nikki had us completely at ease, laughing and having fun in the process.  Looking back now I am completely thrilled we decided to go for it as I couldn't be happier with how they turned out and the special moment in time they captured for us. We'll be able to share these photos with our little man in the future and I'm so thankful to Nikki for the opportunity. If you are in need of any family or lifestyle pics I can't recommend Nikki enough, she's top of her game and soooo fun to work with - I promise she'll have you laughing the entire time!

On a side note, thank you for all the kind words and notes of support about our pregnancy - it's been incredible to share this journey with all of you via social media and looking forward to more updates as soon as he arrives. In the meantime we'll continue to post killer content from around the globe to keep you inspired on your own business journey. 

xx Jac

Maternity Photoshoot 2
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How To Keep Your Business Thriving During The First 3 Months Of Motherhood

By Stephanie Skryzowski

If you’re a highly ambitious, Type A, make-it-happen entrepreneur, who’s passionate about growing your business, AND you’re about to have a baby, you must read this.

You are excited for your little one to arrive. You’ve probably meticulously planned his or her nursery (and of course you know the gender, because TYPE A!) and have all the little clothes hung neatly in the closet, arranged by size. You know where you’ll deliver and maybe even have some meals socked away in the freezer for after his or her arrival.

You are also a busy entrepreneur. You’re hustling daily (and you love it) and your business is growing, maybe faster than you’d anticipated. Your days are filled with client work, hosting webinars, and creating content for your audience. When you left your 9-5, you didn’t imagine it would all work out so well and you are energized and on fire (as much as can be for a pregnant woman).

Does this sound like you?

Then keep reading and let’s talk about what it’s like to be a new mom and an entrepreneur. I’ll give you a hint: it’s not at all like what you think it will be.

If anyone could do it all, it was me. The Queen of Efficiency and Productivity, I remember my husband remarking at my Master’s degree graduation celebration that he couldn’t believe I was even in grad school plus working full time plus commuting four hours a day because I just had it all together.

So naturally, I thought that having a baby would be similar. I’d give birth and be able to keep all of my client work going, hopping on the computer after a feeding or when the baby was sleeping. I knew I’d be tired, but it wouldn’t be that bad. I could do it all.

Turns out, even the Queen of Efficiency and Productivity needs help.

I am sharing my Five Proven Tactics to help you be fully present as a mom, which is critical in those first few weeks and months, AND continue to help your business (your first baby!) thrive.

1. Prepare financially in advance. You are your own boss and nobody is handing you any paid maternity leave, right?! As an entrepreneur you should be accustomed to saving in advance for business investments like a conference or a new computer, and maternity leave is no different. Figure out what your monthly number is then begin setting aside funds in advance. I had set aside three months’ worth of income, just in case all of my clients disappeared while I had the baby (they didn’t!) and it gave me a huge peace of mind. Voila! Paid maternity leave!

2. Tell your clients. I was super nervous about telling my clients that I was pregnant and would likely need to step away for a little while. What if they all left me and I was left with no job, no money, and no prospects? Turns out, that was ridiculous thinking. My amazing clients were not only understanding, but incredibly supportive (they even sent me thoughtful baby gifts!) and they managed to keep the lights on without me. You will feel a huge sense of relief once you tell your clients and come up with an agreement as to how long you’ll be unavailable and when you’ll dive into work again. 

3. Give yourself a maternity leave. I am serious about this. I know you love your business and will want to get back to feeling “normal”, and a true leave might feel hard. You don’t have to disconnect for a year but you must give yourself some space for a minimum of two weeks. I made the mistake of not putting an out of office message on so I felt obligated to answer emails. I even took a client call at just 7 days postpartum, where my mind was so foggy, it was almost an out-of-body experience. I looked back at my notes several weeks later and they were completely unintelligible, so I wonder how I sounded to the client! Trust me that your clients will wait (remember how long they took to finally sign your contract?!) and that you will feel much better after a break.

4. Ease in slowly. So maybe after two weeks you start answering emails, then another couple weeks you take sales calls, then a few weeks later dig into the actual heavier client work. I thought I’d have no problem handling bigger, strategic thinking type projects but I truly needed that time to let my brain begin to function normally after the hormone surge/drop and sleep deprivation.

5. Enlist help. It’s okay if sometimes that help comes in the form of car seat naps and a coffee shop. I can’t tell you how much work I got done in three hour increments while my daughter slept in her car seat. I felt like a normal human by getting dressed and out of the house, she got a solid nap (when she likely wouldn’t have slept at home anyway), and my client work got done. In fact, there was a point in time where we were frequenting Starbucks so much that her car seat began to take on the aroma of coffee beans. And, are you part of any neighborhood or community organization that uses a meal train? Get humble and SIGN YOURSELF UP. I felt weird about it at first (like, I can’t handle feeding myself?) but when that friendly woman showed up on my doorstep with a bag full of chili, artisan bread, and brownies, a smile, and then left, I couldn’t have been more grateful.

Being a mom and an entrepreneur isn’t easy. I landed myself back in the hospital at three days postpartum with an infection, and spending the night in the emergency room with your tiny newborn isn’t all that fun. But these tips will help you get through those first weeks, focusing on your baby and yourself, and give you the confidence that your business will be there as soon as you’re ready.

And I promise you that your clients won’t run away.

Happy Mom-ing, Boss Lady!

(Disclaimer: Every mom's birth and postpartum experience is different, and these tips are based on my experience alone. Sending lots of love and respect to all the new parents out there.)

Stephanie is the Owner of 100 Degrees Consulting, which provides financial leadership to help nonprofits and entrepreneurs change the world. Having spent nearly a decade in Afghanistan, Nepal, Malawi, and other far-flung locales, Stephanie has vast on-the-ground experience crunching the numbers to help organizations make better strategic decisions for their business. Stephanie brings energy and passion to all things in life. She loves her work as a CFO, running marathons (7 to date!), hiking, and traveling off the beaten path. She is a new mama and currently lives in the US with her husband, dog, and five-month-old daughter, Kyla.

The Friday Files

Happy Friday guys! As I write this I'm currently in the Sunshine Coast in Queensland where for the past week I've been blissfully chilled out in baby moon mode.

This means I've (tried) to stay away from laptop and emails but nevertheless wanted to pop in today so say hello, share some of the gems from this part of the world and of course keep you inspired with what's caught my eye in the land of link love.

I'll keep this short and sweet but this time away has really made me think about self-care and the need to slow down. Often it takes a big moment like a baby moon or holiday or illness for us to truly disconnect and give ourselves permission to shut off.

Never ending to-do lists and obligations keep us working at full speed, all.the.time and it's something I'm absolutey guilty of. Being pregnant you have a responsibility to take care of yourself but I'm urging all of you to take a moment and be still this week. You don't need a babymoon to slow down, and that is been a complete eye opener for me this week. Here's to carrying a bit of calm and slow back to the big city upon my return and encouraging you take a bit of time for 'you' this weekend too.

Enjoy below...x Jac

  • Loving this series on real talk from biz mamas sharing their honest advice
  • Did you see our free list building ecourse is live? Check it out here
  • Because everything is better with a kitchen dance party playlist on hand
  • Digital calendars are a life saver, this might convince you too.
  • An April moodboard to sum up all the feels
  • I'm updating our laundry room and using this image as inspo #goals
  • This past week summed up in one photo (p.s. I never want to leave)