SFMS #8 What To Do When You've Lost Yourself in Motherhood

interview with entrepreneur and mom Maruxa Murphy

When I realized I’d lost myself in diapers and goldfish, my first instinct was to buy more yoga pants. Maruxa Murphy’s first instinct? Start a coffee company!

In this week’s episode of the Stand For Mom Show, I interview Maruxa about entrepreneurship as a mom and woman, being a coffee snob, and how life changes when you stop trying to be the perfect mom.

Maruxa went from being a career woman and feeling on top of the world to feeling like motherhood was a battlefield. After years of feeling like she was smart and capable, motherhood found her struggling to validate what she knew somewhere deep inside: that she was so much more than just a caretaker.

How Coffee Helped Maruxa Rediscover Her Brillance 

Fortunately for us, Maruxa found some stable ground, and in our video interview talks about the first step she took to start giving herself space and energy again. It started with coffee--and that’s when Maruxa realized something was missing in the coffee space.

The World Needs What's Inside of You

This January, Maruxa launched Perky Perky, a craft roasted coffee company designed to bring women back into their brilliance. You’re going to love how Maruxa has managed to insert supportive, encouragement messages into moms’ everyday lives using what we love most--COFFEE! Maruxa is relatable and inspiring. You’re going to feel empowered to drop perfection and embrace your own growth, even as your children grow and learn.

You’re going to love…

  • The counter intuitive secret that allows Maruxa to work full time, manage her side hustle, and still show up as a mom
  • How Maruxa identified a huge, gaping hole in the market--and how she’s filling it
  • Why Sarah included herself in her son’s first day of school
  • What you’re really giving up when you prioritize
  • How Maruxa gives you permission to embrace your calling
  • This freeing tip for moms who want to start their own business

Show Links

Watch the full interview on Facebook >>

Like Perky Perky on Facebook and comment on the video post to enter to WIN a Perky Perky giveaway!

Text COFFEE to 66866 to download Maruxa’s Top 3 Tips for Moms Starting a Business (or sign up below)

Find Perky Perky on Amazon (Maruxa recommends starting with the Dark Roast)

FREE DOWNLOAD! 

Maruxa's top 3 tips for moms starting a business

Why Moms Fail--and How to Win

fitness for stay at home moms

When my youngest son was born three years ago, I felt normal (whatever that means),

but by the time he was three months old, I was in pain. I couldn’t sit or stand for long periods of time without my abdominals muscles (and sometimes my pelvic floor) aching. I couldn’t carry my children for very long, couldn’t push a shopping cart at the grocery store, couldn’t move without thinking about how it would impact my sore, aching midsection.

I felt absolutely overwhelmed--I had three small children under the age of four, and I was managing marketing part time for a booming business. I had never successfully been able to make a diet change or exercise routine that stuck, and I was terrified that I would feel like this for the rest of my life.

Pain as Literal Motivation

The terror helped--I finally hurt so much that I made an appointment with my OB and got a referral to a physical therapist. I did a ton of research online. I knew without question that I could not handle a total life change, but I knew I had to face all the fears that were holding me back, or things never would get better.

So, I started walking for twenty minutes every day. It was January and it was cold, none of my clothes fit well, I felt like a giant cow, and the small exercise hurt so much that I (literally) iced down my hoohaw after every walk for the first week. I cut out processed sugar and gluten from my diet. It. Was. Hard. I failed at both things, a lot--there were many days when I did eat sugar, and many days when I did not walk, and sometimes whole stretches of time when nothing was going right.

Glimpses of Victory

But little by little, things begin to get better. I began to walk without pain. My hernia (I had an umbilical hernia!) stopped presenting. I started to lose weight. Mostly, I just felt better. I have a long way to go in my fitness journey (more about that later), but I DO NOT HAVE PAIN ANYMORE!

I can hike short distances without hurting! I can hold my babies for as long as I want! I don’t pee on myself when I sneeze anymore! Frankly, those things are fantastic, but what stunned me was what I learned about failure and (especially) what I learned about myself through my journey.

When I talk to other women, some who work and some who don’t, what I realize is these are universal issues we all struggle with. We all face failure--and we all have to wrestle it down if we want to get to the (beautiful) other side. Here’s what I learned:

1. I Can Do Hard Things 

I was always somebody who was naturally good at a lot of things, but I think that actually instilled a deep fear of failure in me. In the last year or two, I've found myself with new opportunities--writing, starting my own business, new areas of ministry and serving--but I’ve been floored by how deeply my fear of failing runs.

The truth, however, is that anything worth having is hard won. The beginning of my fitness journey was a lightbulb for me, a kind of beacon of hope reminding me that hard things are worth doing. I can now almost literally taste how much sweeter the victory of better health is, because I had to work so hard for it.

2.Tiny Changes Have Big Impact When Done Consistently

There is so much science behind this now, but what we know about routines and triggers and changes that last is that they need to small and accessible and plug in really naturally to our daily routines. Walking around the block every day felt so silly and pointless.

It wasn't a massive lifestyle overhaul, it wasn’t a significant schedule change, and it wasn’t an hour of intense working out every day. But when I kept at it, and walked more days than not, and the days and the weeks and the months started to add up--that's when I started to see some changes.

3. Do Not Despise Small Beginnings

I have put off so many hard things because I feel like I'll look stupid, or I cringe at how unprofessional or just not good my beginnings look. But what I disservice I to do myself! A beginning is only one step, and the only reason it's important is because if you don't take the first step, you'll never take the step where it gets good. I do not want to miss out on something really precious in ten or twenty years because I was afraid of my humble beginnings today.

New Victories to Win! 

This fall, I have some more winning to do. While I feel light years better than I felt three years ago, my fitness level has plateaued. The old exercises I've done are boring, I don't have a consistent routine anymore, and I don't have a community around fitness. My kids are starting to get a little older, and I want to be able to take some awesome family vacations where we hike, canoe, and camp.

I want to get to the point where I could say, I could train for a marathon now without injuring myself! I can go rock climbing or kayaking all day with my husband and love it! I just know the power of listening to my body now and nourishing it and strengthening it and that's a really exciting place to be, and it's great that I'm not peeing on myself anymore, but I know there's a lot farther to go.

For the first time in my life, however, I'm not intimidated or scared. I know it will take time and I know I will need to give myself a ton of grace--but I can't wait to get started! 

11 Jobs for Stay at Home Moms

remote jobs for stay at home moms

Moms are often stuck somewhere between not being able to afford daycare and not wanting to use daycare, but still needing income.

Thanks to technology and social media, opportunities for stay at home moms abound! If you have previous job experience in a specific field, that can be a plus, but even if you have zero experience, you have some great options.

Here are our top 11 places to look for a remote job/jobs you can work from home:  

1. The ProBlogger Job Board 

If you have basic writing skills (or advanced copywriting skills) and can put together a few short articles, or if you have experience or a lot of knowledge about a field like technology or legal, the ProBlogger Job Board is a great place to start. The quality of leads is high, and updating frequently. Because the job board is on a site for bloggers, they're not looking for journalists (some are, but most aren't), which is nice. 

2. Become a Virtual Assistant (VA)

A virtual assistant helps a businesses or individual with a variety of tasks, depending on the VA's skill. Tasks might include managing a social media account, answering emails, doing light design work, or various other duties. There are a couple different ways to get started.

One is by connecting with friends; on the Stand For Mom Show Episode #5, Lindsay landed her first job by emailing a friend. Emailing friends and family and asking for leads or connections is a great place to start. Another great way to break in is by reaching out to one of your favorite bloggers or online businesses. One of Brilliant Business Mom's virtual assistants got her start by emailing Beth Anne and volunteering to do a small project for free (you can listen to that episode here). If you'd like more help getting started as a VA, go here

3. Freelance Writing 

Writing for online websites like Her View From Home and Mother.ly is doable; scaling so that you're writing at a liveable volume (and for publications that pay) can be a bit trickier. If you're the kind who likes to figure it out on your own, Beyond Your Blog's interviews with editors are invaluable. If, however, you'd prefer somebody walk you through the process, I recommend Chaunie Brusie's courses. Chaunie is a work at home mom of four, and provides advice on the work and on being a mom in the midst of it. 

11 awesome jobs for stay at home moms

4. ChatBooks 

ChatBooks has long been a friend to work at home moms--in fact, the company has a whole group of work at home moms they call they mom squad! You can check their job listings to see what's available currently. 

5. StitchFix

Want to work in the fashion industry, and help other people find clothes they feel great about? StitchFix might be the company for you! You can learn more about their remote stylist positions here

5. Amazon

Yep, the online giant is hiring this year! Go straight to the job board here

6. Proofreading 

If you have an eye for catching grammar and spelling mistakes, proofreading is a great option. Caitlin Pyle, fellow work at home mom, has found a lot of success as a proofreader, and offers free webinars and courses if you'd like to learn more. 

7. Use Facebook

Are you a member of Facebook groups? They can be powerful engines for learning about industries and connecting with other people. Particularly if you have specials skills but are new to the job market or the region, joining relevant Facebook groups (like the Austin Digital Jobs group) can give you an idea about what's out there.

A word of caution: there are a LOT of groups out there that offer you tons of making for working at home. As tempting as that sounds--they're scams. Stay away. 

8. Search Indeed.com for Remote Jobs

FlexJobs is also a great source! 

9. Open Your Own Etsy Shop

Do you have creative or design skills? Open your own shop on Etsy! Shop Files has some great resources here. 

10. Be a Digital Influencer 

If you'd like to work with sponsors, offer services as a coach, consultant, or designer, or create a digital product (like an ebook), starting a blog can help you establish yourself as an expert and give potentional customers a preview of what you have to offer. Elna Caine at Twins Mommy is an experienced blogger, and has great recommendations here.

If you enjoy photographing your life, have an eye for style and design, and don't mind maintaining a fairly public profile, growing an Instagram following can allow you to work with sponsors, who pay you for sharing their product with your audience. Depending on the size of your audience and your niche, you can earn anything from free product to $15-over $1000/post.

Many Instagrammers connect their Instagram account to a blog, but you don't have to. Likewise, you can create a Facebook page to support your blog/website, or you can create a niche Facebook page and work with sponsors. This Facebook group is filled with people who do just that. 

11. Amazon FBA

It's a little bit complicated, so I won't go into full detail, but you can consider retail arbitrage on Amazon. Basically, you snag great deals and sell them for a higher price. This couple explains more

In our *FREE* mini e-course, we share the essential skills you'll need for balancing work and motherhood. Things like: 

  • Timeblocking (and why sticking to a strict schedule can sabotage your day) 
  • Making a plan for meals (so they don't derail your whole day) 
  • The 3 things you need to DROP once you become a work at home mom
  • How to keep your children busy and occupied so they're thriving and you're getting your work done

Sign up here >>