Through the art of nurture, patience and letting go, we can raise both our passions and our children.

We asked 10 creative and entrepreneurial mothers a few questions to help them reflect on their process of running a business with children and share with us some wisdom they have learned. For mothers, mothers-to-be, seasoned mothers and skeptical ladies, it's essential to know that we are not alone in the journey that is motherhood—and anything is possible with a little support and unconditional love for ourselves.


// Lisa Hsieh // 

Lisa is the founder of Mien, a modern mommy-and-me clothing collection. Learn more.

Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Lisa Hsieh

How has having a child enriched your work life or business?

Like many mothers, my child is also my inspiration. I am exhausted most days just from juggling a baby while keeping up with my growing business, but I now enjoy a renewed sense of creativity. I've also made many new friends who are also navigating motherhood while trying to balance their own careers. These new friendships I've made through our shared experiences have been wonderful additions to my life. My son Grey is growing so fast and that also made me realize that time is fleeting so I cherish the time with my loved ones even more now.

What did your day-to-day life look like in the first year of your child’s life while running a business and being a new mother?

I was over-the-moon happy to be a mama. My son, Greysen, is my first child, so every day with him was a new adventure, it was very exciting. But looming over my joy was also the reality that I had just launched my clothing line and with Grey's arrival, it was like I had two babies to take care of. It was overwhelming trying to focus on promoting my new business while taking care of my newborn. I had little energy left at the end of the day for my own work so I tried to squeeze in work here and there during the day when I could. Still, I was frustrated that I couldn’t make commitments to leads and opportunities because my schedule was unpredictable. I realized that rather than feeling defeated, I should just give myself a break and allow myself to enjoy my precious time with Grey. My first year of motherhood trained me to be more patient, work more efficiently, and be more forgiving because I can't do it all.

But looming over my joy was also the reality that I had just launched my clothing line and with Grey’s arrival, it was like I had two babies to take care of.

// LaTonya Yvette //

LaTonya Yvette's lifestyle blog focuses on visual and emotional experiences that encompass women in today's world. Learn more.

What did your day-to-day life look like in the first year of your child’s life while running a business and being a new mother?

I compartmentalized a lot of the work within naps. Which was good when they were young, because they took two. Then they moved to one nap, and then River went to daycare and Oak was home. I also worked a lot at night when the work started to grow, and they're used to going on shoots with me, or last minute meetings. Its been amazing but also difficult, but incredible privilege to be able to have work that is inclusive of my life as a mother.

I think if anything, as my children grow older, and as I grow older alongside them, I learn how fragile and brief life and work is.
Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - LaTonya Yvette

How has having a child enriched your work life or business?

I think if anything, as my children grow older, and as I grow older alongside them, I learn how fragile and brief life and work is. Each stage is like new and odd for all of us, and getting to feel all of it has made the gravity of both worlds feel pretty amazing.


// Heather Roma //

Heather is the founder of The Westside Collective, a private consulting agency & mobile pop-up. Learn more.

Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Heather Roma

Do you have any advice for new mothers that you wish you had known about managing these two roles as a mother and entrepreneur?

Don't be afraid to have your little one in tow. It will build character and responsibility. It's so cool to see Hendrix helping out at photoshoots at 3 years old and loving it. And join some sort of support or networking group. I joined Fashion Mamas and could not imagine my life now without this tribe of strong mamas.

During your pregnancy, how much did you try to plan ahead for the changes that were coming into your life and business?

It was kind of a whirlwind. When I got pregnant I was taking a break from the fashion industry and was flying around the world as a private flight attendant. At 7 months pregnant, I decided to move our family 7 hours north of LA to be closer to my husband at the time's family. I knew I couldn't continue to travel like I had been so I put my thinking cap on and decided to offer my fashion consulting services for a fee. That same day I built my website and did a Facebook post about it and got my first client; all in one day. I took that as a sign I was doing the right thing. In the meantime, I decided to purchase a vintage trailer and renovated it into a mobile boutique. I guess I was just rolling with the punches with the goal of being a mom who could work with my little guy close by always.

Don’t be afraid to have your little one in tow. It will build character and responsibility.

// Memry Anderson //

Memry is the founder of Photo By Memry, a fine art and lifestyle photography studio. Learn more.

How has having a child enriched your work life or business?

In the beginning I felt having a child would hold me back and keep me from doing the things I was passionate about. It was just a matter of time before that perspective completely changed and I realized just how much motherhood would in fact enrich my life and propel me further. I knew in my heart as soon I fully accepted being a mother I could embrace it. I’ve taken immense pleasure in documenting through photography my son's different stages of growth. The more he has become his own little person, the more I am inspired by the authenticity and innocence he brings to my images, and these are the qualities that bring me the most joy with my photography.

The more he has become his own little person, the more I am inspired by the authenticity and innocence he brings to my images, and these are the qualities that bring me the most joy with my photography.
Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Memry Anderson

Do you have any advice for new mothers that you wish you had known about managing these two roles as a mother and entrepreneur?

My advice would be to first understand that everyone's situation is different and to try and not compare with other mothers. In my case, it was about finding balance, peace and contentment within circumstances in life that I had no control over. I had to learn to let go. When I was at my lowest it was hard to see beyond it, but with time things always get better, and they will.


// Brandi Sellerz //

Brandi is the founder of Not So Private Parts, an online birth platform & doula service. Learn more.

Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Brandi Sellerz

How has having a child enriched your work life or business?

I have learned to “balance” (if there’s such a thing). I have learned how to recognize and distinguish between times that I simply need to press through and get stuff done, and when to surrender. I have learned how to tap into my village for support and guidance, because I cannot do what I do alone. Motherhood is not an island.

During your pregnancy, how much did you try to plan ahead for the changes that were coming into your life and business?

I always say, my second pregnancy not only gifted me with the birth of my soon-to-be middle child (I am currently pregnant), but it it birthed my freedom to create pathways within an entrepreneurship space. Before having Jedi, I had every intention of returning back to work. I was thriving in my career. I had no reason to expect for anything to change. After birthing Jedi, I instantly knew that he was not like my oldest kiddo, Jax, who I often called my “get up and go” baby. I knew that Jedi was was very much so his own person, and I would have to shift accordingly.

Prior to having Jedi, I had a miscarriage, which sent me on the path of longing to create space for other mamas who had experienced pregnancy loss along with all the other things that women experience. Fast forward to Jedi’s birth, I knew that now was the time to shift. Honestly, it took me almost a year of grounding down and making a decision to venture into the unknown. However, I knew that it was super important that I listen to myself, say yes to opportunities that felt most authentic to my spirit, and that I keep moving forward towards the path in which my heart and spirit were leading. This was my plan. I simply walked toward what felt true.

I have learned how to recognize and distinguish between times that I simply need to press through and get stuff done, and when to surrender.

// Whitney Freidell //

Whitney is the founder of Canyon & The Moon, a private holistic hair and wellness studio. Learn more.
 

How has having a child enriched your work life or business?

I changed as a person just as much as my child that first year. I grew in my confidence as a mother and found new inspiration with my business and in life. It felt really dramatic at the time, but when I went back to work I just got this feeling like doing hair wasn't important anymore. My child became the most important thing in my life and everything that didn't fall into my new values as a mother just fell away. Some friendships fell away, small talk didn't seem as important, and I was craving deep connection to others, to life, to a larger purpose. The way I was doing hair just wasn't satisfying anymore to me and I know I needed a radical change.

I became more health conscious and more aware of common household toxins when I knew I was having a baby. That journey into clean living continued into my work. I always thought of myself as being an eco-conscious stylist, but once I became pregnant I got really serious about the ingredients I was using and their impact on the environment. After all, I was now exposing both of us to those products.

Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Whitney Freidell

Do you have any advice for new mothers that you wish you had known about managing these two roles as a mother and entrepreneur?

That journey into clean living continued into my work. I always thought of myself as being an eco-conscious stylist, but once I became pregnant I got really serious about the ingredients I was using and their impact on the environment. After all, I was now exposing both of us to those products.

Self care became a mantra of mine after giving birth, though it took me the first year to really understand how to integrate it into my life as a practice. Self care looks totally different as a mother than it did pre-motherhood. It is not just something you do, but something you truly believe in. It's having unconditional love for yourself in the same way you have unconditional love for your child. I wish I had understood that sooner and had been more gentle with myself in the beginning. My practice of self care is what keeps my work life and mom life in balance.

My advice to any new mom is to be as gentle with yourself as possible. Don't set up too many expectations of how you think it will be and surrender to the flow when things change. You may think you know yourself, but you don't know how your baby will be, and you won't know the rollercoaster ride of emotions that come with being a new mom. Don't worry too much about about creating the perfect balance as a working mom. Listen to your intuition, give yourself permission to change your mind, give yourself space to feel all the feelings, and make self-care a regular practice in your life. If you do those things, you will find the balance that works for you.


// Deb Heyrana //

Deb is an artist & graphic designer, inspired by her roots, the people who walk beside her + the ones she's raising. Learn more.

Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Deb Heyrana

What did your day-to-day life look like in the first year of your child’s life while running a business and being a new mother?

I work as a Graphic Designer as well for a large firm so I had to make a hard, but right decision to give myself 6 months until I got back to doing art commissions. I know not everyone can do it, but I think giving myself that time made it clearer for me and what my goals are. Quinn taught me a lot and so with Rowan, I had a better understanding what was right for me and my life. Right now with the two, my day to day can be pretty packed. I give myself 1-2 attainable goals each day no matter how small. I also talk to my husband in detail what I need to get done so he can be on board too. Communication with him and myself has given me sanity in all the to-dos. I'm also taking this year as a learning experience because my goal is to take my business to another level the next.

How has having a child enriched your work life or business?

A few months ago Quinn introduced me to a mom at a park ‘ This is my Mom, her name is Deb and she’s an Artist!’. I thought to myself ‘Why haven’t I owned it as much as she has?’

They are everything, they have shaped every bit of it. I started my Instagram account as a platform to share my growth as an Illustrator. I was still learning so much, even though I've been a Graphic Designer for over 10 years and an Abstract Artist for 18 years. I wanted Quinn who was 1 at the time to grow up seeing someone like her being illustrated. I want my daughters and all children to see themselves in my paintings.

A few months ago Quinn introduced me to a mom at a park ' This is my Mom, her name is Deb and she's an Artist!'. I thought to myself 'Why haven't I owned it as much as she has?'. So I changed my handle to @_heyrana which is my last name and started sharing my Abstract Art as well. Since then the response from my community has been so beautiful. I think because they see all of me.


// Tori Owens //

Tori is the founder of Urban Mom Spot, a platform with a mission to showcase the beauty of diversified urban moms. Learn more.

During your pregnancy, how much did you try to plan ahead for the changes that were coming into your life and business?

Everything changed drastically and quickly. Did I plan ahead for my life changes? Yes. In fact, Google was my best friend. Hours upon hours I would google everything imaginable about motherhood and the changes to come. It’s funny how millennial parents prepare compared to our parents. I googled everything from how to bathe a baby to breastfeeding. In fact, it was during this time I decided my child would be vegan.

However my business took a complete back burner. I was doing Public Relations at the time and that required so much travel and I had to put it on ice at the moment. I took that time to re-evaluate what I was doing it for and who I was doing it for. My passion for it dwindled and I had to take a step back and find out what exactly made me happy. I landed on the thought of finding an avenue that would allow me to spend as much time parenting as it did working. That’s when I decided to start my blog. I wanted to merge my new obsession (motherhood) with my skills of growing a brand/business. I decided I was done using my skills to build other brands up and focused on creating @UrbanMomSpot. A really blunt, curvy African American Mommy-influencer was now my end goal. Intertwining these two areas of my life gave me a new purpose and internal happiness that I had never experienced before.

Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Tori Owens
A really blunt, curvy African American Mommy-influencer was now my end goal. Intertwining these two areas of my life gave me a new purpose and internal happiness that I had never experienced before.

What did your day-to-day life look like in the first year of your child’s life while running a business and being a new mother?

It was exhausting to say the least. So many days I wanted to quit. I wasn’t in the position to just quit all my jobs and give my new goals 100%. I was 26, single, and a first-time mom so I really just had to wing it. I learned my baby’s schedule so when she would sleep, I would work. Most of the time , if I had to have a meeting, my daughter would unapologetically be on my hip.

I became a multitasking machine. Since blogging was new to me, I signed up for a bunch of virtual classes and I remember those times having to block my screen because I was breastfeeding at the same time. I wouldn’t change any of those moments.

I did have a great support with my family, but those who know me will attest that I push the term superwoman to another level. I became a multitasking machine. Since blogging was new to me, I signed up for a bunch of virtual classes and I remember those times having to block my screen because I was breastfeeding at the same time. I wouldn’t change any of those moments.


// Kelly Harris //

Kelly is the founder of Midland Shop, a boutique supporting sustainable products that come from a known source and cultivating a community educated about the products they buy and consume. Learn more.

Running A Successful Business As A Working Mother - Kelly Harris

During your pregnancy, how much did you try to plan ahead for the changes that were coming into your life and business?

With my first baby I tried to plan out everything. Every. Little. Thing. I’m a person who thrives on control, but one thing motherhood has taught me is that control is a fantasy. The more we try to grasp it, the further away it gets.

When Lucy (my first) arrived I quickly realized she would be leading the way. You just don’t know what kind of mom, let alone working mom, you’ll be until these little beings grace you with their presence. All that planning goes out the window and intuition kicks in and you just do what feels right. At least, that’s what worked for me.

You just don’t know what kind of mom you’ll be until these little beings grace you with their presence. All that planning goes out the window and intuition kicks in and you just do what feels right. That’s what worked for me.

What did your day-to-day life look like in the first year of your child’s life while running a business and being a new mother?

There was a lot of juggling. In the first weeks I would work from home. Thankfully, a lot can be accomplished on your phone/laptop when you’re buried under a sleeping newborn. I am also lucky enough to be on this entrepreneur ride with my sister wife and business partner Paige Appel. Paige has been a supportive force with all of my babies and has always encouraged me to bring them along to work. That support has meant everything—sometimes as moms, we just need a little permission and cheerleading to follow our intuition. The transition into working mom and business owner is a complicated one. My best advice is to surround yourself with supportive people who will help advocate for you and lend you a hand when you need it.


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Courtney Jay Biebl is the Content Strategist at The Good Trade. She is also a Yoga Instructor, vegetarian, wellness and fashion enthusiast. Originally from Colorado, her soul found California when she came to get her degree in Visual Communications at the Fashion Institute Of Design & Merchandising. She has a background in telling a story through writing, creative direction and content creation. Her online blog hosts her unique perspective on the mergence of fashion and spirituality.