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Welcome to the process to e-commerce profits podcast. Today, we’re gonna be talking about something that is kind of near and dear to both Cindy and I’s heart. And that’s about being an entrepreneur as a mom, Cindy’s got a new book coming out and I’m gonna have her tell us all about it. and, we’re gonna share a little what we’ve been able to do and kind of what motherhood and entrepreneurship really means today. So Cindy, why don’t you start by telling us the title of your book and kinda where the idea came from,
Right? The book is motherhood, apple pie and all that happy horse. It, the, the subtitle is business is personal and the title actually came from back in my corporate days. I was trying to get something through our board of directors and, and one of the board members disagreed and, he, he called my, proposal motherhood, apple pie, and a lot of happy horse. So, it stuck with me, you know, I’m just like, I was a little hurt , but, the phrase just had kind of played over in my mind for a while. The book is for moms it’s for moms who are kind of, struggling to figure out how they can be, be in the mom role that they want, which is different for all of us. I think we all have a different idea about how we want to be a mom, but also continue to have, our own personal professional identities maintain.
And I know for me, my journey of having a daughter, I was very set on staying at home and being a stay at home mom. And after five or six years of that, I just felt like I was lost. And I felt like all of those years of being a, a corporate person and being a, a, an achievement junkie and checking things off at the end of every day and constantly growing and learning, the, the time spent at home just in, in a lot of, quiet time because I, we had moved to a whole new city, so I didn’t, I have a whole network to support me. And, it, it just caused me to really think about, all right, who am I even, to in this, in this role and entrepreneurship, was the answer for me because it allowed me to have the flexibility to do the kinds of things I wanted to with my daughter, but it also allowed me to get back in touch with who I really was as a person and to grow as a person. And I got to meet Robin as a result. ,
You know, there’s so many people that I’ve met because, well, I never, would’ve been friends with, I never would’ve talked to I and so many experiences that I never would’ve had. And, you know, I was kind of in the same situation, you know, I was, was, I was working for the church, but I was really committed to really being there and being present for my kids and being able to do the things that I really want. I wanted to be able to be the mom that, you know, reads in class and, you know, does all those fun things brings in green things for St Patrick’s day, you know, all those fun things. and it didn’t seem like it was gonna be possible to do both. And entrepreneurship has provided me something completely different and that I was able to do all those things and who I know myself to be is more than just a mom. I am a mom. And, you know, like my, my slack image for our team internally is like my face imposed on Leia. And it just says like princess general rebel, you know, like I get to be like quite a few things and know myself as lots of different kind of personalities that blend together. And I don’t think I would’ve had that experience on any other path.
Yeah. I mean, that’s the cool thing about entrepreneurship is that we kind of get to define those things that build us up and fulfill us and, and we get to do more of those cause, Hey, we’re the boss. Right. but those things that, we don’t like to do, we can oftentimes, decide that there’s somebody else who can do that better in our business and ask them to, to take that role. And there’s somebody out there. I mean, just because we don’t like, it doesn’t mean that there’s not somebody out there that just thinks that’s the greatest thing ever. And they, they love the opportunity to, you know, I hear it all the time from our clients. Like, I, I don’t wanna mess with those numbers and I’m like, give me the numbers, you know? So the fact that you can find those people to partner up with that both of you kind of get fulfilled from doing the things that you love. And I just think that’s, that’s brilliant. That’s the real great opportunity with small business
And it, and do that in your home life too. You know, like I have, this really wonderful woman who comes and cleans my house every other week. And, she, she loves what she does and I love what I do. And I love that I’m not scrubbing toilets, you know, so, you know, whether it’s, you know, the partnerships that we have in our businesses or, you know, either, you know, to other small businesses that are also maybe run by mothers or by, you know, fathers and, different kinds of people that are in our lives, it gives us the opportunity to have this really fully expressed life where, you know, we’re getting to do the parts of our life that we really love. Yeah.
Yeah. And there’s, you know, it’s, there’s some research out about, this isn’t from my book, it’s from another book that I’ve been, been reading, there’s some research out that says that if we can just spend 20% of our time on something that really fulfills us, that that puts us in a position of being in love with what we do. I mean, 20% is not that much, you know? And, so that’s one of the things I, I, I try to do as a small business owner is I meet with all my team members and I’m go, what are you doing? Are you loving it? Are you getting enough of what you love? because you know, a job cannot be, just the fun things. But for my team, I try to be sure that they’re getting enough of what they love so that, they feel like they wanna come to work in the morning. And, and, because it gives them, some satisfaction that way.
And I think that sometimes people just look at, you know, you know, I’ve had friends that have come to me and say, well, I just don’t know how you run a business, because now I’m just really focused on my kids. They feel like it’s gonna take away from your kids’ experience. And there are moments where maybe I’m like, Hey, you know, let’s read that book 15 minutes later, I’ve gotta finish this webinar right now, or I’ve gotta do this other thing right now. but for the most part, I feel like, you know, you can be this ex it gives you the opportunity to be an extraordinary mother and a role model to your son or daughter that says, you know, you can have a family and be really active in that family. but also be doing something that you love. And I think that that’s something that you were able to provide to, to your daughter. And, and as she was able to watch you grow this business as she was growing up.
Yeah. It, it’s, it’s a point I make in the book that we, our kids are learning from us. Whether, you know, we are aware of it or not. They’re always learning from us. And so why not be intentional about showing them that you can go after and pursue the things that you want? and the joy that comes from, from achieving things that you’re committed to. I think demonstrating that for our kids, especially as they get a little older, sets them up. Not only are you feeling fulfilled as a, as a person, but you’re setting up an example for your children of how they can live a life where they’re fulfilled as, as well. I talked with someone not so long ago, and I was talking about, his job and, he wasn’t eCommerce. He, he, he wasn’t a business owner, but, I was just talking to him about his job.
I said, well, what do you love about, about what you’re doing? And he goes love about what I’m doing, what does that have to do with any of it? And I’m like, you don’t like to go to work in the morning. He goes, no, , I’m like, oh, we’re really talking about different things here. And it was really sad for me to realize that, he, he, he got no joy out of what he, what he did. And, I, I just think, you know, G life has a lot of ups and downs and, to get through the downs, really, having the, the time to spend with the people you wanna spend with having the, the time to do the things that fulfill you really are, are important. And it shouldn’t just be, left to when you retire or the two weeks vacation that you get,
You know, and I think that how, you know, helping you build this, like, there’s in thinking we’re rich for women, sharing lecture kind of adds on a chapter on the end, called one big life. And one of the things that I like about that is, I don’t know if you’ve experienced this, but anytime, you know, usually a male conference promoter says we wanna do a session for women. It’s usually work life balance. And, I know I have very strong feelings on work, life balance. and what are your thoughts as you know, what’s possible or not possible for women entrepreneurs who are looking at how to try to make sure that they, their, that their kids and their business both get what they need.
Well, I’m anxious to hear what your views are about work life balance. Cause somehow we’ve never talked about this, but I’ll tell you mine. I don’t think it exists. I think, work life balance is like perfection. you know, I think we all juggle balls every day and some of them are glass balls and some of them are rubber balls and the, the key is to figure out, all right, what are the glass balls I got to keep going today? Those rubber ones will bounce right on into tomorrow. No problem. So, I think it, it requires really understanding what’s important to you. and I don’t mean just you as a mom. I mean, you, as an individual, you know, women, the act of motherhood is really an act of sacrifice. It’s giving oneself over to another, which is what a hero is.
And so, I, I think if we identify ourselves, only as a mother, we set ourselves up for not looking at what’s within us. And I, I read a Facebook post of someone I know just the other day. And, and I just, I just, my heart hurt for her. She said, I feel like I lose a little bit more of myself every day that I’m home with these kids. And, and I had a little teardrop emoji and I’m like, oh, you know that, that’s really hard. And so to, to stay in where your life is integrated, where you integrate the aspects of yourself at your, your business profession or whether it’s entrepreneurship and your family, those things all have to kind of be integrated. And you can set that up in a way that today it looks like this, and tomorrow it looks like this other thing.
And the next week it’s gonna look different. It’s gonna happen anyway, because for one, our businesses are constantly changing. And for two, our kids are constantly changing. You know, they, they get involved in sports that are six weeks and then the next six weeks is totally different and school schedules change. And then they come home and do school now and, you know, everything is constantly changing. So just realizing that that’s part of it and setting yourself up in a way that you’ve got the ultimate flexibility, which is why I think of moms as business owners is a perfect combination, because then you can move between those things based on what you perceive as the highest need. What are those glass balls and what you pay attention to?
You know, it’s funny, I have balls in my kind of like the way that I think I’m, I think about, well, first of all, I think we’ve already used the words, so I’m gonna use it again. Balance is. And, there’s no way to have it. And if you try to have balance, you will make yourself literally crazy. You will always feel like a failure, no matter what you do. And you’re always gonna feel like I’m not enough as a mom or you’re never gonna win. It’s always gonna be from a place of lacking where, you know, I look at life more as I have a lot of things that I’m really committed to. And, you know, there is, there’s some things that I have to personally say, you know what? I don’t care if, you know, Susie doesn’t think my snacks are impressive when I come to drop off or I don’t care if my daughter’s hair doesn’t look perfect for drop off because you know what, I had, you know, six calls right before that.
And we’re, we’re doing a lot of things. And, you know, so, you know, there are things that I have to let go societal things and say, say, it’s, it’s okay if I don’t do those things that people expect of me. you know, of course communicating those things ahead of time, not leaving people hanging, but, you know, to say, you know what, I don’t need to live up to this particular expectation. and you know, there’s things that I have to say, you know, what, you know today, you know, this little thing in my business might drop, you know, and I’m, I have planned for that. I’ve made sure my client experiences isn’t gonna be negative because of it, but I let go of some things and let some things fall. So I have kind of like, you’re always juggling balls. And in order to keep them all in the air, sometimes the important ones in the air, sometimes you do have to say, I’m gonna let that ball fall and that ball fall because it doesn’t impact the overall show.
Cuz I’m still juggling. You know, like you said, those glass balls, and the other ones just gonna, yeah, they’re gonna bow. Yeah. And I can, I can go catch them later. And what, you know, by building a great community around me, I have all these people that are catching those rubber balls and when I’m able to play with them again, they toss them back into the juggle. Right. you know, so it’s, and it’s it for me, it’s, it’s about the things that are really important. And for me, who I am as an entrepreneur is important, who I am as a mother is important, who I am as a wife and a friend, those, those things are all important and I’m not gonna have one thing be, and there’s nothing wrong if, if you’re a stay at home mom and that’s all you got and that’s what you love and you fully, self-express doing it.
That’s not a put down at all. I mean, that’s wonderful. It’s just not, not everybody gets that full expression like you might be experiencing. So, you know, for me, I need something else. Otherwise also I know about myself, I am an all or nothing person, as you can tell, I’m a touch intense. So for the benefits of my kids, it is good that I have other things going on in my life, cuz otherwise I would be like, hi, you know, it just a little too much. when it comes, it gives me a chance to have some perspective, especially now that my kids are getting older and I need to leave them room to make mistakes, having my business to stay focused on, keeps me from trying to get too reattached to what’s going in their lives so that they can have the experience of, you know, making mistakes and doing things and experiencing new things without me. you know, even talking over them, you know?
Yeah, yeah. and because as they age, as they grow up, as we age , then it, it really is a little bit of a different dance than when you’re, when you’re there all the time, changing diapers and feeding, you know, and I know it feels like, I can still remember what it feels like when my 22 year old was an infant and I’m like, am I ever gonna get into real clothes again? You know, am I ever gonna have a day where I need to get dressed? And it, those days feel it really long. but, but they, you know, the cliche is, it goes by in a hurry and they do go by in a hurry. But it it’s the experience that you’re creating while you’re in that moment that you do have control over. And, I think a lot of women lose, don’t have a support network to really help them understand that, they do have control over it, even though they have this child that they have sacrificed for and that they’re giving of themselves for, they’re still control over, you know, getting someone to watch the child for a little bit.
So you can have some me time, that kind of thing. I know I had left my corporate job moved halfway across the country and got pregnant. And so when my daughter was born, all of my traditional support network, my, you know, the things I did for work, all of, none of that was there. And luckily I had a neighbor who had teenager kids and she would come over and she would say, okay, how are you doing? And I’m like, and she really did wanna know. And, and she would say, did you shower ? And I’m like, no. And so she’d say here, let me hold that little baby and you go get a shower and I’d feel like a different person just by, by taking a shower. And, and she helped me realize though, that I needed something more, she would, she would say to me, you know, you came out of this really intense environment and now this is your days.
And she said, I just feel like you’re withering a little bit. What can you do to kind of fill yourself up? And that’s one of the main things that I talk about in, early in the book is a, a concept I call sacred space and it’s, it can be religious, but it it’s also just meant to be, respect, respecting that you as a person need some space and that there’s places or things that we do where we get, sacred space for me, it’s gardening. If I’m worrying about my daughter or when she was little, I was worrying about her, or if I worrying about something in my business, I can go out in my garden and totally lose myself, quit thinking about that stuff. It may come, but then it just goes, and then when I come back and it doesn’t have to be for very long, when I come back, that space has given me a different perspective.
It it’s helped me to feel connected, to feel like there’s possibility as opposed to just being stuck. And so I think that’s the really one of the main points I want women and as mothers and as entrepreneurs. Cause I, I really kinda lost my identity both as a stay at home mom. And as an entrepreneur, both situations, my daughter was older and I, I was like, who in the heck am I? And the answer both time was getting back in touch with who I am at my core. And the way I stay connected with that over time is just by finding those one or two, three things that I love to do and make sure I’m getting some of that every day. Do, do you have something you do Robin that, that just centers you and you just know, okay, I’m, I’m in my zone here.
Yeah. You know, I have certain things that I really love and that I’m passionate about, you know, sometimes it’s, it, it, it can be easy for me to say, I don’t need to make time for that right now, cuz I’ve got all these things going on. But I find that when I let myself it, I, I I’m tempted to say indulge, but it’s not an indulgent because it makes me better at the other things. But I think that’s why people stop is because it feels like, you know, you’re indulging. I, I remember even getting a personal coach to kind of like help me launch my, when I did my first book and I would be fine paying, you know, a couple hundred bucks to get my kids new clothes and things like that. But when it came to getting me clothes to be presentable on stage, I didn’t wanna spend that money on me because that felt indulgent. And I think that society kind of makes us feel like we should be pouring everything else out into other, but you can’t pour from an empty cup. And so, you know, it is about making sure that just like you’re saying that as an entrepreneur, you’re filling that cup outside of just your business and your kids.
Yeah. Yeah. And one of our guests talked about it too. And he was a, a, a, a young man that, you know, was saying that the mental health aspects of being an entrepreneur, that’s what really surprised him is just how much more demanding on his mental health, the, entrepreneurship journey had been. So imagine that, you know, you you’ve got that going on and you’ve got, you know, the motherhood journey going on. really having someplace something that allows you to stay connected to who you are. it is just vital to the process. It’s not an indulgence, it’s it? Is it, it it’s, you know, I, I think I use the words in the book that we can, we can force things. We can take a hammer and bang on things and get a solution. And, and I’ve been guilty of this. I just like, let’s just get it done. Right. Or you can step back a little bit and allow things to happen. And when you do the difference in the product is this banged up thing. That’s got hammer marks and divots all over it versus something that’s kind of come from light that is people relate to and that they find inspiring. And I, when, when we’re operating from that true sense of who we are, things come more from a light perspective and less from a beat up around the edges type of perspective.
It allows us to enjoy things more. And I think that, you know, a lot of people who would listen to our podcast would probably already consider them really successful entrepreneurs. And, you know, they they’re further along in that journey. And I think that it is easy to let both things, you know, so you feel like you have this balance cuz you have your kids in your work, but then you turn around and you realize that’s all that you have. and so I think no matter where you are in your journey, it is important to make sure you have things outside of that. I, I, I have a high performance coach that I talk to every week. you and I know I’ve talked about Andrea quite a bit. and one of the things that I’ve noticed about myself that we kind of have been looking at is that when I only have, when I let myself get to the point where it’s only my kids and my business, that when something goes wrong, you know, something there’s an upset with my kids or there’s an upset with my business. It feels like my entire life is falling apart and I will have nothing. And it’s because that’s where I’ve centered everything around. And it’s important for me to be able to have those other things because it’s like adding another wheel to the bicycle that when things get a little less stable, I have something there to make sure it doesn’t tip.
Or feel like it’s tipping.
Yeah. or, or know that, that if, if you’re tipping a little bit, something’s gonna be there to catch you. And if you’re not gonna go all the way over. Yeah. That’s, that’s a great analogy.
It gives me a lot more perspective. And I think that’s something that actually being your friend has helped me do. because I am kind of an all or nothing person and you are so good at presence, seeing peace to the people you talk to and helping people find, not balance in that artificial way, but helping people find a place of serenity and joy. And so I I’m grateful for your friendship for that.
Aw, thank you, Robin. I’m grateful for your friendship too. You’re you know, when we first connected it, it was like we were coming from such different aspects of what we were doing in the e-commerce world, but it, it was like she gets this and she gets me and this has never changed and I really appreciate you.
Well, it’s funny to be able to, you know, work on this project together and do all these things, you know, and you know, and I was in a very different stage of motherhood when we met, you know, my kids were still really pretty, quite little, I think Eli was maybe seven or something like that. Yeah. What would you say to a mom that, you know, I, cuz I know, I don’t know if you, I, you talk to a lot of moms and one of the things that I, sometimes people I’ll talk to a mom that, you know, she’s doing really well in her business, but she’s comparing herself to maybe a 20 year old who lives in his mom’s basement. And they’re saying, you know, like why I, I just, I’m not getting the numbers, something’s wrong with me. I don’t know if you’ve had the experience or maybe that’s just me or something. What would you say to them,
To moms that compare? it is the same thing I say to my e-commerce clients just quick comparing there is nobody doing what you’re doing, the way you’re doing it. And just because you saw it on social media does not mean it’s true. And I, it is only you can do you and only you can live the life that you decide to live. only you can make the decisions for how you’re gonna run your business. I know a lot of accountants, I know a lot of e-commerce accountants, we all do it different. We do it different from the standpoint of running our businesses, as well as from, how we, how we are as moms, E everybody is coming at it from a different place. And that’s what that’s, what’s really cool. You know, instead of trying for all of us to kind of be in the same box, we should all just look for those things that make that person really come into who they are and putting, putting people in buckets doesn’t help, help any of that.
And so it’s, it makes no sense to compare yourself against someone else I’ve done it. And I can tell you, the only thing that happens is you start to feel miserable about, you know, why, why this one thing that they’re, they’re doing well. you’re, you’re not one of, one of my favorite quotes is from Ann Lamont and she says, don’t compare other, don’t compare your insides to other people’s outsides because we all have a in internal perspective on things. And we all have a presence that we put out there. And then we have social media that is, you know, something that, is new in our age, but, only you get to do you and, and comparing just will make, make you crazy.
And I think it comes down to really knowing what is success for you? You know, there was a time where I really thought that being the biggest was the best. And, you know, I’ve gotten to a point now where I’ve decided I don’t need the stress of being the business. Biggest. What I really want is for me to be able to travel with my kids, for me to be able, if they say let’s cuddle or let’s watch a book or watch a book, let’s read a book or watch a movie, you know, or, you know, go, go do something that that’s, what’s more important to me than being able to, you know, go to a bar at a, at a conference and be like, I have the biggest business what’s important to me is that I have the life that I want. And once I got that, it might made my life, a lot more enjoyable. But yeah, even though lots of people told me that lots of other moms were like, Hey, you know, you don’t need to take over the world. It, it, you know, it, it, I completely ignored ’em for a while and, but they were right.
yeah. You know, there may be somebody who does wanna take over the world
And that’s okay.
Yeah, go for it. The thing is, I think it it’s important that we, each of us spend time figuring out what is it that we enjoy? What, what is it that makes us happy as a person? What is it that we’re trying to achieve with our kids? a lot of the moms I interviewed in my book, they, they were trying to create something different than what they had as a childhood. Me, for example, though, I wanted to create exactly. I thought I had like the most ideal childhood ever and wanted to just keep, I just wanted to, I wanted to be my mom again, you know? And, so I think there’s, and then you, then you need to get in, in touch with what you want for your business. So it’s like that three-legged stool. You really do need to understand yourself, your, your BI, your desires for yourself, your, your desires are how you want to be a mom.
And, and, and family, you know, relate with your partner and then how you want to, how you wanna show up as a business owner. I, I, for a long time, thought I wanted to grow to a certain point in my business. And then I realized that the thing that I really loved about being a business owner was creating an opportunity for more moms to have flexibility in their life. And so I only wanna grow to the point where that model makes sense. Yeah. And, you know, that, there are people that are, in the accounting space and their approach is hiring a bunch of people from, offshore, and then there’s nothing wrong with that, but that, wasn’t what was motivating me. And so my, my motivation is just finding those people here that are looking for that, that kind of opportunity in their work world and giving those people as much, as many of those people as possible that opportunity. And there’ll be some, there’ll be some upper limit to that where that structure just won’t make sense anymore, but, I’ll be happy as long as that’s what I’m doing,
You know, and I, I think that that’s what helps keep you able to stay so focused on your goals is because you can see that there’s something more than just the bottom line. and I think that’s, what’s so exciting about your book is that you’re sharing a lot of that. Can you share a little bit more like about what your book is and who it’s for and just, you know, so people can, if they’ve been, maybe they, they know somebody that would be a good fit to read it, or maybe, you know, it would be a good read for them.
Okay. it is for moms or soon to be moms that are maybe trying to make this decision of how are they going, how they’re, how are they gonna either go back to work and make things work out? And they’re struggling with their idea of having to have daycare that, that just doesn’t feel right to them, or maybe they they’re at home and trying to, to do the stay at home mom thing and feel like they’re losing themselves. It really is for the person who sees small business ownership as a way to be, able to create the life that they want. And so we approach things from the standpoint of, you know, understanding what you want from those perspectives of who you are and what you want as a person, as a mom, how you wanna show up as a mom.
and then what you want from your business. And we walk through several exercises of putting in place, a support system for you, both for your business and for yourself as a mom, really identifying how you’re gonna take care of your, of your needs as an individual. We get into, values and the importance of values and immutable laws for when you set your business up, really being in touch with those immutable laws so that you can set boundaries between when you’re, when you do things as a business owner. And when you don’t and, and how you’re, how you and your team are gonna live your values every day. And then, then there’s a couple of chapters on time management and on, fiscal management, we actually walk people through the process of setting up a business financially, and the thought process of what, what you need to contribute to your personal life.
And then how is your business gonna grow to the point where it can do that? And are you, are you really in a, a situation where you, you do a reality check? Can, you know, the numbers may look good, but check it against the market. Is it really gonna fly? Because the last thing anybody needs is to create financial stress on top of the stress of being a mom, right? So we go through those things and, and just examine them from the standpoint of, not so much how to, but the things that you need to be paying attention to at certain points in your life.
And if people wanna know where more, if you wanna find out more about the book, what’s the best place for them to go find out more about the book,
Cindy thomason.com. the webpage is there, with a, both books, the profit first for e-commerce book is there as well as the motherhood and apple pie and the happy horse. And so you can go there and there’s some pretty cool, bonuses that we’re offering for the, for the pre-orders that are, are starting now. it is up on Amazon now for pre-orders. So you can also go to Amazon and, and search for the name, motherhood, apple pie, and all that happy horseshoe.
That kind of takes us to the end of the episode date. we are excited to, hear from you again and looking forward to, the next episode.
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