Creating a Happy Life, Blog, or Brand {Prelude to a Podcast}

I’d like to thank Freelance Blend and Marv de Leon for having me over for my first ever podcast — yay! (Thanks, Marv!)

Listen Now: “Create a Happy Life, Brand or Blog with Bliss-Maker Martine de Luna

Martine-De-Luna-Poster-Freelance-Blend

On this podcast, I talk about how I grew my blog DaintyMom.com, into a three-pronged brand that has eventually become MartineDeLuna.com (my personal website and freelance services site), the WAHMderfullife.com (my site for our work-at-home workshops), and MakeItBlissful.com, my “baby” and the dearest of all my communities.

In summary, here are some of the key points on my podcast with Freelance Blend, which you may find helpful:

  • What convinced me to quit her teaching job to become a work-at-home mom.
  • How my experiences working at home after child birth led me to create DaintyMom.com.
  • How the blog became the storefront to showcase my style of writing.
  • The lipstick sales pitch that gave me my “break” into the full-time WAHM lifestyle.
  • The value of having an audio logo for your brand.
  • How to position yourself to grab the attention of your potential clients.
  • Why it was hard for me to rebrand my already successful Dainty Mom brand into Make It Blissful.
  • Learning when to say “No” to maintain the credibility of your brand.
  • How some of the most successful books are titled and how to apply the same technique for your brand.
  • How to create a job description for yourself and use that to create your own product or service.
  • Why it is important to invest in yourself by taking workshops and courses.
  • How I grew organically her tribe outside the comment boxes of her blog.
  • The importance of having your own mastermind group. (I talk about the Make it Blissful Bloggers Mastermind, a private group exclusive to past workshop classmates of my blogger workshops.)
  • The top 3 bloggers that I follow.
  • The significance of having the best mentors and how to approach them.
  • How I monetize my different websites.
  • How I set different budgets for family, savings, education and fun.
  • How to save and invest using online banking.
  • The future of freelancing and working at home.

Tons of pointers, I know! **Laughing** But it’s 1 and a half hours of me talking and compounding the last 4 years of my life as a WAHM into one podcast. I hope you’ll at least pick up a few points from what I share on the podcast!

Listen Now: “Create a Happy Life, Brand or Blog with Bliss-Maker Martine de Luna

This post appears on Martinedeluna.com

You don’t have to be supermom

2861690380_a55a15c8e0_b

Photo Credit: ashley rose, via Compfight cc

This post previously appeared on the Mom Renewal Project, by Martine de Luna. Thanks, Stacey!

There are so many web sites out there dedicated to moms nowadays. In fact, you’re reading this article on a mom self-care site! Look online, do a Google search and you’ll see: The Net is brimming over with web sites dedicated to moms who are “supermoms” who are able to juggle work, family and homemaking seamlessly, stay-at-home moms, moms who work from home, and moms who  multi-task. In each site, there’s always advice or tips on being a better mom, a better wife, a better somebody.

It seems people have solutions for other people. Other moms give their opinion, their two cents worth on how to cope with so-and-so situation, or with so-and-so person. It gets baffling sometimes when you read through so many opinions. Why?

Because, at the end of the day, none of us have it all together. None of us are super moms. [Read more...]

Thoughtful Thursday: What’s your motive for WAHMing?

WAHMing direction

During our WAHMderful Workshops and in emails I receive each week from inquiries or clients, I come across one question all the time: “How do you do it, being a WAHM?”

I find this an odd question, to begin with. Why? Because the response I tend to give is unique to me as a WAHM: No one is in exactly the same situation as I, so I can only give so much in terms of input and advice. I actually end up reframing this question and asking: “Before we go to the ‘how’, let’s first ask: Why do you do it, this ‘WAHM’ thing?”

Often, people will reply with mixed answers.

“I want to be with my kids.” (Most common answer)

“I want to contribute to the family income.” (Another expected answer)

“I have to, because we won’t have enough if I don’t.”

OK, valid points. Still, they don’t answer the question “Why are you a work-at-home mom in the first place?” Of course we want to do all of these things. We want to spend more time with the kids; we want to support our husbands somehow; we want to be able to provide for our family’s needs, especially in this age of the dual-income family.

However, it’s not enough just to fill in these needs. If we go by the intention of simply “getting by,” [Read more...]

Thoughtful Thursdays: In the Trenches, and the Ideal WAHM Life

thoughtful thursdays may 2013

If you’ve read Chris Guillebeau’s widely successful book, The $100 Startup, you’ll know this quote. You’ll also know about his philosophy of “doing what you love, work better, live more.” In his book, he talks about one main thing: No matter where you are or who you’re working for, you can create a lifestyle that you love, doing work that you’re good at, for people who are willing to pay for the value you can give them.

Awesome stuff, right? Quite motivating, too.

Still, there are realities we have to face. We can actually start on this course to living a life we love right away, if we wanted to. That said, there are some premises to lay down (or what we like to call the cold, hard facts). Yes, it is possible. However, this lifestyle of freedom and passion-driven entrepreneurship begins in the trenches. 

Before we start with blind zeal on the entrepreneurial dream of our choosing, we have to first take stock of things. We have to see what we can do, right now, without sacrificing our family’s right to provisions.

I realized this for myself when I began to explore other options, outside of working for someone else. While I am still technically working for someone else at this point in time, I have already started carving out my path for this type of entrepreneurship. I actually started to, even before I realized it, way before I became a work at home mom.

In fact, I learned all of what I apply in freelancing-entrepreneurship today, from experience I’d acquired in the past as an employee. Yeah, in the trenches.

[Read more...]

The WAHMeo Blog Carnival 2013: Empowering homebased working moms!

For several weeks now, my partner-in-WAHM Ginger and I have been emailing and masterminding about our upcoming workshops for the WAHMderful Life Workshop suite. During these online meetings, I began to brainstorm about the homebased working mom, and coined a new term: The WAHMeo — which, of course, stands for the work-at-home-mom CEO!

What does this mean personally, for me? Well, really it’s what the WAHMderful Life is all about. We are moms who are CEOs of our families as well as our businesses or work-at-home ventures. 

Think about how much work a mom-homemaker/mom-business owner does. She’s got to make sure that her family is well taken care of. She has to ensure that budgets are allotted for the grocery bills and utilities. Often times, she’s the official driver, official cook, official hair-cutter, and after-school activities director. If she’s working from home, she has to add that to the JD, whether she’s an entrepreneur or creative freelancer. That means she’s also got to be at the top of her game so that her business and freelance projects will flourish.

In fact, this article from Forbes in 2012 suggests (after studies and surveys) that the average stay-at-home should be earning an annual income of at least $115,000 — for doing the tasks we’ve mentioned above, and then some.

All in all, WAHMeos are women who are able to creatively manage family, home and work.

We love WAHM-eos!

This is what we in the Wahmderfullife.com blog,  MommyGinger.com and VA Support Pro, believe in. That’s why today, we’d like to empower our fellow WAHMeos out there through a blog carnival, fittingly dubbed the WAHMEO Blog Carnival 2013.

WAHMeo Blog Carnival logo

We are inviting you to join our WAHMEO Blog Carnival. Prizes await the best blog entry!

Mechanics:
1) Blog entries should stick to the theme, which is Why WAHMEOs are geared to Succeed. You can discuss and write about experiences revolving around these:

  • Thoughts on WAHMEOs
  • Your Experience as a WAHMEOs
  • Why do you want to be a WAHMEOs
  • Statistics on WAHMEOs around the globe

2) Please include the “WAHMEO Revolution” logo at the TOP of your carnival post and include the following paragraph as your first paragraph (Please feel free to copy the image of the logo on top)

“I’m participating in the WAHMEO Revolution Blog Carnival 2013, hosted by WAHMderfullife.comMommyGinger.com and VA Support Pro! We’ll be sharing our thoughts and experiences on being a WAHMEO. We will also be sharing our reasons why we want to be WAHMEOs. Please scroll down to the end of the post to see the list of link-up entries.”

3) Your blog entry for The WAHMEO Revolution Blog Carnival 2013 should be published on May 1, 2013 EST or no later than 9am on May 3, 2013 EST.

4) Please fill out the Blog Post Form no later than 9am on May 3, 2013.

5) Once we have the complete list of URLs, we will e-mail you back, so you can EDIT your blog entry to include the link list of the other carnival entries. With this, please send in your blog post URLs as early as you can.

6) We highly encourage you to visit the other participants of the The WAHMEO Revolution Blog Carnival 2013 and leave meaningful comments.

7)  We will be giving away prizes for the best write-up. The prizes will include:

  • $25 Paypal credit (from MommyGinger.com)
  • a business book for moms in business (from WAHMderfulLife.com)
  • one (1) full year FREE hosting of a WordPress site (from VA Support Pro)

We hope that you enjoy this activity! More power to us WAHMEOs!

Thoughtful Thursday: Are you enjoying your life?

thoughtful thursday 10

Are you enjoying to your work-at-home life? (Have you ever asked yourself this question?) 

How about this: What is it that you enjoy about being a work at home mom?

Is it your clients? Maybe it’s the empowerment you feel? Do you feel good about your ability to provide for your family while caring for them, simultaneously? The flexible schedule?

Well, what about the “non-enjoyable” things about being a WAHM? You know: rates, contracts, data work and documents, follow-ups and email exchanges? (Not to mention the chores that pile up when you’re trying to work! Right?)

When you’re balancing five clients (or more), running after errands, running on 4 hours of sleep (or less), and settling a fussy child while doggedly typing from your laptop — what happens to you? Can you still find joy in those moments? (I know from where I speak! Guilty.)

What do you do when you feel like all you’re dealing with in your WAHM life are the “must-do’s” and “to-dos” instead of what makes you excited, or what drives you to get up in the morning, raring to embrace life? [Read more...]

Thoughtful Thursday: “I’m a work-at-home mom — so, step off!”

thoughtful thursday 8

I had a ball reading this on Babble last night, “10 Stupid Perceptions About Work-at-Home Moms,” mainly because many of the perceptions were glaringly true. For those who dream of the WAHMderful life, let me be the first to tell you: It’s not easy being a work at home mom. Sure, it’s fun to think that we can work in our boxers and tank tops (or sweats and yoga pants — your preference!), and that we have the luxury of a flexible work schedule. But the truth is, that’s just a smidgen of the real picture. Being a WAHM is often harder to hack than a clearly defined office based job outside the home. In fact, the life of a WAHM is a two-edged sword, in many ways — and that’s not because of the chores and kid responsibilities that get all muddled together throughout the day!

More than the minor setbacks of homemaking, child-rearing and making sure we work on our businesses, what makes this lifestyle challenging are often the negative perceptions — stupid, even — of those who don’t believe in or understand this lifestyle setup.

Ciaran Blumenfeld of Momfluential states it poignantly: [Read more...]

The Difference Between a Niche and a Tribe for the Work at Home Mom

thoughtful thursday 7

Have you ever thought about why you wanted to be a work-at-homemaker, whether you’re married or a mother? Have you reflected about this work-at-home life that you’re living today? If you haven’t ask yourself: Why did I want to work from home? Why did I want this lifestyle, which (if I were to be completely honest) is not glamorous, not exactly groundbreaking. Why am I doing the work I am doing? And so on.

Your answers to these questions can reveal much about how you view the work-at-home life. In fact, they can help you see the deeper meaning into why the work-at-home life means so much to you.

I started to realize this for myself, when I began reading Seth Godin’s book, Tribes. [Read more...]

Thoughtful Thursdays: Are you being resourceful in your job or career?

thoughtful thursday 5

Today’s Thoughtful Thursday is more of a personal testimony in resourcefulness. It’s kind of a long post, but I promise you, it’ll be worth the read.

(If not, then you’re free to just Pin the graphic. I won’t mind. **smiles**)

So, anyway… I wanted to talk to you today about resourcefulness. I love the word “resourceful.” It has such a strong, independent ring to it, doesn’t it?

To me, it connotes motivation, drive, even originality. It means being able to act imaginatively, even in tight or unconventional situations.

For someone like me, resourcefulness isn’t just a quality: It has to be a way of life. I know, because in my life, I’ve had to be imaginative and self-driven. I’ve had to act on situations that were less than ideal and squeeze whatever knowledge and insight I could from them.

Here’s a story in resourcefulness from my own experience. [Read more...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Adapting

Working from home isn’t what these stock photos make it out to be. I mean, if it were all washed dishes, pretty meals and sunshine, then well and good. But, for the majority of the population, making a living while making a home is more difficult than their previous in-office jobs. There are growing pains when you begin the WAHMderful life, and the changes seem to never end. Why? Because it’s a dynamic lifestyle.

The first change we all deal with when making the work-at-home transition is that of being fully home based, a physical change. The change that follows is that of adaptation, which is really taking on a new frame of mind. 

Being homebound is a paradigm shift.

When we first start to work from home, we all have a different starting point. Some may have self-employed status, while others may have a telecommuting arrangement with their company. Either way, this home-based life is a total shift in gears. We learn to adjust, to settle in to our new work environment. We learn how to “be” the work-at-homemaker by juggling the care of our children, the keeping of the house, and the duties of our job or business. [Read more...]