This Mother’s Day, we’re taking the opportunity to recognize some Mompreneurs that we’ve met along our journey. Somehow, they find a way to balance their entrepreneurial workload while being full-time Moms. We’ll be introducing them to you throughout this Mother’s Day weekend and we asked them to share some tips for fellow Mompreneurs.
Our earliest recollection of meeting Amanda was about three years ago at Artists & Fleas in Brooklyn. She had such a beautiful booth set up with the most adorable little cork buds (they’re little plants growing out of bottle corks). Needless to say that her booth was one of the most popular! It’s not until we asked to feature Amanda for our Mompreneur Series that we learned of her second business that she’s been managing for 15 years! And, we knew that a Mom with two businesses definitely has sage advice. Amanda is one of the sweetest individuals we’ve ever met.
Introducing: Amanda of Amanda Newman Art (and Corkbuds!)
Q: Please describe your business.
A: I do custom artwork such as chalkboards, murals and signs for restaurants, businesses, weddings, etc.
Q: How long have you been running your business?
A: 15 years!
Q: What inspired you to start your business?
A: I’ve been drawing for as long as I can remember. Even when I was younger and the rest of the world tried to tell me that you can’t make it as an artist, I knew that I would have to because I couldn’t picture doing anything else. In retrospect, I’m sure part of my inspiration was to prove everyone wrong!
Q: How do you balance the responsibilities of being a Mom and running your business?
A: For the first year of my daughter’s life, I thought that I could work from home while also taking care of her. I think it is a common misconception that this is possible – I’ve rarely met any moms who were able to make this work full time! I guess looking back I did “make it work” but it was not enjoyable and I would not do it again that way. It was not fair to my daughter or my business because I was never 100% attentive to either one. I was fortunate to have a solid client base at that point and most people were very understanding that my availability was not as flexible as it previously had been. When my daughter turned one, I was finally able to put her in daycare full-time and it’s made a world of difference. Now I try to be strict about only doing work during work hours while she’s at daycare, and then I can give her my full attention in the evening when she’s home. A person who works 8 hours a day at full capacity is just as productive, if not more so, than a person who works at half capacity (i.e. also momming) 100% of the time.
Q: For current and future Mompreneurs, what advice would you give them?
A: Don’t try to do it all. Being a stay at home mom is a full time job, and running your business is a full time job. If you try to do both at once, you’ll never be happy, healthy, or do your best work. Of course there are times when you’ll have to “do it all”, but in the grand scheme of things I think it’s so important to schedule out your days so that you are giving 100% to the task at hand. You don’t want to be reading to your child but really thinking about the client who just emailed you with an issue. Treat your business like all the “9-5ers” treat theirs – it can wait until tomorrow. People can tell if you’re not fully invested in something (i.e. talking to a client while trying to feed your child). If you don’t take your business seriously nobody else will and your career will always be viewed as a hobby. Being serious does not mean working 24/7 – it means being fully present during the hours that you are working. Another piece of advice – take more vacations! And enable an automatic vacation response for your emails. I promise your business will still be there when you get back.
Q: What’s your secret to staying healthy and beautiful?
A: I go running every other day. I plan the time into my schedule and consider it a necessity of life. It gives me time to clear my head and gives me more energy to tackle the rest of life.
Learn more about Amanda and her work by following her at:
Special thanks to Amanda! We’re grateful that you’re part of our journey!