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The Emotional Roller Coaster of Maternity Leave: How to Go Back to Work

Being a new mom means you have a host of new responsibilities. For the new mom on the block returning to work after maternity leave can be a challenge, but with the right support from coworkers, supervisors, friends, and family, making the transition can be healthier for new mothers.

A new study conducted by Michigan State and Texas Christian University discovered that new mothers depend on the support from their coworkers over the support from friends and family when it comes to breastfeeding.

The stigma against mothers breastfeeding in public has been a huge source of debate in the United States over the last couple of decades. However, breastfeeding is a necessary practice that demands support in the workplace and the public. In the workplace, a new mother may experience up to 25 people in an office of 100 that do not support her breast pumping.

"If women know that co-workers and supervisors will support them in their breastfeeding efforts, it can make a big difference," said assistant professor of the College of Nursing at MSU, Joanne Goldbort.

The transition back to work is difficult enough without the threat of hostile coworkers. Taking the time to express your concerns with your boss and close coworkers could mean the difference between stopping breast pumping early and creating healthy food for the baby. Additionally, the U.S. doesn't have a mandatory paid maternity leave program for its citizens.

Some supportive coworkers have even gone so far as to donate their unused paid time off to mothers on maternity leave. After a new study published by the World Policy Analysis Center revealed that maternity leaves lasting under 12 weeks can result in higher rates of depression, some Americans are donating their vacation days to mothers in need.

To make the transition back to work easier, here are some tips for going back to work with grace.

It's okay to feel many different emotions

This is the first time you'll be away from your baby for an extended period of time. It's also the first time you'll be back at work after an extended leave. As such, it's important to calm feelings of getting overwhelmed. Pamper yourself, take a deep breath, and prepare to go through an emotional rollercoaster. Remember that it's okay to be sad.

Pamper yourself

Even though you're now in mommy-mode, you did exist as an independent person before your pregnancy. In the stress of taking care of your new baby, you may have let some things fall by the wayside including your dental health and hygiene routine. To prevent becoming one of the 47% of adults who have periodontal disease, visit the dentist and start a new teeth-cleaning regimen.

Get ready to take more time off

Babies are prone to catching a number colds, often back to back because they don't yet have a strong immune system. Many parents expect to go back to work and stay at work, but it's up to you and your partner to take your child to one of the many pediatricians or urgent cares in the area if there's a medical emergency. Children usually catch between six and ten colds per year, and babies are no exception.

Create a planned routine

A family unit will work best when everyone is on the same page and that the duties are clearly laid out. If you have to work at your office until five, it might be better for your partner to pick up the night shift. Do you have a method for doing laundry? How about a sleep schedule for when the baby cries at night? Creating a plan that prioritizes sleep and results in the best communication between you and your partner is a necessity after a baby is born.

Get a solid support network

While you might not have the type of coworkers that are willing to offer you their vacation days, it's still important to establish a network of support within the home and office. This is a stressful time and without the proper support, you can be left feeling resentful toward others and burnt out. Talk to your friends, your partner, and your boss. Many new mothers often seek therapy for dealing with issues like postpartum depression. There are ways to cope even when you feel like you have no one to turn to.

Going back to work after maternity leave is an intimidating time for the new mother. With these tips, you can get ready to take on the world again.


Convert Your Writing into Wealth

An American freelance writer will earn an average of $29.62 per hour, making it a viable source of income. If you are a mom and you spend most of your days at home, then writing is a way to supplement your income. The flexibility of this role means that you can do as much work as you like, gaining a little extra cash when you have the time. However, you may be wondering how you can get started. Here’s a little guide to get you started and make even more money online

Research the Industry

A key mistake that many freelance writers make is to start by focusing on their writing skills. The truth is, you don’t need to be an incredible writer to write for a living. As long as you have a firm grasp of the English language and can communicate effectively, then you are able to earn an income in this area. Written content that appears on the web tends to be simple and to the point. There is no need for an extensive vocabulary or complicated punctuation.

Instead, focus your time and energy on getting to know the industry. You should research what blogs are looking for in terms of content and how much they tend to pay. Writing may be your passion, which is no bad thing, but making money as a freelance writer requires more than beautiful prose. You need to be able to provide solid content that will increase a company’s website traffic. Get to know how to use keywords and hyperlinking to improve the SEO of a blog, rather than becoming an expert creative writer.

Start Small and Be Proud

Once the research is done, it’s time to start pitching articles. There are a seemingly endless list of online job boards with companies seeking writers. Search as many as possible and keep applying until you land yourself a job. Earning a steady stream will come in time, but earning anything at all is a win in itself. Getting paid for online content is hard and many aspiring writers don’t even try. If you earn just $5 from your work take pride in your achievement. As you get going, this amount will grow, so be happy to have an income on which to build.

Freelance writing is a great way to earn money for anyone who enjoys writing. You can take a hobby and monetize it by being savvy and getting to know the industry. In time, you’ll become an expert at landing jobs and will be making a decent income without too much time or effort invested.


Mommy Monday:: Univhers 

Your name and business name:

Natasha Soleil operates Univhers. You can download the app from iTunes here.

When did you start your business?

I initially started my business 8 years ago just a web site to make it easy to post DIYs and recipes. My son Luka was newborn at the time and I didn’t have time to set up a blog and upkeep one so, I figured as a technologist I would prefer to build a solution for all the other moms like me who want to share a recipe or project...and don’t have time to blog.

What services/products do you offer?

The Univhers app makes it easy to post a DIY or recipe tutorial step by step with pictures and text an recommend links a like a blog, site , store or product. 

How do you balance family and business?

It’s a little crazy busy - I work from home and take care of my two kids Luka now 8 years old and Stella is 6 years old. They are a little older now so, it’s much easier but, still constant attention I do have more time to work now that they are in school and thankfully in summer camp so, I can work 6-8 hours min. a day - but, usually I start my day very early to work when the house is quiet and also continue to late night. Launching a tech start-up is so much work similar to taking care of kids...but, overseeing a team of developers, designers and also working on the PR level, setting up partnerships, advertisers etc...it’s really endless.

What advice do you have for other mom entrepreneurs?

My advice for mom entrepreneurs is to join a networking group - This way it takes you out once in a while and you can meet other women with businesses. This really helped me stay focused on my work and not just identify myself as a ‘mom’ but, rather a business women with a family. It’s also just lovely to dress up, enjoy appetizers and many events have a great panel discussions so, try to also become a speaker in your local chapter to start talking about your business to a wider audience. It’s key to receive feedback and support from your peers.

How do your market your business?

I’m currently use ‘word of mouth’ and market using ‘Instagram’ as the main social media outlet. 



Trendsetting Makeup Brand Lime Crime Is In Expansion Mode Now That Tengram Capital Partners Is Running The Company

Doe Deere and Mark Dumbelton thought they could make a difference in the beauty industry in 2008, and they were right. The two entrepreneurs had enough innovation and creativity in their beauty genes to come up with the name, Lime Crime, and that brand name got an instant reaction from the beauty world. Deere and Dumbelton had enough edginess in their digital marketing plan to develop a cult following, and that’s exactly what happened. The two founders wanted to redefine the beauty industry using a mixture of crazy names for lipsticks and bold citrus colors to make those crazy names stick in the minds of young consumers. The company’s Unicorn Lipsticks hit the market like a bull running through a Spanish town, and unicorn lipsticks flavors are still popular products. Thanks to some brilliant thinking by the Deere and Dumbelton, the brand is an international hit. Stores like Bloomingdales, Selfridges, and Ulta.com carry the complete Lime Crime line. The funky brand is a mixture of products like Diamond Crushers, Velvetines, Unicorn hair, and the now famous Unicorn Lipsticks in every color under the sun.

The company’s website, limecrime.com, is still ground zero for the brand. But the executive team behind the brand is new. Tengram Capital Partners, a private equity firm, recently acquired Lime Crime. When a company gets absorbed by a private equity firm, things start to change in terms of management and the marketing direction of the brand. Tengram decided to replace Deere as the CEO and bring in an industry expert to run the company. That expert is the former general manager of Fresh, Stacy Panagakis. Panagakis will continue to focus on current retail partnerships as well as other retailers that can expose the brand to consumers who don’t know anything about the brand. The management team likes to call its customer base, unicorns, and they want those unicorns to see the brand wherever they shop.


New CEO Stacy Panagakis has a proven track record when it comes to developing retail marketing concepts for beauty brands. She is a strong leader who has solid connections in the beauty industry. So the partners at Tengram are expecting big things from the brand, and from Stacy Panagakis, according to Tengram partner, Richard Gersten. Panagakis is ready to sell more than the sizzle that seems to attract interest from consumers who don’t fit into the brand's typical client base. Panagakis wants to expand the brand, so it attracts more than a cult following, and she knows that is a strategy that is easy to talk about but hard to implement. But the new management team is ready to empower consumers to express their individuality and to move past the traditional concepts of beauty imposed by the industry. Tengram wants Panagakis to do what she did for Sephora, and Stacy says she is ready to tackle that challenge.

The Millennial market will still be the focus of the brand, according to Panagakis, but the company’s message is for women of all ages. Panagakis lives by the slogan, “It’s okay to experiment and be bold as long as you’re having fun.” Stacy will continue to market the edginess of the brand, but she also wants to continue to revolutionize the makeup industry. She wants to break through the old industry taboos that restrict brand growth. Her plan is to expand the product line as well as expand their presence at the retail level. Panagakis will continue to work with the brand’s chief creative officer, Sasha Valentine. But Doe Deere will not be part of the day-to-day decision-making process, according to a Tengram spokesperson. Deere will be a board member. Deere can still dream, explore, and inspire the team, and Panagakis welcomes that unicornish energy.



Mommy Monday:: Susan Hagen

Your name and business name:

My name is Susan Hagen and my business name is LISU Wedding and Handmade Jewellery. I also sell on Etsy.

When did you start your business?

I started my business in April 2012 after doing an online business course from the London Jewellery School on how to sell online.  I had a part-time job at the time and my jewellery business is part-time too. I have been making jewellery for over twelve years now and I still enjoy making it.

What services/products do you offer?

I offer a bespoke jewellery service where you can tell me what you want me to make for you and I also make tiaras, hair fascinators, necklaces, pendant necklaces, wire wrapped pendant necklaces, wire weaved pendant necklaces, wire wrapped rings, bracelets and rhinestone quartz watch bracelets.

How do you balance family and business?

As I am working from home in my business, and both of my children are grown up now, I just work around things that need to be done.  I do not have a set timetable each day for what I do.  I tend to post on Instagram first thing in the morning and mostly every day.  When I have made new items of jewellery I try to photograph the items straight away but this does not always happen.  I then put the items of jewellery on my website and Etsy.  I sometimes work on my business at night and also at the weekend depending on what I am making.

What advice do you have for other mom entrepreneurs?

Basically if you have an idea of what to make and you think that it will sell then just go for it. You will not know if you will succeed or not unless you try.

How do your market your business?

I market my business mostly on social media now and Pinterest.  When I first started my business I had adverts in quite a few magazines such as Vogue, Craftseller and a few other jewellery making magazines.  I was never sure if this helped me make a sale or not and it was also getting too expensive doing the adverts. Now I use Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to market my business. 

My social media links are:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LISUWeddingandHandmadeJewellery

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/suzy068

Pinterest:  http://pinterest.com/LISUJewellery

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LISUSuzy068