In a world where juggling the demands of a career, parenthood, and side hustles can feel like an unattainable feat, we bring you a captivating editorial series, "From 9 to 5 & Beyond: Slaying Careers, Parenting, and Side Hustles", that spotlights remarkable parents who have mastered this balancing act.
This series will celebrate the extraordinary parents who have defied the odds, proving that it is possible to excel in multiple areas of life simultaneously. These inspiring stories illuminate the path to balance and success, offering motivation and empowerment to parents everywhere who navigate the intricate dance of work, family, and personal passions.
We hope these narratives provide valuable insights, strategies, and inspiration as you embark on your journey of slaying careers, parenting, and side hustles.
As a parent and photographer, I understand the challenges of managing a career while nurturing a family and pursuing personal passions.
First up in this series is Priscilla, the founder of "Awesome Women Series". We stumbled upon Priscilla and her co-founder/husband, Shawn, at a Mothercare event a few months ago, and we fell in love with their books! The illustrations of incredible female activists like Greta Thunberg, Malala Yousafzqi, and even our former president, Halimah Yacob, in the book were inspiring.
Please share a bit about what you do and how you got started with your passion project/ side hustle.
Hello! I am Priscilla. Together with my husband, Shawn, we founded the Awesome Women Series. We are parents of 2 young girls, and we understand that raising them in this volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous (VUCA) world is challenging. We want to help parents and educators grow confident, intelligent and resilient girls through stories and games. We currently have a collection of 12 board books featuring female leaders and activists, and we will also be launching our very own card game - the Awesome Women Card Game, in October this year!
This idea started as a passion project. We love books and reading to our children (we only had Andrea then!). However, we struggled to find modern, relatable female role models for them to learn from and emulate. It hurt because it was a massive missed opportunity to harness the power of role models. We believe that children learn best from role models and through storytelling. So, we decided to try and create our version of the stories.
How do you create a harmonious work-life blend that empowers you to thrive in your career, actively engage with your family, and pursue your passions and side ventures?
It was a real struggle and still is a daily battle! I quit my full-time job to be a stay-at-home mum, and we started the Awesome Women Series just before COVID-19. I am still learning and trying to create a good balance between work and life and managing the different roles that I have to play (wife, mother, daughter, entrepreneur). I recently picked up a technique called “time-blocking”, which helps create a better work-life balance. It also helps me be present and focused on that task or activity I set aside time for. Of course, there are days when things get chaotic, and plans go haywire. I have also learnt to let go and follow the flow when that happens!
Could you please share some of your strategies for mastering time management, particularly when it comes to gracefully juggling the responsibilities of your career, parenthood, and side projects?
I have also been reading the book “Indistractable” by Nir Eyal, and he mentioned that time management is pain management. I have been trying to embrace and implement that in my life and work.
What hurdles have you faced along your remarkable journey, and how did you summon the strength to surmount them, aligning your aspirations in both your career and parenting?
The most significant challenge I face is balancing the different balls in my life and realizing which are glass and rubber. Trying to be a good daughter, a good wife and a good mother while trying to grow a business is not easy! I think the desire to build a better future and world for my daughters helps me get through the difficult moments and days. One of the challenges we faced while creating the Awesome Women Series was that we had no experience in writing or starting businesses. I was trained in accounting, and Shawn is a professional lawyer; we had zero knowledge of writing books or being entrepreneurs. And, of course, there are various challenges that we faced along the way while growing the business. What helped me to push through those challenges was firstly having the overarching mission of wanting to help parents and educators raise confident and resilient girls and also wanting to be role models for my girls. I want to show them they can do anything they set their minds and hearts to.
In what ways do you believe your approach to work and parenthood sets a compelling example for your children, inspiring them to pursue their dreams and ambitions?
The mindset of “never giving up” and the “power of yet” about what we are doing with the Awesome Women Series helps to set that example. The desire to be a role model to my girls - showing that it’s okay if you don’t know how to do something. You can always learn and try again; you can try new things, too. We persevere with the end goal in mind and the true North in our lives. Even if we are taking small steps, we are moving towards our dreams as long as we don’t give up.
How do you stay inspired and retain a resolute sense of purpose, especially when confronted with the diverse challenges and obligations that come with your unique journey?
Becoming a mother helped in that aspect. I want to build a better future for my girls, even if whatever I do creates only a tiny impact. I always say my girls are my inspiration. Without them coming into my life, I wouldn’t have taken the leap of faith to write books or start a business.
Looking forward, what legacy do you aspire to leave for your children in terms of your career accomplishments and the values and principles you impart?
At the end of the day, all we wish for are our daughters to be kind, happy, contributing to society and financially free. I am sure they will be excellent in their own right and contribute back to the community uniquely!
What would it be if you could offer a single piece of advice to fellow parents striving to excel in their careers, be fully present for their families, and nurture their side projects?
Accept help! It takes a village to raise a child. I wouldn’t be able to try and run the Awesome Women Series without my village's help. The other important thing is that there are different seasons for different priorities.
For example, when I had my second daughter, the business had to take a back seat because I needed the time to heal from the delivery to adjust to having a new addition to the family and new routines. I had so many ideas for the business, but I had to tell myself that this season was for family and I could work on the ideas when the right season came. It’s really about balancing the glass and rubber balls in your life!
Are you looking to raise intelligent, confident, and resilient girls and boys? "Awesome Women Series" has launched the 3-in-1 Awesome Women Card Game! Harness the transformative power of play to be inspired by 40 diverse excellent women role models. Enjoy endless tabletop fun with our 3 games inspired by Happy Families, Memory Match and Cards Against Humanity! Only for good girls and boys aged 4 and above!
If you want to get your hands on the Awesome Women Series books and their recently launched card games, we have a great deal for you! Visit https://awesomewomenseries.com/ and code: "<FAWN10>"10% off products, valid for 1 time use per customer, no min purchase amount!