Monday, 26 January 2015

MUMS IN BUSINESS: THE FIFTH ELEMENT LIFE

I stumble upon Sarah via my favourite social media, Instagram. I am honest enough and shallow enough to admit her hair and her smile sucked me into her page. Then I discovered her business ethos and stunning mandala rings, and I became a true fan. Sarah is a perfect example of a mother who has grown her business organically. Sarah's Facebook page, Instagram account and Website are all amazing. Please visit Sarah and give her some extra love.



1. Tell the readers a little about yourself, can you share a bit on yourself and your background?
I don't like to carry a million labels to define who I am, so I always say I'm a woman who wanders the path of her spirit. I have a background in the fashion design industry, and lead that life path until my mid 20's when I feel pregnant and my whole life changed for the better. I left work, embarked on my most important role as a mum and spent a year rediscovering who I really was. I blogged my journey of spiritual discovery, and developed a really organic online presence which led my down this current path utilising my design background, creativity and spirituality. I now live on the Sunshine Coast, with my little family and am building my business to a point where it can fund my philanthropic dreams of starting an animal sanctuary on some acreage here - A place where people can come and dwell, learn about living off the land, work with the animals and help me rehabilitate them and educate the future generations about respecting all life forms and how to truly connect with one another and the planet. 

2. What inspires you?
My son, nature, my kindred sisterhood. I have some incredible customers, friends and soul sisters and they always keep me creating and inspired in my work and life. My son is my biggest source of inspiration - he has taught me so much about myself and he makes me want to be a better version of myself, everyday.

3. How did you begin your business?
I had the idea during my pregnancy to make mandala rings. At the time, I didn't even know why - it was more an aesthetic thing. When I was literally 9 months pregnant, I just designed these 20 symbolic designs in just over 24 hours. They just came so organically, I was definitely being guided by something other than myself (I didn't even know how to use photoshop or any digital programs very well to make them). After that, it took me a good year to understand them, develop my prototypes and hoan in on my vision and offerings. I am someone who is abundant in ideas, but not necessarily good on the follow through, so It took me a while to really focus in on delivering a small, concise offering and really hustling to get that out into the world. Just after my sons 1st birthday, I launched my new baby - The Fifth Element Life store (had been blogging under this name for 8 months) and I've been loving the journey ever since.

4. How do you balance life and running a business?
It is a daily challenge. One thing I owe my productivity to in that first year was changing my diet and doing allot of self care. I am always mindful that my son comes first, and the business second. Sometimes I get lost in the business as it now demands so much more of my attention, however I am lucky enough to have a partner who has been able to take on more of the household duties while I build the business (this kind of happened by default, but everything happens for a reason). Right now, I'm having to make some big decisions because I know in myself that things are out of balance, so my priority now is to hire my first staff member (!!!!) so I can get back to the self care and be a more present mum and partner. Every nap time, every spare moment in the last 2 years has been spent working on my own personal development or my business and now it has had that solid foundation work, I can let go and get back into enjoying the life I have created.

5. What direction do you see yourself and your company heading?
I see us moving into a commercial space this year, where I have a small team of amazing people who will do the day to day running of The Fifth Element Life. I'll be able to be part-time at home with my son, and the rest working towards building my brand and creating more products, offerings and gifts for the world. As it grows, a percentage I will be putting aside to save for the purchase of the property to then start the sanctuary (as mentioned above). I see me always having a work day that looks different, switching in from mama, entrepreneur, creative, spiritual and philanthropic being day in and day out. 

6. What advise would you give someone else wanting to start/run their own business?
Start small. Work with the resources you have. I started my business with $1000 of my tax money that I got back from my previous working year before having my son. We had to make it work. Do plenty of inner and outer hustle. I believe the more you work on yourself and your inner harmony, the more that comes out into your business world. The minute you notice that things are not working in any aspect of your life, learn from it and focus on bringing back that balance. 


Grow organically, listen to where the signs are taking you - follow your intuition. If it doesn't feel right, don't do it. I have never done anything purely for the money, it has always come from a place of wanting to make a difference in some way to anothers life, so understanding your 'why' you want to do this business is a really good place to start and build it around that.




Tuesday, 20 January 2015

CONFIDENCE NEEDED FOR 2015


Confidence. Some have lots, Some have a little. Did two and half year old me have loads of confidence?

Most people, okay I, want more confidence in myself. I may talk allot and be loud. Change my hair colour often and wear what I want, instead of what is in fashion...

I would say I live my life about 70% how I want. However, there is one area in my life that needs improvement.

Any hints on how to increase your belief in yourself? I think it is something we all face, to some degree. The lack of self worth. But the question: how do you, well, me overcome the fear?

One of the things that holds me back from pursuing my dreams is fear of failure … and the lack of self-confidence that I needed to overcome that fear.

I read an article stating there is a strong distinction between self-esteem and self-confidence. The difference being whether you believe you are worthy of respect from others (self-esteem) and whether you believe in yourself (self-confidence).

However, I believe there are one and the same thing. 

Bettina from Little Old Souls recommend this podcast for me:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bDqj1URcDQ4


So peps, give me your hints on how to improve confidence.

Monday, 19 January 2015

HAVE YOU EVER BEEN KICKED OUT OF SOMEWHERE?


Way back in 2008 Tamika and I got kicked out of a hotel in Spain. Why? Because they thought we were a gay couple.


Have you ever been kicked out of somewhere?

Sunday, 18 January 2015

3/52 2015




Same same but different. My two are so much alike in so many ways. There are only tiny glimpses of me in Jarvis. His love of cleaning and order. His love of cuddles and affection. That is me. But, on a lazy day like yesterday, my two are almost a mirror image.

With no car all week. (Off at the panel beaters) And extremely hot humid days, we opted to do one of Jarvis's favourite things...go to the movies. Even more fun for him was that we caught the bus to the cinema.

Quote from Jarvis: "Me see that!".


After every preview at the cinema Jarvis will tell me this. He loves the movies so much, he wants to watch every single one that comes out even "Mummy Daddy movie" which is how Jarvis describes any movie that is not a PG movie. We took him to watch The Hunger Games: Mockingjay. We were not sure if he would sit till and or enjoy, but he loved it as much as his movies, talked for days about the bad guys, and how the doctor help people like Octonauts help people. 

Saturday, 10 January 2015

2/52 2015




I often find myself stopping in awe of just how much I love these three people. My daughter. My son. My grandson. My heart.

Quote from Jarvis as we got home "hmm good day".


Yes, it was. A bus to Southbank to GOMA, then a walk into the city to get milkshakes, with Tamika and Chester. All of Jarvis's favourite things in life.


Wednesday, 7 January 2015

AGEISM AND AN AGEING ME



A while back, well it seems like ages ago, I wrote a couple of posts about Comments on My Appearance, and How Old is Too Old? At the same time I wrote about how I feel the world has become so ageist and youth culture seems supreme. Various popular media outlets regularly bombard our already increasingly self-centered, youth-obsessed culture with negative messages about aging and the aged. As a woman closer, and closer to fifty I question my worth as a woman. As an 'older woman'.

I went back to edit it, but then I read the below quote from Annie Lennox, and I think her words cover it exactly how I wanted.

"There's this youth culture that is really, really powerful and really, really strong, but what it does is it really discards people once they reach a certain age. I actually think that people are so powerful and interesting - women, especially - when they reach my age. We've got so much to say, but popular culture is so reductive that we just talk about whether we've got wrinkles, or whether we've put on weight or lost weight, or whether we've changed our hair style. I just find that so shallow."–Annie Lennox, who turned 60 in late December 2014


For 2015 can we not just empower other women instead of knocking them down? 


Note: Image not mine, obtained via Google Images. Trying to track original source. 

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

A BREAK UP LETTER


Dear Ovaries,

I think we need to break up. For all too long this relationship has not been working out for me.
Once a month you have me writhing in pain. In agony, that even on days stops me getting out of bed. You have me inhaling chocolate at an alarming rate. Because of the hormones you produce I cry over nothing. Plus you make my tummy swell to the proportions of a second trimester pregnant lady.
You also fail to give me the thing I want. More children.
While I do appreciate, more than words could ever express, how eternally grateful I am for the two children you did allow me to grow, I do think it is time for this relationship to end.


Love me



Side Note: Images were created a life time ago, on a Film Negative Scanner. Back in the day before Photoshop.