What does the term ‘Mum Boss’ actually mean? Can we have it all? Can we have a healthy and exciting ambition and reach for our goals, whilst being a hands on Mum?
I love the work of Vicki Psarias aka ‘Honest Mum‘ and author of Mum Boss. I can relate to so much of her content and love the fact she is so straight talking yet kind with it. Like myself, she shared her first book with the world this year, and I loved it so much, I wanted to write about it in more detail and also catch up with Vicki to get even more inspiration for you all.
One of my biggest lessons of 2018 is the value in taking time to slow down and really get to know ourselves. I write a lot about this in my book, time for a mojo injection and it has connected with so many of you. Taking this time out to consider our greatest values can feel rather self-indulgent, yet it is key to enable us to move forward and make the right choices. Growth can be scary and challenging and dark, but it can also be incredibly beneficial when it comes to us living a fulfilling and rewarding life. Knowing what we want, our biggest passions and what we are not prepared to compromise on is key for growth and what I like to call a ‘mojo filled life’.
It may sound cliché but happiness or a lack of it shows in our eyes. When we feel energised and excited, our eyes light up when we talk. What about when it comes to the words we create? Some of you have kindly said that my book feels like receiving a warm hug and this is exactly how I felt when I read Mum Boss. The beautiful, raw and authentic writing from Vicki is so nourishing. I love to read and if a book really connects then my pen comes out and I underline key parts. Mum Boss is a book with a lot of pen on it. I shall share some of my favourite words from it –
‘Some nights I feel sad I have to sleep as it means missing out on writing. That is passion’.
This is exactly how I feel. A writer has to write. Let me ask, what keeps you awake at night? What gives you energy and lights up your eyes when you talk? Because the equation that Vicki gives us is true:
Passion will ALWAYS win over self-doubt. Passion + confidence + hard graft = success
Vicki writes about two types of people. The first type are those we are only in it for themselves (mostly down to deep rooted insecurities). I have a bonus podcast going out tomorrow with my friend Ruth, a fantastic councillor and psychotherapist, all about these insecurities. Often people are walking around ignoring these issues and as a result their behaviour towards others is negatively impacted. This takes me back to the crucial point above, taking time to deal with our issues, so we can connect with others more deeply and compassionately is always worth it. It is hard to be empathetic when we don’t take time to understand ourselves. The 2nd type are those who want to collaborate with others and contribute to the bigger picture. Again, I love her wise words and stories around these experiences. I honestly believe that life is too short to feel intimidated by people. Feeling inspired is so much better and healthier for us. It can take practise to push any feelings of jealously and negativity aside but it is always worth it.
I love these words in Mum Boss so much:
‘the beauty of art is that being yourself and being genuine is what matters above all else’
I love how much encouragement this book gives in terms of silencing the inner critic and being true. Honesty is everything. This book totally lit me up because I can tell it was written with a genuine intention to inspire and uplift all who read it.
The book is cram packed full of tips, with amazing advice for those who want to build a successful brand, whilst thriving at home.
Now, let’s get some more wise words from this absolute author, blogger, vlogger, Mum Boss Queen.
Hi Vicki, you are clearly an amazing Mum boss. What is the best response for someone who judges and makes digs about the fact we can’t be great at both parenting and work?
The pressures mums face whether they work or not is immense and reflects the inequalities of the workplace and society as a whole. My kids are my universe, my sons are my ‘suns’ but I don’t feel I need to prove that to anyone, they know I’m a good mum.
Why can’t we have both a career and a family if we so wish? We can. It requires compromise and juggling but it’s possible. I love my work and need both spheres of my life to connect, in order to feel content. The older I become, the less worried I am about what people I don’t know, think of me. It’s liberating and beautiful in equal measure.
(As a side note to back up this point, there is research to show that effort and work ethic is learned behaviour at home. When our kids see us working hard and following our dreams, it gives them the natural desire to follow their dreams too. Effort is everything. I was drawn to the effort section of Bonnie’s report card first, when we received it last week. Whilst her reading and counting was marked ‘good’, she scored ‘very good’ for every box in the effort section. I would pick a good reader with very good effort levels over a very good reader with good effort levels).
If you could only keep one social media platform, which would it be?
I’m old school, so Twitter. I do love Insta too but Twitter connected me with like-minded parents in the first place when I started blogging back in 2010 and I love the connections I’ve made there from fellow authors to TV producers and beyond.
What would your perfect meal be from starter to dessert?
I’m plant-based so a butternut squash soup followed by a vegan pizza topped with roasted veg (made with fresh dough)-ideally eaten in Rome, I don’t ask for much, ha followed by a big chunk of vegan chocolate cake please!
What would be your ideal day of self-care?
A spa day at Cliveden House Hotel. Truly dream. See her review here, yes please!
What’s one of your favourite moments as a Mum to date?
I love the ‘ordinary times’, us all snuggled on the sofa watching a Disney movie or running around the Long Walk in Windsor, the castle in the distance on one side, deer on the other.
A special moment was my book launch in May and seeing my children’s faces beaming as I signed books for those in attendance. Alexander who was 5 at the time jumped in to sign books himself at one moment and that memory won’t ever leave me.
(This answer really got me – I answered the following in an interview recently about one one of my most memorable moments: launching my first book and singing a million dreams with my daughter Bonnie at Borthwick Castle to a room of over 100 people, who then joined in. That was the moment it hit me that all my dreams were coming true.)
You are so warm and sincere and that really shows in your work. I can relate to so much of what you do and say and it’s clear you have a great growth mindset. What would you say your biggest lesson has been over the past couple of years?
Thanks so much. I think as cheesy as it sounds, getting to know myself more deeply has been a huge lesson. Knowing and trusting my gut and letting that lead me. Learning to self-love more. I also realised quite how strong I was when I needed a big thyroid operation 5 months ago that was both a frightening time, and pretty traumatic physically too.
Favourite form of exercise and why?
I’ve only just been able to start running gently again post op but swimming is my fave. I love how relaxed it makes me feel. My mind has the chance to wander too. I don’t like that it means I have to dye my roots more often though!!!
Vicki, when you are next in Scotland you will need to come to my happy place with me. Water babies are us, so worth having to dye the roots more. In fact, any excuse for a pamper ha.
Do you have a favourite motivational speaker or author?
Oprah all the way. I was lucky enough to attend a Q & A with her not long ago and it touched me on a cellular level. To hear her thoughts on being underestimated in her early career and that, that fact led to her success and wealth was fascinating. She said when she was offered her programme, she asked for a large cut of the profits which she was given as the powers-that-be thought it would flop. The rest is history. She made me more fearless after that night. A hero.
What is your favourite quote or mantra?
‘When they go low, we go high’-Michelle Obama, another hero.
Fave festive canape?
Vegan spring rolls!
Thanks Vicki, may you continue to inspire millions. You have certainly inspired me.
Follow her wonderful blog, honest mum here
and buy the book here
It would make an amazing read on a cosy, lazy boxing day at home. Candles, fire, book, leftover food = heaven. Enjoy X
I’m raising a glass to all the Mum Bosses this Christmas.