Episode 37: Finding A Way To Turn Your Past Experience Into A Thriving Consultancy, Lauren Lorow

September 28, 2021

I am so giddy to bring today’s guest on the podcast!! My Marketing Director, Lauren Lorow is here! She is my behind the scenes, right hand woman on all things podcast and today she is here to tell her story! I found Lauren through a friend of a friend off of an IG story post and what started as an inquiry to be a VA, has grown into so much more!

Lauren tells me about her professional past, which was mostly in health and wellness in Manhattan. She talks about how she was able to mix her love for fitness (as a life long athlete) and passion of business into unique jobs that fit outside of the normal boxes we think of as careers. We talk about her family plans to leave Manhattan and how she had the foresight to build her skills for whatever was next work wise. Lauren talks about moving in the beginning of the pandemic and how it forced her to refocus her career plan and what was the best for her family. She started building relationships and was connected with some women entrepreneurs that needed marketing support. Since then she has built a strong collection of clients who she connects with personally and professionally. Lauren finishes off with some great insights on how she juggles multiple clients, teaching Pilates and a traveling husband.

I have been waiting to bring Lauren on to hear her story and share her tips with all of you!! This is such a great listen for anyone who has skills and has thought about branching out to start something but is not sure if they can or should! Lauren didn’t plan on building this to what it is, but used her connections and passions to do just that! Make sure to check out her instagram for some great insights on women own business and marketing, as well as her site to reachout about working together!!

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37. Finding A Way To Turn Your Past Experience Into A Thriving Consultancy, Lauren Lorow

I am so giddy to bring today’s guest on the podcast!! My Marketing Director, Lauren Lorow is here! She is my behind the scenes, right hand woman on all things podcast and today she is here to tell her story!

Full Transcript:

Dana: Are you dying at the thought of missing a single one of your babies. First, we have no idea how you’d give up the security that your nine to five job brings. My name is Dana Graham and I had no clue how to escape that vicious 40 Hour Workweek cycle either until I did, as the wife of a traveling husband and mom of two tiny humans, and made the terrifying and totally bizarre leap from health insurance with a two year old and newborn into, but I’m not the only one. I’m so glad you’re joining me as I chat with other moms who took the leap into entrepreneurship and created the ultimate best of both worlds life doing it all amidst the chaos.

Welcome back everyone to another episode of amidst the chaos I am so so excited to be here with you guys today and with one of my favorite people on the planet, and you will understand why, as I always claim in every episode, I’m so excited for this one but for me this is a very personal episode and I am so excited to hear this gal story from her perspective, because I know her story from my perspective, so I’m here today with my marketing director who does all of the things for my podcast and finding the guests, and doing anything I asked like, basically anytime of the day and she’s incredible so Lauren Lorow is here and I’m so pumped to be able to talk to her and her story about how she’s kind of branched into the entrepreneurial world, all on her own, with kids in tow. So Lauren, thanks for being here.

Lauren: Thanks, Dana.

Dana: It’s so funny, I’ve like had her coordinate and set up her own recording and like, schedule it like you would have all our other people and should probably be editing this session too so I’m thrilled to have you and I just want everybody to know kind of what you do for me and what you do for others and to hear about your business so tell us what you do right now and then we’ll back up just like always.

Lauren: Cool. So right now I am kind of threefold I do marketing consulting with a couple of different clients, and then I also teach Pilates part time, and then somehow in between they’re trying to keep two tiny humans alive, so I’ll go right now.

Dana: All the jobs as so many of us are wearing all the hats but it’s been so interesting so I found Lauren, I had posted that I needed at the time I posted that I needed a virtual assistant, I just wanted somebody to help me run the podcast and run my social media as and answer emails and do the things for my photography business and for the podcast and then for all the things we have to come, but when Lauren reached out, she’s definitely overqualified for that. I was like I need her. I need her on my team, I don’t know, not for what I originally thought but I need her now so that was kind of how I found you through a friend of a friend who had recommended you and said you have just moved here which obviously didn’t matter that you lived in my area but really exciting to find somebody that was had so much experience in the marketing field to kind of help me get this podcast off the ground so talk to us learn before you started working for me before you started working for your other marketing clients like what did your life look like and why did you kind of want to shift into, into this new world.

Lauren: Yeah, so, I’m from upstate New York, and before moving to Northern Virginia I lived in Manhattan for 10 years, which was not the plan I was like, Oh, I’m going to go to the city for a couple years and then all of a sudden, two kids and 10 years later, there we are. So I started working in finance and accounting right off the bat, honestly, it’s just a job to get me to New York, and I quickly realized that was just not for me and my kind of outlet was fitness, so I started working at a boutique fitness studio really started to love the community, the people there, and quickly got close with the owners. And after about a year she asked me to jump in and be their director of operations which, ironically, as I was thinking about this story, this thread has found its way through my life is realizing that I have this job that I didn’t even know existed. I feel like we grow up, even until you’re like in these boxes of like what you can do and maybe you can do something kind of cool, but that’s not going to happen. So I found myself being able to take my business degree my passion for marketing and put it into health and wellness which I’m a lifetime athlete I played soccer in college so it was like the best of both worlds. And I really was thrown into the wringer so two and a half years we open a new studio, I was in charge of marketing hiring scheduling, all the things which it was crazy but also great, I was also single at the time so I was working crazy hours and really just taking all of it in. After I was working for them for a little while. I got to know some women at a fitness brand for athletic wear, and I started doing some in studio workouts for them and got connected with their marketing manager and she presented me with this job again that I was like, How is this possible, basically opening new studios, working out as your job, getting to talk to people take them out to lunch, and just open the studio and get people to wear fitness clothes all day, I was like, yep, please send me up. So I did that for three years, had my first daughter, in the midst of that, we stayed in New York, and after my first daughter and the role kind of shifted a little bit. My husband and I were talking about like what do we want to do after this we had agreed early on that we weren’t going to raise the kids in New York, but we didn’t know where we wanted to go. I’m from New York, we were like, I don’t want to go back to upstate New York, it’s like winter there six months of the year it’s not we want to do, and he’s from down here, Virginia, so we spent, we’ve spent time with his family here but never to the area where we currently live we literally drove through the town once, I was like, Oh, this is pretty. I’d like to live here. We decided once I got pregnant with my second we were like, Oh, my maternity leave, and my our lease is up the same month, so we either sign into another year of crazy run crazy daycare that my job doesn’t even cover for both the kids, or make the leap and do it. So once we made that decision. I knew that where we were moving wasn’t going to be this metropolitan hub it wasn’t going to have all these boutique studios, all these high end fitness brands so I really needed a digital aspect of it. So I took a complete pivot and went somewhere that all my friends were like wait, where are you working, and then went to a digital publishing company, and did their email marketing their ads, their click through rates, their newsletter ads, all these things kind of on the back end because I knew when I move a lot of it was going to have to be bit digital not necessarily remote but a lot more digital because that’s where marketing world’s going. So, that was crazy. It was fun I was actually working with one of my college friends at the time which was cool to just kind of be with him and learn something totally new. And it was also a breath of fresh air because I love health and wellness, but when it’s your passion and also your work, it can kind of just become a lot and so even though I wasn’t super excited about publishing and media buying it was like Oh this is nice to just like do something totally different, and then be able to enjoy your workout and not be able to like look at it as my job, so we decided to make the move, and we moved down to Northern Virginia, the first week of March, when whoever is watching this yes in 2020 So whoever’s listening to this a year from now, that is, the week before the world shut down. So then I was like, like everyone else was like, oh, stay with the kids I wasn’t able to move jobs, so I stayed home with the kids, and I thought it was gonna be a couple weeks turned out to be eight months. And once my oldest went back to school part time, I just kind of started thinking, what else can I do to, I still had my youngest at home. I’ve gotten connected with a Pilates studio and I was teaching her a couple times a week which was so fun, but I was like, I know in my heart of hearts, I want to do something for myself to workwise, I know you’ve said this before, like, I give credit to anyone who can be with their kids 40 hours, or 100,000 hours all the time, no help, I mean, I wish sometimes that was me. I definitely need that break for myself. And so I started, I went on a mom’s platform for work, and I was connected with a woman in California who wanted a part time project marketing director, started doing some work with her, a friend of a friend connected me with you and I slowly started building wonderfully based on friends of friends that needed some things this platform in such a way that so now I have a bunch of different clients, some are really small and just need a couple hours a month. Some are more hands on like ours is much more regular and cyclical, so it’s nice, I like that mix and something when I went into it I was like, Oh I would love to be in the health and wellness space, and I do have one client, that’s a, on demand, fitness brand but everyone else is not, but what they all have is they’re all women and most of them are mothers so I’ve been finding that that’s actually selfishly it’s nice because then it’s like you can have a call in the car with a kid screaming at you or change the plans but I just love to be able to help elevate these mothers these women who I know how much they’re working hard and I know what they do behind the scenes and so it’s great for me to be able to get back to them and I also connect to them or I feel like, yeah, and it’s great at.

Dana: First off, there’s so many things that I want to go back and touch on here but it’s so awesome because you’re right, it’s not only that you get to spend your time around people who are doing what you’re doing right they’re trying to be a mom, they’re trying to run a business, they’re trying to grow their brand or business, or whole aspect of life, and also grow the tiny humans like that, it gives you that feeling of camaraderie, but also it feels so good like helping somebody like it really dies like anytime like even for me like I’m not helping anybody by taking their photos but like every time like I send a gallery often the moms in tears like that is just something that like I relate to on such a personal level and I feel like for you like, I’ve literally sent her text, like she’s, she’s an early bird and I’m not like I’m a night owl so like I’ll send her texts like late at night to be like oh my god this looks so great, thank you for doing this and like it really has changed my life having you on my team and I know that I’m not the only one that you’re working with it feels that ways. Okay, so talk to me about how you went from having all these skills and all this, this huge resume of like, you know, working with several different brands and businesses and doing all sorts of things for them because you’re a bird of many feathers, what’s the phrase I don’t know, whatever that phrase is, yeah you do all the things and so how did you then say, because I think so many people are, they realize that they have some skills from work, but it doesn’t seem to be able to transition into doing it on your own. So where was your mindset shift and okay how can I make whatever talents I have because you, you know from fitness, health and wellness to, you know, marketing and ads and social media like, how did you say, Okay, here’s what I could do and then figure out how to put it, because that’s a big jump to work for yourself after working with people for your whole career.

Lauren: It isn’t to be honest I’m like so figuring it out and constantly like figure out a way not only the skills that I have that I want to either pitch someone or a job or things of that. But also, what do I actually want to do because I mean, some of the pieces yes I might be, have a skill in it, but is it something that I find value in is it something that I really want to invest all of my time and energy in, so it’s definitely a juggle. I think what’s been great is, like I said I found my first project on this platform that’s for moms, so they really lay out kind of like here’s the skills we’re looking for. Here’s what you’d be doing and I was like, oh well I can do that I can. Those are my skills I’ve done that before. And it’s really like that learning process of, I was talking to a friend of mine and she was looking for jobs during COVID and she was like, at this point I’ll take any interview and ask anyone for feedback because I just had to know and get comfortable, and that’s almost how it’s been I took a couple job interviews that I definitely probably wouldn’t have taken. Otherwise, but it was good to know like what they’re looking for how to pitch that how to talk about myself how to find that confidence really, and I’ve just been able I’ve been really lucky to be honest, that I’ve had referrals or friends of friends who need a little marketing help here and there that have hooked me up with some people that I otherwise either wouldn’t have known or are on the platforms that I normally would find them. So taking that and then as I continue to grow with the clients that I have going back to seeing what I like seeing what I’m good at seeing what works and then allowing that to cross pollinate almost because it’s cool. A lot of my clients are in completely different industries and fields but certain things, either whether it’s platforms or initiatives are working across them so it’s fun to kind of see that as well.

Dana: Well, it’s crazy because you know I feel like I talked about this a little practice a lot, but so much of what you’ve done and then people that you’ve met and people that you’re working for are based on relationships and also based on people referring you and it’s not because they got anything out of it, Like I know who referred you to me like she’s a client of mine and she’s a friend of yours and she, she got nothing really.

Lauren: I mean, it’s crazy. She was like, send me screenshots, like, Oh, you’d be good for this and like again and you mentioned this all the time like doing something good for each other, not necessarily wanting it in return but it’s, it’s so great and it also, I mean this in the least egotistical way but it also shows like the people that you surround yourself with to like having those people that are willing to look out for you and absolutely that I need any handouts but it was so nice to have somebody like oh immediately Yeah, this would be great for you if not whatever but like here, you’d be so good with this you know and it’s really cool to have those people in your corner supporting you and really looking out for you, even honestly at a time when I didn’t know if I’d be able to do it you know like referring you to something like that, I don’t know that I can do that,

Dana: it’s like, yeah, you can, you can, you know, and it took it took, not many minutes out of her day and it’s changed your life, change my life, and that’s, that is a shout out Eileen, by the way, but like it, that is something that she did out of the goodness of her heart that took her not many minutes at all while she was on Instagram so my story’s post like it did not take her a long time and what she did has changed both two lives and down the train, you know, of our rings from that and the ripple effect that it’s caused from that many more lives after that and it took her very little time to do a nice thing and it’s been life changing, so just your PSA reminder that I say too much every episode like do nice things for other people, and I know that karma will come back her way but she’s fantastic but that’s what you want, and that’s just, it just shows what a great person she is and how much of an impact it’s had on the rest of us so okay so you knew that you could pivot right you knew that you had these skills and you could turn them into something else, tell me about this platform that you found that you were set for a job in the first place like how did you find it, what did you do once you were on there like give advice for somebody who knows that they have some different talents and like freelance skills that when you really step back and look like everybody has some sort of freelance skill that they can monetize. So how did you then get on that platform and make it your own and make it work for you.

Lauren: Totally. and I also want to start by saying too that I spent that last year also applying to full time jobs first. To be honest, I was like, going on every job order, any company that I thought looked interesting or that I wanted or just really searched I mean I’ve applied to a lot like upwards of 50 to 60 full time jobs like yeah I don’t know that I could have done that with the kids and my schedule and everything like that but that’s really where I also was like throwing everything in the ring so we’re like, 10s of 1000s of other people because these were companies that everyone wants to work toward type situation. So I don’t even know honestly I think it was something on either LinkedIn, maybe Instagram, but I found the main one I’ve been using is called the mom project, it is for both moms and dads, but their main focus is around mothers who are looking for full or part time work, they have endless types of industries you basically go in narrow down your industry, your specificities, in your experience, and then they have this algorithm so whenever a company uploads a job that fits your roles if you will, it’ll send it to you. You have the option to pitch it, it gives you the details of the job. It also gives you, either the compensation how long it is because some of them are like maternity leave some of them are part time, all of that. So it’s really great. And I’ll be honest, at first I was literally applying to everything I was like sure whatever is going to work like I’ll do this. Exactly. And I remember Abby said this too that I was in the fortunate position that my husband is the breadwinner, I was able to kind of not pick and choose but it wasn’t like I need this right now, to maintain the roof over our house, so it’s been nice to kind of be able to be a little choosier and picky with what I like what I think my skills would be good at, but at the time I was kind of really, because I also have a background of, I’ve worked since I was 16 like to me, and not to diminish this and it literally is a daily conversation we have he’s like, you’re also keeping our kids alive you do a lot around the house and it’s this weird mindset shift that I have to like, okay, bringing in money isn’t the only impact that I have on our family, but still in my heart of hearts, it is something that I want to do and it’s this crazy fun dynamic that I need to like figure out my head every day.

Dana: And I think that’s so many like what you just what you just said is going to be the quote for you. By the way, I’m telling you right now, like, because it’s so true, like, but you still it tugs at you every day and you know that, like you know, it’s what you want to do and you know that’s how you feel, but it doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter that your brain logically knows okay I know I need to work I know I want to work. Like for me, it doesn’t matter because then you have these tiny humans that need you to do them alive, and only just knowing that in the back of your head and even knowing that it’s good for them to go and be cared for by someone else and give you the time to be you. It doesn’t matter. Your brain just doesn’t process that fully, it’s like this mental block that just happens and it’s, it’s so hard to work through, but I think once you do work through it and you’re kind of on the other side you’re like, Oh, that was a great choice that I made.

Lauren: Absolutely and we have the same choice with our youngest because my older went to daycare at four and a half months because that was what I had not really what a maternity leave, I had to like really go on short term disability but that’s like a whole other story on this crazy veteran leave. But with COVID, a blessing that we had is I was with, I got to see my youngest every day for a year and a half, and see her develop and change, and that was a discussion we had, we were like, do we send her full time, not even for a financial because at that point I was like okay, client wise, and I was like man Do I like we’re done having kids like she’s my baby and like ready to let her go and not in a bad way he was like yeah well our oldest one at four and a half months I was like it’s different, though it’s just like such a weird, weird new thing so yeah it’s like this, and then of course I teach Pilates one night in my in laws are here so I love their school but they’re literally in the hands of family and I’m still like, oh man I missed that one funny thing they sit in the bath tonight and like, we’ll look at the pictures like every mom does at night and I’m like, oh man I miss that really funny outfit she put on so it’s it’s just this crazy back and forth, it’s super fun.

Dana: I know and I don’t think it’s ever anything that really goes away, but I do think that, recognizing that those times that they’ve had we push other people, you know, means something to those other people to, it means to hold on they totally know that you’re their mom but it is nice to have them have memories you know we’re dealing with all the memories that my kids have built with my family and transfer. We’re moving like we’re moving down the side of the country and so are most of the world. Oh my god, but I feel so good about the time that I wasn’t within it meant something to somebody else to make me feel feel really good about it. Okay, so talk to me about what you do on a day to day basis and how you pivoted your skills that you had before, into working for a very different clientele because what you’re doing for me is, first off, not what I hired you for now. Okay, so not what my original job posting was for, not what I hired before, and now it’s morphed into this whole new aspect but I know it’s very different than what you do for your other clients so talking about how you’re managing wearing all the hats for not only in your personal life versus professionally but within your professional life.

Lauren: Yeah, And that’s another thing that’s constantly changing and I’ve been, I know we’ve talked about, or I’ve heard you guys talk about time blocking and I again, it’s something I’m so envious of if you can actually talk about your life and stick to that. So what I’ve been trying to do is there are a couple things for instance this podcast, that is on a cyclical basis is on a weekly basis on Mondays, anyone that I handle their social media for I go through the next two weeks, make sure all the social media is propped up all the copies ready all that stuff for this podcast and make sure that it’s uploaded the show notes the links, everything’s good. And then on Tuesdays, I try and just catch up with other things that might pop up, Wednesdays and Thursdays I dedicate to an email newsletter and I have for one of my other clients, and then editing, whatever podcast episode we have those are kind of the ones that I stick to and then everywhere in between is really just what pops up, what meetings I have what needs pop up at the moment. A couple of my clients, I only do their social media calendars and they’re very educational base so they’re this quick social media blast I really do a whole month in a couple of hours. So those I only really have to look at a couple times a month if that. So it really depends on the needs of each individual client. For instance, one of my clients has their one year anniversary coming up. So we’re doing a lot more of a marketing push around that another client, like everyone’s on vacation for the next two weeks. So it’s super slow. I’m a big Google Calendar person. I’ve tried writing it, I write notes to myself all the time, like posted everywhere. But I’ve tried to keep like a normal planner, and I just need it in Google calendar to see and where it all lies between the kids schedule, my teaching schedule, my clients schedule. So I really just looked at that the night before I kind of see what I have going on, and then plan mentally. According to that.

Dana: I feel like having that Google calendar is something that I need to work on because I have everything in our calendar online. And then I have everything but I’m a very visual like tactile person to and so I like to write it and have it in my calendar. But that’s so hard because then if it’s not seen by whoever needs to see it, I’m only one person But that’s happening. I feel like this is great advice for somebody especially who’s working with a lot of different clients and wearing different hats is to have something on your Google Calendar because otherwise it’s just impossible to manage. So talk to me about how you have spent this time you know, you’ve found your clients But you’re working towards what are your goals? Are you looking for more clients? Like, uh, what is your plan to keep the progress of this? I mean because there’s a pretty new business you have going on. I mean really like in the past We’re in July of 2021 is this is being recorded so it’s really only a year in right yeah so really oh gosh gosh, it feels like I’ve known you way longer than that I know that’s how much she’s done for me guys I just feel like she’s

Lauren: she’s just so funny because I’ve been meaning to tell you this now that anyone on this podcast cares about this but I set an alarm the first time we called because I didn’t want to like that’s again on my phone is just like this is what you need to do Lauren reminder and so dad like an alarm to call you It says called Dana and I’m so lazy slash also really love it. And I haven’t changed the title of it. So if it’s just like a random thing in life, then I need to do all those like put it on Thursdays. I teach My alarm to wake up just this call Dana.

Dana: I love that. People will appreciate that because it’s true. Like it’s so funny that things like that happen and you have the reminders in your phone or in your calendar for a long time. It’s nice. It’s nice to keep those and keep track of like when things did happen because it goes by so quickly. Prior to coming to this podcast is not even six months old, like it’ll be six months old and two weeks. So yeah, two weeks from today. So it’s and it feels like forever. Exactly. And I think that it’s important to celebrate those milestones however big or small, but Okay, thanks My original question so talk, talk to me about like the future. How do you see this progressing and what’s your strategy for finding new clients and moving forward?

Lauren: So it’s funny I’m going back To that platform that has all the mom postings we’ve been doing a lot during COVID In terms of like trying to engage their audience and they do some webinars and all this other So, one of the things they did is they kind of create their own mentor mentee situation. So you could submit if you wanted to be a mentor Or a mentee and I was like I’m just trying to learn as much as I can so submitted to the a mentee. You put like your field what you’re looking for. I was connected with this amazing woman in Chicago and she’s on offense. Hold 19 she’s in a completely different industry but she has a lot of project management and business development experience and This is literally what we talked about this week on our mentor mentee call. She was like, what are your goals? Where do you want to be? And I think I’ve been fortunate enough that like we’ve talked about a lot of my clients have been either referrals or meeting people. I didn’t start this to be a business. I literally started this as like oh I’ll just do some consulting until I figure things now until I either get a job I shouldn’t say job I until I get like a standard job that every Here’s a full time job. And now that it’s what it is, I’m like wow, in the midst of this where I can’t imagine being on Someone else’s time. I can’t imagine having that 40 Hour Work Week. So it’s something that I really have to sit down and think About and something that’s also hard for me being very Like typing and planning is the way The consulting works is you’re not guaranteed every Once a month and that person is going to stay if it’s a project Bass, okay, at least you know, but maybe finances change, maybe the direction changes and so I’ve been working to also just understand that being present with the clients. I have been working as hard as I can, but maybe that’s not always going to be the case. Then it’ll be time for me to kind of build that out. So right now I’m pretty good. I feel in a good place. I mean I’m always that person. It’s like oh yeah, just throw it all at me. But then I’ll hit a wall or I’m working when I’m not sure but when I Want to be with my kids? Or I’m not spending over my husband I are both working till 930 at night computers on our labs watching TV like the reason I want to do This is because it allows me to hit those pockets of time that I would normally be working in a nine to five I have that I can be with my kids that I can go on vacation and just pop it from one to 330 when they’re napping and then be back on vacation. So, right now I’d like to keep it where it is always welcome like talking to new people and kind of building that out. And again, like, it depends like, no, I couldn’t take on a client for 25 hours. But if it was someone for five to 10, that I really resonated and connected with, absolutely. But that could change in two months when this goes live, you know what I mean? So, I’m trying to find that balance between really sitting in where we are, where I am, but then also knowing that I do want to grow this, and I do want this to be something when my kids are both in elementary school, and maybe it’s, they need me in different ways, but it’s not as much I don’t really want to say physical, but it’s just different. It’s hands on. Yeah, yes. Yeah. So when we have friends who are over that have an EIGHT and a 10 year old and they’re like, wow, I don’t remember like this age where you’re just like, at all times focus and like you can’t take your eyes away. Because one kids climbing on something one kids choking me only mean where my kids make their own breakfast, they like hang out and I’m like, What is that, like?

Dana: Well, it’s funny to give you some encouragement, like because your kids are not quite two and not quite four, not quite four. Okay. So so my kids are Two and a half, almost three and almost five really. We were at we were at the pool this past weekend we have friends who have a two year old and a five month old and then a another friend who’s pregnant with our second and has an not quite two year old and shy and I literally like we’re far apart. Sitting at the pool, there’s like a kiddie pool in the big pool and we literally like all parents were running like chasing kids. And Shawn and I were both in our seats. We looked at each other. We’re just like, we’re You start doing so yeah. Like we are sort of on the other side at least comparatively, you know, and and you don’t want to wish the time away and like not to be there because but at the time like it is exhausting but then since there is a sense of appreciation, right, there is no way got like an eye every now like I have no regrets like I don’t feel like I missed anything like I don’t I don’t feel like I missed anything that I that was really important looking back and don’t get me wrong Like I miss things to work like I might be other people watch my kids and they saw things I didn’t see especially with blakesley like I was still working with full Time job until she was two but but I don’t have any work and I feel like I don’t really embrace the life and it was crazy and hard but like, I definitely embraced those baby years big time. And now I’m like the older toddler like almost preschooler really realm and I’m like this is amazing. We’ll make them breakfast but just to have that level of appreciation like know that it’s coming like you know

Lauren: And I think you’ve been an I don’t know if you feel the same but Having two that are so close in age, I look at my younger and I’m like, wait wasn’t my older just this age like just doing this? How is she wearing and I have two girls so and they’re the same season so my youngest is just wearing everything. My oldest said, and oh my i for you. Well, I remember when my oldest was wearing this outfit and you’re like transported back into time and you’re like How, how am I now having a discussion in my three and a half year old is teaching me things I don’t even know. No, she’s learning in school. And I’m like, how are we here? But yeah, it’s crazy. It’s, it’s insane. And I think especially when, like my husband works pretty long hours and I mean, I’m preaching to the choir over here when it’s like all on you and you have both of them and you’re like In it there are moments when you’re like holy, I don’t know for a long time and Then you’re like, oh, but that was so cool. Like I got to experience that like I’m the one that they want to I’m too or I’m the one that they were so excited to show me this that the Other things so yeah, it’s like you It’s that crazy like csop emotions, but It’s awesome when you look back on it too.

Dana: And it’s so funny you know me so well because that’s literally exactly where I was going. I was going to how are you managing having because your husband does work long hours when you travel some in the travels, picking back up now. So how are you managing doing all this because just because you have a flexible schedule doesn’t mean that you Don’t have responsibilities and deadlines now and I think that’s a very huge mistake. Inception even people who like idealize I was like, oh, if I could just work for myself, this would be so easy See, but there are things in response abilities you have to meet. So how are you doing that? And how are you managing Get with the kid. And making sure that you’re carving out enough time for with the kids and for your husband, and for yourself because that’s a lot of things to juggle.

Lauren: Yeah, and it’s not easy and I think it goes back to its Funny. One of the things that I love so much about Now having this roll in I’m doing the podcast Reading is not that I Listen to it on my own, but I literally just get to listen Like Not at all, like repeated you know what I mean? And sometimes I’ll hear it like, more than once in a while like, sometimes I don’t even reach out to you Dana, but I’ll be like, this was just like the most amazing thing that I needed to hear like Depending on what episode it is and what moment I’m in, but I think a big thing for me is finding just being honest unrealistic So, I do get up early, whether it’s to teach or to like spend time for myself whether it’s while Walk around whatever it is. And to do that I need to go to bed earlier. Yes, I would like to stay up later to like hang out with Jason but I need to go to bed a little later if I need to be kind of like strict on that in terms of during the day and seeing the kids like I’ve made it known to almost all my clients If something crazy comes up, yes, but from that for until bedtime point like, I’m with my kids like, that’s when I’m here. Yeah, yeah. And so being really strict on myself to in terms of whether it’s social media scrolling or what I’m putting In that time when I should be working, is really just being on top of myself as well. And it’s funny because usually like my not flexible part my consulting job is quote unquote more flexible than like my teaching job. I have the same schedule every week and so I’m literally in the midst of Right now Jason’s travel is picking up again I have classes that I need to fill in. It’s hard because other people have different schedules. So it’s a lot of community. I’m like an over communicator on like, hey, this might be happening. Hey, if this happen Here’s what’s going to happen and I’m just letting you know So it’s a lot of communication In a lot of posts in house everywhere around my house and Just being as open with not only my client But my husband myself in Just being like Take a deep breath What do you really need? Yeah, maybe You wanted to do this that the other thing but sleeping For an hour’s what’s going It’d be best for you. Maybe you need to get the is done but sitting on the couch and just was in your eyes is going to be best for you at night, whatever it is. And it’s a complete learning process and every week is different. Like sometimes super germinated. Sometimes it’s just been like a crazy week. So trying to find that.

Dana: Yeah, I think having the schedule that does change so even though your schedules quote unquote flexible and you have your teaching job where you know, these things are that your husband’s job is not flexible, and I struggle with that too. Because for me, it’s like, I this is a business like, it’s because I make a good amount of money like this isn’t this is a great business that’s flourishing. And I have, like I built this and it means something to me, but I feel like sometimes it does. And not intentionally I make him sound like the bad guy. And it’s not even just him. It’s like it does get more passed aside.

Lauren: I feel the same exact way. I just think about in again, not making the bad guy but when we moved to our new rental, like the extra bedroom automatically jumps to the office, which is fine, like he’s on more calls during the day kids are running around. My office is in the formal dining or living room, whatever it is that we told me But if I’m on a call there are kids running around their kids sitting on my lap if he’s on a call there’s no and it’s Hey, different levels yes I work for women. Yes I work for moms. They know man a personal level but it is just different and it is kind of like not to his choice but like to like six 630 not really able to kind of jump down and kind of take on those parenting duties and it is hard and that is something else going back to like almost that Ego that it’s like, well, this is still something that’s important to me. It’s making a difference. It’s also helping in certain ways, maybe not as much financially but it is different. And so that’s definitely A big struggle that I’ve had and it’s interesting too because if I bring it up, it’ll be like Oh, I didn’t mean he’ll be like, Oh, I didn’t realize it was like that you don’t need me on my phone Had to I’m like, why don’t you care that I’m doing this? He’s like, No, I just didn’t know like, you’re the one They told me this is my office. Okay, maybe you know, so

Dana: That’s 100% and that’s so I’m so glad that you first off brought it up and are experiencing a two is that like, there are So many times I find where I’m like, Hey, I didn’t get to do this, like, I haven’t gotten this stuff done. And it’s so funny because like, I get to this point where I’m like redlining, right and he always any and we keep making this mistake where he’s like, you’re redlining and you didn’t tell me that you’re nearing the red line. You didn’t tell me you needed help. And I just wanted you to know that I needed help. I just wanted you to do it like because I’m the one that just does it. Like I’m the one that like, Hey, have the kids do they have food for the babysitter’s your transit? Do they have diapers? Do they have postman wash, like all that like mental load that the mom has, that’s just on the back reel and on the back burner in your mind taking up space, like they don’t have that and it’s not their fault. It’s just because I’m also a control freak. And so I need to be in charge. And so you can’t blame them. You can’t be like, Oh, you didn’t do this. You didn’t do that. And people are like, Well, you know, Chinese know that you need help and I’m like, but I also have to communicate better. Like I also have to take some responsibility for that and be like, Hey, I’m nearing redline like I need time for you to take them and for me to be able to get this stuff done or for you to do this stuff on the family. aside so that I can focus on the kids or I can focus on the business and I think that, especially this move like we’re having more conversations like, Hey, we’re talking tonight about XYZ. Yeah, absolutely. And I think that if you can create time to be like, okay, we need to and I feel like for you like Jason, he’s not necessarily involved in your business, but it’s the same as Shawn. It’s like he’s willing to talk to you about it any time totally loves it and he loves to and we’re fortunate in that way that they can be kind of quote unquote involved without being legitimately involved, but it’s a blessing and a curse. You know, you have to be able to keep them apprised of what’s going on but at the same time You don’t want to have to like tell your spouse You just want to be I just sometimes I just want to have like Hey, I’m not in charge of our family right? Now be in charge of our family for

Lauren: Yeah, you know, yeah, well, there’s Uh, one of my clients you know, as I’m an early bird too and she’s like, hey, do Want to get in like a 730? Let’s just like hammer This out and I was like yeah so so that Again, I’d like one kid screaming at me. Like breakfast beer throwing them just like here. We got like I said, where we’re at but it’s funny you say that because I’m the same way it’s like, either need to have them help out in a situation like I need you to Have that or take over the family stuff. But then for me, it’s like I have so I need to be okay if that’s not done to my standards. I’m not saying my kids are going to go to school naked. But sometimes they’ll be like okay What are we doing here like this is not home mom. What Prove it. But again, they’re live. They’re asking That’s funny like This is like well what do you want? Do you want control it or do you want it done right oh

Dana: But that’s what I need. Thank you. It’s funny too, because we were talking about how you get two different seasons with their kids. I’m wearing out this season with my daughter which should be well should be like mom doesn’t do it that much like she’s mad. With the query like she’s like, no, that’s not gonna fly with my page. I think the other day she told me she told her and she was like, mom’s not gonna be happy about this dad. Like ready to scold him. Because everything you do they so bad that so you are kind of training them to like that’s terrifying to like your Writing to how they’re going to be as a parent and as a as a wife.

Lauren: I see it in my oldest too because we joke around our kids are such carbon copies of us like my oldest is very just like Passionate and like anal and OCD and she wants to know what’s going on in she gets mad if like her ego is now on the right spot. Our youngest just could literally not care at all. She was just like yeah, whatever like you take something from her. She’s like cool and then like moves And that she’s just totally Jason Surely don’t mess with her but she’s just like Live in life the way that she wants to

Dana: Yes, that’s how our kids are. But opposite. My daughter is my husband and a carbon copy. And my son is me. And it’s fun to like, see them both. And then to see like, how we each can push the other kid, right? Shawn has taken Grady like, I’ve just like, parented him as I would have wanted to be parented as his personality, you know, electronics back home. Like we’re kind of switching roles. And it’s funny to see how much of an influence you can have as a parent on a kid that isn’t like you.

Lauren: And that’s Yeah, hard to figure out how to do that. Yeah, and I see it’s really funny because I on Sunday mornings, I teach like a block of classes, because Jason’s almost always here on Sundays. If he’s struggling, it’s very few on Sundays. But when I come home, not that they’re different kids, but it’s just a different energy a different vibe. Me I’m like, I’m also just like, if the kids are playing I’m also cleaning I’m also trying to cook I’m doing this and I’m not I’m not paying attention as much as I should be not paying attention, but I’m not like fully invested on the ground rolling with them at the moment. I come home and there’s like toys everyone’s Oh, this but Jason like made a random four in the living room with every piece of furniture we own in the house and the kids are like, it’s great, but it’s all So, so funny like you said just to see the dynamic and the difference and kind of how they lean into that in certain times. So it is it is so funny and like,

Dana: but then at the same time you’re like, I this is what I told Sean when he has the kids like for like if I’m working late for a night or like I just went to my sister’s for a couple of days ahead of time. before them and I was like, Hey, you have to be a proactive parent. You can’t just be like the stand in fund parent like basically babysitter, glorified babysitter and you can’t do that you have to like also be a productive parent like yes, I want you to pay attention to them and have fun with them the whole time but like I also knew Due to throw in a little laundry like make sure the kitchen looks like it did When I left like you have to keep us moving forward and I think for him like just I was having that talk and this was years ago that We had this talk where I was like when I You’re with them and I’m not home like you need to be doing one names like move our family forward. Like in the course of the week in the course of like our six cocco pattern of life like you have to be thinking about that as we go along. I see articles a conversation and a couple words Or something back and like that’s on me. I’ve just done that since we’ve Do they move in together, you know Have you just used to like somebody else kind of doing that? So, and that’s what we have our conversations around schedule too. because like you said, and we’ve talked about this before, like, I’ve always said you I don’t know how to do this. So Shawn gone and you’re like, Yeah, but it’s also Different when the travel is like stop and go.

Lauren: And now that’s what we’re starting to notice here too. It’s like, I need you to let me know when these plans change or like when I need to find what I need to get a cell for my class or when I’m going to need to be doing X, Y, and Z. Because stuff like that, so yeah, it’s it’s interesting.

Dana: Yeah. And I think, you know, society in general is moving away from like the insiders being like, Hey, I’m booking a flight. This is what I’m gone. Either it goes both ways. It’s either the mom being like, Okay, I’m just gonna say I’m booking a flight, you have to figure it out. Like, that’s basically what I did for when I went to my sister’s. I was like, I’m gone for these three days. He’s like, Okay, well, what is we have boozer? I was like, I don’t know, do you know our schedule? Like, the days like, and he’s like, well, how am I supposed to do this on this day that we don’t base it. I’m like, I don’t know if I should call someone to help. Like, it’s fun to kind of watch and sit back. And I think I’m in an in a unique position where like, he’s been gone a year. So I almost feel like I’ve earned it. I’m like, I don’t know. Like, I feel like that would be hard to do if you’ve been together like in the thick of it, especially. And I think this year has changed a lot of people’s, you know, and a lot of dads relationships with their kids because they just hopefully more of what happens behind the scenes and in their homes.

Lauren: Yeah. And he doesn’t want to travel as much not that he was away from us before but it’s like, Yeah, I don’t want to because like they changed so much and you’re so used to it and There’s very few times that he’s not done for bedtime. Like that’s really kind of his cut off is like that time that’s your time. And it’s funny because almost the reverse if I have to give them a bath, it’s like, No, daddy takes me, mommy and I’m like, Okay, well today I am getting used to it.

Dana: Well, Lauren, thank you so much for doing this. I do want to have give everybody like, I mean, we’ve talked a lot about it. What you do but give everybody who’s like two questions here to give everybody who is already has a business and need some help like in terms of just like elevating in any way that you talked about, give them an idea of what you do and how you can help them and then second part of it for anybody who wants to start kind of freelance Seeing and honing their skills like what are some things that They could do to get started.

Lauren: So for the first part My main phone This is marketing Brand development Customer Relations I do do a lot on social media, but on A lot of that is to kind of build that community. The need for retention whether it’s up The product or just educational pieces in growing the community Because that’s something that I’m super passionate about. Is elevating In these brands and kind of bringing them to the fore For people who You might not know them. So Anything that’s kind of under that marketing brand development strategy is kind of my preferred my go to my bread and butter and I think anyone who’s lucky enough to go into consulting finding Like I said, what you’re passionate about, like what you actually want to do because there are things that people To follow the marketing that are just not something that I enjoy or maybe that I just don’t feel like I’m good at right Now, and that’s okay. So finding Whether it’s like your niche like I know you’ve suffered About or just something that you’re actually passionate about because If it is something you’re going to be doing day in and day out You want to like it and if you’re making that decision to go out on your own, make sure it’s something that you do like. And then I think what’s so awesome now is there’s just so many resources, whether it’s the platforms that I’ve spoken about to find a job, but last here whenever my youngest actually goes and I would be sleeping, I would go on like Udemy or these online courses and just be up to date and take like a $25 course on copywriting, or some UX UI and whatever you’re kind of passionate about, or that you want to just learn a little bit more about and finally them and then. I mean I literally listened to So many podcasts all the time I listen to podcasts while I’m working, unless I’m editing one because that’s really hard to do. But I listen to podcasts about like Facebook ads and strategy and this or media marketing or what’s big here what to change here. So, finding a medium that you can And it relates on just diving in and learning as much as you can And finding those resources and I think for Need still to this day. The hardest thing is The confidence factor and just like getting over like even You said what’s your vision for your business? It’s like ice don’t really need to remember Submit it’s a business and I’m not just like helping people out for Find that pain. You don’t mean it’s like Do you have to get over that you have to find like the first time I sent invoices out. I was like, Oh my gosh, this is so awkward like, hey can you in it’s like now I can’t that’s normal like every first of the month. It’s just so interesting. to almost envision that yes this is a business, I am providing something that these people are looking For that they need that they don’t want to do and it is a skill that they have shown was in me to help them and like allow that to kind of either elevate what you do for them or get you other clients or more work which has been again like It’s a constant thing that I need to kind of even set myself up for.

Dana: Okay, well I think that so many people that is so so Many people but just like the reef Remember that like, Hey, I am doing this, somebody I mean they’re keeping me on like, this is awesome and I can do So I think telling yourself that is got to be really be really helpful and I know it is for me too and Sometimes I don’t believe myself but most of the times I’m like, okay, here are the tangible ways that I’ve helped in tangible things that I’ve done well and I know that are working, you know, and I think that if you can find something tangible to grab on to and like, are really like actual proof, I think that helps me the most.

Lauren: So yeah, and I think too, like depending on what people’s past work is like when I was working at the publishing company, we had so many editors and it went through six different review points until it went out to the Public and now Yes, I send it to the clients but there are times in beginning when I have like typos or things like that and you get like one bit of fee You have to be like, Oh my gosh, I’m the worst. I shouldn’t be doing this and you’re like me Actually what that’s going to force you to do is the next time read it for two Instead of three or go back and look at it, then Next day or just also realized that we’re human And you may notice something that they get And I just I mean, you’ve talked about this with Erica but the whole I think sometimes we live in this world of like constant appreciation which we should Don’t get me wrong Like appreciate that love, but also know that like in order to be better and grow better, you have to almost I don’t wanna say be knocked down but just be like oh Okay, I didn’t do this, right like, this week. I’m one of my other clients. I have a weekly call with them and I said, Hey At the end of this call, we’ve been working together for seven months. Can we sit and talk about just like, how it’s going, what feedback? Like, I want to know that, you know, like, maybe I’m wondering, are they going to stay on or they’re wondering like, I don’t Know what it is. So just when we’ve talked about in relationships like that communication needs to be there and it might be It’s tough at first but it’s going to help me it’s going to help our relationship and then Hopefully in the long run help with the growth altogether.

Dana: Yeah, so sure, it’s absolutely true. Well, Lauren, thank you so much for doing this. I’m so excited to actually hear this from your perspective and I know that everybody listening will appreciate knowing who’s kind of behind the curtain of amidst chaos and All the things and it definitely is amidst the chaos of both of our lives for sure. So I’ll tell everybody where they can find you your email, Instagram, all those things.

Lauren: So my email is lauren@the3lconstulting and my website is the3lconsulting.com and check our my instagram @3lconsulting for lots of marketing tips and insights on women owned businesses!

Dana: Fantastic. Well thank you and everybody who’s needs help or he needs advice Lauren is like just is a really great friend and she posts so much just amazing things on Instagram and she is actually Friends with a lot of people we’ve had on our podcast and has gotten a lot of those connections like pretty much all people you hear from New York City in New York in general are from Lauren. So check her out and she’ll she’ll get you in touch with anybody that you need for anything. She’s like such a connector. I am so appreciative to have her in my life. So thanks, Lauren.

I am so honored you spent any minutes of your day listening to me babble about living this entrepreneurial life amidst the chaos in any mom’s normal day to day. If you love what you heard and more snippets of knowledge about this mom Boss Life, head over to our website at amidstthechaospodcast.com For show notes and links to anything mentioned in today’s episode. If you’re really feeling inspired, it will mean the world to me and my family if you take the time to read it with you. Thanks for joining me, amidst the chaos.

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