Ep 116: Everything Back-to-School, Totally Systemized & Simplified

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This episode is a little different. It is actually the audio from a live class that I led on social media. And it is jam packed with some serious value. I’ve got everything that you would need for the back-to-school season and beyond. This episode is about systems, organization, and a streamlined, simplified approach to handling incoming paperwork, email systems, extracurricular activities, routines & rhythms, meal planning, and how you decide what is worth your time and what isn't. So, whether you have school-aged kids or not, this should be helpful! 

 
 

In This Episode Allie Discusses:

  • Processing incoming paperwork and emails

  • Life-hacks to make mornings easier 

  • Simplified meal prepping 

  • Solutions for your family’s “drop zone” 

  • How to decide what’s worth your time and what isn’t

  • Setting a seasonal intent for your family 

  • Teaching your kids responsibility 

  • Maximizing the fringe moments with your kids

  • The benefits of a digital calendar

Mentioned in this Episode:


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Does motherhood feel more like a hurricane of chaos that you’er surviving rather than the awesome, joy-filled season you want it to be?

Unburdened lightens your load so you can live abundant, well, and intentionally focused on those who matter most! It’s the overwhelmed mom’s guide to a simpler motherhood.


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.


Hey friends! Oh my gosh! This episode is packed with some serious, serious value. It's longer than my usual episodes because it's actually the sound pulled from a really big live class that I held on social media. So, if you missed it or you just want this for the future, here it is for you! 

It is seriously packed with everything that you would need for help for the back to school season. But this doesn't even have to be listened to when it's just back-to-school. It's systems, organization, and a streamlined, simplified approach to handling: incoming paperwork, alerts, events from the school, your mail, your regular life, email systems, before and after school routines, and how you decide what is worth your time and what isn't. 

What about extracurricular activities? How do you decide what your kids should do and what's not for right now? What about obligations like being the “room mom”? And you have all of these feelings like you should be doing more? How do you weigh out to say, “yes” or “no” to those things? What about simplifying lunches, meals and just everything if you have school-aged kids?

It's really, really jam-packed. 

So, I'm going to let it play for you now, but please know that this is for everybody. Amy, she's on Team Allie and she was at the live to be admin in the chat for me and she texted me afterwards, “Oh my gosh! That was so good! I don't have school-age kids yet and I got so much out of it!” Her oldest is 2, so just so you know, this is for everybody. But it was so good and I didn't want to let it fade away into the cyber universe, so I'm sharing it with you here today. 

Alright, so here's what's going on: My name is Allie Casazza and I help overwhelmed women, particularly mothers, simplify their lives so they can spend more time focused on what matters and less time on the side-note things. The things that are supposed to be “extras” that support the life you want to live, but if we're not careful they can tend to completely take over and “maul” us and then all we're doing is the side-note stuff like cleaning up and meal prep. Then, all those things that are supposed to support a great life end up totally taking over and distracting from it. 

So that's what I do. I think it all starts at home. I love to get people started with clutter, but then that spills over into calendar, schedule and all of that. My personal opinion after years of doing this for myself and with other women—leading these online programs that I create and coaching women to take action—my belief at this point is that home-decluttering is Step One and that everything kind of stems from there. Then, from that place, the next step would be to apply this kind of minimalistic approach to your schedule, your life, the way you're living, and the way you're spending your time. 

So we’re gearing up for August to focus on that Step Two, because a lot of you guys came to the How To Declutter Your Home In Two Weeks live trainings that we did, and a lot of you guys have come to join Your Uncluttered Home and you're getting your house simplified and doing all of these great things and you're ready for Step Two. Step Two is all of this kind of stuff. 

It's back-to-school season so it (accidentally) works out perfectly, and I think that we should take advantage of that and make it happen. 

If you haven't decluttered your home yet, it's okay. But just know that you can set up rhythms and routines and simplify all you want but you're not going to really see a huge difference if you don't declutter first. That's a tough truth and it's a little disappointing when you just want to get things lighter and you haven't started yet. Everyone has to start somewhere and it does matter where, okay? 

Part of the thing that I do in creating these online programs is I passively coach women on their own time because it's all prerecorded and automated. Sometimes we'll add in an accountability group so that they can talk to me live and talk to each other as they're all working towards the same goal. But basically it's like passive coaching because everyone's in different time zones, in different countries, and it's a really cool setup. 

So, essentially what I create are these passive coaching programs for women who want to simplify. We do Step One, Your Uncluttered Home, and then Step Two would be Unburdened. If you find this episode helpful (which it’ll be super deep and really helpful), Unburdened is times a hundred. So, if you've ever been wondering what's the difference between the programs, that's the difference. 

Unburdened is life stuff: systems, rhythms, and getting things done in a way that serves you in the life you want to live. I hope that makes sense. Okay, let's get started. 

The first place I want to start with is paperwork because, whether you have kids or not, paperwork is always coming in. But when you do have kids it absolutely increases, right? We get a ton more papers just by the fact that we have kids. 

You send your kids to school and in come the papers—announcements, activities, all these things they're sending papers home for. If you homeschool that can mean even more paperwork than if you don't. What do you do with all the paper? A lot of schools are doing a more digital setup where it's email-based but that can also create clutter. 

We're going to talk about how to handle it in a way that is helpful, life-giving and feels attainable. Sometimes people share decluttering tips or organization systems and you know you’re not gonna keep that up. My least favorite thing in the world was when I moved into a two-story house for the first time and looked for tips for how to handle when things are downstairs that belong upstairs. Things were making a mess at the bottom of the stairs because no one was going up and putting things away. And all of the tips were like, “Oh just be disciplined. That’s the rule. We go upstairs and we put it away. Don't be lazy. We just go upstairs and put it away.” 

Maybe I'm lazy, but I'm not going to go upstairs to put something away when I'm staying downstairs. And I know that I could tell my kids to do that all day, but it's going to turn into a nag session and a fighting match that I don't have time for. So, I had to create my own solution. I put a basket at the bottom of the stairs instead and that is where things that belong upstairs go. At the end of the day, we bring it up and we empty it. 

I like to do things like that. I like to take whatever is not working for everybody and I'll just figure it out for all of us and then share it. That's what we're going to do today.

So, I'm going to teach you my system for incoming paperwork. I know everyone's getting started with back-to-school, maybe your kids have already started. I homeschool my kids. Emmett goes to school a few days a week and the other kids have programs that they go to a couple of days a week, so I'm kind of half in and half out. But it doesn't matter because there's a system that I have that's for everything: mail, random papers (like when you write a note down on a post-it and you're like, “I'm not going to remember that; I’m going to lose it,” or you write it in your journal and you don't want to forget it, so you’re like, “I'll rip it out and put it here”). I have a system for all paperwork ever and this will absolutely work for back-to-school. 

Okay, here we go. 

The first thing you need to do is basically create an “email inbox system” for physical papers. So, the first thing you're going to do is get yourself a physical box. Mine is tin or metal and I got it from Target. It's white. It matches my house. And it's super simple. It's like a magazine holder. So, you're going to get a physical inbox and this is your home, this is your landing zone for paperwork that comes in. Okay? 

The other thing you're going to get is one of those normal folders that you can just get for school or whatever. Get whatever color and pattern you want. Mine says “follow up” on it. The folder is going to live inside of your new physical inbox. 

Okay. So, Step One, buy a physical inbox. Step Two by a little folder. Now, I’ll explain how this works. 

When the kids go back to school or if they already have, you will need to process all the papers. I'm going to show you how to set up a normal weekly rhythm for processing incoming paperwork, but when your kids first go back to school, you're probably going to have an extra amount of papers, so you're going to want to process them all right away and then start your weekly rhythm, okay? 

I have one day of the week that is my physical inbox processing day. It used to be Sunday, because we have our Sunday meetings. I don't know if you guys have heard that podcast episode or not, but Brian and I have a Sunday night meeting before the week starts and I thought, “Oh this goes in perfectly with that. I'll just do it then.” But it didn't go perfectly with it because I don’t want to process mail and big decisions like that on Sunday night when I'm not usually in my calendar, I'm definitely never at my computer, and sometimes mail comes and I need to update an insurance problem or something. I'm not going to do that on Sunday night. 

So, I moved it to Friday. It's the end of the week. I'm wrapping things up. I usually have team meetings on Friday; I'm wrapping up work. I'm in my office. I'm in that mode of let's get things done and wrap it up so we can have an amazing weekend because we take Saturday, Sunday, and Monday for our weekends here. So that's my mental process. 

Pick a day. Don't overthink this. Just pick a day. What day of the week is going to work for you? It's okay to pick a day and then move it later. Just pick a day. That day is your processing day. 

Make it fun. Brew yourself a fresh cup of coffee or tea, get a juice, or whatever. Sometimes I'll go and get an iced latte and bring it home. Make it a treat. This shouldn't be a burden. It shouldn't be a big ordeal. It should be something you look forward to. You have a system. You are being an action-taking, problem-solving lady. You’re the CEO of your home and this is the day where you organize, systemize, and handle that crap that would stress you out otherwise. 

You're going to sit down and go through things. You are going to process piece-by-piece. Open the mail, look at the school flyer, whatever it is. Look at it and you're going to be processing that. What is this paper? What's the point of it? What action needs to be taken on it, if any? 

Sometimes the action is a quick action, like adding an event to your calendar. Other times it takes a little more time. Maybe it warrants a response from you or maybe it warrants a conversation with your spouse about what decision you want to make about the idea that this paper is presenting to you and your family. 

Whatever the action is, do something immediately. If it is a quick action, do it immediately. Add an event to your calendar or add a task to your to-do list or make a reminder of something. Do that right away. You look at the paper and you're like, “Okay, 5K for the kids' elementary school project on September 5th. Yes, I want to go to that. I'm putting it on my calendar. I'm sending a teacher an email. Yes, I want to do that.”  Now, done, processed, finished, trash. 

If it's not a quick action that you can take, if you need to think about it, pray about it, talk to your husband about it, talk to your kid about it, or whatever, then you're going to put it in the “Follow Up” folder. This folder is for following up on things that aren't quite closed and also for decisions you haven't quite made. Your goal every processing day is to put as little amount of papers in this folder as possible. Any time that you can take immediate action and make it a quick task, do that. But if you must, put it in this folder, okay? 

This is just a place for you to come back to. You know that your physical inbox is empty because you processed things, but these are things that you are not quite done with yet. If you need to come back to something in the middle of the week, like maybe you send an email to somebody and then you have to wait for them to email you back, that paper is a reminder of what you emailed them about and all the information you might need. So you put it in that folder. 

You could take a picture of it and make it digital if you want. To me, I'm coming to this zone of my house when I'm dealing with incoming things, so I just want it all in one place. I don't want to take a picture of it. I'm already minimalist. I've already taken pictures of tons of stuff. I don't need another iPhone folder. This is already here. It’s just easier for me. Does that make sense? 

Let's say that you get a piece of mail and it's something from your insurance. Something happened and it lapsed or something and it's Saturday. Okay, well that sucks. You need to follow up with that. So, you reach out to them. You call them. You leave a message. You email them or whatever. That's going to go in here because it's not finished. It's not processed all the way yet. When things finish processing, when the decision is made, the action is taken, the issue has all panned out, then you can put it in the “done” pile, shred it, throw it away, or whatever. Okay?

When you are in a rhythm like this, there are really not a lot of things that you will need to take immediate action on. Everyone usually freaks out, “Once a week? But what if I receive it on Thursday and it needs an immediate response and I can't wait til Friday?” Well, usually there's a note on the envelope, “immediate action required,” or a pink slip or yellow slip or something in there. It’s okay to break your own rule and respond to it or whatever you need to do. But usually things can wait until Friday, so once a week is enough. It'll be fine. 

The goal here is whatever the action is, take it immediately if it's quick. If it’s not, add the action to your to-do list and put it in your “Follow Up” folder to reference until it's completely processed. 

Your new inbox processing day is now a nonnegotiable. Okay? Because if it's negotiable, you're going to get all inspired and you're going to be like, “Oh, Allie told me to do this. I'm going to go do it.” But when life happens, you're not going to take action. And then you're just going to have this pretty inbox sitting there and it's pointless. You need to make this a nonnegotiable. Put it on your calendar. Set alerts to go off to remind yourself for 30 days until you have formed a habit. 

You need to understand that you are going to be overwhelmed, you're going to cause yourself so much stress, you're going to fall back into that hot mess mom culture that we don't want to be in (that's not where we belong and it's not necessary) if you don't get a system in place. 

This is the part where everyone has excuses: “Oh, there's no day of the week...Well, I'm not good at things like this.” And this is my favorite one: “This won’t work for me because of [insert reason.]” Anything can work for you if you make it work. If you decide that you don't want to be a mess, if you decide that you want to process things, it will work. 

There are weeks where I have to move the day. Whether I'm just so exhausted I forget, or I'm out of town so I have to do it on a Monday. It doesn't matter. The point is there’s space in my calendar to handle my life, to make decisions, to go through the mail, to respond to things and it all works out. 

Then you get to feel like your to-do list is crossed off. You responded to those emails. You answered those papers. You committed to this event and not that one. You were on top of it and you did something about it. Okay? 

Email basically works the same way except it's already an inbox just digital. We took the physical inbox idea from the idea of how email works. Email is just already set up for you. What I want you to do in your email is I want you to set yourself up with three new folders. Basically any email system that you use (I use Gmail) will allow you to make subfolders in your inbox to categorize different things. 

I want you to make three new folders (or labels, tags, however your email system works):

  • Respond Today—I have a rule where I don't respond to almost anything right away. I will put it in the “Respond Today” folder and wait and just think through it or talk it out or whatever. 

  • “Respond This Week” 

  • “To Reference Later” 

I got this idea from my friend, Stacy. She's amazing. It's brilliant. I've had this setup for a while now and it works so well because it keeps you constantly at “inbox zero.” Your inbox can be such a complete crap show and it doesn't need to be. 

I immediately label everything either: “I need to respond to this today,” or “I can respond to this later this week,” or “I need to just save this information because I might need to reference it later.” 

You can get as deep as you want. You can have subfolders. I have subfolders underneath: 

  • Reference Later/ Receipts, 

  • Reference Later/ Giving, 

  • Reference Later/ Business Tips I want to see later but I want to save. 

You can do whatever you want. So, you might have “Reference Later/ Kids School.” Or Reference Later and it's all general and you can just search to find stuff. So, that’s how you are going to organize this. 

Use “Unroll Me” to originally purge your inbox. Say you get emails from Anthropology—I mean, I don't know why you want to unsubscribe to those because their emails are just so beautiful, but let’s just say you want to unsubscribe from Anthropology. Search for “Anthropology,” select one, “unsubscribe” from it and then go back and select all of them and delete all of them. It will take you time, but you can also use subscriptions like “Unroll Me” and things like that. Do the original purge and get to that “inbox zero” and organize everything else by folders in your inbox. Okay? 

That is how we're going to handle both physical and digital incoming information. Especially for those of you who might have ADD, or a lot of kids, or just a lot going on, having a system like this is ingenious. It takes the problem out of it. I literally put everything in my digital or physical inbox. Every day I check the mail and I put it in there. Then on Friday I go through it. 

If I write down an amazing business idea on a post-it note while I'm cooking dinner, I take that post-it note and I put it in the inbox. So then, later, when I'm processing on processing day and I see the post-it note, I'm going to open up Asana where I keep dreams and ideas and I'm going to put this in my “ideas” list in Asana. Now I can throw the post-it note away because I processed it. At the time when I had the idea I physically couldn't get to Asana so I just jotted it down. You guys, if you do things like this, this is the answer to all of the things. 

Sometimes I will empty out my purse because I've shoved random gum wrappers, post-its, pieces of paper with ideas, thoughts, and to-do lists in there because I couldn't get to my phone at that moment. I will empty out my purse of all the things I jotted down and put it in the inbox to process later. 

Sometimes I voice-memo myself on my phone and I will put a post-it note in the inbox as a reminder to process voice-memos. So, when I'm processing I'm like, “Oh yeah! I voice-recorded some ideas and things I needed to do,” and I'll go back and listen to my voice-memos and then I'll make it a to-do list or just do it right away. Okay? 

When it comes to the morning time, I think the overwhelm is because there's so much to do. The kids are sleepy. You've got to wake them up. You've got to feed them. You have so much to do that it becomes this tornado of chaos and you end up sending them out the door while you’re yelling and you aren’t who you want to be as a mom. And that is absolutely the worst feeling ever. It sucks. 

I know that's not how you want to be. I know that’s not aligned with who you are as a mother. It just comes out sometimes when you're really, really busy. There’s a rush and there's a consequence if they're late all the time. You look really bad and you're embarrassed. You just wish you could get it together. 

Here's the thing that nobody does that is going to solve a lot of that upfront: Count backward from the time that controls you. What I mean by that is: count backward from the deadline. So, if you're homeschooling and you say, “I want us to start school by 9:00 AM every day, otherwise it's just going to take too long and it's not going to work,” then that is the time that controls you. If your kid’s school starts at 7:45 AM then that's the time that controls you. When I say “the time that controls, I mean: “When do you have to be there?” Or “When do you have to be done?” 

I like to give myself an extra 10–15 minutes because I know myself and I know my kids.

So, whatever the time that controls you, select it. Add a little “give” if you want. Then you move backward. If you have done this multiple times, you have kids that have been in school a few years, you probably just know that it takes 30 minutes (or however long) for everyone to get dressed and brush their teeth. And it takes 15 minutes (or however long) for them to eat breakfast. You might already know. Take those time increments and count backwards. What time would that mean that you've got to be up and going? I would even add another 10–15 minutes to that and that's your wake-up time. 

How far is your drive to school? How long does it take you to get ready? How long does it take your kids to get ready? If you don't know, test it out. Estimate what you think, and then keep tabs. It's a little bit extra in the morning, but if you give yourself some extra time, you can jot it down in a journal. How long does it take? That kind of data—that's power right there. You’ve literally got data on how your family does their mornings. That's amazing. That's so powerful for you to know. Knowledge is power, right? That's how this works and these are the kinds of little tweaks that nobody else is doing. 

So, from there decide what everyone's wake up time is. Is yours going to be earlier than theirs? Is there anything you would like to get done in the morning for yourself before the day starts? All of these things will factor into what time you wake up. If you calculate that and it's an ungodly hour and you're like, “I'm not getting up at 4:00 AM” or whatever it is, then you have a choice to make. What things are you willing to drop? And let me also tell you this, the most helpful shift you can make is to ask yourself, “What could I possibly get done the night before?” 

Act as if this were a game of “Who can get the most stuff done the night before?” and the prize is $1 million. Think about it like that. I bet you can think of so many more things than you ever have before, such as: 

  • Laying out the outfits and shoes, that's a given. 

  • Making lunches. 

  • Giving your kids showers and baths so they don't have to do it in the morning. 

  • Having their backpacks packed, and everything ready to grab and go at the door. 

  • Having your dinner ingredients chopped or things in the slow cooker. Whatever you could chop, slice, dice for the slow cooker and put in the fridge the night before. 

  • Make breakfast the night before, and only make breakfasts that can be easily eaten and still be yummy the next morning. There's so many ideas on Pinterest for that. I'm not going to provide you with any; go look. 

  • Set your coffee timer 

  • Maybe have your quiet time the night before when the kids are in bed and asleep and you're just sitting there. Don't turn on Netflix. Read your Bible. Journal. Read a book. Pray. Go for a nighttime walk. Maybe you could implement some peace the night before and then you just wake up and go. 

What could you get done the night before? How much can you cut from your morning? All of these things are going to help you. 

Then when you know what your morning must-do’s are—these are the things that, no matter what, must get done in the morning—you use those things to count backwards from the time that controls you. Then you know about how much time you need. And you can test and tweak it, but I think that you should give yourself a little bit extra time too—at least 10 extra minutes. 

I feel so much better when I know that I've given myself an extra half-hour in case Emmett decides all-of-a-sudden, “Oh! I can't get my shoes on,” and does this weird lazy drop thing that he does. Anyone who knows me in real life knows what I'm talking about. He'll just drop and he's suddenly “paralyzed” and just can't do anything for himself. It's super annoying and I'm not going to have it, so I have to do the whole, “Emmett Finn! Get up right now!” thing. So, I feel really good when I have an extra 25-30 minutes and I'm not having to yell and freak out. I can have my kid do a toddler-drop situation and not freak out. 

The main goal for me is to not be freaking out. I just want to be calm. I just want to be the mom that I want to be. Sometimes it's a total botch and it doesn't happen. But when you prepare and you are an action-taking, problem-solving woman, then you've solved a lot of the problems before they even start. You took action. You know you tried and everyone just has bad days and that's okay. 

Okay, so let's talk about a few quick tips for making meal prep really simple because time at home in the evening is often limited. I was just talking recently with my friend Kendra Hennessy (I think some of you guys probably know her and follow her) about how everybody tends to think you have to have a brand new, amazing meal, especially at the start of the school year. We all go into it like, “I'm going to be like June Cleaver. Everything's going to be perfect. I’m going to have this amazing meal because I have these new routines in place.” Routines that we all know you're not going to stick with for more than two weeks because they never work. We've got to solve the actual root problem so that our routines can stick. Right?

You don't need to have a different meal every night. I have friends that rotate two weeks’ worth of meals constantly and that's how they are. I feel like I'd get sick of things, but they don't and that works for them. Does that work for you? What can you do? 

Crockpots and Instant Pots are life-changing. They’re lifesavers. They’re serious, serious, serious help.

Instant Pot. I love it. Pre-chop and prep the ingredients. If you're like us and you need to cook a lot of things from scratch for health reasons or just your preference, then pre-chop and prep the ingredients the night before, or even the week before, freeze them and then saute them up to defrost and then cook. 

There's so many things you could do no matter what your dietary restrictions are, no matter what you’ve got going on to simplify meal planning. Get the meals ready the night before. Set a takeout night on the hardest night to cook. What is the night that you pick up the kids late from school because they had something extra and you had to rush? You don’t even go home, you just go straight to the sports or whatever. What is the night of your schedule that is just the worst? How can you flip it around and make it positive? Is it that the kids look forward to eating out and you budget for that because you know every Thursday you’re eating out? 

On the night that you guys choose to have a takeout night or a “no cook” night, find a place where the kids eat free that night and go there. If you have time to go into a restaurant, that's a great option. But if you're choosing that night because it's crazy and you can't go out to eat and sit in there and eat, then just order from somewhere and take the load off yourself.

If you guys don't have a ton of extracurricular activities, just pick a night that you tend to kind of poop out. What is the day of the week where you're like, “Man, I'm really ready for the weekend. I’m done.” Is it Wednesday? Thursday? Is Monday really hard because you're coming back from the weekend? Pick a night to simplify. 

Maybe you have frozen pizzas in the freezer and you just pull those out every whatever night that is. Maybe you order pizza, order takeout, get Uber eats or whatever, but pick a night to give yourself a break. Plan on that. 

I'm not a meal planner/teacher. There's Pinterest for a reason. There's so many other things. If you have Your Uncluttered Home, you’ve probably got the bonus of The Minimalist Meal Planning that comes with it. Go to that. Use Hello Fresh, or whatever you want to do. But just know the biggest takeaway is that meal planning is an area that we overcomplicate so much. 

Stop over-complicating meals. You don't need something new every night. You're doing a fantastic job. This is the place with a lot of wiggle room. There's not a lot of wiggle room in other zones. Your kids have to be at school at a certain time. There's not a lot of wiggle room there. There’s not a lot of wiggle room after school either. Simplify your meals. There’s so much wiggle room there. You can make it so flexible. 


Hey beautiful friend! Pausing this content right now because I want to talk to you about something that is currently open and is super temporary. I don't want you to miss out!

 Do you ever feel like you are just stuck in the mud? Every day feels like you're sinking in quicksand and you can’t get out? No matter how much effort you put in you just sink further and further? 

If life feels like it's just heavy…maybe you've decluttered, maybe you've simplified your home but life, your calendar, and your schedule just really feel heavy and you wish that you could implement minimalism to that part of things just like you did with your house. I am so excited if you’re saying “yes” to this because Unburdened is open! 

Unburdened is the second course that I created. It is basically a tool and resource for you to use to pull yourself out of that pit and do it a whole lot faster than if you did it without help. 

Basically, Unburdened will help you set boundaries for your phone, your technology, yourself, and other people, to make space for what matters. 

It'll help you take ownership of your time. We're going to gut your calendar and clear the clutter in your life and your schedule, create your ideal day and set up daily and weekly rhythms (which for those of you who don't do routines and you can never make them stick, this is the answer because I'm like that and this is literally my biggest secret.) 

I'm so, so excited! 

Step 3 in this program is you're going to implement a plan for doable self-care because you can't give your family water if your well is all dried up, right? 

And then Step 4, you're going to get purposeful in your day-to-day, because how we spend our days is how we spend our lives, right? This stuff matters. 

Unburdened only opens up twice a year for enrollment. This is your chance. Go to alliecasazza.com/unburdenedlife. The doors are open! It's a $99 program.

I'm super excited to get you guys in there and help you reach success in the change that you're seeking for your schedule, your routines, and how your days go because this is the kind of stuff that's so exciting to get to work on once you've simplified your home. 


Let's talk about “the drop zones.” The entryway, places that your kids tend to drop stuff like their shoes, their backpacks, sports equipment, like just everywhere. This is tactical, practical stuff. 

First of all, I don't think enough can be said for hooks and baskets in the entryway or your “drop zone.” Some people come into their house from their garage. Some people come in entering the kitchen. Some people have an actual mud room. Some people are like me and they come in the front door and there's not really a mudroom, but they made an entryway for themselves. Whatever your situation is, where do you guys come in? Where do things tend to get dropped? 

Listen, let me just save you a lot of effort and freak outs. Wherever the drop zone is right now, wherever your family tends to dump stuff, that is always going to be the drop zone. Don't try to change where the drop zone is. I personally don't think it's worth the effort. It is so much harder to change a habit. This is just the way your family seems to use your home.

I think we should just see that the drop zone is the drop zone and create a system there. So, unless it's a terrible place and you just have to change it, I think it's better to just make it work instead of changing the habit because you're going to end up nagging and being like, “Dang it! I told you don't put your stuff here!” And we don’t want to go down that path. Just accept that the drop zone is the drop zone and set it up so that the dropping isn't a problem anymore. 

This is kind of the same idea I mentioned earlier of how I put a basket at the bottom of my stairs where stuff collected. Instead of telling my family, “New rule! Nobody drops things here. Everyone takes everything upstairs when you're done. I don't care if you're staying downstairs, go upstairs and put it away,” the basket came into play. Because, otherwise, it's just not going to happen. I'm not going to do it. So how could I expect them to do it? I need to get stuff done and move on. I just need somewhere to put my thing until I'm ready to go upstairs and put it away. So, I put the basket at the bottom of the stairs and that's where we put things that go upstairs. 

At the end of the day we have our nighttime family rhythm (Unburdened—it's opening soon— teaches all about rhythms) where we do a quick 15-minute, whole-house pickup as a family. And part of that is emptying that basket and putting things away upstairs, then putting the empty basket back downstairs at the end of the day. 

So, what is your drop zone going to look like? Do you need hooks for backpacks? Do you want a basket or bin for shoes? A bin for sports equipment? You can have hooks for backpacks. A bin for shoes. I hate shelves for shoes because the kids never lined the shoes up on the shelf and it ends up piled. Instead of piled on the floor, it's piled on a shelf. So, we just got a metal bin from Target and we all just throw our days’ shoes in that bin and it works great. 

You could do hooks for backpack and jackets, a bin for shoes and then a basket for sports stuff, so that it's basically on a wall altogether. It looks super organized and pretty, but it's housing all the drop zone stuff. 

If you guys just naturally come in through the garage when you come home that's even better, because you don't have to have it in your house. You can make a mud room wall in your garage and everything's out. That's amazing. If you don't come in through the garage, you have to just ask yourself, “Where is the drop zone?” Is it in the kitchen? Is it in the front of the house? The front door? Where is it? What is going to work? And get creative. 

Another great thing to look up on Pinterest is faux mud rooms and things like that, but I suggest you stop trying to get your kids to hang stuff in the closets (unless they already do) and just start noticing, “Okay, where’s the drop zone in my house? I'm going to create a storage solution right around there so that I don't have to change the habit, and we're all happy.” 

You might also consider doing what I did and putting your physical inbox (that we talked about earlier) in the drop zone as well. That way you could have the kids hang their backpacks on the hooks, pull out all the papers their teacher gave them and put it right there. Then the physical inbox is already in the drop zone and they're putting their papers in there for you. You know where to go and get your physical inbox when it's time to process. 

Let's talk about saying “no” and extra commitments and all of that. Classroom parent stuff, being the “room mom,” classmate birthday parties and being the mom that brings the homemade cupcakes, extracurricular activities, just all of the things that we feel obligated to do. 

If you guys came to the two-week class that I hosted multiple times, or if you have had me teach you about decluttering, you know that the first thing I say you need to do when you're walking into a room you're going to declutter but you don't know where to start is that you need to set the intent for that room. This is a really, really beautiful way to make decisions in your life too.   

I'm not going to tell you right now to set the intent for your family. I think you should, but I'm not going to tell you right now to decide what your core values are. That's a really big discussion and I think it's important that we all do those things, but that’s not so much what I’m talking about when you're prepping for back to school. I think, right now, it’s important to just set the intent for this season for your family. 

For example, and I think a lot of you guys might do this because whenever I talk about it people are like, “Yeah, thanks for saying that. We do that too.” For our family, we kind of flip flop. We will head into a really restful season. The intent that we set for that group of months or weeks or whatever is set to be in “rest mode.” It is full rest mode. We say “no” to everything and we just rest. 

We just came out of a really big rest season and now everyone's noticing that I'm back. I'm doing multiple webinars a week. I'm doing all these things. We're getting ready to open up the doors to Unburdened again and do this great big launch party with everybody that's joining this time around. We're doing all these big things because I just came out of a season of rest. We're getting back to homeschooling. The kids are going to start baseball soon. I love baseball season because we don't do it every season. We take rests, so when it comes back around, I'm ready and excited and I can't wait. I'm not fatigued because we also did soccer and now we've got to go straight into baseball. 

Set the intent for every season for your family. What do you guys need right now? Do you need rest? Do you need structure? Summer’s over and you’re like, “Everyone's bored. We all feel like we're going to kill each other. We need structure.” What is the intent that you're setting? 

How do you want your kids to feel the end of this season or the end of the school year? What do you want them to be like? How old are they? If I really sat down and spent 10 minutes or so on each of my kids and I thought, “Okay Bella first. What do I really want for Bella this school year? I really want her to feel confident in overcoming some learning disabilities that she struggles with. I really want her to continue to love reading. I want her to create a group of friends, and I want her to just feel more confident in general.”  That's a really great intent and every decision that I make will either align with that or not.

Just like we set the intent in a room before we declutter, we set the intent for this season of our families’ lives before we say “yes” or “no” to things.  And when you're in a room and you're decluttering and you have set the intent, that is going to help you make decisions about what stays and what goes, because you say, “Well I wanted this room to feel like this. Does this item help with that?” Yes or no? It's simple. 

Same thing with your calendar and your schedule. If you set the intent for this season of your family and it’s rest, then you’re going to go ahead and pass on football this season. You're going to pull out of that. Cancel. It doesn't go with your season because that's not going to be restful. There's multiple practices a week. There’s games, maybe some travel. It’s a lot. It's not rest. So it doesn't align, right? It makes it so much easier to say no. 

It makes it easier to ask yourself things like, “Will saying ‘yes’ to this serve my entire family and align with the intent that my spouse and I set for this time?” If not, are you willing to push that intent back? Probably not a good idea. 

I also think it's worth asking yourself why you’re considering this commitment. Why are you considering being the room mom? Is it because you feel guilty because you work and you feel like you should? There’s something in there to work through. Heart issue alert, right? Is it because you're controlling? Is it because you love it and it's something that you want to do? Great! That seems like a green flag to me. Thumbs up! Ask yourself, “Why am I even considering this?” There's such an easy pull to say “yes” to everything. 

I also want to give you guys freedom. We don't put our kids in things all at the same time. They take turns. Two of the boys will be doing baseball, but we're not doing horse lessons for Bella right now. She's going to have to wait. There's give and take. And if they ever are doing things at the same time it's not in the same time frame, so it’s not like Bella is doing soccer, Hudson's doing football, and Leland and Emmett are doing baseball. So, there's two different baseball teams in the afternoon, plus a horse lesson in the afternoon, plus a football practice in the afternoon and we all have to split up. I don't do that. We're a family. We're together. 

If Bella's horse lessons are in the morning on Wednesday and Hudson's piano lesson is on Thursday mornings and is a part of school, great, then they can all do their things in the same season because they don't overlap. But I'm not willing to spend time apart from my family and do the crazy run around thing. Not at all. The boys play baseball in the same league, so even if they're on fields that are next to each other, we're all in the same place together. We might need to take turns watching each team, but it creates togetherness. I want my intent for my family in every season to create togetherness. Do you see what I'm saying? Set the intent. Where do you want to go? 

Remember my favorite quote by Annie Dillard, “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” These are the decisions, ladies. These are the decisions that you're making that are going to create how you're spending your day-to-day, and that's going to end up being the life you live. That's going to end up forming the childhood your kids will look back on and say, “My childhood felt really busy,” or “It felt really happy,” or “It felt really balanced.” This matters. 

If all of the decisions you're committing to will mean heading into a busier, fuller season, okay; it's good that you're noticing that. Are you just now wrapping up a really restful season? If not, it might be too much. It might be exciting to look at all this structure like, “Okay, good. They're out of the house. They're going to school,” or “We're starting our homeschool year. We've got our new curriculum. We're going all in. We have baseball on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and we have Karate on Wednesdays, and we have the…[whatever.]” It might look good and you might feel like you're doing your kids a huge service by making them so cultured and putting them in different things, but you’re really, really not. 

You're going to poop out. If you don't have enough space in your week to call it off, to take an afternoon to breathe, to just be a family, order pizza, and just chill together for your kids to catch up on homework, it is too much. It's too much. 

Let's talk about delegating and getting your older kids involved as much as possible. I'm just going to do a quick note on this. My goal is to raise good people, confident people, capable adults who will be an addition to society and will make great spouses. But they are currently children, so they're in training and there's so much grace, but ultimately when they're done and they're all baked and heading out into the world, that's my goal. So, I need to teach them—graciously—how to manage their time, their things, their responsibilities by giving them responsibilities in the first place. 

I need to teach them teamwork and help them learn how a home runs smoothly, right? And it runs so much more smoothly when we're all doing things together. Yes, Emmett—and the things that he does—is not really helping me, but it's not about that. It's about teaching him, “Look, you matter. You have a say. You have a job here and we need you to pick up the toys. Thank you so much. You're doing a great job.” 

You know the older kids (Bella’s 10, Leland's 8) they do the dishes and they help with the laundry. Those are big things and they’re finally at a point where they really do help me. And so, communicating that, giving them those responsibilities, and showing them, “Look guys, you chose to play instead of doing your chores and now we need the dishes washed for this meal.  So, now you have to hurry up, and it's a bummer.” Just showing them that, teaching them that. 

I'm really, really big on bringing the kids into things. I'm not big on the whole idea of a massive chore chart—all of these responsibilities and consequences without any teaching. I think it's unruly and a little harsh. Then the mom freaks out and is like, “Who washes a dish like this? Get back here and do it again.” It’s like you never taught them how to, you showed them once and that's it. Of course, I make mistakes and I yell and I have freak-out days, but in general, I really, really am big on teaching, showing, talking to them and understanding that it's my responsibility to teach them. It's not their responsibility to know how to do everything. 

I really don't like when there's talk, especially in the Christian circle, about kids and chores. It's very harsh, almost demeaning and demanding. You guys know what I'm talking about? Kids need to be taught. They need to be talked to. They’re people. Respect is mutual. We're all in this together, and I'm wanting to train them to be good humans. Yelling at them and expecting them to know things that they couldn't possibly know because they’ve never learned is not doing that. 

I think you should ask yourselves, “What are my kids capable of doing?” Think about what they're doing in school. They're given so much responsibility. They're doing homework. They're learning big things. They can probably do more than you think they can. Just try it. Say, “You know what? I'm going to give you the job of after dinner dishes,” and see how it goes. Be with them. Show them. Teach them. If you want to do monetary gain for doing chores, do it. That's your call. 

For us—just to give you guys an idea if you need help—we don't do paid chores. I think that we are all a team and we're all here to help. However, there is a list of extra work that if somebody wants to do, there is an attached payment for and it's like $1 or $2, so they do earn for extra things. And I really like that setup. It's worked really well for us. But you guys do what you want. 

I also think it's possible if you have kids who are a little bit older, to give them the breakfast role. We've done this in our house and it's great. Having the kids be in charge of making or grabbing a really simple breakfast for themselves. My kids get their own breakfast unless we're having a special family breakfast because we won't be together for dinner, which we do sometimes especially if I'm going to travel that night or whatever. 

Some really simple breakfast ideas like cereal and fruit, oatmeal and fruit, pre-made smoothies packed with nutrients that you made that they get out and have. Toast and hard boiled eggs. The hard boiled eggs are pre-done and they just make toast and put butter on it themselves and they eat their breakfast. Things like that. Teach them that responsibility. Obviously, this won't work for super little kids. 

Have them help pack their lunches the night before and then come up with a plan to give that responsibility over to them. Have them pick out their clothes the night before. I've taken this as an opportunity to actually teach my kids how to form an outfit that's socially acceptable. And it's been great. My kids totally know how to dress and I love it, because you guys, if you follow me for a minute, you know that I love that kind of stuff. I've taken that opportunity to teach them like, “Okay, this isn't going to work because you’ve got navy on navy, so we need to pick something green or white. You really don't want to do black and navy.” I've taken the opportunity and it's been great. Make it fun. 

Okay, let's shift into ways to maximize time spent together in the evening. I know we’ve got a lot of work-out-of-the-home parents with kids in public school, private schools that are trying to squeeze in dinner, homework, bedtime routine all in an hour or two, so we need to get into where are the fringe moments that you have and get into quality time over quantity time, which is all that matters anyway, and how we can streamline. 

There is so much to be said for a bedtime ritual. This is such a sweet time. I know you're exhausted. I know you're pooped and you're done. Just so you guys know that I'm human too. Brian got the kids this book from a Navy Seal that wrote a children's book (which is questionable already; it seems like it would be disturbing, but it's not.) And it is the longest children's book ever written in human history. Literally feels like I'm reading the Bible out loud. It is so long. Also, I don't like books that have very little writing on the page, so you're turning the page every second. It seems like a lot of work. Maybe I’m lazy. But it is the longest book in history and the kids, of course, loved it. 

After I spent five weeks glaring at Bryan with the evil eye because he bought this book for them, I decided we're done with this book. The book went “bye-bye,” and I hid it. I don't want to sit and pour into my kids, read them this giant story, and hear their hearts. I'm tired. Go the frick to sleep, people. But having said that—so you know, I'm a normal mom, I'm tired and I don't want to do it—it only takes a minute. 

Put the long Navy Seal book away and don't read at all. Go and sit on the edge of their bed. If you just make a minute to listen to them, hear their heart for a second and just make space for them to feel, that's what kids want. That's all they want. They can share with you without the stress of knowing that there's a rush to get somewhere. 

Earlier in the evening, there's just so much rush, even if you don't have extracurriculars. There’s dinner, homework, stress, and sibling rivalry, and you yelled because you’re just done. At the end of the day, that bedtime moment is really a sweet time. 

But I think we overthink it like it’s got to be a story, a prayer, and this long, overdrawn-out thing where you're just like, “Look, am I a terrible mom that I don't give a crap and I don't want to do that?” No. You’re not a terrible mom. You're just normal. 

I think it's just about simplifying it. Make it a minute, just a moment. Sometimes I'll go in, sit on the edge of the bed, and just ask, “How are you feeling about tomorrow? You ready for a new day?” And just see if anything comes up. It’s just a minute. Usually there's nothing. But every-once-in-a-while one of the kids will be like, “Something weird happened today and I just feel really bad and I want to talk.” They'll start to talk to me about somebody who said something and it hurt their feelings or whatever. And if I hadn't just made a second, it wouldn't have come up. 

And you know what? I will hide the really long books all day long and I might really botch the bedtime prayer because I want it to last about 2.5 seconds, but I will always create space for my babies to just have a moment with me. And I can do that. We can do that. No matter how much we worked in a day, no matter how tired we are, we can do that. 

So, just simplify it. Just make it a second. It's a wonderful sweet little pocket of time that we can cultivate. 

The next part in maximizing our time together in the evening is to never be afraid to reevaluate the things that you've said “yes” to. Not to talk about the podcast the whole time, but there's another episode called It's Okay To Change Your Mind, and that's what this is. There's no shame in backing out of a commitment. You don't want to do that all the time, but if that's what's going to shift, if you're going to learn a lesson from that, back out of it. Just be better next time. It's okay to back out. 

Every day is time on this earth. Time with or without your family that defines where you guys end up. So don't waste it pushing through until the end of a commitment that is toxic to you and your family simply because you said you would do it. That's ridiculous. 

Bouncing back to some of the practical stuff, I also want to highly encourage you guys to use the Google calendar or iPhone calendar, something color-coded to keep track of your practices and appointments. That's just the way to go. Color coordinated helps so much. Put events on your calendar, not tasks. Have a separate place for your tasks. You can even get something that syncs with your calendar so that tasks show up in a different color. 

On my Google calendar I have reminders in bright green that every Friday is physical inbox processing day and it's also the day that Brian takes the cars to get cleaned out. We get our cars cleaned and detailed so they feel clean and nice. We're paying for them for a reason. It's a nice car and it feels really good and clean like our house does. So, that's a reminder not an event. An event is at 2:00 PM on Friday you have a doctor's appointment, or for me at 1:30 on Tuesday you are doing a live training. Don't clutter your calendar with ideas, thoughts, to-do lists. Don't do that. Have those separate. 

Let's get back to the idea of Sunday night meetings. Sunday night meetings are basically when Brian and I will come together, we'll sit together and we will just look over the week. What's going on? What do you need from me? What do I need from you? How can we support each other? How can we make this week simpler? Where are the really heavy days? 

For us, Tuesdays are always a really heavy day. It’s a really big day of work for me because it's technically my Monday. I'm always really excited and inspired to get back to things on Tuesday, so I really go all in and have a really thick, heavy, long work day where I'm working all the main part of the afternoon. I'm working all day. Where are the cracks? What could we do to make this better? All of that. 

Consider adding Sunday night meetings to your Google calendar into part of your weekly rhythms because it's a really great way to reconnect. We keep this separate from date night because I don't want date night to be a CEO/COO planning session, which it can feel like if you talk about these kinds of things there. I want date night to be just fun. 

On Sunday night we stay at home, we get the kids busy and we go over everything, get on the same page. This is so important for you to feel like you're not running crazy. You know what I mean? It's so, so helpful. 

Consider adding a Sunday night meeting. Go over all the things. Pull out your calendars, ask how you can support each other. It gets you on the same page in a really positive, action-taking way. There's a whole podcast episode and blog post about that. You can get that freebie, go listen to the episode if you want. There's a lot about it because it's so helpful. 

Okay, I just want you guys to know before we go, if this helped you at all, you're going to frigging love Unburdened because it is a masterclass for your entire life. Your entire schedule, your rhythms, your routines, how your life is flowing and going, all condensed into a boot camp style, masterclass for everything. There are life hack tips in there like the basket at the bottom of the stairs, tons of stuff like that. 

I help you completely set up rhythms. I don't like calling them routines because it's not routines. Routines don't really work for me. They never stick. But I found a way to create rhythms that do stick because they're just attached to things that I'm going to be doing anyway. Every day I wake up. Every day I eat lunch. Every day I get ready for bed. So, I attach the things that need to get done to those things. And then they're just natural rhythms. They are almost more like habits. 

And so, I teach you how to take that idea and set up routines where you need an actual routine, but set up rhythms where routines just aren't sticking, but you've got to get these things done for your life to feel like it's put together. I walk you through that in your entire life. 

It is a deep dive masterclass. It’s pouring into all the things like this about fixing your life, your calendar, your schedule, how your days feel like they're flowing. You walk out of Unburdened feeling a million times lighter. I think it's one of my favorite things to teach you guys.

Unburdened is only $99 too. Your Uncluttered Home is a higher price point. It’s so much bigger, thicker, and a huge undertaking, and Unburdened is less money, less time and packs a huge, powerful punch. 

And again, it only opens once a year. So even if you're not ready to do it right now, just get in while you can. The price usually goes up, and it's closing for at least six months, probably. I think, looking at my year, maybe more. 

But anyway, love you guys! We're done here. I hope this was super helpful for your back-to-school needs. 

Homeschoolers, if you didn't get what you need it's because the Simplify Your Homeschool course is legit every single thing that you'd ever need to simplify your homeschool. So, head over there and get that. 

I love you guys so much. Thanks for hanging out with me and I'll talk to you next time. 


This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend! See ya next time!

Hey mama! Just a quick note, this post may contain affiliate links.

Ep 112: Live Chat with Allie

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I think social media can be such a waste of time and on those same platforms where so much time is wasted, I love creating spaces that are intentional and inspire you to be better. I have a free Facebook group that’s really big, really fun, really engaged. It's an attachment of this podcast, a place where we discuss episodes. Discuss abundant life, simplicity, and intentional living for mothers and women of all types. It's such a cool place.

Once a month in that group, I do what is called an Allie Chat where I pull somebody out from the community there and we go live together. There was an Allie Chat recently with a woman named Christina who is just a gem. She asked such amazing questions about her motherhood. I loved the conversation we had and the audience loved the answers that I gave. It was such a powerful Allie Chat and I knew that I had to use it as an episode for The Purpose Show.

 
 

In This Episode Allie + Christina Discuss:

  • encouraging creative play in toddlers without living in constant mess

  • transitioning between seasons and when you need to change up your routines

  • self-care practices with and without your kids around

  • how the Enneagram empowered Allie’s marriage and relationships

Mentioned in this Episode:


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The Supermom Vault is a library of inspiration I created for you.  It holds replays of my very best online workshops that aren’t available anywhere else, tons of really actionable pdf’s that are downloadable with just one click, more than 20 audio and video trainings from me, and professionally designed printables for your home to keep you focused and inspired.

Check it out!  It’s a really good simple start.


who doesn't love a GIVEAWAY?

Reviews are everything on iTunes! Would you take a minute and click here to leave a review? Email hello@alliecasazza.com with a screenshot of your review on iTunes. You'll be entered to win one of Allie's amazing courses for FREE!  

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at hello@alliecasazza.com or connect with me over on Facebook & Instagram


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.


Hello, my beautiful, beautiful friend! I've got the coolest, most unique episode ever for you today.

I have this free Facebook group. If you're already a part of it, you know, but if you're not, you've got to get over there. I will link to it in the show notes for sure, or you could just search for it.

It's a free Facebook group that's really big, really fun, really engaged. The women there are just incredible. There's this energetic current that flows through that group, and that flows through me every time I spend time in there. It's really an amazing place to be on the internet, which is awesome because that's one of my biggest goals in my business. You know, I think social media can be such a waste of time and on those same platforms where so much time is wasted, I love creating spaces that are the opposite of wasted time.

I love creating spaces that are intentional and inspire you to be better. When you're on social media with me, you are bettering yourself, not wasting yourself. I love doing that. And this Facebook group is such a picture of that. It is The Purpose Show Community with Allie Casazza on Facebook. It's an attachment of this podcast—a place where we discuss episodes, discuss abundant life, simplicity, and intentional living for mothers and women of all types. It's such a cool place.

Once a month in that group, I do what is called an Allie Chat where I pull somebody out from the community there and we go live together. She gets to ask me basically anything she wants. It's really, really cool.

There was an Allie Chat recently with a woman named Christina who is just a gem. She's so cute, so sweet, so beautiful and amazing. She asked such amazing questions about her motherhood. I loved what she chose to ask me. I loved the conversation we had and the audience loved the answers that I gave. It was such a powerful Allie Chat and I knew that I had to use it as an episode for The Purpose Show.

We discussed a lot of things, but here’s a quick surface recap. We discussed encouraging creative play in toddlers without living in constant mess. We discussed transitioning between seasons and when you need to change up your routines—which is a really frequently asked question in my community so, I'm happy that I had a chance to answer it live with Christina. We discussed self-care practices with and without your kids around. We also discussed how the Enneagram empowered my marriage and relationships.

This is not doing it justice. This is a really powerful episode, so keep playing this. Put it on while you drive, while you go do whatever it is you're doing today. I encourage you to listen.

Thank you, Christina, for being a part of my community. Thank you for asking these important questions. Guys, enjoy this conversation. It’s so, so good.

ALLIE: Hi, can you hear me? How are you today? You look beautiful.

CHRISTINA: Thank you. I'm so excited to be here! I'm such a fan of yours. I'm so emotional already. I love you so much. You changed my life in so many ways. I'm just so excited. You're like my hero, so I'm just happy to chat. I got some coffee.

ALLIE: Oh my gosh. Okay. I left my coffee upstairs and right when I got on, I was like, “How awkward, on a scale of 1 to 10, would it be if I just hung up and ran to go grab it? No, it's fine. I’ve got water, and I should drink it.”

Okay. So, I have your questions here, but I would rather you ask them since you're here. I have them just in case we have tech issues or in case you couldn't come. I love what you asked though. And I saw that you have a Bella too!

CHRISTINA: I do! I actually named her after you. Not in a stalker-kind-of-way. But I love that name. I actually named her Isabella, but we call her Bella and she's just a little light in our lives though. I just saw that name and I think I first heard it from you.

ALLIE: Yeah, I love it. Well, when we named Bella we couldn't name her—well, we could have, but we didn't want to name her—Isabella because our last name is such a mouthful. I feel like it's a lot for a 2-year-old to be Isabella Casazza. It’s just a lot. And so, we just did Bella and I was feeling super unique. It was an old Italian name and every time we said it people were like, “Wow! That's really unique.” And then Twilight came out and ruined my life and made me super mad. Everyone was like, “Oh, I like Twilight, too. Are you going to have an Edward next?” Yeah, I hated everything for three years because it wouldn't stop.

So, talk to me about what you want to talk about today.

CHRISTINA: So, I've actually been through the decluttering process. I actually did it before I found you. So, I’m really on the other side of it. I post a lot in the group—testimony to how this minimalism thing can change your life and add time with your kids. But my kids are so little still, they are 4, 3, & 1.

So my first question is: After you have completed the decluttering process, how do you keep your toddler messes to a minimum without discouraging creative play?

My 4, 3, & 1-year-olds love exploring. We've gotten rid of so many toys. We have a box of Legos and some dolls. But they are so creative, they just get into all this stuff, you know? Like my 1-year-old is taking stuff out of the dressers. The 4 & 3-year-olds are pulling out the pots and pans. They want to dress up in mommy's clothes.

And for a while I was like, “Okay, I'm putting all the clothes up. I'm not letting you guys change six times a day.” And it worked for a little while, but I want my 4 & 3-year-olds to help, and I want them to learn. I don't want to do everything for them. So, I guess what is the balance between that? I don't want to put everything up so that they can't access it. I don't want to be doing everything for them, but I don't want to be walking around all day cleaning up all these random messes.

ALLIE: Yeah, totally. For me, in my experience, you're right at the point in motherhood where you go through these tiers. You go through these stages. I remember times when I thought, “Oh, are timeouts irrelevant now? Do I need to do something different because they're so old?” It's weird. You realize like, “Oh, I think it's time for this now.” And you're right at that point where it's time for them to help.

CHRISTINA: Even though it takes twice as long.

ALLIE: Yeah, oh my gosh, but that gets way better. And some moms don't have the vision that you have for your kids. They don't mind doing everything and that's not what they want for their kids. So, if you're watching and that’s you, disregard.

But for me, I really wanted my kids to help. I believe in chores. I want them to be helpful and not entitled. And that's just important to me. It gets so much easier when they're older. Now Bella and Leland are 10 and 8 and they do the dishes after dinner. Every once in a while if they have extra schoolwork or they've just had baseball and they're just really tired, I'll do it for them. But typically, they do that. And it's because, around the ages that your older two kids are, we implemented, “You get something out, you need to pick it up.” I'll help them if they need my help.

It's basically disregarding the idea in toddlers’ heads. There's this book called Happiest Toddler On The Block and it talks about how they're like cavemen and they don't know anything. When you have toddlers you have to say sentences like, “Please get your finger out of your nose while we're at this restaurant.” You have to explain the basics. So, thinking of it like that…they just don't know.

You're basically having to untrain them to just make a mess and not care. You have to teach them like: “Okay, new thing is being introduced: When you make a mess, you need to be polite and help clean it up.”

It's just a thing you have to spend your time on for a little bit.

But I'd like to encourage you, because you're in such a cool time, but also such a hard time. This is not something that I made sure they followed through on every single time. I wasn't a psycho about it. When you want something for your kids, it comes out of you for them. So, if you want your kids to be helpful when they make a mess, you're going to be able to fight that urge to clean it up. Call them back and say, “Hey guys, this looks awesome. What did you guys do with this? Tell me what you were playing. That's so fun. That's so great! Okay, let's clean it up though. We don't want to just leave it out.”

Make it fun. I was never like, “Get over here!” You don't have to be crazy about it. But when you make it fun, you just infuse that in your day. Of course, there were times when I was like, “Screw it. I'm just gonna clean it up. It's fine.” But typically it was me saying: “Hey guys, come back. Remember? What do we do after you play with something?”

Make them learn that it's just a part of their lifestyle. You've already done that with minimalism and toys and look at how your kids are.

CHRISTINA: Yeah, they’re so creative.

ALLIE: They don’t come to you saying, “I'm bored.” They know how to create, play, be innovative, and messy because that's all they know. Eventually cleaning up after themselves will be all they know and it will just happen. It's awesome and it's so worth it. I think that you can start to do that.

Also, I don't like this idea that people have: “Oh, having toddlers, is just messy. It just is what it is.”

When you're living life and having fun, you let things go. But it doesn't have to be like, “Oh I have toddlers so this is just a total crap show. It's always messy. It's always hard and I can't wait for them to get older so I can have a clean house.”  That's not a good mindset to carry.

But to some effect, when you have creative kids, they do get things out. They think the broom is a horse and they get it out and they play with it. It is to some extent part of it, but there's no reason they can't put the broom back when they're done. There's no reason that you should be running around putting things back by yourself anymore. You have the badge of honor that you have a 4-year-old and she can help put things away. That's just what I did.

What might help you is implementing what I called: “the dinnertime pick-up alarm.” When I made dinner, I would set an alarm for 10 minutes or 5 minutes. You can gauge the amount of time your kids can handle at their ages. Again, super fun. No one's in trouble here. We're just doing our family thing and you say, “Guys, it's time for our dinnertime pick-up dance party.” We would blast Taylor Swift and dance around.

Do you know about the laundry hamper trick? Have them pick up everything in the room and dump it in. It makes it easy because the laundry hamper can be pushed around on the floor by toddlers and they're not having to go and put everything away. They’re just putting it in the hamper.

Then you can make the call. Sometimes I would just go through the house after bedtime and put everything in the laundry hamper where it goes. Sometimes I would have them help me. Definitely as they got older, like once Bella turned 6, it was her job. Go put this in whoever’s room it belongs in. If it was my flip flops she would put them on the floor in my room, which was at least more helpful than them being downstairs on the floor, under the table, or wherever. But yeah, make it fun.

I think that moms struggle because they're exhausted and they don't feel fun, so they don't make things fun and normal life things feel like a punishment. And that's when kids freak out. My son, Leland, has always been my harder one. He'd be grunting, stubborn, and saying, “I'm not going to do it.” All because I sounded like, “Guys what the heck? What is wrong with everybody? Why is it so messy? Pick up right now.”

But if you set a timer and play music, and you're helping and just dancing around, and you say, “Look, let's see who can put the stuff in the hamper the fastest.” How could they not want to? Toddlers love that.

Even if it was super fake and I was really annoyed and didn't feel it, I still made it fun. It’s like a fake-it-till-you-make-it thing, because then you do eventually feel like that and the kids catch that and they like it.

Then that solves the problem that your house feels really messy and it's all on you. If you implement that just every once in a while—having them clean up after themselves, reminding them, calling them back, and then you implement a nighttime pick-up party—then you've solved your problem.

And you can do that. It could be after every meal, you just say, “We just finished a meal. What do we do?”

CHRISTINA: That way it’s more often because I definitely need it at least three or four times a day.

ALLIE:  Yeah, you can do that whenever you want, five times a day, once a day, whatever. I think the key is to just make it fun. Infuse that into them and make them feel like, “Wow! You're such a help to me.” You know when people feel valued—it doesn’t matter if they’re 3 or if they're 90—if they feel valued, they want to show up for that.

There’s this marriage book that I read a long time ago. I think it was called For Women Only, and basically there was this section in there that changed my life and I've applied it to my marriage and everywhere else. It talked about when you want somebody to do something, telling them that they suck and they need to do better doesn't do anything.

If you told your husband, “I just want you to know I think that you're so romantic and you did this (insert small thing that wasn't really romantic, but you're just trying to praise him) and it just really made me feel loved and I felt really close to and I love you.” He's going to notice that and respond by doing another romantic thing instead of you saying, “Why can't you be romantic?” Do you see what I'm saying? Apply that to your kids. If you make them feel valued, make them feel like they’re so good at cleaning up, that’s going to make them want to be better at cleaning up instead of you nagging them.

CHRISTINA: That's awesome. I love that. I use a lot of Wendy Snyder's praises. I love her. And this morning I was asking my toddler—the second one, she's 3-years-old—“Could you please put that up? And she was like, “Nope, I'm not doing it.”

So I said, “Oh my gosh, could you do it as fast as you can? I'm going to set the timer.” Then my 4-year-old came running in and she's like, “Can I do it too, please?”

So, yeah, I need to remember to keep it fun because sometimes I'll definitely be like, “Oh my gosh, why is this room such a mess?” You know?

ALLIE: Yeah, yeah. I just did that yesterday. I freaked out and I was like, “Wait, okay guys, sorry. It doesn't matter how you've messed up today. It doesn't make it okay for me to mess up and I just messed up and I yelled, and I'm sorry. Let's just hit the reset button. Let’s clean up and then let's go downstairs.”

We have this little jar of Hershey Kisses that are for Emmett when he goes potty in the toilet. And I was like, “Let's clean up and let's go downstairs and everyone can have a Hershey Kiss because I think we all need chocolate right now.” And they just laughed. It fixed the day.

I think shifting that perspective in yourself is so powerful. And you can also solve your problem. You don't have to have “good moms don't have sticky floors and messy whatever and it’s a crap show, but at least I'm having fun with my kids” mentality. You can have both.

CHRISTINA: It's good to hear that you're on the other side of that too. That's awesome. I think one thing that they do really well now is they lay out their clothes and they get dressed in the morning. That took forever, but now they're doing it on some level.

ALLIE: Amazing. Yeah, that's amazing. It’s a little thing that trims our morning down a little bit. For me, my son Leland, has definitely been my tougher one. He’s weird about his socks and shoes. There couldn’t be any bumps. He would just take forever. So, I was thinking, ‘How can we fix this when we have to go in the morning?’ Having him try his socks on at night before bed. While I got Emmett’s teeth brushed and got Hudson in his pajamas, Leland's working out his sock issues and then he lays them out and they're ready for the next morning. He already knows that they are going to work and he's happy with them. Those are mom hacks that you don't think about because you're drowning.

So, I know that you had a question about life transitions and routines and stuff.

CHRISTINA: I can read that one. How can you tell when it is time to transition to a new season of life and change up certain routines? I don't want to stay stuck in my routines if they are not serving me.

I’m the kind of person who gets into a routine and can get a little lazy in that. For example, my baby, I'm nursing her at night and a lot of times I'll bring her in the bed and snuggle her. She’s probably at that point where I can start getting up early again. She's sleeping a little bit better, but I'm still stuck in that routine. She's in the bed in the morning, so I'll just sleep in. I'm enjoying that time with her. But I feel like a lot of times we start doing something that's working for us and boom, it changes, you know? Like for you, putting your kids in school and then taking them out. I had such respect for that when I listened to that episode where it's okay to change your mind. You know? If it's not working for your family, you don't have to follow through with it.

So just do you have any examples or tips there?

ALLIE: You like that time. You don't seem ready. I don't know if everyone has this. I talked to a few friends about it and they all agreed so, I don’t know if it’s a mom-thing for everybody, but when I was nursing, I really enjoyed it. My other two babies had issues and they wouldn't nurse. So, when Hudson and Emmett nursed, I just held onto that and it was so sweet for me. Emmett nursed for a really long time. He nursed for almost two years and Hudson nursed for nine months. And at the end of both of those journeys I started to feel different about it. My skin would kind of crawl and I would just kind of be like, “Oh. Ugh, we have to sit down and nurse.”

I feel like it's God's way of getting our bodies ready. It’s like at the end of the pregnancy you're like, look, I don't care how much it hurts, get out of me. It's like your mother's natural way of closing a season off. I think it's beautiful, and I think it's really, really beneficial when your life allows you to make decisions based on that. And you don't have to go and do something else and stop when you're not ready. So, you don't seem ready. Enjoy that. Snuggle her. Sleep in a little bit. Enjoy that sweet time and look for other ways in your life that you could fit things in. Unless you're Type A and you just love routine. I’m not, and being really rigid makes me feel super trapped.

But the fact is, spontaneous or not, the laundry has to get washed, the dishes have to get run, meals have to be cooked, things have to move forward for our houses to run smoothly and for our families to be taken care of.

So, in our family that role is split now between Brian and I. But before it wasn't. It was on me. And so, those are what should be routine. What are the things that absolutely must happen for you guys to function well? Don't put things that are an ideal in your routine right now. Just enjoy sleeping in with your baby girl. Soak up that time and then just know, okay after that I get the girls breakfast, then I put a load of laundry in,  and that's my morning routine. Whatever it is.

The way you know that it's time to switch transitions and bring in a new routine or let go of an old one is when you're like that nursing-skin-crawling-feeling, so to speak, in your life. It should serve you and you can tell when something is serving you versus when it's really inconvenient. You know that feeling when you just feel like everything is just a mess and you feel like, man I need to get my ish together... Like now...This is just not working?

But it depends on your life season where that routine goes. If you feel like that, but you love that snuggle time in the morning and you don't have to be at work at 9:00 AM or you don't have anything, you can fit in your morning routine somewhere else. Make it work for your life. It should feel good. Maybe you snuggle with your baby girl in the morning but at nap time instead of watching Netflix, you first switch the laundry and run the dishwasher, then you veg out and watch Netflix. You can fit it in wherever it works for you right now. It should make you feel like, “Oh that's good, that's really good.” It shouldn't make you feel like, “Oh man, I have to get up. I have to.” Unless you're a working mom and you've got to get up and go. That's a different story.

CHRISTINA: Yeah. Okay. That makes sense. And I think you're right. I feel to be productive, I need to get up at 5:00 AM, get all my meditation and blah, blah, blah. But I do get that stuff in. I just don't do it super early. I think you're right. It feels good right now, and I’m enjoying her.

ALLIE: I didn't even start doing a super early morning routine until I started getting up early and working on my business when Emmett was one—because that was our story. That's when the idea hit me. That's when it needed to happen. But with all my other kids, I didn't do early morning things until they were two. I think people look now and my youngest is 4 ½; That's why I get up at 5:00 and go exercise, then come home and meditate, and have a good time with my family. It seems so easy and smooth now because I have no babies. Just know your season.




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CHRISTINA: Okay, now my next question is: What is your go to self-care when you're just feeling done? What's something you do that helps?

ALLIE: Do you want something that you can bring your kids to? Or something where you’re leaving and getting away?

CHRISTINA: How about one of each?

ALLIE: Okay. So, for myself, I could have no makeup on, have my hair in a topknot because it hasn’t been washed in six days, but if I have a manicure, I feel on top of the world. So, I always have my nails painted and pretty fresh because it makes me feel so good. Maybe think of something like that.

I feel like as women, if we feel good physically then it transfers. If you feel like crap (just getting real here: you've got no bra, sweaty under boob and you're feeling like you're gross), then you feel gross.

What’s the one thing that just makes you feel really, really good? I have a friend who's a little more high maintenance than me and she really loves facials. And so, she found a place to get a cheap organic facial and she goes every week on Wednesday morning. And that's her thing.

It could be like that or it could be less extreme. Going for a drive, getting yourself a chai tea latte—or whatever vice it is—and just going for a drive by yourself.

Then with the kids, I've switched back and forth between two things. We live in California, so the weather isn't really something I have to worry about. So, when we're having a day where homeschooling isn't clicking, everyone's just pissy and bickering, I'm done, I'm yelling, I'm not who I want to be, then it's time to get out of there. You need a change of scenery.

If it was raining or cold, we would take a drive. I would buckle the kids up. There's something magical about your kids being stuck in their car seats when they're driving you crazy. We would just listen to the music and just relax.

Then the other thing we would do, which was my favorite thing, which you might've heard me say before, is, I would get my headphones, get my phone, pack the kids up, get them all ready to go and take them to the park. There was this one park where there was a playground and a little sidewalk to walk around. It wasn’t really wide, but it went right around the playground so I could see them wherever I was. I would just put my headphones in and watch my kids play and listen to a podcast, something that encouraged me.

CHRISTINA: Yeah, like The Purpose Show?

ALLIE: What is the issue? Did you have a fight with your husband and you feel like you're having a crappy day? Listen to a marriage podcast. Are you struggling with one of your strong-willed kids? Listen to a parenting podcast.

Or maybe you need to exit the arena of whatever is causing stress that day, then don't listen to that. Listen to something for yourself. Get something in your head because words are powerful and when you're having a bad day and you put positive words literally in your head, you're going to leave that park different and your kids got their energy out. We would blow off nap time and just go whenever we needed to. And even if it was like 20 minutes, it changed the feel of the day.

CHRISTINA: Yeah, I love that. I do that. We have bad weather right now, but I'll just go to like Chick-fil-a if I can or an indoor playground. But yeah. I definitely use the podcast thing, but it's always you. Why are you doing one podcast a week? Please up it.

ALLIE: Good, that’s what it’s there for.

CHRISTINA: Okay. That was very helpful. Thank you.

Okay, so my last question is: What would you say has been the biggest impact of studying the Enneagram on yourself, your husband, and your kids? I am fascinated by the Enneagram. Yeah, I think I'm a 9.

ALLIE: Are you? They’re all great, but there are certain ones that I think I just kind of vibe with more because of my personality. It was funny because I'm such a dork. We were having a get-together at our house and I basically made everyone pick what they were on the Enneagram. I just wanted to know. All of my friends are like 2’s or 9’s. I think the biggest impact was marital for me.

I know I've shared about this on the podcast and it's repetitive, but I always could cry when I talk about it because I just felt so excluded all the time. I felt like I didn't belong anywhere. I didn't always fit in the mom circles. Like can we talk about something other than what Sippy Cup doesn't leak? I didn't get along with a lot of moms. I wanted to talk about marketing and blogging.

CHRISTINA: You’re passionate. You’re fiery.

ALLIE: Yeah. I'm super blunt and my sarcastic sense of humor would sometimes not go over well. I didn't fit in the business industry because they're all like, “Oh, where do you summer?” And I’m like, “I don't. I have a million kids.” I always felt my whole life, even as a kid, like I didn't belong anywhere and like I always needed to tone it down. “Relax” was basically the message that I got all the time from everyone.

And the Enneagram showed me, when I figured out that I was an 8 and I looked at what that meant, it was like my identity and who God made me to be. It was like a light was shone on it. I just cried. I felt so at peace and like, “Oh my gosh! It makes sense why I would take something basic and have to run with it and do way more than anyone else thought I would do with it because I'm passionate about it.

Especially being a woman and being an 8, when Brian and I would have friends, couple friends and stuff, the husband never liked me. They always seemed irritated or intimidated by me. I noticed that even being a teenager, and then especially after I started my business and our friends would see things online about the success of the business. Relationships changed. I never got along with my friends’ husbands; they just wouldn't like me.

And so, the Enneagram helped me see that I'm just super driven. I'm made to be an entrepreneur. I'm just powerful, confident, fiery, and blunt. That doesn't mean that it's an excuse to be rude or anything, but it's helpful to know yourself. Then knowing that and then seeing that Brian is a 2, we have always felt like we were the opposite of what we needed to be. I learned that it's not that. It's actually that we're just the opposite of tradition, and the traditional roles we were in almost split us up and they caused so much unfulfillment, drama, and just fighting.

And so, when I took the Enneagram, it really helped me step into my role and who I am. No matter who that threatens and no matter what other moms think about that. For Brian, he was like, “This is crazy. I’m literally designed to be a support. And I love supporting you, but I always felt weird about it. Like, am I nuts? Am I doing something wrong? Am I supposed to be the provider? What's going on?” So that was really liberating for us.

With my kids, I feel like I'm still figuring them out. I couldn't say that I know what all their numbers are right now. But I'm aware of the different attributes of the Enneagram and the different personality types and it's helped me see those in them and in my parents and siblings.

I have three siblings, so you know, those relationships are sometimes weird. I'm really close with one of my brothers, but my other two I'm like, “I need to figure you out. Are you being really rude or what's your problem?” The communication there, you know? And so, it's helped me see there's not somebody that's wrong and somebody that's right. There's not somebody that's annoying and somebody that's funny. It's just a personality thing. It's been really liberating in that way.

CHRISTINA: That's awesome. I think for me, my husband and I are kind of like the more traditional roles. He is a 3. Which one is the achiever? 3 or 6? I don't remember. He really works on his image and has to be very successful. It really means a lot to him. And I'm more or less like, “Just let's not fight. Everybody get along.” You know, the peacemaker. So yeah, for us it is a little bit more traditional, but I love how you embrace what you are.

It’s sad that the world hasn't come to that yet. I feel like in this age we should be at a point where we're accepting each other. I think that your accepting that about yourself is just awesome. Especially Brian, who is just so sweet. I just love him. He's so cute. I love you guys.

ALLIE: He's so funny when he does the podcast. I always say, “You don't have to be on anything. I never want you to feel like you have to.” And he's always like, “Oh no, I really want to.” He'll come to me with ideas and then we sit down to do it. I always have my hand on his knee and I can feel him tensing up, and we have to do seven takes in the beginning of the episode. He's like, “Okay, I got it now.” And then we'll just go with it and totally flow and the episode is great. But it's so funny to me because he seems so nervous and tense and I'm like, “You don't have to be on here.” He's always like, “I'm just thinking about all those people listening.” And I'm like, “Why would you think about that? I never think about that. I just do my thing.”

It's just funny that you can be so different, but you can still show up in the same way. He can still show up and serve people, it’s just different. It doesn't take him one take with no mess ups, like it does me. It's cool to learn how to be patient with each other's quirks and stuff.

CHRISTINA: Yeah. That's awesome. That's the last question I have.

ALLIE: That’s the last one on the list. I try not to look at every single thing that's typed up because I don't want to come in pre-prepped, but it's helpful in case people don't show up or whatever. But I saw the topics that you picked and I was like, “Oh! This is going to be so good!” And I was really excited.

Thank you for caring, listening to the show, and showing up with amazing questions. You are just such a light. You are. You’re just doing a great job. You're beautiful, shiny, bright, and amazing. You're inspiring to me. So just know that.

CHRISTINA: Thank you. I wish you could see how many women that your life has touched.

I mean I'm sure you see it in some aspects, but there's a lot of women where I share your message and they're constantly messaging me like, “Oh my gosh! This is changing my life. I'm actually scheduling time to get down on the floor and play with my kids.”

I'm your biggest fan. I share you all the time. Your messages are just so good. It's so good. It’s so important that this message gets out there because there are just so many moms that look at each other and they go, “Oh, that's just how life is. It just sucks. It's always a mess. Your kids are always going to be either in a pile of crap or you're going to suffer cleaning all day long.”

ALLIE: There's a lot of shame in being a total mess mom, and there's also another level of shame in not being that. Not that I have it all together. There's always something that's kind of dropped off. If I'm killing it at the business one day, then my house is a little messy. If I'm killing it at motherhood then, in the business some things didn't get done. There's always a balance, but I think there's a different level of shame that comes in when you are doing well and loving it. There's shame in that and it's awful.

CHRISTINA: It is awful. How do you respond to them? I mean I know that's your business, that's your heart. But for people who follow you, and we want to share this and want to share you. Usually I'm just like, “Okay, there's this girl named Allie…”

I'm the peacemaker and I don't want to rile people up. But when I see these people posting, a lot of times on social media, things like: “My house is a crap mess.” I hesitate to comment because I don't want to shame them. I want them to see that there's a light, but I also don't want to make myself look like I'm better than them or anything. What would you suggest if you see people posting things like that? Even if they are asking for help, what's a good way to say that this message is out there, without being rude and without shaming them?

ALLIE: Yeah, I understand that because that's my job. I love marketing so much, but it is so hard to figure out the marketing message behind what I do without coming across as preachy. I can't even tell you how many hours and hours and hours Brian and I have poured into it. Especially him being a guy, he'll say, “Why don't you just say this?” And I'm like, “Okay, if I said that—that was a guy thing to say because I would never get a follower again.”

It's very hard to say, “I can help you,” without it sounding like, “because I'm better than you.” And that is not my heart at all. What I would say and what I've been doing is thinking about it like it's a story that you're telling and you've been there. You've stood where they're standing and you came out of it. Come at it with that heart, like you're doing them a service by telling them, “Oh my gosh, yes! I could have posted a picture just like this times 10 last year. Have you ever heard of (whatever)? It's been such a lifesaver for me.”

I always try to say, “I'm not going to preach at you. I'm not gonna tell you exactly what to do, but rather just help you shift your perspective so you can figure it out yourself.” That's just how I've done it. Tell a story that started exactly in that photo: “That was my photo and now it's not, and it doesn't have to stay that way.” Rather than, “You should…” Never say “should.”

You know what really breaks my heart too, is when I get tagged in something and it's something like that. I wish there was a way to remove that tag. I do not want to be associated with: “You should look at Allie. You can be way better than this. She'll just help you.” No. That is not what I do. I hate it.

It's a problem and, especially, I think, mothers are very protective over their role and what they're doing, and it can feel convicting because of what’s within their own selves. So you can't control that. But I think if you can look at the comment and you're like, “This isn't preachy. This is funny and relatable and I’ve stood where you stood,” and it’s helpful, then it's a green light, you know?

CHRISTINA: Yeah. Awesome.

ALLIE: Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me. I'm so happy that you're here. Really. This was so good and you're just amazing. I'm really thankful for you taking the time away from your kids to talk to me and help the ladies that are going to watch this later and that are watching right now. Thank you so much.

CHRISTINA: Thank you so much for having me. I just want to say to anybody listening that hasn't been down the journey before, it's so, so, so worth the work. Get one of Allie’s courses. Anything she has is amazing and it changes your life. So yeah. Team Allie!

ALLIE: Thank you Christina. I just adore you. I will talk to you later.



This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend! See ya next time!

Hey mama! Just a quick note, this post may contain affiliate links.

Ep 109: Let's Talk About Life, Business & Motherhood with Reina Pomeroy

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Reina Pomeroy is a business coach for creatives, the Founder of Reina + Co., and mama to two little boys. She is incredibly talented and successful in all she does! She has mastered being the CEO of her business AND the CEO of her home (because doing both takes strategic balance!)

This episode is a super laid back conversation between two working mamas talking all things business, motherhood, pregnancy, infertility, rhythms and routines, getting it all done, and fitting it all in. I am so excited to share this conversation with you!

 
 

In This Episode Allie + Reina Discuss:

  • What “batching” is and how you can apply this method to various areas of your life.

  • A BIG way you can simplify your meal planning and grocery shopping (seriously, this is life changing!)

  • The systems Reina has put in place so she can fully show up as the CEO of her business and her family.

  • How important Team Meetings are to their families and what those look like each week.

  • Reina’s current reading list (there are so really good books on this list!)

Mentioned in this Episode:


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The Supermom Vault is a library of inspiration I created for you. It holds replays of my very best online workshops that aren’t available anywhere else, tons of really actionable pdf’s that are downloadable with just one click, more than 20 audio and video trainings from me, and professionally designed printables for your home to keep you focused and inspired.

The Supermom Vault is only $39.00 and is available at alliecasazza.com/allcourses.

Check it out!  It’s a really good simple start.

Want more inspiration than just the podcast? Do you wish there were more episodes?  Want more details? Do you want videos? Do you want pdf’s? Do you want to download things and get your hands on something to really get you started when it comes to minimalism and simplifying your motherhood?

This is definitely the place to go!


who doesn't love a GIVEAWAY?

Reviews are everything on iTunes! Would you take a minute and click here to leave a review? Email hello@alliecasazza.com with a screenshot of your review on iTunes. You'll be entered to win one of Allie's amazing courses for FREE!  

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at hello@alliecasazza.com or connect with me over on Facebook & Instagram


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.


ALLIE: Friend, I am so ready to share this really chill, really friendly conversation with Reina Pomeroy. Reina is such a beautiful person and she actually has a really special place in my heart because she used to host this podcast, actually, it was co-hosted. It was The Creative Empire podcast. I'll share a link to my episode. It was such a really great podcast. It's not active anymore, but I did my first ever business interview on her podcast.

It was the first time that I ever got to share my business story, which if you have listened to episode six of The Purpose Show you know that's a really emotional story. I sobbed and she sobbed and her cohost, Christina, another beautiful soul, she sobbed. We all talked together about the emotions that are involved in starting a business and seeing it start to succeed and getting through the hard parts.

Reina has been somebody that I have followed for years and she's just amazing. She's a certified coach and a founder of her own business called Reina + Co. She created this really amazing program called Dreamy Client Magnet. Basically, she helps creative entrepreneurs get super laser focused so they can book more of their dream clients with a lot more ease, get paid to do what they love, and have freedom and flexibility to enjoy the life they built, which I think is super important and one reason I love following Reina because she doesn't just focus on business and marketing stuff. She focuses on life, living it well and enjoying what you built.

She's an amazing speaker, a certified coach, an educator, an author, a podcaster. I just adore her. She has been featured all kinds of cool places including top itunes podcast Entrepreneur.com, The Influencer Podcast, Entrepreneur On Fire, Brit & Co, Huffington Post, The Rising Tide Society. This girl is everywhere and for good reason.

She's an amazing teacher and like I said, a beautiful person. She is a mom to a 5-year old. She was about to have her second baby when we recorded this episode. He has been born and the family is happy and healthy. I'm so happy for them.

We really went a different way with this episode. I came into this conversation with almost no notes. I really wanted to talk with Reina about how she finds her version of balance in being a business owner, a mom and a wife. How do her and her husband connect and plan out their weeks? How’s she preparing for her baby's arrival? How does she seemingly do so much, so well? What does life look like for her right now?

This is a really, really loose-structure episode. Normally I come a lot more pre-prepped and I really didn't want to do that with Reina. I see her as a friend and I really wanted to approach this episode in that way. So, if conversations about all the things between two working moms is not your thing, then maybe this episode is not going to float your boat. But it definitely made me happy to sit and talk with my friend and just hear what she had to say about so many different things from business, motherhood, pregnancy, infertility, rhythms and routines, getting it all done, and fitting it all in. This is a great conversation that I'm happy to share with you.

There is so much that is mentioned in this episode, so many good resources. I’ll link to all of it in the show notes so you can go there if you want to see anything that Reina mentioned. She's one of those girls that’s loaded with resources, so she shared lots of helpful things. I will link to all of them in show notes and you can check all of that out.

And now let's welcome Reina and have a conversation about all the things.

ALLIE: Hi Reina, thank you for being here.

REINA: Thank you so much for having me.

ALLIE: I'm so excited to talk with you today. We just chit-chatted a little bit before we hit record, but I wanted to save all of the things for our actual talk because I feel like you're a friend even though we've never hung out in real life. You give that vibe on social media, which I think is that you’re doing your job really well. I love watching your Instagram stories. You're one of those people that I feel connected to. You're so sweet and honest and it feels like we have so much in common. I'm excited to talk with you today.

REINA: I feel the exact same way. I talk about you all the time as though we are in real life friends, and we live in California now.

ALLIE: I saw that. I was going to ask you about it, like, “When are we gonna try to squeeze something in before you squeeze your baby out in the next two weeks? Tomorrow? Yes. Oh my gosh.”

Okay. There's so much with you that I want to unpack and talk about but, first of all, you are about to have your second baby. So how are you feeling? How's it going?

REINA: I'm feeling great. You know, people assume that at 38 weeks you're just a complaining mess of stress and uncomfortableness. Rolling over in bed is like an Olympic sport. Let's just be really clear about that. But otherwise I'm feeling great.

You know, like you said, I'm a business owner so I'm getting that part ready and I'm getting my son ready, who’s five, and just kind of getting everything here ready. I actually don't know if your family is nearby but we have no family here in northern California. We are both transplants. We have no real family support system. So that's been really hard. But we're managing and we're making it work and I'm actually pretty excited about this next phase.

ALLIE: Yeah, I totally get that. I just did an interview on somebody else's podcast about when we moved out of state and we had no one. We didn't. We went from being so immersed in…we had a church that we had gone to for years and all of our family was nearby and then we moved to literally nobody. There was somebody that went to our high school, but they were two hours from us. They were so sweet and drove and met us once, but it was not the same thing and it was so hard. So yeah, I get that.

So where are you in northern California? We’re in southern California.

REINA: We're in Silicon Valley, so we're right north of San Jose.

ALLIE: Okay. That’s not too far; we can make it happen.

Since we're chatting about it a little bit already, tell me how you have been getting ready to be a mom of two. I know people will tell you, “Oh it's so hard to go from one to two,” and “Oh two to three is really hard.” I feel like everybody has these usually negative opinions about growing your family. What has that looked like for you? What are you nervous about? How have you been getting ready? What's been going on in your world in terms of mom's stuff?

REINA: I feel like we've had so much time to get ready and also no time at all. And I've heard the same thing - that going from two to three is hard, from one to two is hard. Zero to one was hard, so I have no idea. I have no sense of what to really expect here. But I think the biggest thing is paying attention and giving myself space to do whatever needs to happen.

I think the first time I was very reactive to…I had to read all the things and make sure I knew all the things, read all the blogs and stuff like that. And this time I'm just paying attention to what my family is needing. What do I need right now? And making sure that all that is in check, instead of looking outside of myself to do all that research. Obviously, listening to my doctors and stuff.

ALLIE: I know what you mean. For most people and for me, I think after your first baby you stop being like, “I need everyone to tell me how this works,” and you start being more intuitive, I guess. And for me, my second, third and fourth and thousandth babies (that’s what it feels like)…

REINA: I have so much to learn from you.

ALLIE: But you're on the right track like that. Having done this so many times, the one thing that I have learned is if you feel concerned about something or you think that you might need to prepare for something, I think there’s a reason that came to your mind. We're all different. I was chosen to be the mom of these kids, like you were chosen to be the mom of those babies. There's a reason that something is concerning you versus somebody else.

That's why I think we should stop judging each other and decide what we think is right. You know?

I think it's empowering when your intuition kicks in and you feel like, “I think I want to focus on this right now, or worry about this right now.”

REINA: Yeah, I totally agree with that.

ALLIE: Good for you.

In sharing whatever you want of this, but I know from being an Instagram friend that you guys have had a really frustrating journey to pregnancy and you've struggled with infertility in a way that's unique I think. Do you want to share a little bit about that struggle?

REINA: Yeah. So, the first time around we got married and then we waited for however long we waited and then you're like, “Oh, maybe we should start trying.” And then the next month I was pregnant. I felt lucky, it was great, and I had a really easy pregnancy. We thought we would have the same kind of experience the second time. We waited till our son was maybe 1 ½ then 2 years-old and started trying and nothing happened. Then they say, “Well it'll take about a year.” You’re not “in trouble” until about a year. And then a year passed. And then a year and a half passed. And it always felt like there was no answer.

We didn't start getting serious until we moved out to California and I was like, “You know what? My son is going to be five. That is a big gap.” We started to see infertility consults and trying to figure out what the heck was going on, and really started taking my health seriously. I was wondering what was going on with me. I assumed that it was about me, right? My husband got tested too, but neither of us had any sort of diagnosis about what was wrong.

We didn't experience loss or anything like that, thankfully. But at the same time, it was equally frustrating to not know anything. They just call it an ‘undiagnosed secondary infertility.’ What does that even mean? How can you not diagnose what's wrong?

ALLIE: And how can you try to fix it?

REINA: We were trying to figure out what was wrong and then how to make sure that we can have a second baby because we both looked healthy from the outside, and from the inside…all of the lab work, all the poking and prodding that they did to us. That was really scary and hard.

We started down the IUI path, which is the less invasive path. I think it has a 10% success rate each time you do it. Something might take; something might not take. But it's usually the precursor to the IVF path and they decided that IUI wouldn't be a good option for us. So we were like, “Okay, I guess we'll go through the IVF path,” and it's ungodly expensive. It's like $30,000 or $40,000 to go down this path.

As an entrepreneur it's a really big expense and you don't want to think about it like, “Oh my child is going to cost $40,000 to create.” That's not the mindset I wanted to go into this pregnancy with. But we were trying to figure out all those costs options and whatnot. We’re grateful because we have really great insurance and whatnot, but it's still really scary.

As soon as we signed all the papers, I had this sense of relief that it was going to get taken care of, or we had an answer and we were going to get something to happen. Because I think not knowing was the most difficult part for me. It was like all the medications, all those shots and stuff that I would have to endure…fine, I'll take care of it. But not knowing was really hard.

Once we signed the papers, I had this sense of relief. Two days later I found out I was pregnant. Once all the papers were signed and all the documents in…it was just a God thing, I think. One of those random things that I could not have anticipated, and maybe that sense of relief or whatever happened that the baby was ready to be brought into our lives. So, I feel really lucky.

ALLIE: Do you feel maybe the process of deciding to…I mean that's a lot of money, especially as an entrepreneur. I immediately went to, “that's half a launch.” Do you think you stating audibly, “Okay, we're willing to do this,” maybe got you more ready for the baby or something and maybe your body aligned with that?

REINA: That's really interesting that you bring that up. I don't know if there was a moment or whatever, and that could be one of the speculations, but one of the spheres that I had, and I had journaled about it a lot right before we couldn't figure out what was actually happening was “maybe my business is never going to be ready to have a second child.” Not that my body wasn't ready, but maybe my business wasn't going to be ready.

I had a little bit of a fear around will my business survive if I have another child. Because the first time around I took a maternity leave from a 9-5, so I had that cushion. And this time around we're taking a maternity leave and it's solely from me paying myself from my company. That was pretty scary to me. Maybe that was part of it and just being okay with the fact that I was going to be able to sustain myself.

ALLIE: There’s so there's so many terrifying things about being your own boss. So many liberating. I mean you have those moments where you're like, “Just forget this. I'm going to go back to how things were. It was way easier.” But then you think about all the freedom you're losing. I totally understand.

For me and my business, I didn't even start it until we were done with our whole family. So, I've never had that like, “Okay, time to make this transition.” It was…for a lack of not wanting to cuss on my show…a crap show from day one.  We had all four of them and everything. It was just a different story.

When you need a break, whether it's from maternity or anything, you're giving yourself that or you're not able to and it's on you. Everything is on you.

REINA: I've gotten a lot of DM’s on Instagram recently, “Wait, you're taking maternity leave? Are you paying yourself?” I'm actually glad that people are asking about these things because we should be asking about these things, right? You deserve as an entrepreneur to take time off for your baby, to recover, to bond with your child and hope to goodness that you can pay yourself in that time because it's darn hard. I feel really grateful that I have a business that has allowed me to do that. I'm planning on taking four months.

ALLIE: Good for you! That's amazing. Do you think you’re going to be like, “Oh I want to go back?”

REINA: I don't know how you felt, but I will probably feel like a Zombie for a good 2 months, and then I'll probably start trickling back in and be like, “Hey, tell me what's going on.” My team has a pretty good system of how we're going to check in and stuff like that, so I'm not completely isolated. But yeah, I think I'm going to be in the space of, “Can somebody just please talk to me? I just need some adult time.”

ALLIE: Well, we love what we do. It's refreshing to get a break. I had a burnout last year and I took eight weeks off. After four weeks I was starting to…I would imagine if I was having a baby right now, it would be very similar. “I'm actually scared of how little I want to talk about my business. I think I'm done. I'm just so annoyed with everybody and burned out.” After the third or fourth week, I never wanted to work more in my life and I wanted to go back. “Let’s launch. Let's just go all back into it.” I think it would probably be the same if I was having a baby right now. I just never did that in my business.

You have so much going on. You’re a very active businessperson. You do a lot. You're one of those people that always seems to be coming out with the new content. You do these amazing challenges and videos. You always are doing something. I know that you have a client-based business so you're always serving them in that way. I admire you for all the things you're always putting out. Your Instagram is so inspiring. I really love what you do.

I know it's an annoying question because there's really no typical, but what does the most typical day in your life look like? How do you block out your work versus your family? Is Cato at home with you? What does your day look like?

REINA: I think it's hard, like you said, with the “typical” cause there's not really a typical, but my work hours are typically 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM. I work from 10:00 to 3:00ish and I try not to work in the evenings. I really try to focus on whatever is in front of me with family and stuff like that, unless there's a launch or something like that happening. I will wake up in the morning and take care of my family, drop off Cato at preschool. He starts kindergarten in the fall, which is sad and exciting at the same time.

ALLIE: It's such a fun and cute time. You're going to love it.

REINA: Yeah, it's just really exciting. He loves school and loves his friends and stuff like that. I love sending him to school because he just really enjoys that atmosphere. During the day…in the morning I like to get brainwork done, either writing or some kind of content creation or something like that. And then I'll take client meetings in the afternoon or interviews in the afternoon when I have a little bit less energy. I'm an extrovert, so I love the connection process. The afternoon is a great time for that. I'm usually cutting off my “work” around 2:30 or 3:00, check my email one last time, wrap things up, and then I'm rolling out the door to pick up the Cato again. In the afternoon and evening we're doing homework or school things that are required.

ALLIE: It’s like you shift into that mode, right?

Like I said in the beginning before we recorded, I'm being selfish and just asking things that I want to know because we have so much in common and I never get to talk to other moms. One thing that I really struggle with as an introvert is, I run out of steam. I will run out so early in the day. That’s why it was okay that this time was okay because I was like, “Well, it's Reina. We'll just talk and it'll be awesome.” But if it was somebody that I never had any interaction with… it just takes a lot out of me. I would have been like, “I think I have to cancel. I'm dying.” My energy, it just leaves. This morning I had a creative meeting, then a decision-making meeting and then I wrote an email and I was like, “It is 11:30 and I'm done.” Do you feel that way or because you're an extrovert is there any part of you that can always keep going? I feel like I need a nap and I'm done and then I still have to do all the mom things. Do you struggle with that still?

REINA: No, I think that…well right now I definitely do. Around 2:00 I'll hit a wall because I'm pregnant. But usually when I'm not pregnant, I think that as an extrovert I feel like I need to get outside. I usually get outside around 11:00 in the morning to walk my dog. Then in the afternoon I'll walk or go do something fun a little bit like sit by the pool or something like that. I don't know what it is about being outside and the California sunshine, but it really does help me.

Maybe it's an extravert thing, but when I connect with my clients and stuff like that, it doesn't drain me. It doesn't feel like, “Uh, I don't want to do this.” But the things like the brainwork - that takes the most energy for me to sit down and concentrate. I have to get it done in the morning or I'm like, screw it.

ALLIE: Yeah, I'm the same way. And if there's one big thing that can be done per day…I know you relate…in my DM inbox, there's always like, “How do you get it all done? You're always making up new things.” And it's like, “Girl, you don't realize those were batched way long ago.” Like tomorrow on my calendar is to sit and write the emails for a launch that's coming in a month. And that's the only thing on my calendar, and I'm done after that. It's probably going to take me an hour and a half, but that's it. I'll be a Zombie.

REINA: I'm so impressed that an email series is only going to take you an hour and a half. Give me that brain of yours – that’s amazing.

Anything that’s not task-oriented where it's just me doing the work, like you're talking about…I have one thing on my list for today, which is my workshop workbook. Just complete the workbook. The workshop is already written. That's already recorded. Those were done in batches last week. And then tomorrow I have to write this other thing. So it's the same thing. What's the most important project that you've got going on and focus on that.

ALLIE: Yeah. And then the rest of the day and I'm lounging on the couch shushing the kids so I can rest for a second and then I'm cooking or doing homeschool stuff or whatever.

REINA: I’m so impressed that you homeschool. It’s really incredible.

ALLIE: Oh thanks. Well it's mostly Brian.

REINA: But it's still really cool. I mean, you guys tag team.

ALLIE: Yeah, tag team. That's the only reason that it gets done. And we only homeschool because we like the flexibility. It honestly is so hard sometimes.

REINA: Yeah. My husband has 12 weeks off for paternity leave and we were going to take six weeks of it after the baby was born and then we were going to take our family to Japan for six weeks and we realize that we can't, even though I have flexibility and my husband has flexibility because my son's going to be kindergarten. This is the first time we're ever having to deal with the public school system. You can't just up and leave for six weeks. Dang it!

ALLIE: Yeah. I know. Homeschooling is not for everybody. But it’s one of those things like we were talking about with work. You have to weigh out what you really want and if you want one thing more than the other, you make it happen. If you can only do one thing, you have to choose what it's going to be that day. It's all about balance.

REINA: I think it's interesting too, and you talk a lot about this in the mom world, I talk a lot about this in the business world and how you have to focus on what matters the most right now. It's not a matter of doing all the things, but like you say, it's prioritizing the most important thing so that you can rest easier or know that things are going to happen and be taken care of.

I think people get so overwhelmed by the image and the facade of doing it all that it’s crippling. I don't do it all and I do not try to handle everything in one day. It’s just not going to happen.

ALLIE: Yeah, absolutely. I've been thinking a lot and talking about this and just seeing what women, what their feedback is and what their take is. I've been thinking a lot about the difference between living busy and living full. To me living busy is busy for the sake of busy. You’ve just got too much going on. I look at the friends that I have that have their kids in eight different activities and then they're basically just chauffeurs and I just can't be busy like that. But then I have people that tell me all the time, “Oh, you're just so busy.” And I'm always kind of thrown because I don't feel like I'm busy. I felt like my life is just full of good.

REINA: Yeah. My friend Martha, she works for a big company and she's busy. She does a lot of things and I think she's full and busy at the same time. But she always comments about how how much I have going on. I'm like, “Not really.” I mean I do quite a bit, but it's not like I'm constantly shuffling around or at least that's now how it feels day-to-day. My days are full and my brain is full, but I don't feel like I'm pinging from thing to thing to thing, which I think that toggling and that switching effect is really harmful for our brains and it's just difficult for us to keep going.

ALLIE: Yeah, absolutely. And I think that's where batching comes in. Are you a batch worker?

REINA: Yeah, I batch work.

ALLIE: It's something that I learned in business that has translated over to motherhood with meal prepping and stuff. It's just so powerful.

We need to talk about that for a second. Because I'm thinking that my audience is like, “Oh my gosh, talk more about that.” So batching for those who are listening and don't know, batching is basically a productivity hack, right? Where you are in one brain mode working on something, so you might as well just do all the things that are like that task at one time so that you're not switching like Rana just said, toggling back and forth from task to task. So how do you do that in your business? And then let's talk about if you do that in your family, meals and stuff like that.

REINA: Yeah, so in my business we do that in a couple different ways. I have done all of my client work in one week, so I take all my client calls on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursdays on even weeks and then I'll do all of my content on Weeks 1 and Weeks 3. So anytime there's things that need to get out the door, those are the days when I have those chunks of time blocked out for me to sit down and do the work. I think that for me it helps because I need to be an extrovert mode where I'm interfacing with my clients versus I really want to get this deep work done during the content time. I try to do that as much as I can.

When we were podcasting, that was definitely something that helped because if you are in content writing mode and your brain is on, on fire and doing awesome writing and then you have to context switch to different parts of your brain, it's just really difficult. It takes me a little while to switch over.

In my personal life, I think with the meal prep specifically, I love using Plan To Eat.

Basically, anytime you see a recipe online, you can just pull that link and pull it into this library. Oh my gosh. You have to check it out. It's awesome. If you Pinterest something and you're like, “Oh my gosh, this looks so yummy. I want to check it out.” Instead of putting it on a Pinterest board, you just drag it into Plan To Eat and then you have a library of recipes that you want to check out and then you'd just say, “Oh, I want to do this on Monday. I want to do this on Tuesday. I want to do this on Thursday.” Whatever. And then it creates a shopping list for you. Oh my gosh, it's amazing.

ALLIE: So how does it know what all goes on the shopping list.

REINA: Because the recipe is already in there and so the ingredients are in the recipe and it just pulls it in. It's insane.

ALLIE: OK. That's amazing. I wrote it down.

REINA: That might be a potential sponsor for you in the future. It should be.

The cool thing about Plan To Eat…I don't want to go too far into it, but our family's favorite recipes…and you can collaborate with friends. So if you have friends who eat similar to you or whatever, you have a gluten free family or whatever, you can borrow from their menus too. What I love about this tool is that you can have family favorites and then plan in two months we're just going to do the same exact month recipe.

ALLIE: Okay. You don't even realize…I won't go on a tangent, but side note, I have been cooking more than I ever have in my entire life lately. I'm so overwhelmed. I basically just figured out all of these hormonal problems that I've been having and I'm not going to have all these surgeries and these unnecessary things and I'm like, “I'm going to heal this with food, hormone imbalance is food.” So I'm eating Paleo and it's so much food prep and I've just been dying. It is what it is. I'm going to be cooking a lot. That's just the way it is. But to know ahead of time, “Oh, these were our favorites and we’ll just eat this again.” The planning is the hardest part.

REINA: It totally is. What I've been doing is as soon as I know what I need for the week, I'll just have it delivered. Especially now that I'm pregnant, I'm not going to the grocery store, hauling that stuff, but I can log in, my husband can log in and he could go grocery shopping for me. Or if we're out and about, he can just pick something up. This app has been amazing in just being able to say Allie likes this recipe and she's going to put it two weeks from now so that you're repeating and you don't have to plan it out again. But also it's been two weeks so you're not going to remember that.

ALLIE: Exactly. Totally. And then you know what you like or what was a family favorite. Okay. That's amazing. I'm going to link to that. This sounds like such a sponsored conversation. I know.

REINA: I know. It totally is not.


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ALLIE: Okay, so getting into that overly annoying term, work life, family, work, life balance and all that. I feel like you're really good at being the CEO of your business, but also you show up and you're the CEO of your home and your family and you seem to do both so well. I know that it's all Instagram or whatever, but you show up really well where you need to show up. I feel like you have really good boundaries about like, “Well I don't need to do that so I'm not going to feel like I need to that. I'm going to focus on this.” You seem really focused and that's also what you teach in your business. You’re so good at that. Having said that, do you have any systems week-to-week in your home that free you up? I'm all about rhythms and routines and those things, but sometimes I'll meet somebody who’s like, “Well those ones just didn't work for me. This is what I found.” I'm learning that everybody is different. So what are the systems in your home that have helped you do all the things?

REINA: Yeah, so I'm going to answer one simple thing first. One of the things that's really important to me as a human is that as a business owner, as a mom, I think the identity that gets lost often is the Reina identity, right? Being the person. And so, I like to think of my life as three buckets. My family and home life bucket, my Reina bucket and then the business bucket. And when I know that each of them are, maybe not equally replenished because that's not ever going to truly happen, but if I know that I'm going to be in a heavy business season and the other two are going to be a little bit depleted, to make sure that I'm communicating that with myself and with my husband.  Knowing that's what's going to happen. Or if I know that I'm physically going to be taxed, like going through labor or whatever, that the other two are going to be depleted and have that expectation and reality check.

I think that for me that's what balance is, to know that there's going to be these imbalances and to know how to accommodate for those. If I know that my family is going to be going through a tough season to lighten up on the other two things, like I'm not going be ice skating as much or maybe I'm not going to be reading as much for myself and that's okay. The adjustment of expectations. That's one way I like to think about life balance because you can't get it.

And then I think at home, I mean I'm not perfect and I have plenty to learn from you here.

I think just one of the things to think about with life stuff is just communicating. We do ‘team meeting’ with my husband and I on Sunday nights. It's a really quick check in to be like, “Okay, here's what's happening in my life. Here's what's happening with work.” It's not a romantic meeting or anything by any means, but it's our one time to check in logistically so I don't have to hassle him, I don't have to nag at him during the week. It's like, “Here are my expectations. Here's what we need. What do you need from me? How can I support you this week?” Those are basically simple questions to make sure that we know what's going on on each other's calendars at work. I found that when we weren't doing that…even though it's like, “Hey, how was your day? Fine.” You don’t really get to the core of it. In the seasons when we haven't done as many team meetings or check-ins, it's been a little bit more like we're not communicating as well or just a little bit short with each other because things are happening at work or you had a really tough conversation with somebody at work or whatever is going on. Checking in is really helpful. That's one of the things that we do.

ALLIE: I think also it helps us to have a meeting once a week that's not date night so that date night can be romantic. Why is it so easy for companies and CEOs to know they need to have a team meeting but nobody's thinking about that when you are a team with your husband? You're running a family, a life, and a home, which is far more important than any company. Of course you need to have a meeting. It’s funny because we implemented that a while back before I ever knew that I would have a company. It's something that everyone is always so like, “Oh wow, what a great idea.” I don't know how anyone is doing all of this without meeting. Maybe that's why the divorce rate is so high or communication….because you have all of these expectations and you have to have a time and place to communicate that. I think that's so amazing that you guys do that.

REINA: Last night it was not perfect because we didn't do it on Sunday and I had done all the meal planning and all that stuff, but we hadn't done a team meeting. So late last night right before we went to bed we're like, “Oh! Team meeting,” and we were checking in with each other because there are a couple of things that are coming up with appointments and stuff like that. It was nice to be able to know that we have a space for it and it's like a recurring calendar thing on our calendars. Do you guys do it with your kids? I feel like your kids are old enough that you could probably do this with your kiddos.

REINA: It's starting to get there. Bella is 10 and she's a girl and she's really wanting to be involved in everything. What we've been doing is we still do it on Sunday night and the kids are playing and then we'll pull them in at the end and we'll be like, “Okay guys, here's what's going on. Here's what we're doing in school.” Because on Sunday night we go over the homeschool curriculum for the next week and be like, “Okay, do we need to get any supplies on our shopping list for tomorrow?” Then we do meal planning and groceries all at the same time. Then we do what's going on with my work and the business and what press stuff is going on. Am I driving anywhere? Meeting anybody? What's going on? They're really long. They used to be really short. Now it's a couple hours of all the things, and we'll pull the kids in at the end and check-in on everybody and see how everyone's feeling. Usually they rabbit trail and talk about a show they want to watch or something. It's becoming from a couples reconnect thing to a family team meeting where “How's everybody doing?” I think it's evolving into that for sure.

REINA: Yeah, I like that a lot and I think that as my kids grow I think I’ll want to include them in these conversations. I'm pretty excited about that.

One of the things that we started doing was in meal prep before I do a lot of the thinking about food stuff. I'll ask my son, “What do you want to eat this week? What are your friends eating? What are you interested in? So that he continues to be interested in food, you know? That’s something that we've just started and he doesn't have much of an opinion right now. He's like, “I just don't want to eat this.” And I'm like, “Cool. That’s super helpful.”

ALLIE: I've never heard anybody say that. And what a cool idea. What a cool way to get around a picky eater, to twist it and make it positive. “Have you seen anything that you want to try?” I'm willing to try. What a great mom.

REINA: I don't know about that. I don't want this to be the first response. He’s a pretty adventurous eater, so it's nice to be able to include his opinion in the food.

ALLIE: Yeah, for sure. For sure. It’s his house too and you want to make food...I wouldn’t make something that Brian didn't like. You guys are making yourselves this team, this group, that we all have opinions and we will respect each other's opinions and I care what you think. We’re coming away from the whole time of parenting where it was, “Sit down. Shut up. Do what I say. You're the kid. I'm the parent.” You know what I mean? It feels like we're raising kids who could be a little more respectful because they were respected too and we cared about what they thought and we asked. “Yeah, we’re the parents but I care about what you think and I want to know how you're feeling.”

Okay, so let's shift gears a little bit and talk about your business kind of things. I know that this isn't a business podcast (sometimes I wish it was because all day I could talk about marketing and all the things) but there are so many women who listen, who message me, “I love the business talks. I want more about that”. So while there isn't a business podcast for now, let's talk a little bit here about your content.

You seem like a content creation machine. Are there any hacks that you have? You’ve been at this for a while. You've been doing your business for years and you seem to have really fine-tuned what you are good at. You have your elevator pitch and the way that you succinctly say who you serve and what you do is so fine-tuned and beautiful. Do you have any hacks for how you create content so regularly? Do you batch everything? Your Instagram and your blog content? How do you structure all of that?

REINA: At this point right now we are not creating a lot of content, but for the past 2 ½ to 3 years, we had a podcast episode going out every week, twice a week, right? And so there's a lot of content out there. The way that I've done it in the past is really thinking about who are the people that I'm serving? Who do I really want to be talking to? Making sure that I'm answering their questions before they even know that it's a question so that we can kind of tackle those.

I know you do this too, where are you have a Q & A kind of thing and we respond to those. I love your podcast episodes where you were talking about business stuff because you're just answering people's questions which is awesome. Maybe you could have a business podcast. It's just one of those things for me that whenever I ask for what people need, it's just readily there. That’s the way that I like to create content.

For me, at the very beginning I felt like no one was listening and so I didn't really know how to answer questions. Because there's just not an audience. I was so grateful when I started getting feedback. It was like, “Oh, okay, this is working or this is what people are curious about.” It's so much easier. If you're in that phase of, “I have no idea what I'm supposed to be talking about,” just keep talking because people will start to pay attention. I don't know if that's your advice, but I would probably say don't get discouraged by people who aren't listening yet. We have to win over those people one by one and your audience will grow even if it doesn't feel like immediate overnight growth.

ALLIE: Yeah and just sharing what have you learned? What have you struggled with? Start talking about that. Start talking about what was hard for you yesterday. How did you handle it? I had the funniest little random blog post topics in the beginning because it was just like yesterday I had a really crappy day and I just restarted in the middle of a day. And then I had a blog post called something like “How To Have a Monday Morning In The Middle Of A Thursday Afternoon” or something like that, “Restarting Your Day - It's Okay.” And that gained following. Everything that you are learning is valuable to somebody. Just start talking. Somebody will listen.

REINA: Yeah, I agree with that. I love that.

ALLIE: For yourself, do you have any ‘rules’ in terms of when you know that your business needs to take a back seat, you need to shift gears and focus on your family? You mentioned your buckets. I have more of a seasonal base. I'll know that I think I need to maybe bow out of that launch, push it to fall, and focus on my marriage this summer. It feels like that. Do you have any hard rules for yourself in terms of what you're focusing on most?

REINA: It's not really a hard and fast rule. I think one of the biggest things I do is, so I use Lara Casey’s Powersheets planners. I think that just looking at the full year ahead of when it's starting and actually happening, to be able to know, “These are my life things that are going to be happening. I have a wedding to attend and we have to travel across the country.” Whatever things are happening and making sure that I know don't plan anything crazy big for your business during this time, or I'm coming out of maternity leave, there's no way that I'm going to be doing anything crazy right after this. And just easing myself into it. I think that looking at life first for me, then adding on the extra layers and making sure that I'm tempering or scaling my expectations depending on those seasons.

Then whenever I have a busy work season, I try to take a little bit of time, not off necessarily, but just kind of turned down, I guess, so that I have a little bit more spaciousness in my life.

ALLIE: Yeah, absolutely. I love that. Do ever feel like one area of your life is so busy that the other area never really gets to where you want it to go? Sometimes I feel like my personal life is so full and so busy. My kids are older so they're into things, doing sports and stuff, and while we keep it toned down, I don't want to be the mom that says, “No, you can't do any. Just baseball.” It's a lot. It's three days a week. It's so busy. Sometimes I feel like I'm saying “not right now” to things in my business so much that I'm like, “Man, am I ever going to get where I want to go because it's having to grow so slowly?” Do you feel like that?

REINA: I feel like that sometimes. I think it's really funny that you're saying that because I feel like you've grown so quickly.

ALLIE: It’s always a perspective thing when you're in it.

REINA: You're like, “This is so slow” aka really fast to somebody else because you're witnessing so many other cool people who are doing amazing things.

ALLIE: And you know in your head where you want to be and you’re not there, so it's like, “Oh this is too slow.” When I look back it's like, “Yes! So many things have happened.” I think it makes you choose, or at least for me, it makes me choose what I'm going to say “yes” to is a really good yes and then the “no’s” would have helped, but it's not necessary. The growth is still there, but I think if you're a driven person, you're not ever going to be satisfied with what's happened.

REINA: I think it's really interesting. I have this inner dialogue with myself and I don't know how you experienced this, but for me, “I want to go faster, I want to go faster, I want to go faster. I want to do this other thing and continue to pursue it,” and it's tempered by, “Okay, well, I have these other responsibilities and it's not that this other thing is more important necessarily, but in this season this is the most important thing that I need to focus on.”

For example, over the summer, I want to make sure that my son is able to swim. That is a huge priority. He's 5; he needs to be able to swim. I was a water baby. I played water polo. You know, all of this stuff. And I'm not going to be able to do all of this other stuff that I had hoped for in my business. And that's okay. It's weird to think about business in the context of, “Oh well I have to balance my life against this,” because if I was in a corporate company you can't do that. You don't have the luxury of being like, “No I'm not going to do that because my son has to take swim lessons.”

ALLIE: You have to do what you were hired to do.

REINA: Right. I try to think about what would it look like in 9-5 world and also, “Thank God I don't have to do that. Thank goodness I don't have to abide by somebody else's timeline and schedule.” There's a give and take I guess.

ALLIE: Yeah. I think that's why the phrase “work life balance” irks me so much. I mean is there even really such a thing? My business is almost like another baby to me. I love it. I care about it so much. I wish I could do more, but I also feel like I wish I could do more with my kids in other areas too. It's the same thing of which thing is going to win this season.

REINA: Yeah, absolutely. I think people hate the word ‘balance’ because it feels like it has to be…

ALLIE: …perfectly even.

REINA: And it’s not, you know? It's a juggling act. I imagine standing on a yoga ball and juggling at the same time.

ALLIE: Yes! Well put!

REINA: It’s not balance; It’s like trying not to fall and drop the balls all at the same time.

ALLIE: Yeah. I think that social media is so beautiful and no matter how real you are it always looks like that's not what's happening. And it is. It’s hard. Then you show up and you serve and somebody says something rude, like it wasn't enough. You didn't do good enough. You made this grammatical error and they've got to pointed out. And then that's discouraging and you're like, “Wow!” Then you come inside your house and I made this huge elaborate meal and one of my kids is like, “This tastes like dirt.” It's like nothing is ever good enough, ever balanced enough, so all we can do in every area is just show up and, “Oh, this is what I did and I feel really good about it, so I'm going to move on.”

REINA: Yeah. That example is such a real life. I had a really a trying day a couple of weeks ago and everything I was trying was not working, and then I get to dinner and I was like, you know, sometimes it's a hot dog and they're happy and everything is Hunky Dory. And then the next day you try to make an elaborate meal where you actually served them vegetables. It was a healthy meal and you actually thought about it. Then it's like, “Mom, I don't want to eat this.” And you’re like, “Ahh, I can't even deal with you right now.”

ALLIE: Yeah. This morning I did this Instagram story where I was talking about a time in our life and I said something like, “Oh, we moved to the Midwest and it was, you know, Arkansas.” I got this message that was like, “FYI Arkansas is not the Midwest. I love you, but get your geography straight.” Literally what she said. It just bugs you. It wasn't a big deal, but I was already not super emotionally fit at that moment and it just bugged me. Then I came in and I made a giant amazing lunch – shrimp, that black rice, that Forbidden Rice or whatever that’s loaded with nutrients and it's $25 a bag. Right? I made this amazing thing and my kids were like, “I don't want…” and I just lost it. It’s okay that I'm not good enough for everybody all the time because my value can’t be in that…I don't know, this is kind of a tangent…but my point was I'm learning that it's okay.

I'm showing up. I'm doing a free Instagram story with a free podcast for you and if you don't like that I called Arkansas the Midwest, then just get out. I just showed up and I cooked this amazing meal and it nourished me and my body that’s going through healing and it was good for you guys but if you don't like that part of it then just don’t eat it. Just get out.

REINA: You cannot please everyone, Allie. Can. Not.

ALLIE: Ok, one more question about working for all of the work-at-home moms.

Your office is at your house. Do you ever struggle with the fact that it's all happening in the same place and it's distracting?

REINA: It always is distracting. I mean as you said that my dog walks into my office, right? She's like, “I want to go for a walk. I'm ready to do it.” And now that I've said it, she's going to get excited. Things are happening all the time. Thankfully my son is not at home and he has his own care. But at the same time, there's laundry to be folded, there's dishes to be clean. There's stuff that needs to happen. I try my best to have focus time for each of those things so that I know they get taken care of, but it's not perfect. It’s a matter of where do I want to put my focus on right now, and making sure that I dedicate the time that I need to, to the things that need to happen.

It sucks. It's definitely not perfect and I have lots to learn in that regard, but it's just one of those things that whenever I need to focus on work, I'm all in.

ALLIE: Yeah, and you just have to have that self-discipline that I'm working right now. It's not laundry time. That's amazing that you have that. The only reason that I even started figuring out rhythms and routines in my house stuff is because I don't have that and it's like if the other things are not rhythmatized, and I know in the morning the laundry is switched and done. Now the kids are older and chores are happening, they're actually helpful, so the kids do the dishes. But you know those things are done. Then it's like, “Okay, now I can work.”

REINA: Yeah, it’s about creating those habits and for me the rhythms are a little bit different than yours and I think that's fine. For example, this is such a silly example, but on Sundays, every single week, I have a reminder on my phone that says ears and nails. I have to clean out my son's ears and cut his nails, or else I will never remember.

ALLIE: Yeah, I know. Oh my gosh, yes. I have so many random little alerts on my phone. Especially with boys, they don't care or notice. Bella would be like, “Mom, my nails look really long and dirty. Can you help me?” The boys are still being gross and playing in dirt with dirt under their nails. Eating dirt. “We don’t care.” Yeah, it’s a boy-mom problem.

REINA:  Exactly. It’s one of those things that if I have them in my phone and I know that they're going to happen, I don't have to worry about it during the rest of the week kind of thing, unless there's a problem obviously.

I like to have little homes for these little assignments for myself, so I guess that's the way that I do rhythms.

ALLIE: It’s like you’re clearing mental clutter. It's mental clutter to know that you have to do something, but you have no assigned place that you're going to remember to do it. That's totally raising your cortisol.

REINA: Yeah. No stress for me in that regard. Let's handle it. It's taken care of.

ALLIE: Yeah, totally. I love that. You easily say something so actionable and relatable.

I love it.

I know that you're like me and you love to read. I don't know if it's changing for you lately but what are you reading right now? What are you loving right now?

REINA: What am I reading right now? I am reading Kristin Hannah's Midnight Hour. I just finished The Tattooist of Auschwitz.

ALLIE: So you like to read novels.

REINA: I like to read novels at night and then during the day I like to read business stuff or other fiction stuff, I guess. I'm reading Shoe Dog by Phil Knight. He founded Nike. I'm obsessed with this story.

ALLIE: Me too. It's so crazy to see the beginning of something so huge and so inspiring. It’s such a humble start.

REINA: It really is. He's talking about a $1,000 shoe order like, “What? That’s amazing!” And now it's a multibajillion dollar company. It’s really remarkable.

ALLIE: Yeah, it is. I love that too.

In conclusion, just a random question. I didn’t give you a warning so it's okay if you're like, “I dunno,” but what is one life lesson or something that's been resting on you lately that you have been learning lately?

REINA: I think coming back to journaling a lot recently. I've been trying a lot of different formats of journaling recently. This is not a word obviously, but I got to the season of being a little bit too busy for daily journaling and I wanted to figure out what was happening and what I could try. And so, I've been trying a lot of different formats and I really like the simplicity of the Start Today Journal. I think it's 5 pieces of gratitude in the morning and then 10 things you made happen. It's Rachel Hollis’ Start Today Journal. She talks about it in her new book Girl, Stop Apologizing. I devoured that on Audible. I think she has an actual physical journal that she sells. I just made my own. The second part is really interesting because it's all about the dreams that you made happen and so the things that you want to have happen, but in the, “I've already done it” tense.

It's really cool stuff. If you look up the ‘Start Today Journal’ Hashtag on Instagram, you see all kinds of stuff, like hers is “I'm a New York Times bestseller author” before she was. And some people are like, “I lost 10 pounds.” It can be really different types of goals.

ALLIE: I love that. It's the whole idea that I have seen over and over again in my life - speaking it out before it happens and saying, “This is mine and I'm going to make this happen.” I love that.

This was such a good conversation. Thank you so much.

I know that this isn't your normal interview. Normally you are all business. Some people will want to go and chase after what you’ve got and some people won't really have it be relative, but where can people find you? Because I know if people know what you do, you serve amazing entrepreneurs and I love when you share your clients' stories and their wins and stuff. It's so cool to see who you're working with. But if people want to do that with you and work with you and find you, where can they find you?

REINA: You can find me over at Reina + Co. I am always hanging out over on Instagram at @reinaandcompany and I respond to my DM’s. That's really the only place I'm hanging out during my maternity leave. It's going to be a fun little transition time. Who knows what'll happen.

Even though this conversation was more life stuff, I think it's important that we talk about this and just because I'm an entrepreneur doesn't mean that I can't talk about mom stuff, you know?

ALLIE: It's all woven together. Are you going to be sharing baby staff on Instagram?

REINA: Oh, for sure.

ALLIE: Yay! I'm so excited for you. Oh my gosh. Having brothers, too, in your home is one of the glories of my life and one of the things that I am so proud to be a part of. It's so cool. I didn't really have that in my house. My siblings are really far apart, so while we have two girls and two boys, we didn't grow up together. It's really cool to have the boys growing up together and don't worry about that age gap. The ones that are the closest in my house are the farthest apart so it doesn't matter. They're going to be  little friends. Especially when the baby gets to be 1, they're going to start to play. It's so magical. So fun. You're going to love it. I'm so happy for you.

REINA: Yay. Thank you so much for that encouragement. I'm just looking forward to this sweet season.

ALLIE: We'll link to all the good things that you shared, the journal and the powersheets, all of that good stuff, but thank you so much for having this conversation with me.

REINA: Thank you so much for having me.


This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend! See ya next time!

Hey mama! Just a quick note, this post may contain affiliate links.

EP 108: I Had "The Talk" with My Kid. Here's What I Learned.

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The talk. It isn’t just one talk, it is an ongoing conversation. It is an important conversation, a personal one, and one that will come as your kids start asking questions. My 10 year old started asking so we dove right into it. I knew the time was right and I felt confident to lead this conversation well based off the conversation Brian and I had as we prepared for this.  

There's so much negativity out there about talking to your kids about sex, so I wanted to add positivity to that pool and just say it doesn't have to be that way. It can absolutely be good, positive, constructive, helpful, sweet, silly and relaxed.

I hope that this episode empowers you to do this well and to have a successful ongoing conversation with your child about sex, kissing, love and all that stuff.

 
 

In This Episode Allie Discusses:

  • How to approach this topic with positivity and not negativity (like culture puts on it!)

  • The way she approaches her relationship with her daughter and how that impacted this conversation.

  • Why this specific conversation isn’t a one time thing but more of an ongoing dialogue we have with your kids.

  • Navigating when the time is right to have the talk and how to start it out on the right foot.

Mentioned in this Episode:


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Did you know I have an entire online academy full of things I created just for YOU?

There are so many different things in there. It's all together in my store or what I like to call the Allie Academy, so if you want to check that out, you should. There's lots of good resources that have helped a lot of women - tens of thousands of women - get their lives in order. Because when you invest, that's the first step to succeeding. Free will only get you so far.

So if you're ready to put some skin in the game, show up, and really invest in the deep dive content that I have to offer, that's where the online programs come in.

Plus don't forget, just for Purpose Show listeners only because I love you guys so much, you can use the coupon code PURPOSESHOW at checkout on any of my online programs and take 10% off.


who doesn't love a GIVEAWAY?

Reviews are everything on iTunes! Would you take a minute and click here to leave a review? Email hello@alliecasazza.com with a screenshot of your review on iTunes. You'll be entered to win one of Allie's amazing courses for FREE!  

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at hello@alliecasazza.com or connect with me over on Facebook & Instagram


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.


Hi, beautiful! Welcome to The Purpose Show! Let's dive into today's episode.

It's kind of intense, kind of personal, and I'm really hoping that it demystifies talking to your kids about sex and giving them that important talk, and also changes your perspective on how it is “one talk” and shifting it to it's an ongoing conversation. And here's what Brian and I have done so far. Here's what I did when I actually sat and talked with our child about it because our oldest is our daughter and it just felt right that I would sit and give her this conversation. How we handled it. What I liked and didn't like and what I learned afterward. So, ready? Let's talk about this.

This is definitely an episode that needs to be for mamas’ ears only. So, pop those headphones in or come back to this after bedtime. But it's going to be good. Let's do it.

Before we get into the nitty gritty about talking to your kids about sex, I just want to say a few things. First of all, this is something that I have done with only our daughter. Bella is 10 years old. She is one of those kids who is wise beyond her years, but also still very childlike. She loves playing with her brothers, even though they're younger than her. She's really creative and kind of a whimsical person but also incredibly smart. She's like a little entrepreneur. The ideas and business thoughts that she has blow my mind for how young she is. She is a unique kid, an anomaly. I used to feel really intimidated about raising her and now I just feel so honored, thankful and excited to raise her.

I think that in parenting things need to look different for each of your kids. You know, my other kids are boys and that doesn't mean that their “talk” will look the same. Even though they're all the same gender, they will still have different conversations with Brian and I than each other because I really think that these big parenting moments need to be tailored to who it is you're parenting. I really do think it matters and it's different for each kid.

Having said that, I want to also preface with how I want my relationship with my daughter to be. I really want Bella to know that she can come to me with the little things and the big things because if she can't feel like she can come to me with the little things then she's not going to feel like she can come to me with the big things as she gets older.

She has shown me that she feels like she can come to me with the big and the little things.

She'll come to me regularly, daily or throughout the week, and say, “Mom is it okay if I sit here with you and we just talk for a few minutes. I feel like talking,” and she'll talk to me about what's going on in the latest book she's reading, or how she wishes that her friends down the street would come back from vacation so they could play outside. Sometimes she’ll say, “I need to talk to you about something,” and she'll ask me a really big question about how life works or who God is or why people do scary things to other people. So, I think that it's going well and I really want my relationship with my daughter to feel that way. I really want to continue that. I want to get even better at that. I want that to continue as she gets into her teen years.

What I think I'm doing right here is creating a space in our home, creating an atmosphere in our family that Bella feels she can come to me and she feels free to ask if she can talk to me. What I feel I need to improve here is Bella has the amazing gift of choosing to come and ask if she can sit and talk with me at the worst possible time. I'll be sitting on the couch just because I needed to get out of my office.

I have a home office but it is kind of outside of the house. It's an extension of the garage and it's got its own walls and doors and stuff, but it is technically a part of my house. So, I'll get sick of being out there and come in and sit on my bed for a second or sit on the couch for a second and be wanting to unwind and breathe for a moment before I jump into making dinner and doing family things. and Bella will choose that time to come and find me and touch me (which my love language is not touch so it's irritating sometimes) and just sit with me and want to talk about all the things. And it is so hard not to make her feel like she has irritated me with her terrible timing. I'm just being honest with you guys, I do sometimes, “Oh, what is it sweetie?” She picks up on those vibes obviously.

I really want to work on finding a way around that. Even if I can't stop and if I want to have that boundary for myself and I just need that space, it doesn't mean that I have to give her that space every time just because she wants to talk. But even if I can't stop and talk now, I want to check and make sure that this isn't something urgent that needs to be talked about right now. And then make time later to sit and talk with her. And then even if I need that space right now, that I make her feel loved, I make her feel valued and I give her a set time later on that I can sit and talk with her or invite her to join me later when I'm making dinner and she can talk to me then while I cook, but right now I just need a minute. I just want to work on that.

I think that's powerful. Asking what am I doing right here? What do I need to improve here? And just being honest with yourself. I try to do that regularly. I'll think about if I have a conversation that I felt maybe I hurt her feelings or I just didn't make her feel valued, it didn't align with what I want my relationship with Bella to be, then I'll think about it for a minute afterward and think, “Okay, well why didn't that feel like it was good? Why did she get her feelings hurt from that? What could I do better? What needs to just be let go, I can't control every single emotion that she feels. What actually does land on me and my responsibility that I could make better.

Having said all of that, let's get into the talk. So, I felt so good about mine and Bella's sex talk. I felt so good about it. It's something that I had been thinking about for a long time as she started to inch closer and closer to being ready for the talk. I was 10 years old when my mom sat and talked with me and I felt like it was a good time for me. I had that age in the back of my mind, but I was also very ready and willing to adapt.

If Bella had learned things at school at an earlier age than me, then I was prepared to talk to her earlier. It was important to me that I let her know how things work before she learned too much from her peers. But because we do homeschool, that was on my side and I had a lot more time than I think a lot of other moms do. That was a pro for me and my lifestyle.

The kids did go to public school a few years ago for a brief period of time. We didn't know if that was going to be brief or it was going to be ongoing. We take our school plans year-by-year, so you never know if things will shift and the kids will end up going to school. So, I always have it in the back of my mind “do we need to adjust this?” I don't think, “10 years old...once they turn 10 I want to talk to them about this.” It might even be later for another one of the kids. It might be sooner. It just depends.

I pray about it. I follow my gut. I am aware of the different circumstances per kid, per year, per age. I'm trying to live “led by the Holy Spirit motherhood” and asking God to be with me in the day and asking Him to give me a knowing and just following that as I make decisions and not having a set age where this is when we talk about this, this is when you get to do that, this is when you get to know this, and letting that motherly/parenthood instinct between Brian and I lead our decisions in these big things.

I ended up feeling so good about our talk. It was a really beautiful conversation. It was a really sweet time. I couldn't have been happier with how it went. So I wanted to share with you guys why I felt that way about it, what exactly we talked about, how it went, what I used as a guide and why I think it went so well because I think that this is something that people get really freaked out about.

I almost didn't do this episode because there are so many people who are professionals at this and they share what to do and what not to do. That information is very freely given out there and you can absolutely look those things up. But I really didn't look anything up about this. I didn't read books about talking to your kids about sex. I really just went with my instinct and went with what I know of my daughter because I'm her mom. I'm her mom for a reason and I know her better than anyone else. I felt really confident to go with my gut on this, with what to share and what not to share, and how to approach it.

I knew it was time to talk to Bella based on the questions that she had begun to ask me. I knew that she was starting to get curious about how people make babies and she knows that parents make babies. But she was starting to get really curious about how exactly. She was starting to get really curious about things about boys. Not boy crazy or anything at all, but just little things like she let me know that she had a little crush on somebody and she was thinking a lot about and wondering about why do people kiss. Just little things.

This was over about a year's time where she was asking more and more questions. I knew that it was going to be time soon. She hadn't come to me directly and said, “How are babies made,” but she was asking little things that were leading into that. She was 9, soon to be 10. I knew like, “Okay, I think 10 will be good and once she turns 10 I'd like to pencil in that time with her and have this conversation.” That's how I decided that it was time to start thinking about this.

One big perspective shift that I made and that I think is important that we all make as parents is I did not think of this as a one-time conversation that I check off the list (even though I do kind of see how that happens because this was more of “the talk” than any of our other conversations).

Because I had carved out time for it, Bella knew that it was going to happen. We sat down, we closed the door in my room and we just talked. I had a book to kind of guide me, which I'll share a little bit more about in a second. We were intentionally talking about this. In that sense it was a one-time talk, but I still don't think it's a one-time conversation that we check off our list.

I think this needs to be an ongoing conversation. I think it's incredibly crucial that we create space in our lives and that our kids know we've created that space for them to talk whenever they need to talk about something. To answer their questions as they pop into their heads because they're probably not going to remember them later on when you're available. I think it's important to be available at least as much as you can and to have your kids know they can come to you and say, “Mom, I heard this at school today and I was just wondering what this meant,” and give them the answers. If they can ask us, we need to give them some form of the answer. We can water it down for their age and what we feel is appropriate or not, but I do think that it's important to have an ongoing conversation because your kids are not going to suddenly remember every single thing they've been wondering when you’re ready to sit down and talk to them. It's gotta be an ongoing thing.

I also think that “the talk” is going to get peeled back for Bella and I in layers. I did not sit her down and tell her every single thing that can possibly happen. I didn't talk to her about hard things in detail, like all the different types and styles and ways of intercourse. I didn't talk to her about all the details of rape and things like that.

This is an ongoing thing that needs to be talked about as she gets older, as she's ready, as things come up, as she sees and hears things by accident by being a person alive in our world today.

I think that this talk was more of a start to an ongoing, lifetime conversation. More than just a one-time thing, like a band-aid I rip off where I just spilled the beans and that was it.


Hey friend! I'm interrupting this amazing conversation that we're having because I wanted to let you know that there's a whole online academy that I've created for all things, overwhelming-mom life. And I don't know if you knew that.

There are online programs that I have created and refined over the last several years that are world renowned and I'm honored to be able to say that. The content in these online programs are what has landed me on television multiple times and gotten me acclaimed in the world of motherhood, minimalism and simplicity.

There is a course all about decluttering your home and it's realistic, doable decluttering that is going to make you feel lighter and help you feel like you can actually do this.

There is a program for your life, your schedule, lightening your load, simplifying your days and how those are going and getting some rhythms and routines set in stone.

There's also a vault with a library of inspiration and pdfs, workbooks, and online workshops that you can replay and watch. Lots of good stuff.

There is a Time Blocking Mom Workbook that's like $9.

There are so many different things in there. It's all together in my store or what I like to call the Allie Academy, so if you want to check that out, you should. There's lots of good resources that have helped a lot of women - tens of thousands of women - get their lives in order. Because when you invest, that's the first step to succeeding. Free will only get you so far.

So if you're ready to put some skin in the game, show up, and really invest in the deep dive content that I have to offer, that's where the online programs come in.

Visit alliecasazza.com/store and check out your options.

Plus don't forget, just for Purpose Show listeners only because I love you guys so much, you can use the coupon code PURPOSESHOW at checkout on any of my online programs and take 10% off.


I would like Bella to look back and remember multiple conversations, multiple times that we made tea and sat together on my bed and just talked about these kind of awkward things that she was wondering about. I want her to remember multiple talks, not just one talk.

Let's talk about how to start this conversation. The biggest takeaway that I had for me and how I did this with Bella was I started the conversation ahead of time, not right before I do “the talk.”

I let her know that there was something that I think is important that we talk about soon and we should make that happen together. So, whenever she would ask me something that had to do with this and I knew that it was a question that would lead into our eventual talk about sex, love, romance and all these things, I would say, “You know, I think there's something that is important that we talk about. I think you are getting older. I think you're ready for that special knowledge and I think we should make a girl date soon to talk about that.”

What I wish I would have done is I wish I would have made a set date for girl time and put it on the calendar. I think it would've made it seem even more valuable to her. I think it would have given her a clear-cut date. Because I would say that a couple times in conversations in the car with Bella and then she would check back in and be like, “Hey mom, when are we going to have that special talk?” And it was like, “Oh crap, I kind of forgot we need to do that.” So, I wish that I would've said that and sat down and made an actual set date for this girl talk. If I was doing it over again, that's what I would do differently.

But I would kind of answer the question like, “Kissing kind of does this…” or whatever the question was that she was asking me. And then I would say, “I think that there's an important conversation that you're ready to have with me and we need to make that happen.” I wish I would've actually penciled it in and given her a set date instead of making it an open-ended thing that she kept having to remind me about until I finally made it happen.

To recap, one of the biggest takeaways that I had in this conversation with my daughter was I started the conversation ahead of time. I didn't just say, “I need to talk to you. Let’s go,” and then start the conversation about, “There's something that you're ready to know” right before I did the talk. This was an ongoing thing. I started the conversation ahead of time. And I think that set the precedent for how I want my relationship with Bella to be moving forward. This is something we talk about often throughout life. It's on-going. It's not a one-time thing.

Then the next thing that I want to say is that I think it's really important to not be afraid of this conversation or to not be weird about it, awkward, stiff, or timid because let me tell you kids pick up on that stuff. You're basically teaching them how to feel about sex and how to feel about having big discussions with you as well, so I think it's really important to be calm, loving and confident. Even if your stomach is turning and you do feel weird and awkward, don't let them know that because I think it sends a message.

I felt really at peace. I had thought about this a lot. I had prayed about it. I had been talking to Brian about it. We knew how this was going to go. That I was going to have the main conversation with her and that Brian would come in at the end and sit with us for a moment and ask Bella if she had any questions. Because it's important to us that our kids that are the opposite sex of us feel comfortable to talk to us about sex, intimacy, marriage, intercourse and difficult things with each other.

I didn't want to set it up where the boys talked to Brian and Bella talks to me because I just don't think that's healthy. What if something happens to one of us, you know, and now we've set a precedent to where it's awkward for Bella to talk to Brian about things and what if I'm not here anymore. It was really important to us that it goes both ways. But I do see the value in Bella and I sitting alone together and talking about this, and then Brian came in at the end and it was perfect. It was beautiful and really good. She did ask him a couple of questions and he handled it great. He was really calm and loving to her and gave her enough information that fit her age. He was totally in on this conversation and it was really great. So that's another thing that we did.

But going back, the biggest thing was not being weird, timid, or awkward. Full disclosure, it's really hard for Brian not to get weird, timid and uncomfortable because this is his little girl, this is his baby girl and it's really hard for him that she's growing up. It’s really hard for him that we had to go get a starter bra for her the other day. It's really hard for him. It's just weird, new and different, and it's out of our element and that's okay.

But I think the key is to not make it seem like you're super uncomfortable and so timid and afraid of this conversation because you're teaching your kids how to feel about having these discussions with you. You're setting a tone that is going to decide if they want to have these conversations with you again in the future or not.

You're teaching them how to feel about sex. And I want Bella to realize sex is created by God. It's beautiful. It's comfortable. It's normal. It's okay. We can talk about these things and then I can teach her the other things I want her to know about sex and the boundaries around sex as I talk with her about it. So, don't be afraid or timid or stiff. Your kids will pick up on that.

Another thing that I think was really helpful for me is that I had a book to guide me. I actually am not going to share what book I got just because I had looked and looked and wasn't really happy with my options. The Christian books…some of them I found were really stiff and actually had undertones of shame, and I went to a private Christian school growing up and I got plenty of that tone and it did not serve me well at all. I really didn't want Bella to pick up on that tone. I just wasn't happy with what I found.

I had gotten some really great recommendations but I didn't want to order the book online. I wanted to look at it in person. The options at Barnes & Nobles were just so-so. What I ended up doing is I got a book that had drawings, not actual pictures, which I liked. It was a really sweet book where it had drawings of butts, boobs, “pee-pees” and “wee-wees” and all of that silly stuff that kids just think are hilarious.

They were drawn and they were all different shapes and sizes. It gave a picture of, “these are our bodies and God made our bodies and it is what it is and we can talk about this.” It made it silly because they were drawn and they were sketched kind of funny. It brought humor to the conversation. It wasn't like pictures of bodies, which I would feel was inappropriate. I really liked that.

And there were some things in the book that are not what I believe about gender and people and sex, so I looked through the book beforehand and dog-eared the sections that I wanted to skip over when I sat with Bella. And I think that's the most important part.

I loved having a book to guide me, but I think it's less important to freak out about exactly what book it is, how perfect it is, and research, research, research when you're putting off this conversation that needs to happen. Don't overthink the book. It's more important to look at every page on your own before you talk with your kid so that you can edit out anything that you don't want to talk to your child about just yet. Eventually I will talk to Bella about all of these extra additives about sex and gender and all of that, but I just didn't feel like it was time for all of that yet. I just wanted to talk to her about how reproduction works, how sex works and what it is.

So, I personally, like I said, liked the drawn pictures. I let her giggle at the boobs and butts and the wieners, and all of that and we giggled together, but it also opened the floor to questions and she asked them freely and it was really good.

By letting her take those reins and letting her ask the questions that came to her mind, it let me know where she was at and what information she was and wasn't ready for. So I almost live, right then and there in our talk, was able to decide, “Okay, she's asking this but not that, so I think she's ready for this and not that.” I answered the questions she asked, and the way that she asked them and the questions that she did and didn’t ask, let me know what she was and was not ready to learn.

I didn't lay every single thing out and say too much. I let her guide how far the conversation went and we will talk again later when the time is right for her to know more.

So that's how I did it. That's how it went. Those are the key takeaways. I hope that this episode empowers you to do this well and to have a successful conversation, a successful ongoing conversation with your child about sex, kissing, love and all that stuff.

It went so well. It was a really sweet time. I will always remember it. It has opened the floor for Bella to talk to me about anything and everything. It was a gift and it went so well.

I think there's so much out there about grown parents remembering their talk with their parents and how terrible it was and how awkward it was. There's so much negativity out there about talking to your kids about sex, so I wanted to add positivity to that pool and just say it doesn't have to be that way.

It can absolutely be good, positive, constructive, helpful, sweet, silly and relaxed. And I want to encourage you in that.

So, go and be empowered! Pray and follow your parental gut instinct. Talk to your spouse. Talk and decide what do we want here? What do we want them to know? How do we want this to feel? Let it be an ongoing thing that you are empowered to talk about with your kids.


This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend! See ya next time!

Hey mama! Just a quick note, this post may contain affiliate links.

Ep 106: Rocking Life as a Work-Out-of-the-Home Mom with Kendra Hennessy

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The one thing I don’t talk about is being a work-out-of-the-home mom. I just never did that, so I don’t want to teach what I don’t confidently know. But! Today’s a good day because my friend Kendra Hennessy has been in that position and is about to drop some serious truth bombs for you mamas!

This episode is going to bring you a lot of hope and inspiration no matter what type of mom you are! Whether you are a mom who works from home or outside the home, get ready for really good conversation around finding the balance and harmony between work and family. 

Kendra and I talk about figuring out what fits your family best, discovering the values that are non negotiable, and finding ways to connect with each of your kids (because we all know, every kid is different and needs their mom in different ways!) There are fears, doubts, and misconceptions moms who work outside of the home face but at the end of the day we are all moms working to give our kids the best we can!

 
 

In This Episode Allie + Kendra Discuss:

  • The biggest doubts work outside the home moms face.

  • Understanding that chaos is routine out of control and how you can get it back in order.

  • How valuable quality time with your kids is (and not just quality time, but time spent doing things they love)

  • Why the “fringe moments” matter.

Mentioned in this Episode:


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Made For This Mom is a beautiful, life-changing program that I co-created with Kendra. It deals with mindset, attitude and heart shifts for moms who are ready to uplevel their mental and emotional health.

If you want to get away from the whole “oh mom, life is so hard and so messy,” and just that victim mentality. The, “I never get a moment to myself. My whole life is just such a crap show. I don't even know what selfcare is. I never get time to myself.” That whole act, that whole lifestyle and start living your life as who you are meant to be, this program is meant for you. It will change your life.

This is a mindset program that helps you identify the source of the weight you're feeling and get this aerial view of your motherhood so you can become the confident, flourishing mom that you were meant to be.

It is a next level program. Made For This Mom. Doors are open now and I really want to see you in there!


who doesn't love a GIVEAWAY?

Reviews are everything on iTunes! Would you take a minute and click here to leave a review? Email hello@alliecasazza.com with a screenshot of your review on iTunes. You'll be entered to win one of Allie's amazing courses for FREE!  

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at hello@alliecasazza.com or connect with me over on Facebook & Instagram


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.


Guys! It is finally May and I'm so excited because it's Mother's Day this month. It's the month of motherhood and that means in my life that I get to do a lot of work side-by-side with my business bestie, Kendra Hennessy of Mother Like A Boss.

We co-created an online program called Made For This Mom together a few years ago and every May we open the doors to that program. I'm so excited because this is just one of the reasons that I love May so much. This time of year honestly makes me super emotional because this program is so important, so close to my heart, and so different from the other courses that I've created.

Made For This Mom is a beautiful, life-changing program that I co-created with Kendra. It deals with mindset, attitude and heart shifts for moms who are ready to uplevel their mental and emotional health.

If you want to get away from the whole “oh mom, life is so hard and so messy,” and just that victim mentality. The, “I never get a moment to myself. My whole life is just such a crap show. I don't even know what selfcare is. I never get time to myself.” That whole act, that whole lifestyle and start living your life as who you are meant to be, this program is meant for you. It will change your life.

This is a mindset program that helps you identify the source of the weight you're feeling and get this aerial view of your motherhood so you can become the confident, flourishing mom that you were meant to be.

It is a next level program. Made For This Mom. Doors are open now. Go to madeforthismom.com. Get all the deets. I really want to see you guys in there.

It comes with a student-only online community where Kendra and I regularly check in and can talk to you guys. You can ask questions and comment. It also comes with three live coaching calls with both Kendra and myself present and we literally are taking your questions, taking your specific life issues and talking with you, answering your questions, helping you, coaching you through things. So, three of those live calls plus the entire program, plus the student community. This is just invaluable.

I can't wait to see you guys in there. I'm so excited about this! Madeforthismom.com. The doors are closing super soon, so get over there.

ALLIE: Hey guys! Welcome back to The Purpose Show. I'm so happy today. Extra, extra happy because I'm sitting with my BFF and we're going to hang out and talk and you guys get to listen in. Kendra's here. She is one of my best friends in the whole world. She lives across the country, so I think that's a bummer. It's a bummer, but it says a lot about our friendship because I'm over here in sunny San Diego and you'll send me a picture with 8 ft. of snow.

KENDRA: It's the middle of January. And Allie will have an Instastory and they're gallivanting around southern California, and I just sent her a picture of us bundled up inside because we're inside the Polar Vortex, and she's like, “Oh I know! I totally feel you, friend. It was 50 degrees yesterday.” Very different.

ALLIE: Kendra and I, she's been on the show before. I'll link to her initial episode because it was really good. She’s the queen of simplifying your cleaning and your cleaning systems, your cleaning routine, how to clean. She taught me how to deal with urine, which I need to do a lot because I have a million boys.

KENDRA:  I'm really good at teaching people how to deal with urine. I want that to be on my tombstone.

ALLIE: This episode is going to be so fun. I'm so excited! Kendra is the founder of Mother Like A Boss and her website is amazing. The way she does things is really similar to the way that I have my business laid out because we've been doing stuff together for a while.

I think you can see the influence that we've had on each other whenever we come together. We have a really good energy together and I love doing stuff with you. We also made a course together, Made For This Mom.

KENDRA: Which is incredible. I'm trying to say that with the most humble sound in my voice as well. I know when we talk about it we try to be very humble, but I really do think that I can say that because it's helped so many people. And I also think that both Allie and I know that that course came out of somewhere else. It came to us in an instant and we laid out everything for that course in a day because it just came to us from another place. We just knew that this is what we were supposed to talk about and it deviated from what we normally did because it's not about decluttering or minimalism or homemaking or cleaning. It's really about motherhood. It's about your relationships with yourself and the people in your life and getting back to a really solid place in your own life.

A lot of moms in there are like, “You know, I have my systems down. I'm running my home. I've decluttered and the everything there seems great, but why do I still feel this longing? Why do I still feel this emptiness inside?” And that's where Made For This Mom really has been able to fill that void.

ALLIE: Yeah, we launch it every May for Mother's Day, so coming up. Every time we do that, I always say that I'm so proud of that course. I think I really am the most proud of it because, not that the other stuff doesn't matter, but this is so much deeper and the kind of comments that we see coming out of that course…it's just better.

It's so amazing and so powerful. I love that we did that together. It was like we were just enlightened with it. It came out of us when we were together in San Diego. That was great. I love it.

So, tell everybody about your family and, you know, be better at it than I was at saying what you do.

KENDRA: Absolutely. As she said, I founded Mother Like A Boss. We actually just celebrated our three-year anniversary for the business, which was really incredible. And I wasn't even keeping track at all because, as you know, as you get older time sort of constricts and you're like, “Oh! It's been a year? It feels like 10 minutes.”

Before that I owned a cleaning business, so that's really where my cleaning expertise comes in. I wasn't just somebody that liked to clean, I actually ran a business. I ran the numbers last year and I have about 22,000 hours of experience cleaning houses. That's not including my own, so I do have the expertise. I have learned a lot.

It was an 11-year process and I sucked at it at first. I really do tell people that for a reason because house cleaning isn't something much like anything else in motherhood. It's not something people are born with. People have tendencies towards organization or tendencies towards good habits. But at the end of the day, something like cleaning your house is not just innate. It's not like we're born knowing how to do it.

I ran that business. I loved it and I loved what I did, but I was exhausted. Cleaning people's houses every day is exhausting. From a business standpoint, I wanted something I could scale. I wanted something that would allow me to be home with my kids more. So, I went into the online space and thought there has to be a way that I can serve moms in a better way, not just with cleaning, but with home management in general.

Really what I talk about is modernizing homemaking. I sort of feel like I’m on this one-woman mission to modernize and put a fresh spin on homemaking because I think that it is one of the most important things that we can do these days and it's one of the most overlooked.

And that's really why Allie and I both not only get along so well, but have such a heart for each other is because we both have that same belief…if your home is in order, then you're going to radiate that love and joy to your children, to your husband, to the relationships in your life. And then they're going to take that and radiate it out.

I think now we live such busy, full, crazy lives that why wouldn't you want your home to be the safe haven?

I always say I want my home to be the hammock and the safety net that catches us in our lives, so that when the stresses of the outside world are crazy, I can come home and it's not another stressor. When I walk into my home I'm not like, “Oh, great, crap” and there's crap everywhere. And I have no systems. We wake up in the morning and we're run, run, run and rush, rush, rush, much the same way Allie talks about decluttering.

On the personal end, I've been married to my very tall husband, as Allie can tell you.

ALLIE: Yes! He’s so tall and so loud.

KENDRA: He's tall and loud. Bless his sweet, sweet heart. He's one of the loudest people on the face of the earth. His whole family is. They just talk loud and he doesn't even realize it. What's funny is that he's not an ostentatious person at all. He's just loud in the way he talks.

ALLIE: It’s literally his voice decibel. It's just funny. We joke about it all the time because when we were first hanging out as families…Brian…one of our pain points in our marriage is, I'm like, “What? Huh?” He's kind of a mumbler. He has a quiet voice. And Adam was like, “So how's it going?” And I was jarred. And I noticed it and Kendra was like, “Oh yeah, sorry.” He's really loud. It's just funny.

KENDRA: He has a very rich timber.

ALLIE: Well said.

KENDRA: We've been married for, it's coming up on 12 years in a couple of months. We have a 12-year-old daughter, Ava, and a 6-year-old son, Everett. They are truly the light of my life. All three of them. I love them so much. I love being a mom. I love being a wife. I love being a business owner.

I think that if you're listening to Allie, you know Allie's the same way. And again, that's something that really created our friendship is while I love my family and I would do anything for them, my business is like a third child to me. My business is super important, running my business is important. I love being successful. I love making money. I love all the things about running a business. I love being a CEO.

Also we live in upstate New York where it's cold four months out of the year. Really cold, not like southern California, 50 degree cold. Like actually cold.

ALLIE: It sucks. I'm embarrassed that I've acclimated back to here because I travel so much that if I'm gone enough I'm like, “Oh, I'm actually not that cold and I don't need this giant puffy jacket on day 15 of being here.” But then I get back and I'm like, “Oh it’s so cold and then I look at my phone and it’s like 61.”

I don't even know where to start with you because I have so many things that I want to talk about, but I want to circle back to when you had your cleaning business. You have a podcast, an amazing podcast by the way, which we will link to. My podcast and yours is coming out at the same time, so if you're listening to this one you can go back and listen to hers.

You talk about being a work-outside-of-the-home mom. I know that you know how it is when you’re audience is building and they want to know something from you and you want to help them, but there's certain things that you can figure out and help. But there's other things you just can't talk about because you've never done that. And being a work-outside-of-the-home mom is one of those things for me.

Now it's a little different. You start to travel, and speaking events, and I'm gone a lot more, but even then, my family usually comes too, so I just don't have that experience of you have a job. It's not necessarily something that you love and are super passionate about, but it pays the bills and you're working and you're gone all day and you're exhausted when you come home in the evening and you've got homework and family and cooking and all that. I've never done that.

I want to talk to you about all the things, but I really want to hone in on you blessing and speaking truth over the women that are listening that have a work-outside-of-the-home life like that. It's not their passion, it's their paycheck and they've got to do it, you know?

KENDRA: Yeah. I should start by saying I started out feeling like it was my passion. For me it was. I want to start out by saying that. I started my business when I was pregnant with Ava, so it was 13 years ago. I had gone to college and I dropped out of college in my last semester. Go me.

I had a panic attack. I did not want to do what I was going to school for. It was freaking me out that I was going to then be put into this job that I didn't want and I literally had an actual, physical panic attack and I was like, “I'm done. I'm just going to drop out. I'll figure it out later, but I'm not going to continue doing this.”

And the long story made very short is that a friend of mine had a neighbor that had just moved here from 20 or 30 minutes away. She owned a cleaning business there and was going to be running it here and needed someone to help her. So I was like, “You know what? Well I just quit school so I should probably do something during the day, so I decided to work with her, loved it and then decided to do my own business.

Well while all that was happening, while dropping out of college, which broke my family's heart because I was really the first person to go to college. I had a scholarship so they did not expect that.

ALLIE: What were you going for?

KENDRA: What I went for the first two years for was secondary math education, so I was going to be a math teacher, which could not be any different than what I want to do.

ALLIE: When she first said that, I was like, “I don't know if we're going to be friends, how can you like math? But it's so funny because she has this numbers-based memory and she'll be like, “Hey, remember on January 2nd, 2016 when we were sitting at 45-degree angle and you said this, and then we started this part of the business and we made exactly this dollars and cents amount?” She'll remember things and it's kind of amazing in a business partner because I'm the opposite.

I come up with all of the creative ideas and I'm really good at writing our emails and stuff. She's like, “Okay, but we should probably plan on making money from this.” And I'm like, “Oh yeah.”

KENDRA: Yeah, you'll give me the information. Then you're like, “Can you just run the conversions real quick on that.”

ALLIE: Yeah, we’re a good team, but I think it's so funny because your personality is so…you're so bubbly, you're such an extrovert, you're so good with people and you're so good at speaking the truth, gently, but also not so much when it's needed. And you're just so good that it's so funny that you're such a logical numbers person too. It's a weird mix.

KENDRA: Yeah, I think that's why I decided not to become a math teacher because it was like, “I just don't think that I can do that for the rest of my life.” So after two years in school of doing that, I was like, “Yeah, I don't want to do that.”

Then I thought, “You know, maybe instead of doing math, I'll just do elementary education, teach 5th grade.” I never wanted to be a kindergarten teacher. I just wanted to teach maybe fifth or sixth grade, so that's really what I went to school for. Which is interesting now because I am doing that, I'm teaching and I love to teach. I love helping people. I love the look in someone's eye when they get an “aha” or when they type it and they're like, “Oh my gosh! That just was so great!” I love helping people on a journey. I do it in a different way now.

When I dropped out of school and then was starting this new business, I also got myself pregnant. I should say I didn't get myself pregnant. Adam got me pregnant. That's really an odd thing to say. I love when people say “I got myself pregnant.” Did you? Did you really get yourself pregnant?

ALLIE: But I also hate when couples are like, “We’re pregnant!”

KENDRA: No, we're not pregnant. I was pregnant. He was not. I found out I was pregnant four months after we had gotten engaged. That was all happening at once. And to be honest, I'm glad it happened that way because it forced me to move forward. I didn't have a choice. I just kept moving forward.

Anyway, I was always a “working mom.” And I say it in quotes because I think that all of us are working, but I mean the go outside the home every day, leave at 7:00 AM, go to a job - my business - and then come home. It's funny because I don't know any different and I've never known any different. I've only been a stay-at-home-mom two different times in my life and it was only for a few months at a time. So it was just a very different way of doing things.

And I think, like many other things in parenting, it's trial by fire where you see what works and see what doesn't. For me, what helped tremendously…and I know that not everyone is blessed to have family that they live around…but if you don't have family around, finding yourself a support system. Even if you have to pay them. Even if it's just a babysitter that comes in for a couple of hours at night or on the weekends, or a nanny or a mommy's helper, that kid next door who's 12 who's looking for a few extra dollars, having somebody come in to clean your home, even if it's once a month.

Here's the thing guys, people talk all the time about like, “Oh, I can't afford this. I can't afford that.” But they'll go to Starbucks every day and get themselves a coffee. I'm like, if you just saved that money every single day, if you save that $5, you would have an extra $150 at the end of the month that you could have paid a house cleaner to come in and do a bunch of stuff for you or someone to help you with laundry once a week.

To me as a work-outside-of-the-home mom, it was about making my priorities crystal clear and nonnegotiable. Where when I was working, I was working, and when I was home, I was home and that was really difficult having a business because it wasn't like a job where I just left the job and came home. People were texting me or emailing me or whatever, so I really had to get crystal clear on what was important to me and how important it was to me to clean my house, to do my laundry, to cook for my family, to grocery shop.

Then I had to make routines around that. That's why I am so big on routines now is because routines help you to create freedom in your life so you're not coming home at 5:00 PM every night and starting from scratch every single day. And that is what a great majority of moms out there are doing. They start from scratch every day. And I know that you're big on routines too. It's exhausting. And that's why we're so big on routines because if you can make something rhythmic, make something the same every single day, even if it's just one small thing at a time, it's one less thing you have to put your mental energy into.

ALLIE: Absolutely. And I love that you described it as this is why routines are so freeing because the thing that just grates my nerves more than anything else that I hear is that, “I just can't do routines. It's too rigid for me. I’m too spontaneous.”

I am so Type B and I love being spontaneous. Let’s just take today for a quick example before we get back to the working mom thing. We're in launch mode right now in my business and you know how that goes and today, everything is done and we have a free day. I immediately was like, “Oh! I get to talk to my best friend on my podcast and then we're going to go and have a family day before baseball practice. It's going to be awesome.”

But before…I was sitting outside this morning having my coffee on the porch while the kids played and literally just thinking about before, like I would have thought, “That would have been nice. Unfortunately, I'm eight loads behind on the laundry. The dishes are all crusty. I have no food prepped for dinner.” These things are all done because it's rhythmatized and simplified. The load of laundry is finishing right now. I can hear it above me. There's food in the crock pot because I had it prepped before. Actually, Brian helped me with that, but we had the plan in place. The dishes are done. The house is picked up. Everything is running smoother because we're not, like you said, starting from scratch every day and now we're freed up to go and have that spontaneous family day. I didn't have this on my calendar. I didn't know this was going to happen. We can go because we've freed ourselves up with routine. I love that you worded it like that. Thank you because nobody that doesn't have routines thinks that it's going to be freeing; they think it's going to be rigid.

KENDRA: One of the most quoted Kendra Hennessey things, that I see people post is “chaos is a routine you've lost control of.” People think that chaos is this same thing. Like, “Oh, I would like to be able to just wake up every day and just choose what I want to do.” And I'm like, “Yeah, how's that working out for you right now? How is it working out when you wake up in the morning and it's chaos from morning until night?” That's a routine. Being chaotic every day is a routine. It's just one you lost control of. If your kids, if you and your kids can expect chaos every day, it's a routine because a routine is something that is based on expectation. Expecting something over and over, like waking up in the morning and brushing your teeth. That is something you just do because it's you have what you call anchors. I think the way you talk about anchors is genius. You're anchoring something to a time of day so you don't even have to think about it.

I said recently, I think it was in a workshop that I did, that when I worked at a pizzeria when I was a teenager, I would work on the weekends and I would ‘open.’ Well, we didn't walk in on a Saturday morning and go like, “Whoa, there's a bunch of stuff to do. Where do you want to start? What should we do today?” No, you have an opening list. You have a whole checklist of stuff to get done. Why? Because then it's done and as soon as you open those doors, you can just work the whole day, serve your customers and not have to worry about all the rest of the stuff getting done because it's already done and you know that the closing list will get done at the end of the day.

Just like Allie said, she got everything done. So now it's like, “Cool, we can go out and enjoy our day because I'll come home, dinner will be ready in the crock pot and laundry has already been done. Or maybe there'll be a load that was done in the dryer and I can come home and quickly put it away. That's what routines get you.

And it doesn't matter if you're staying home all day or working. That is a very common misconception. Your routines are just as important no matter what type of mom you are.

ALLIE: Absolutely. I love that so much and I think that it's important to say as well that like you mentioned it in the beginning, having a mommy's helper or whatever…we are not saying you're a mess. You need to get your ish together and you need to do it all. I'm the minimalist one. I have two girls that are in high school and they go to our church and they come twice a week and they fold all the laundry that I do on a rhythm in the mornings. I just put the hammer there and I'm like, “they’ll deal with that,” and they fold it and put it away. And it's amazing. You can delegate, that could be a rhythm, but you are keeping things running at least. You don't have to do every single thing.

If you don’t have the budget…we’ve both been there, but if you can simplify. If you can afford to have a little mommy's helper come. I give them I think it's like $20 or something a week. They’re so excited and they're saving it for their summer and all this stuff. But they love it. They're so happy to help. It helps me so much. That's saving me I don't know how much time, but I feel it and I feel that in my week that I don't have to do that. Find ways to delegate. Find ways to delegate to yourself. By rhythmatizing you’re delegating those brain calories somewhere else where they matter more. Delegate to another person or your kids when they get older. People's kids don't do enough to help.

KENDRA: No, and that's something that gets talked about quite a bit in my business. And I've had a few people that don't agree with me. They're like, “I don't believe that kids should have to do chores.” And I'm like, “Well, you do you. If you want to do everything for your kids and you think that that's the way that you want to run your house, I am not going to judge you for it. But I'm going to tell you right now in my house we’re a team and I'm not anyone's servant.

ALLIE: You make a mess, you help pick up.

My son is 6. He can't mow the lawn. I can't be like, “Oh, we're just going to split everything 50/50.” He’s not old enough. Can you imagine Everett mowing the lawn?

KENDRA: He is the cutest thing. He doesn't do that. Adam does that because that's Adam's job to do, but you know what Everett can do? He can help fold clothes. He can put away his toys. He can put the dishes in the dishwasher after dinner. He can help set the table. He can clean up the table. He can do things.

And my 12-year-old is now as tall as I am, so she can do a lot of stuff around the house. She's been doing her own laundry for four years because I bought back my time.

I taught her to do her laundry while I still had my cleaning business. I should make that very clear. I was working eight hours a day, outside of the home, and I still taught Ava how to do her laundry because I was like, “I don't want to be spending time doing her laundry when I have all the other things that need to be done.” At the time I had a 2-year-old; I didn't want to be also doing her laundry and I was like, “She can learn how to do it and then I will literally buy all of my time back. All of those years that I've bought back that I haven't touched her laundry.

I think we have gotten so far away from delegating to our kids. I mean that's a whole other discussion in and of itself. But your children aren't there to be served by you. You're all there to serve one another and the home. I view homemaking as a team effort. We're all here to serve our home because when we all help and we all have our own routines, we get to have days like Allie just said she gets to have where everyone goes out.

Because I know for a fact Allie’s kids are helping do stuff too. And it's like, “If we all get our stuff done, guess what we get to do guys? We get to go out. We get to go to Legoland. We get to go to the park. We get to go swimming.” I tell my kids in the summer, “Listen, if you guys want to leave, I get my work done from 9-12 in the summer. If you can get your work done from 9-12, guess what happens at 12? We go to grandma's to swim. We go to the lake. We go out to the park. But that stuff has to be done.” And so, we all have our routines. We all have our marching orders. It's not a negative. No one's being punished. It's just a part of running a home. The same way you would run a business.

ALLIE: Yeah. And what a beautiful way to prepare them for the world. A light switch isn’t going to flip on when they're 18, “Oh, I suddenly know how to fold my socks. I suddenly know how to make pancakes or oatmeal or whatever. I suddenly know how to pay bills.” You have to teach them.

I think we all have families in our head that maybe freak us out a little bit about this topic. They are having them do too much or they're so strict that it's joy-sucking, and there's just this tension in the home of the kids are scared of the parents and there's so much responsibility and it's so strict. I can picture two friends that I grew up with that it was like that. They were so rigid and scared all the time and they were doing so much for their age that they weren't able to enjoy childhood. But you know, balancing that and teaching them to not be entitled that things are just done for you and your clothes just appear. I love that. I love the way you talk about that.


Okay, friends. I know I already told you in the beginning of this episode that Made For This Mom is here. It's open. It's May. It's one of my favorite times of the year. But as a piece of Made For This Mom, coming back around every May, there's also a free masterclass that Kendra Hennessy and I do together every year.

Anyone can come and sign up for this. This is something that we have gotten such incredible feedback on. People just freak out about it every year and they want it be something that we do more often, but because we have separate lives, separate businesses, and it takes two of us, we've just really dedicated this class to be a thing that happens that’s a free event just once a year. So, this only comes around in May. Anybody can sign up, but the live spots are limited.

Go and sign up. If you are able to come to the live showtime, come a few minutes early and be ready so that you can snag your spot. If you can't come live, sign up anyway. We'll send you a replay link and you'll have a couple of days to watch it before it disappears for another year.

To sign up for this masterclass you need to go to alliecasazza.com/unstuck.

It’s called The Get Unstuck Masterclass and that's exactly what we help you do.

There's typically four big myths that Kendra and I see popping up in you women in our businesses, because we work with women and mothers all day. We're women and mothers ourselves, so we also struggle with these myths. Kendra and I address each of these four core myths about motherhood head on.

It is a truth-bomb-dropping powerful masterclass that will literally have you moving around in your seat because you can't wait to take action on these things, shift your perspective, change your mindset, and start viewing and acting on your motherhood in a different way.

If you're going to spend an hour on the internet, this is the most intentional, the most beneficial place for you to do so. I promise…and I know that is a big promise to make…but I stand by it.

Alliecasazza.com/unstuck. It's free to come to this. You're going to love it.

However, this is a temporary thing. It's happening this week. You can go to the website and get all the details for the time and place and all that, but it's happening live and then you're only gonna have about two days to watch it before it will disappear from internet land until next May when we do it live again. This is a temporary thing.

Alliecasazza.com/unstuck. Go sign up.


ALLIE: I was wondering this morning when I was thinking about this episode, what do you think are the biggest doubts that work-outside-of-the-home moms deal with in themselves about themselves? About their lifestyle? I don't know if ‘doubts’ is the right word. Maybe what are the judgments? What are they dealing with inside of themselves?

KENDRA: I've said before that I never really felt guilty for working. I never really felt guilty about the fact that my daughter went to an in-home daycare for the first three years and then she went to a preschool-based daycare because I always looked at it and thought, I'm a better person for owning my business. And because we're a 2-family working home, we have more money to do different things, and I wanted to work and whatever.

But what I did feel guilty about was that I didn't feel guilty because people would ask me, “Oh, don't you feel guilty about sending your baby to a daycare?” And then I was like, “No, I didn't until now. Now I feel bad. Maybe I'm not a good mom. Maybe all these other people guilty and I don't, maybe I'm not a good mom.” And I think the one thing that I hear work-outside-the-home moms say all the time is, “I am missing time with my children. Am I not a good mom because I'm not staying home? Are they as well taken care of where they are versus if they were at home?” I hear a lot of that.

And then also there's the home aspect, “I feel like I can't maintain my home as well as somebody that stays home.” Just to let you all know, I have just as many stay-at-home moms as I do working moms in my course. It is not a stay-at-home mom issue or a working mom issue. I think we all need to realize that.

ALLIE: It’s a task list issue.

KENDRA: It’s funny because we all have the ‘grass is greener thing’ but it's not; the grass isn't greener on the other side. I think those issues really come up quite a bit for work-outside-the-home moms.

We were just talking beforehand about one of the big issues that comes up is not being able to spend enough time with your children. Feeling like you don't have that quality time. The typical thing I hear is, “We don't get home until 5:00 PM, and then I have to start dinner, there’s homework to do, and then it's bath time/shower time. And then I also want to spend time with my husband.” And you're trying to squeeze a lifetime's worth of stuff into four hours after you get home.

I try now to fit my quality time in with the other stuff I'm doing. There's a book on that about The Fringe Hours. Noticing those fringe moments. Those moments when I'm cooking dinner, having Everett sit down at the kitchen table and do his homework there, or color a picture, or help me cook dinner. Having Ava come with me to the grocery store or when I need to run an errand, saying, “Ava, you want to come with me?” And then talking about the insane dragon books that she won't ever stop talking about.

ALLIE: That’s why she and Bella are cross-country besties and they love each other because they talk about dragons. Kendra and I check in on their texts. The apple ID is the same, so I can open up my phone check their texts and I do often. As a mom, you’re like, what are they talking about? It’s weird when your kids ‘have a life.’ I'm always a little ‘bated breath.’ And then I go on there and it's like, “Dragons are so awesome!” And Ava’s like, “I know! Especially purple dragons. And ice wings,” from the book they read or whenever. And Bella is like, “yeah, ice wings are like the best.” And I'm just sitting there…like they're both dorks and it's amazing. I'm so glad.

KENDRA: It’s amazing. So, I don't care at all about dragons, but I do care about my daughter, so I will listen to her drone on about dragons because that's what she loves.

So, finding that time to spend with them that's not just carved-out time. I think all of us are trying to fit the lives that we see other people living into our own life. And your routines should fit into your life, not the other way around. You don't need cookie cutter routines that then you try to squeeze your unique life into. So, we've really tried in our home now to do the quality time together in those ‘fringe moments.’

Even my husband…he takes Everett to school every morning. Now our school is three minutes down the road. He leaves 15 minutes early because he drives him there and then they sit in the car together and they talk. I could just as easily drive him. I work at home. I just sit at home and I say goodbye to them. But that's their time together. It's their time to go to school and spend that time.

Someone else, they may be like, “It's only 15 minutes.” Well yeah, but that's 15 solid minutes that they are only concentrating on each other. They don't have anything else to do. And to me it's all about quality over quantity. Find those moments that you can fit in there.

Another popular one which I know comes up I'm sure in your audience a lot is wanting to have a nighttime routine where they're getting cleaning done, but also wanting to spend time with their husband.

ALLIE: Why are these your choices?

KENDRA: Exactly. I don't understand. Why can't you do stuff together? Why can't you have your routines be like, okay, for 10 minutes we're just going to clean up the kitchen together and get that done, because many hands make less work. Do it together. Then you can go enjoy time together. Or I say split it down the middle and say like, okay, a few nights a week I'm going to really go all in and make sure there's a load of laundry in and get my evening routine done and then the other nights of the week I'm going to say, “I don't care. I'm going to sit down with my husband, watch a movie, talk, do whatever I want to do.” It doesn't have to be all or nothing. We don't have to have this all or nothing mentality about everything we do in our lives.

ALLIE: I think that we also over analyze how much time things are going to take us.

In business we listen to a lot of the same podcasts. Our businesses are about our real life, our mom life. So a lot of the times I'll learn something about business and be thinking more about applying that to my mom life. And it was like that. There was this episode where this woman was talking about however much time you mentally give yourself for a task, that’s how long it's going to take. If you give yourself an hour to write this email, guess what? It's gonna take you the full hour. But if you're like, alright, 20-minute timer and I’m writing this email, it's gonna take you 20 minutes.

And we do that with our tasks. “Oh well it's either time with my husband or cleaning up the kitchen.” If you just both worked together for 10 minutes it would be done.

KENDRA: Yeah. It’s called Parkinson's law and it is for real. I have done the same thing. How many times have you gone, “Oh, I'm just going to give myself until the end of the month to get this thing done?” If you just give yourself two days, it would have gotten done in two days.

ALLIE: I have seen that so much in my life. You know with the book stuff right now ? They're like, “Okay, how much time do you want for writing your book? We'll stretch it, we'll give you 18 months if you need it. You just seem really busy.” And I'm like, “That is the opposite of what I like. Give me what's the bare minimum? Can I get this done in a month? Give me a three-month deadline.” I know that however much I'm given, that's how much I'm going to take.

I think that's really powerful for us as mothers because we just over overthink. We overcomplicate. We give ourselves too much time. We make it seem way harder than it is. Just get in there make it fun, put in your Airpods and blast music and just get it done. It'll take you five minutes if you give yourself five minutes.

KENDRA: Yeah. Also, if you have children that are old enough to be eating their own food, they're also old enough to be cleaning up after themselves. I say this in my community all the time. When people ask about the after dinner, they're like, “It just sticks me. It seems like it's an hour to clean up after dinner.” And I'm like, “Then you're doing something wrong because it does not need to be taking you that long.” It probably means that you're the only one doing it and you're probably trying to multitask by doing other things at the same time. Trying to answer questions from your children, trying to get somebody in a bath and then coming back downstairs. Tag team that stuff. “Hey, guess what? You're going to do the dishes and you're going to do this and you're going to put the leftovers away.” Everybody has a job.

Believe me in our home, we are not perfect. There are some days where I'm like, “This is not working out. Nothing's working out here.” But when we sit down and have dinner together, cleanup takes no more than 10 minutes because everyone has a job and that's just the way it is. Adam will put the dishes in and I'll clean up the table. Ava will put stuff in…the leftovers or something. If four people were eating, why shouldn't four people be cleaning up. Obviously if you have small children, you know tiny children, I get that that’s the season of your life.

But if you're in the season…I hear people say, “I have a four, a six and an eight-year-old.” That's three extra people to be helping. It’s going to take a little bit of time in the beginning to teach them how to do it, but again, you're buying back your time later because the time you invest right now into them helping is time you're getting yourself back in the future for the future. You could spend 10 minutes every night for three months doing it and you're going to net yourself back every single night for the rest of your life. It seems like a really good investment to me.

ALLIE: Yeah, for sure. I want to ask you when you get to a place in your family relationships, I'm thinking not so much with Adam, but with your kids, maybe in particular Ava, since she's a little older. When you get to a place where you feel like…I always describe it for lack of a better phrase, like when you just don't have their heart. Nothing really happened, nothing’s really, really wrong, but you don't feel like if there was something bothering her that she wouldn’t come to you. Maybe you've gotten a little too busy and you know that connection, there's a gap. What's your favorite thing to do with your kids when you feel that you've gotten to that point so you bridge that gap and fix it.

KENDRA: First of all, I love the way you say that because you have talked about Leland like that. Correct? Meeting his heart? Leland's my favorite kid. He's the best. He could care less about me at all. He literally could, that kid could not care less about my existence. And I think that's why I love him so much. He's just his own person.

ALLIE: That’s the thing, he makes you want his love and attention. He's just so indifferent and then the most random things…I’m like…why do you care about that and not about me? He’s hard to get.

KENDRA: He is. He is going to be really hard for some woman…that's going to be a hard nut to crack, for sure, but in a good way. Because when he finds someone, that’s going to be the person.

But I love the way that you say that because it's so true. Sometimes you just feel like there's a ‘block’ up. Like there's a barricade. I do sometimes feel that way with Ava, one, because of her age. She’s a little more independent now, which I love and hate at the same time. And two, because she is very introverted and always has been. She was never my super cuddly kid. She was never the kid that was like, “mommy, mommy, mommy. I need mommy all the time.” She just wasn't like that.

And now it seems even more extreme because Everett would climb back up inside my uterus if he could. That kid is attached to my life. He just wants to be with me 24/7, like just all the time. So, now it seems even more extreme. I never have to get Everett’s heart, ever. His heart is usually right in front of my face all the time, but Ava's…I feel like I do, now more than ever.

What I've noticed helps with me is getting out of the house because in the house she has her room that she can go to and I feel like it's almost like a retreat. I get it. I was 12 at one point too. I was the same way. “Leave me alone. I'm the oldest. I don't want to be around my siblings or my parents.” But I feel like now getting out of the house really helps because for a lack of a better term, she has nowhere to go.

It's easier for us to relate to one another if I can take her to Chipotle, for a drive, or we can go somewhere. Meeting up with the girl scouts, even that 20-minute trip just together, it's so much easier for us to turn on music. We love that. We share that love for music and then it'll open her up because she’s like, “Oh, do you know what this song is about? I looked it up and this is what they meant,” and it gets a conversation going. But in the house, I noticed, I’ll say, “Ava come downstairs and sit next to me.” I'll talk to her. And she's like, “Umm hmm, can I go back upstairs?” For me getting out of the house has helped so much with our relationship because it's just one on one, it's just the two of us.

And also, she has a little brother and her little brother annoys her. And so, when she's downstairs, she just like, “Everett go away.” And when we're not in the house I feel like she's more open to not be annoyed.

ALLIE: Yeah, I love that. That was a good answer.

Hudson is like Everett for me. I feel like you've seen this in action. I don't know if you guys have a dynamic like this, but Brian is Hudson in giant man form. He gets so irritated with Hudson and I'm like, “Do you realize that this is because he's you? You're irritated at your own self.” Because Brian's love language is touch and mine is not. I don't want to be touched. It’s so hard. We've had to come to the realization in our marriage that when we are having a disagreement and we're working through it, I have to put my hand on Brian’s knee or at some point he just feels unloved and far from me and it's the worst thing. It’s the worst thing. I’m like, “Ugg, fine!”

And Hudson is so touchy and it's irritating. The other day me and Brian were snuggling in the kitchen and he gave me a kiss and I'm in his arms and all-of-a-sudden I feel someone on my thigh and it’s Hudson joining in. Then yesterday Bella came over and, she was like, “Thanks for taking me to lunch, mom. I had a really nice time.” And she gave me a really long hug. All-of-a-sudden Hudson joins the group. If there's physical touch or love happening, Hudson's like, “Oh, I need in on this.”

KENDRA: That is our exact dynamic. I just have two less children. It's the exact same dynamic.

ALLIE: It’s easy to get to his heart. I know where he is at. He's very emotional and he always wants to be close to me. But the other kids all pretty much are a little more distant.

KENDRA: It is funny because all four of your kids…it's funny because I feel like I have the best relationship with Emmett. Emmett and I really bonded. We really bonded, and Emmett and Ava bonded so much. They had a great time. They had so much fun.

But it's the same with us. Adam’s love language is touch as well and so is Everett's and it's really difficult sometimes to feel like I'm being smothered because I'm just like, “Oh my God, can you people stop touching me?” But I love that you said that about Brian because I've noticed the same thing where I need to recognize that just a gesture of an extra kiss, a hug, a back rub or something, means so much in the same way since I'm ‘words of affirmation’ in the same way that an extra, “Hey, I just want to let you know thank you for everything you do for us.” I will live off that for the whole day. I'll be like, “Oh my God. Thank you!” Because that's how I receive love. It's the same with my kids, you know?

ALLIE: Yeah, I love that.

Okay, so what is going on in Mother Like A Boss world that you want to share with everybody. I know we've got our stuff going on this month, but I want to hear from you. What are you super excited about? Is there a behind-the-scenes you can give us or is there something already out that you want to share? What is getting you really excited about all the mom things you do?

KENDRA: I would say that because this is sort of ‘the May” (if you're listening to it live) in May. June…I can't give too much information, but I will say that we’re really going to be focusing on goals again. And I talk about goals in a very different way. I'm not all about, “Set your goal and then achieve it.” That's boring and no one ever does it.

We're going to be really focusing on how can you make the rest of the year your best year ever and how can you start over. I love fresh starts, but I'm also a big believer that a fresh start can be this very moment. You don't have to wait until Monday. You don't have to wait for the New Year or the New Moon or whatever. A fresh start can be the moment you decide you’re making a fresh start.

Instead of taking the summer off, we're really going to be diving in, in Mother Like A Boss, into how to really finish off the year strong. How to have a great summer and enjoy yourself while also not neglecting everything in your home and in your life and stuff like that.

ALLIE: I love that. Oh my gosh, you're going to have to share the link with me because last summer…June to me because we homeschool…break, right? Last summer on the podcast I did an episode called basically How To Revisit Your New Year Resolutions  and check-in. Nobody does that. It was so good because nobody does that. But that's what I do in my personal life. Check in. Where am I at? I'm six months, I'm halfway through…I don't want to get to January again and be like, “Shoot, well here we go again, back to the same goal.”

I think that you're taking that and really breaking it down and putting that into action for them. And that's amazing. I love that you shared that. I definitely want to share that and help get people in there. It's so helpful.

KENDRA: Yeah. Thank you. It's true. I think a lot of us we sort of “phone it in” at the second half of the year. I really do think that’s a perfectionist thing. It's like, “Well, if I haven't gotten stuff done by now, we'll just wait until next year.” As if those six months don't matter. It's really crazy.

I love that we can dive in and everyday figure out a new way to have a fresh start and start over again.

ALLIE: I love everything about you. I love everything that you talk about. I love the way you talk about it. I love that it's so different than the way that I talk about things.

Kendra will come to me guys and be like, “I just want you to know this idea that I just saw your post about is amazing and I like kind of hate you because it wasn't my idea. But I love it.” And I'll be like, “What are you talking about? You just put out this video series. It’s so amazing!” I just love that we can cheer each other on. Also we help each other out. We brainstorm together. We'll talk things out. “I've got this problem. Have you ever had this?” We just did that with webinars.

I just love you. You're so dear to me and I'm so excited that we got to do another episode on here together.

KENDRA: Thank you. I love you friend. Not to toot our own horns and say we're great or anything, but I also think that it warrants saying that the friendship that we have is the type of friendship that you guys can have with other moms. Even if you don't own a business, we don't compete with each other. We're not looking at it like, well look what she's doing and I can't have that. I look at everything that Allie does in her home and her life and I look at it from the lens if she can do it, so can I. If she can make this look easy, then that means that I can do it.

I think we need to bridge that gap in female friendships and you don't need to compete with your female friends. And if you have friends that are constantly competing with you in a negative way, it's probably time to find a new friend.

ALLIE: Yeah. And not being withholding either. If Kendra texts me or I text her like, “Hey, I saw this. How did you do that? How did you get that many people? Or how did you do that in your home?” Whatever it is. I'm not withholding, she's not withholding. We share with each other.

And that's what's so crazy to me about when we're doing… like the masterclass that we're going to do or I have a new challenge or video series or something and people are not sharing with their friends almost like they're embarrassed to say that they needed help with this. We all need help with this at different seasons.

There's other moms that are on your Facebook feed. Just because you're not an “influencer” doesn't mean you don't have influence. Share what you were finding. Share what you're learning and help other people rise up too and be better versions of themselves too. We're all trying to be better. There's no secrets there.

KENDRA: There was a woman in my group yesterday who posted this genius idea for dealing with kids cups and stuff throughout the day. And I was like, “Can I steal that and give you credit for it in my course because that's the most genius idea ever.” Share with each other. That's how we grow is by sharing and not being judgmental of others, but instead saying, “Hey, this worked for me. I hope that it works for you.”

ALLIE: Since we're sharing, can you share what the idea was?

KENDRA: Yes, it's a great idea and I'll have to go back and find her name because she was not somebody that I'm friends with. She was just in my free group. But she basically took a placemat from Walmart. She bought this big placemat and she made it into quadrants. She has four kids and she put their name and then she puts it on the counter and that's where their cup goes throughout the day so that it stays in one spot.

ALLIE: You’re like, “Where's your cup?” And there's rotten milk in a sippy cup.

KENDA: Yeah. So that's where it stays and then when it's washed it goes there and it just sits there so that they know where their cup is. They get one cup throughout the day and then they can wash it out. And I was like, “That's such a genius idea. Thank you for sharing. Thank you for not just being, “Oh this is stupid. No one's going to care about this.” Share with your friends. Share what’s working for you.

ALLIE: I love that. Well thank you so much for sharing. We're going to link to everything but Motherlikeaboss.com you guys, it's so good. And she's got the setup where you can choose your own adventure. She has this vault with all these free goodies in there.

Made For This Mom is opening this month for enrollment. It only opens once a year. And we really want to see you in there.

We'll be talking about that and we'll see you guys at our masterclass. We're hanging out every May, Kendra and I, we really hang out and I love it.

KENDRA: Thank you. Love you friend!

ALLIE: Love you too. Thanks for being here!


This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend! See ya next time!

Hey mama! Just a quick note, this post may contain affiliate links.

EP 103: Decluttering 101: Where Do I Start?

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It’s no surprise that my favorite thing to talk about is decluttering! Clearing the clutter is simplifying your life and creating an atmosphere of less so that you can focus more on what you want to be focusing on and what actually matters to you. This comes in many forms - physical clutter and mental clutter, heart clutter, calendar clutter, physical health clutter - all of that. And in this episode, we are going back to the basics of decluttering your physical stuff. I am going to help you figure out exactly where you should start! Let’s dive in!

 
 

In This Episode Allie Discusses:

  • Where her journey with decluttering all started.

  • Ways to handle the people in your life who don’t want you to declutter.

  • How to determine the best place for you to start decluttering your home.

  • The freedom you will experience as you declutter your home and your life.  

Mentioned in this Episode:


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I know how overwhelming it can feel to get started with all of this stuff. It's just a lot. And I wish I could be there with you and hold your hand, breathe with you and walk you through it step by step. But I can't.

However, the next best thing is totally free and I've got it for you right now! It is the Clear The Clutter Starter Kit. It's the best place to get started with my philosophy of simple, realistic, freeing, not limiting, doable minimalism for moms. It basically explains what minimalism actually is, which is not joy-sucking and depriving yourself of everything, getting rid of everything you have.

It will help you find your ‘why’ and teach you how to journal through the process so that you have that solid foundation to stand on. Again, this is totally free and it's just a downloadable pdf. You can keep it on your phone or print it out! I cannot wait for you to dive into this!


who doesn't love a GIVEAWAY?

Reviews are everything on iTunes! Would you take a minute and click here to leave a review? Email hello@alliecasazza.com with a screenshot of your review on iTunes. You'll be entered to win one of Allie's amazing courses for FREE!  

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at hello@alliecasazza.com or connect with me over on Facebook & Instagram


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.

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Hey guys! This episode is a Decluttering 101.

I get super excited when I talk about this still, but only because everybody else seems to get super excited when I talk about this stuff. I talk about so many things that fall under the umbrella of simplifying your life and creating an atmosphere of less so that you can focus more on what you want to be focusing on and what actually matters to you. Clearing the clutter in so many forms - physical clutter and mental clutter, heart clutter, calendar clutter, physical health clutter - all of that.

So, whenever I talk about actual physical decluttering, like in your home, I feel like it circles me back to the beginning of where everything started because for me, it all started at home. And I think that's a lot of the stories of people that I talk to is that it all started at home. From getting really minimalistic there it spills over into the other parts of your life because how can it not when you see it working? When you see so many amazing, beautiful results, changes, and shifts happening in your life just from clearing physical clutter, you naturally wonder, “Well, what would happen if I applied these principles that I'm figuring out to the other areas of my life? Into my schedule, my relationships and all these other areas? So, I feel like we're going to just go back to the basics today.

It’s hard for me because I want to cover, “Okay, Decluttering 101, where do I start?”

Well, I want to talk to you about how do you deal with people in your life in starting to let go of things that other people feel are important for you to keep? It's so funny how other people will insert themselves in your business and say, “I think you should keep that.” And it's like, “Oh, it's not your house.” Or your spouse? It is their house and they have a problem with you getting rid of stuff.

There are so many pieces. This is a beast of an issue, which is why I have Your Uncluttered Home in the first place. That's where that online program was born from because people were asking me for it. “This is all so much. Can you condense it into one place and you just pour everything into one place that will walk me through the A to Z of becoming a more minimalist person in a way that's relative and doable for me, my personality and what I want?” And so that's why that's there.

So, it's hard for me not to go down all the different roads here, but I really want to zoom in on where do you start physically? Actually where do you start when all is said and done? When we're not talking about the other people in your life? When we're not dealing with your spouse and his or her pushback (depending on who's listening here) to the changes that you want to make? When we're not talking about your kids not getting it and them pushing back on letting go of things? We're not talking about all of that other stuff. We're just talking about the physical act of decluttering your stuff and where do you start there. So, I'm going to work really hard to hone in on this thing and answer this popular question for you.

When it comes to decluttering, I always give a couple of options because I think the world wants leaders to say, “This is the answer! This is the way you need to do this. It's cut and dry. It's super simple. This is where you need to start.” But it's hard because there's different personality types. There's different houses. There's different families.

I've done enough work, one-on-one and in a one to small group and I've had tens of thousands of people go through my online programs, and I talk to them, we survey them, we do group calls with them. I've had these conversations so many times, enough to know that giving one answer is only going to solve the problem for about half the people.

So, I have two options for when it comes to where do you start in decluttering.

The first one is an easy start. In that regard I think the easiest, best place to start with decluttering is in a bathroom. It doesn't really matter which bathroom it is. You can start in your personal bathroom. You could start in your guest bathroom. But in a bathroom it’s pretty much easy yeses and nos. Old makeup. Old hair tools and hairsprays that don't even work anymore. Why do you even have this? Old washcloths. Hair stuck to the bottom of the drawers that's been there forever. It's an easy clean out area. And what's good about that is that it gives this momentum that you need to keep going. It's an easy place to make decisions and you can just say, “Obviously no, I'm not going to keep this. Obviously, yes, I'm going to keep that because I use it every time I get ready.” Whatever the thing is, whatever the answer is, it's a place where you can very simply and easily make decisions about what to keep and what to let go of.

And there's not a lot of donations in there and most people don't keep sentimental items in their bathrooms unless you have a really interesting way of home storage. For most people, it's just easy. Yes and no. And that builds this momentum. You get in there, you get it done and you feel so good. Like you accomplished something. You started.

The hardest part of any project, whether you're writing America's next great novel or you're just decluttering your bathroom, the hardest part of any project is taking that first step in getting started. So starting in the bathroom gets that out of the way for you. It's just easy. It's simple. You get started and when you walk away with a trash bag full of old makeup and hair products, you feel pretty good. And your bathroom feels a lot cleaner.

You can work out how you want to organize things once you have what you're keeping. I like to get everything out of a person's bathroom that’s not going to be kept and then look at what is going to be kept and look at what's not working here? Do you need some little plastic trays to go in your drawers to store your hair ties and all that? We can look at drawer organization and set up after that.

Even if you don't want to do that, if you're kind of like me where I'm not a super organized person. I actually really like minimalism because it doesn't make me feel like I need to be organized. What do I need to function here? What is essential for me? What is making me happy and working for me? What do I use and I can just throw it in the drawer? I don't really need to be organized because there's not a bunch of crap everywhere that needs to be arranged in a more appealing way, in a visually appealing way.

Minimalism requires no organization because there's not a ton of extra stuff. You can just throw things in a drawer and it looks fine cause you don't have a ton of extra junk. So that's why I like this stuff. I'm not super huge into organizing. But if you are and you want to go and get little bins and trays and stuff to organize what you're going to keep, you can do that at that point. And then you feel super good.

A lot of people will send me emails after they work through that part of the course. And it's funny because they always say the same thing. “Is it weird that I totally wanted to have my morning cup of coffee in my bathroom this morning because it's the only purged part of my house so far and it just felt so good to be in there? That I want to spend time in here because it's so minimal, clean and fresh and I want to be in here?

So, I think that the bathroom is a really great place to start if you're looking for an easy starting point, if you're looking to build up some momentum because you're a little overwhelmed by the idea of decluttering your entire house.

Because it is overwhelming. It's a lot. It's a lot to think of. It's a lot to hear me talking about this and then walk into your home and see the piles of stuff that you've got shoved in closets. The stuff that's hiding under the beds and in drawers. All the paperwork. All the stuff…it's a lot.

And so, if you're feeling really burdened by that, start in the bathroom, consider starting there. It's an easy yes or no area. It'll give you that momentum you need to keep going. I think that in that regard it's a really great place to start.


Hey girl! Speaking of minimalism and simplifying your physical space, I know how overwhelming it can feel to get started with all of this stuff. It's just a lot. And I wish I could be there with you and hold your hand, breathe with you and walk you through it step by step.

But I can't.

However, the next best thing is totally free and I've got it for you right now. It is the Clear The Clutter Starter Kit. This has been downloaded over 150,000 times by moms just like you who are looking to get started in a really simple, straightforward way.

The Starter Kit is exactly what it sounds like. It's the best place to get started with my philosophy of simple, realistic, freeing, not limiting, doable minimalism for moms. It basically explains what minimalism actually is, which is not joy-sucking and depriving yourself of everything, getting rid of everything you have.

It will help you find your ‘why’ and teach you how to journal through the process so that you have that solid foundation to stand on.

We're going to talk about the basics, and the biggest time sucks, the laundry and the dishes because those are going to give you the quickest return on investment when it comes to time spent decluttering. But they are also two of the biggest difficulties for moms when it comes to clutter.

We're going to talk about those and get you started there. We're going to handle some 15-minute, quick, simple decluttering projects to really dumb this down and simplify it for you.

There's also a few other things in there that are super helpful to get you going.

Again, this is totally free and it's just a downloadable pdf. You can print it out if that's your style. You can keep it on your phone, tablet or laptop, whatever. Go to alliecasazza.com/starterkit and get it for free. Right now! Alliecasazza.com/starterkit.


Okay. Let's talk about Option 2 when it comes to where do you start? In helping people to decide which way to go, I ask them a couple of questions. It matters what kind of person we're dealing with here. So, the second option with where to start in decluttering is to tackle your big time suck first.

What I mean by that is, there something that's really stressing you out as a mom? Maybe you work, maybe you stay at home, but whatever your lifestyle is, one thing you know is that you are constantly overwhelmed by the laundry. It’s eating away at you. It's all you do. You spend your evenings and weekends trying to catch up on the laundry as your family is creating a bigger pile for you to wash every second. It's the bane of your existence. Knocking that out, cutting that down a ton is going to give you a lot of freedom. And that freedom is also going to give you the momentum that you need to keep going on your journey to a simpler home.

So, it kind of depends. Some people like to tackle their biggest time suck. Maybe it's the laundry. Maybe it's the kitchen. Maybe it's the kids' toys. Maybe it's your wardrobe, which basically falls into the laundry category. Whatever is your biggest time suck and if that was just purged and out of the way, you would feel so much better.

But some people have a personality where they want to see the biggest bang for their buck right away. Does that make sense? They need to see a big shift. They need to feel the effects of minimalism right away in order to have the drive to keep going.

Other people don't really need to see how much time I got back from doing this. They just want to get started. They just need to feel that momentum. They just need to start and see that they did something and they should start in the bathroom. But the rest of us need to start with our biggest time suck.

When I started doing this ‘minimalism’ was not a trend. I didn't even know what I was doing was called that. I was just a super overwhelmed mom, desperate to make something change. And I had this crazy idea that a lot of what I spent my time on was stuff. And what would happen if I just got rid of all the excess? Would I have more time on my hands? Would I be happier and lighter?

Of course, you guys know the story. Yes, the answer was yes. I was right and it worked out.

When I started I just thought, “Well, I'm going to start with the toys because the kids are going to bed.” And that room, that toy room is the bane of my existence. We have the first set of grandkids on both sides of the family. So everybody's just super excited. Our kids were given tons and tons of toys. We had turned our dining area into the toy room because it was downstairs. It was next to the kitchen so the kids could play while I watched them while I cooked and all that stuff. We had three kids ages 3 and under, and the toy area being the dining area was just right in the middle of everywhere.

You could see it when you walked in the door. You could see it from the kitchen. You could see it from the family room. You could see it from the living room. It was always visible. There were no doors. It was just an area and that area was loaded with plastic bins that were overflowing with toys. And the thing is, is that that area wasn't even serving us at all. It was not serving its intended purpose.

The purpose of kids' toys is to keep the kids busy and have them play with them. But my kids would just wander in there, dump out all the buckets because it's fun for toddlers to dump out buckets of stuff. They're searching for their favorite one or two toys and then they'd come out complaining that they're bored and want a snack two seconds later.

So that room just kind of made me angry. It just was not working for us. I knew it wasn't. I was constantly picking it up and reorganizing things just for the kids to come in and ruin it. It was one of those things where we'd have play dates and I'd have to like, “Oh I gotta go in and pick up the playroom so it's not a total crap show for our friends that are coming over and letting their kids play with us. But I know it’s just going to get undone in two seconds.” It wasn't working. It felt pointless. It was literally just sucking up my time for no good reason. If something is really worthwhile, you don't mind putting your time into it. That's why I think minimalism needs to be a little bit relative to each person.

Like for me, I don't mind having shelves of books in my home because I think it cozies it up a lot. I love my library of books that I've read. I love loaning books to friends. I love the look of a nice, full bookshelf and a cozy bedroom. I don't mind that I have to run the Swiffer duster over the books a couple times a week and pay a little extra for the sweet little lady that comes and helps with our housework once a week to have her dust those for me. I don't mind that. It's worth it to me. But these toys were not even serving the purpose that they were intending. You know?

So it's not about, “Oh, what's the bare minimum amount of time I could spend on my house and how can this be easier for me and I don't care what it means for my kids. I just want my life to be easier.” It's not about that. It's just that this room wasn't even serving us at all. It wasn't serving the kids. It wasn't serving our friends. It wasn't serving me. It was pointless and a giant time suck.

So, when I inadvertently started by purging the toys first. I was acting out of, “This is what I know is overwhelming me right now. I don't really know anything about this. I don't know where to start. I'm just going to dive in and see what happens.” I was just following my personality type, which if I was teaching me it would be, “Okay, where do you start? Let's figure out if you're a bathroom starter or a time suck starter.” I would see very quickly by my personality and the way I like to do things that I'm a time suck starter, so I just kind of accidentally started by purging my biggest time suck in my house, which was the kid's toy room and I, immediately, the next day was lighter.

The next day the kids played better but didn't even miss anything. You guys, kids are overwhelmed and they need us to bring this into their lives so badly. The kids didn't even miss anything. They just walked in and started playing better. It was awesome. I immediately felt a time difference. I immediately felt my load lightened. I saw the return on my investment right away. And that gave me motivation to keep going.

So to summarize, when you ask, when it comes to decluttering, where should I start? You've got to know yourself. What appeals to you more? Starting with your time suck? The laundry? The kids’ toys? The dishes? A closet that's really, really overwhelming you? Just make sure it doesn't have any sentimental stuff in it because you really shouldn't start with sentimental stuff. That's something you need to save for later when you're good at this and you've got some momentum built up.

Or do you need to just have an easy ‘yes and no’ area and just start in the bathroom?

I hope that makes sense. That's the approach that I used to take when I would do one-on-one clients and group coaching and all of that. That's the approach that I teach in my course, Your Uncluttered Home. And that is what I have found over the years to be the best proven technique - picking based on who you are and what is more appealing to you.

And you know what? Don't let yourself get stuck here. Don't spend a lot of time deciding. If you can’t decide or you don't really know where you feel overwhelmed, maybe you have a problem making decisions. Just start in the bathroom. I'm telling you right now. Decision made for you. Start in the bathroom and it's going to be that easy ‘yes or no’ that’s going to get you going.


This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend!

See ya next time!

Hey mama! Just a quick note, this post may contain affiliate links.

Ep 098: Parent-Child Disconnect After PPD: My Story

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Postpartum Depression is real. It happens to so many women and isn’t talked about enough. PPD is part of my story and it deeply impacted my relationship with Bella, my first born. But we have come a long way and because of that, I think it is time I share our journey and how we got to the healthy place we are today. And I want to give you freedom, if you are struggling with this too. You don’t have to be the victim forever. PPD is only your story if you let the pen keep writing that way. If you don’t want that anymore, write a different story. Make the choice. I did and it saved my relationship with my daughter!

 
 

In This Episode Allie Discusses:

  • Her story with Postpartum Depression and what it looked like in her day to day life.

  • How PPD can impact the memories you make with your kid(s).

  • Things she did to redeem her relationship with her daughter, and how you can apply them to your own situation.

Mentioned in this Episode:


Well, motherhood is hard.  I am not going to lie to you about that. While it is servitude and giving to your family from yourself, it doesn’t have to be something that we are waiting to be over.  Something that we are counting down the minutes till naptime, or bedtime, or waiting for the next day to start. If you are wanting to sort through the clutter in your mind, your heart, your home calendar, your health, routines, and relationships, I created Unburdened just for you!

It is a guide that will help you go from drowning in the sea of stress and overwhelm, to owning your time and living the best version of your motherhood. So you can live abundantly while intentionally focusing on those who matter most.

Unburdened is the overwhelmed beginner’s guide to a simpler motherhood.


who doesn't love a GIVEAWAY?

Reviews are everything on iTunes! Would you take a minute and click here to leave a review? Email hello@alliecasazza.com with a screenshot of your review on iTunes. You'll be entered to win one of Allie's amazing courses for FREE!  

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at hello@alliecasazza.com or connect with me over on Facebook & Instagram


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.

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Hey, sweet friend! Welcome to The Purpose Show! I am sharing today something that is really heavy and a part of my story. I've definitely talked a little about PPD and my experience with postpartum depression and depression in the past, but I've never really gone into this deep of a dive publicly about my struggle, the story of me and my daughter Bella, what PPD did to us, what the enemy tried to do to us, and everything that we've gone through.

This always happens when I'm thinking about sharing something hard or I know eventually I will, but when the time comes that topic kind of finds its way in front of me over and over and over again. To me it's God's way of, almost in a humorous way, showing me it's time. It's an unavoidable amount of signs that He gives me.

This has been happening lately with talk about depression and misunderstandings about depression, especially postpartum depression, which is what PPD is. If you've never heard that acronym, that's what PPD stands for.

I want to open up and share this side of my story, especially because lately I've been so overwhelmingly grateful for where Bella and I are today. She's 10 now. She just turned 10 and I've been noticing so many things that have been healed almost without me realizing it. It's really, really a testament to how God works and what happens when you decide that your story is not going to be the way it's been going and you're going to change it. What I'm going to share is really raw and I know that it's really easy to judge if you've never experienced postpartum depression, especially at the level that I had it.

And it's not that one level is more of a badge of honor than another level of PPD. PPD sucks. It's just that the way that mine went really robbed me of a lot of time, a lot of memory and a lot of relational connection with my daughter. At the level that it was at, it took a lot from me. And so, to see what I've gained back is amazing.

If you never understood PPD it's so easy to judge, even if you're not meaning to. Or if you follow me and you like me, it's easy to still judge a little bit, even if it's subconscious. So just keep in mind that I'm a person and I have feelings. This is my experience and it was a panic and I've only done the best that I can do every step of the way.

And this is my story. This is my experience.

I'm sharing because I know for a fact that there's somebody out there who's listening to my voice right now who's had parent/child disconnect after depression, especially PPD. And they feel awful about it. They've probably Googled it a few different ways, trying to find some sense to make out of this situation. They are lost and confused. They're worried and they feel terrible. They feel guilty. They feel like they're a broken mom.

I'm doing this episode to tell you that you're not broken. You went through something really difficult and you can change the way your story is being written and that doesn’t have to be it. The aftereffects of postpartum depression don't have to be a period at the end of the sentence for your relationship with your child. And that's the main message that I want you to get. That’s why I'm starting this out by saying that.

First of all, let's just get a disclaimer out of the way. Postpartum depression is real. PPD, so is PPA, postpartum anxiety, and postpartum psychosis. These are real things. Just because you've never experienced it doesn't mean it's made-up, fake, or any less awful than those of us who have walked that road say it is.

This is one of those things that gets debated all the time. I really don't understand why there's even any debate because the side of the debate that saying that this is “made-up” has never gone through it. It's angers me. Like those of us who have struggled are asking for that or want a pity party or wished it upon ourselves to struggle so hard in an otherwise really sweet season of life.

Having said that, I just want to start by sharing how PPD started for me. Bella was my first born. We weren't really sure if we could have kids. I have PCOS, it's an ovary syndrome that typically comes with infertility issues. When Brian and I were newly married we thought like, “Oh well I guess we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.” But we really weren't concerned with starting a family. I got pregnant very surprisingly about eight months into our marriage and I just was shocked.

So, I'm going through the pregnancy and we're young. We're poor, broke, just trying to figure life out and get to know each other as a married couple. Our first year of marriage was beyond rocky. And then towards the end of my pregnancy I started to just feel weird and different. For me, postpartum depression actually began at the tail end of my pregnancy.

It doesn't really matter what caused it. You can have PPD without logical reasoning and reasons behind it, but our circumstances in life at that time definitely didn't help. We couldn't afford to stay in our little apartment. I had just gotten Bella's nursery all decorated. My mom and dad helped me out and took me to the baby store to get some stuff. We thrifted a lot and I got her nursery all ready to go. Then we found out that Brian was getting laid off from his job at the time and we had to leave. And so, we moved in with my parents and that whole situation just kind of sealed the deal. It really sent me into a difficult time, which was really poorly timed for how I was struggling emotionally and mentally already.

Without knowing it, PPD was creeping in and then this happened and it just made it worse.

My birth with Bella was very, very, very traumatic. It ended in an emergency C-section. It was so awful. I had a panic attack while they had me strapped down on the operation table. I was strapped in and I couldn't move. I was telling them that I could feel the pokes where they were going to do the C-section. They were asking me if I could feel it and I said, “Yes, I feel it.” They kept giving me more anesthesia and more and more. And I kept saying, “I still feel it.” And they said, “Well, you're going to feel that we're doing something but you shouldn't feel pain.” And so I said, “Okay, I don't think I feel pain.” And they needed to get her out. So, they did the surgery and I completely felt the first slice.

It's a feeling that I have all the time in nightmares and it wakes me up in the middle of the night often, because it was so searing of a pain. It was so awful. I just felt out of control and that's when I started to have a panic attack. They couldn't calm me down. They had to put me out because I was freaking out. When I woke up, I didn't know where my baby was. I didn’t know where my husband was. I was next to some lady making notes on a chart next to me, and she told me that my baby was born, that she was healthy and fine and that my husband was giving her a bath. I just remember immediately feeling robbed of something, actually, a lot of things.

I finally got to Bella and I held her and I just remember I felt something, but I didn't feel what I imagined I would feel. I remember noticing my emotions don't fit this circumstance. What's wrong with my emotions? I remember having that thought.

We had a lot of trouble breastfeeding, lots of lactation consultants coming in and out of my room. It was just an excruciating healing time after my first C-section. It was so painful. I felt like I couldn't hold my baby and my cut hurt so bad. I had a lot of issues with the staples. Chronic, constant problems all the way through the healing process.

And postpartum depression - it felt like it took advantage of me in that difficult time of healing. Like it saw an opportunity and it just took over. That's how it felt.

We were living at my parent’s house. We had our own little room, but I felt like I didn't want to be there. I wanted to be a family in my own house and I couldn't understand why this was happening, why Brian had gotten laid off. It didn't make any sense. How was all of this happening?

The postpartum depression got so bad so quickly. Eventually when it really took over and it got to be the worst, it felt like I was out of control of my own self. It felt really scary, really dark, super lonely.

I had detachment from Bella and her cries. I definitely had a few normal days of talking to her, videotaping her when she was cooing and feeling like a little bit of a normal mom. But those days were way outnumbered by the hard days.

For me postpartum looked day-to-day, like watching TV, not being able to get out of my bed, physically not being able to get out of the bed, so much so that I would just hold in urine because I felt like I couldn't even get up and go to the bathroom. It just was debilitating.

It looked like just going through the motions, not being myself, ho-humming my way through events and things that I needed to be at, family birthday parties and things like that. It looked like just throwing myself into other things to avoid my motherhood issues.

I actually ended up studying for the California real estate exam and passing on the first try. I threw myself into that because I couldn't bear what I was dealing with in my relationship with my new daughter.

I was so ashamed of my struggle. I didn't know what was wrong with me. I couldn't fix it. I would lie in bed and pray for help. I felt like nobody was listening. It took a really, really long time for anyone to say, “I think there may be something wrong.” That really hurt me that my family and my husband didn’t realize and help.

There was one incident, Bella was around six months old because I was feeding her baby food. Bella was is in her little feeding seat on top of the dining table and I was standing there feeding her baby food peaches. I was standing there and she was cooing and spitting. You know how they spit the food back out at you and all, that phase. Instead of being happy, silly, talking to her, wiping her mouth, trying to feed her and enjoying the moment, I was really angry with her that she was fidgeting and spitting out her food. That’s the thing right there, what I just said, that isn't even my personality. That's not like me at all. I was just not myself. I was like a Zombie or a robot or something.

I had lost my personality. It was like my soul got sucked out and I was just my body, my anger, my sadness and that's it.

I was feeding her peaches and getting really frustrated. My mom was folding laundry on the couch right across the room from me. And Brian was there too, looking for jobs on the computer. I remember I got so fed up, I said something to Bella like, “Oh my gosh, come on! Just eat!”

I was getting more and more frustrated and my mom came over, took the peaches and spoon from me, trying to be helpful, and said, “Here you go. Just take a break. I'll feed her.” And I grabbed the peaches back from her, slammed it down on the table. They exploded, flew up and peaches got on the ceiling, on the table, on the walls and everywhere. And I yelled, “Don't you think I know how to take care of my own baby? Do you think I'm a terrible mother? Obviously, you do.” I started freaking out, again, just not like myself at all.

And that was the moment where I for sure realized something was wrong. And that night Brian and my mom came into the room where I was lying in bed, and gently suggested that I might need to go to the doctor and get some help. I was already so angry at them for not seeing my issues and helping me, especially Brian. I was so hurt that he didn't notice and think “I need to help her.”

And you know, obviously he did notice, but he was as freaked out as I was. We were new parents. We were 21. He had no idea what to do. It's not his fault, but at that time I was so angry. I was angry, but at the same time I didn't really know what was wrong with me myself, or how to articulate to anybody how I was feeling.

My brain wasn't functioning healthfully. I wasn't my direct self that I normally am. I just sort of sat there and withstood my own personal living nightmare.

It caused resentment and a wall to go up between Brian and I early on in our marriage and it was an issue that stuck that we had to spend a lot of time working on later after I was healthy.

My PPD was so bad for so long (it lasted a little more than a year) that I actually lost memory from Bella’s first year of life. So, what will happen is I'll look back and I will see myself in photos with her, but I don't recall being there at all. I can't really picture her as a baby like I can the boys.

I have one memory of Christmas morning that year (Bella would have been about 10 months old). I had refused to go on medication because there's substance abuse that runs in my family and I was really afraid. I was uneducated about how antidepressants can help. I was scared and again, my brain wasn’t functioning correctly. I didn't have the brain capacity to make that decision wisely for myself. I still wasn't on medicine and I was still just really sick and really struggling.

That Christmas during the depression, Brian gave me one of the seasons of “Friends” on DVD because I had really enjoyed watching that show. I had never seen it before. I was watching them on TBS during the day and it was making me laugh. It was one of the only things that made me laugh and he got me the next season of “Friends” on DVD. I remember opening it and expelling so much energy to try to have a normal reaction to this present, but it was so forced and I could tell and everyone in the room could tell. I could tell that they could tell that it was so forced.

All I wanted in that moment was to just be normal again and it was such a bad feeling. I'll never forget that. That is my most prominent memory of my daughter's entire first year of life.


Do you feel like you are barely getting through your days friend?  Does motherhood feel more like a hurricane of chaos that you are just surviving rather than the awesome, joy-filled season that you want it to be?

Well, motherhood is hard.  I am not going to lie to you about that. While it is servitude and giving to your family from yourself, it doesn’t have to be something that we are waiting to be over.  Something that we are counting down the minutes till naptime, or bedtime, or waiting for the next day to start. If you are wanting to sort through the clutter in your mind, your heart, your home calendar, your health, routines, and relationships, I created Unburdened just for you!

It is a guide that will help you go from drowning in the sea of stress and overwhelm, to owning your time and living the best version of your motherhood. So you can live abundantly while intentionally focusing on those who matter most.

Unburdened is the overwhelmed beginner’s guide to a simpler motherhood.

In Unburdened, I will walk you through how to stop over-complicating, procrastinating, and just start making positive changes now. How to declutter, just a little bit – not super deep into it, because you can’t handle that when you are this overwhelmed – but a surface declutter that will get you real results in your house so you can clean up less.

How to declutter toxic relationships in your life and set some good boundaries. How to simplify cleaning, get healthy and feel better – finally!

How to simplify your calendar. How to start owning your time and not just managing it as life happens to you.

How to stop just setting goals and letting them sit there. Start actually defining where you want to go and getting there through reverse engineering and goal-setting.

How to create a cleaning routine that works for you and your life.

This course is a mini-course. It is small. It is straightforward. But it is everything for the mom who feels like she needs a total overhaul, but is too overwhelmed to start.

It will help you simplify the things that have you stuck and leave survival mode behind for good.

Is this resonating with you? Sound like you? Does this sound like something that would really help you right now? Go to bit.ly/getunburdened.

I really poured my heart into this little course. I created it for the mom who is really wanting to simplify, declutter, and pursue a life of less, but she is so burdened and overwhelmed with the mess of life. It’s not just her house. She wants to simplify at the surface of all the different things in her life so she can focus on her family more. So then she can focus more on really, truly purging her entire house.

If this sounds like you, I encourage you to check it out. You are probably the person I created it for. I want you in there. I want you to have it. I want to help you.

Check it out.  bit.ly/getunburdened.


I saw my family giving each other concerned glances after I opened the present and kind of communicating to each other about me with just their eyes, you know? I just felt so helpless. I was trying so hard to be normal and I couldn't. I was so tired of fighting and so tired of trying.

So basically, as soon as Bella was born, my relationship with her was under attack and it was strained. She was my first baby, but I was pretty sure you're supposed to feel something when your baby cries and I just didn't. And I know that this is the part where some of you are going to have a lot of judgment and that's okay. But that's not the mother that I am. That’s not natural motherhood. Something was off. Something was broken. I could feel it.

I had really hoped that things would be okay, despite my struggle, but I couldn't control the fact that I felt so little connection to my daughter. We just kind of carried on like that. And I tried. I would go to her because I felt it's my obligation to go to her…I'm the mom.

But Brian did a lot of stuff because he was there. He was laid off for a while, a really large chunk of the first year of her life. It was just really, really dark. It was really hard.

At Bella’s first birthday, I had finally gotten on medication about a month before that and I was feeling a little better. As the months went on, I got healed and weaned off my medicine and I stayed okay. And it was good. It served its purpose.

I still felt a disconnect to Bella, not even just a disconnect, but this “tension,” this push-back toward connecting with her. Something in me would fight back anytime I tried to form a deeper connection with my daughter. This was something that I thought about and tried to figure out basically 24/7 because it concerned me. I knew it was wrong. I knew that medicine couldn't fix that and I didn't know what to do about it.

Take this with a grain of salt if this isn't your thing, but I firmly believe that this was a spiritual attack. Mother/daughter relationship issues go way back on my side of the family. There's been legitimate abandonment. My mom was literally dropped off and abandoned by her birth mom. There's verbal abuse, emotional neglect, and other problems in my maternal lineage as far back as my mom and I know of. I believe in generational curses and spiritual warfare. I've seen so much, way too much, to not see that as the truth, especially when it comes to family relationships.

I believe that is a really big part of what happened with me and Bella and that there was a war raging for our relationship.

I want to say that moving forward from that things got better. Bella and I today are incredibly close. I'll get into that more in a few minutes, but I want to give freedom to anybody struggling with this too. And I also want to discuss what I did to make this relationship that we have now happen.

I have never heard anybody talk about this. Why is nobody talking about this? So, I want to do that today.

If you are listening to this and you're feeling that “freedom relief” feeling that somebody's talking to your situation…a situation that is dark, terrifying, heavy, embarrassing, horrifying, and awful…I'm so happy that you're here and I know it's not an accident.

Please know that if you're listening to this and that's you, my gosh, God loves you and He brought you here. Okay?

Secondly, this is not your fault. You are not a bad mother. You are not a broken person who is inept. You're not unable to raise your child. You are not the wrong choice. You are not a mistake. Your child is not a mistake and you can get through this. You can.

There is another side; however far away it feels, however dark it feels, there is another side and you can get there. I want you to have that hope.

I know, even as I'm saying this to you, 10 years out, it's so emotional because it so dark and I've been there. I've stood where you're standing and my gosh, it's so awful. It's just like a black hole and there's nothing. You can't see anything.

When a mother doesn't feel anything when her baby cries, something is damaged. I just want you to know it's not weakness to need to get medicine. It's not weakness to need to get healing. You're not making the wrong choice. You need help.

This example is given a lot, but I'm going to give it again anyway in case you haven't heard it. If you get diagnosed with diabetes you're a diabetic and you need insulin, are you going to feel weak for that and not take it? No, of course not. You're sick and your body needs something. You're going to take the insulin. Depression, especially postpartum depression when it gets this heavy...I do believe that there's a “blues period” for a lot of women, and you'll have to kinda just weigh it out. But for me, and if you're at that level, when it gets bad and you're not okay, it's not going away. It's not lifting. Something is off in your brain. Go and get that insulin. Go get the medicine. You need help. That's what it’s there for.

Outside of that, I want to discuss what I did to make mine and Bella's relationship stronger. After I came out of the PPD, I was maybe about a year out of the postpartum depression tunnel, when I realized our relationship is still strained. She’s so little but I know she feels that, I know she feels the pushback and I don't want to feel it. I don't want to sit and have time with my daughter and feel a resistance to closeness to her.

Over the course of years, what I did to fix things and repair things, I basically just decided that the dark wasn't going to continue to rob me anymore. This was not going to be the story of Bella and I. It just wasn't. It had been so far, but it wasn't going to be anymore

I didn't know what to do. I couldn't find books about this parent/child connection issue. I didn't know what was going to work. I didn't know where to start. But I just started. I started by deciding the dark isn't going to win anymore. I'm not going to be robbed any more, and I'm going to figure this out.

I also got real about what was going on. How exactly did I feel when Bella tried to get close to me? Or came and sat on my lap? Or I tried to get close to her? Where was the pushback and resistance really coming from? What's the source? I would feel it…I didn't know this at the time, but I was going into a little bit of a meditative state, honing into my internal self and feeling that feeling all the way.

Have you guys heard about that technique? Don't push your feelings away. Feel it more. Lean in to that feeling and ask yourself, “Where is this coming from? Why am I feeling this?” Sometimes I would hear nothing. Other times I would “feel” an answer and I would feel like, “Okay, when she touches me I just feel irritated.” That sounds awful, but things like that. Just being honest. Not pushing because it's so awful to be a mother and to feel those feelings and it’s even more awful to admit that you feel those feelings, that you're having those thoughts. But get real about it. Don't suppress it, ignore it and pretend it's not there. Lean into it. Feel it all the way because answers come out of that.

I also prayerfully walked forward trying to figure things out. I talked to God about all of this as I walked through it and I realized that He can handle our realness. Don't be afraid to let Him in on it. He already knows what you're struggling with. I used to feel like I didn't want to tell Him how I was feeling, I felt so bad about it. Here He gave me this gift. I was supposed to struggle with infertility and here's a baby, a toddler girl in front of me, and I didn't want to spend time with her, or I had a resistance to closeness with her.

But I let Him in on it. I was honest and I talked to him about it as I walked this road. I asked that He would show me what I needed to see to heal. And He did. He would show me little things like, “just go over and hold your daughter's hand. Why don't you sit and watch that movie with her instead of cleaning right now?” Things like that. He showed up in the mess and helped me walk the path one moment at a time.

As Bella got older, 6 or 7-years-old and up, I started to find things in common with her and I would take part in those things with her intentionally, even when I didn't feel like it.

For example, today we go and we get manicures together every two weeks religiously. It's our thing. It's our time away from all the boys at our house. We talk on the drive. We listen to whatever music she wants. I go into the coffee shop and I get a coffee and she gets a hot chocolate. We go get our nails done. We just kind of relax and enjoy the time. We pick our colors together and then we spend a little bit of time out together after that. And it's our regular thing every two weeks.

Ever since I was trying to intentionally heal from this parent/child disconnect, we've had things like that and it's changed as she's gotten older. When she was really little, she didn't want to go get manicures so it was different. Maybe it was playing horses with her. Maybe it was reading her stories, whatever. But I found things in common and intentionally took part in those things with her.

Another big thing that I did was I let her talk and I made sure that I actively listened to her. We have developed this thing where we take drives together. Anytime that I've needed to have an important conversation with Bella, I'll take her for a drive. It's come from when she was little and her brothers were toddlers and babies. We would get everyone in their car seats, get in the car and we would talk and the boys would fall asleep in their car seats and it formed this tradition.

When a kid is talking to you, they're usually talking about something that you don't really care about. But the thing is if you don't listen to your kids when they talk about the things that don't really matter when they're little, they're going to see that you don't listen to them and they're not going to talk to you about the things that really do matter when they get older.

So, I listened to her talk about her toys and the show that she's watching on Netflix. Now I listen to her talk about dragons (she's really into dragons) and unicorns, the story that she's writing, whatever movie that she just watched on Netflix. I listened to her talk about those things and now she'll talk to me about the hard things, the awkward things. And we have this super close relationship that I think a lot of parents who didn't struggle with parent/child disconnect don't have with their kids.

We struggled with it so much that it almost was the demise of our relationship before Bella was even old enough to realize. We have that closeness. As she's gotten older, things have gotten easier and better because I've worked so hard at this for so many years.

I want to give you that hope.

Do something. Do something. If you're struggling with postpartum depression, check in with yourself. Is this something that you need to just kind of let run for a little bit? Has it been a while and you're not getting better and you know what you need to do? Go get medicine.

Are you out of the PPD or PPA or postpartum psychosis period and you're just dealing with a parent/child disconnect? That doesn't have to be your story. You can write a new story.

Today Bella and I are so close. We have such a good relationship. I can tell her, “Sweetie, mommy really just needs a little bit of alone time right now, let’s spend time together tomorrow.” And her feelings won’t get hurt. I can share with her anything that I need to share with her. I can talk to her. She can talk to me about anything.

She's 10, so we recently had “the talk” and it went wonderfully. She felt so secure and at ease to ask me questions and it was beautiful. It was a beautiful time for us. We have talks all the time. We have our regular manicures that we get together. She wants to spend time with me and I want to spend time with her. Our relationship is so close. I can't believe that this is the relationship that we have after what we've been through.

The lesson that I have learned here is that you don't have to be the victim forever. That is only your story if you let the pen keep writing that way. If you don't want that anymore, write a different story. Make the choice.

I hope that this has given somebody out there so much hope. I hope it helps.

I don't care about the judgment that's definitely going to come from sharing this.

I just know that there's somebody out here listening that has this right now and has been super scared and worried about what it means and I just hope that this episode brought you a lot of hope and a big light to just bring you some peace.


This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend!

See ya next time!

Hey mama! Just a quick note, this post may contain affiliate links.

Ep 083: Let's Talk About Working Mom Guilt

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Working motherhood has so many different angles. And whether you work full time or part time, work outside of your home or from your home, working mom guilt is a real thing. We all struggle with it at one point or another. We don’t want to miss the first moments of our kids lives or the activities they are involved in, we don’t want them to think that all we do is sit on our computers or phones all day working, and we definitely don’t want them to resent us for working. So how do we deal with our guilt? How do we balance work and life? How do we teach our kids to value good work ethic? (Because they will grow up and enter the workforce one day!)

If there is one thing I know, it is that being a working mom doesn't mean show up, be perfect at everything, have a super clean house, be an awesome cookie baker, come to every game, be super rich, run an amazing business or do amazing at your job. It means prioritize what matters, show up where you can, and find the balance in seasons. Show your kids what a healthy work life relationship really looks like, how grateful you are, how awesome you are, and what it looks like to thrive in these two roles of worker and mother. You’re doing a great job, mama! Keep going for it!

 
 

In This Episode Allie Discusses:

  • The key to working mom guilt is recognizing what causes it for your specific situation.

  • The connection between how you talk about your work and how your kids will view your work. It is important that they see it as valuable and not something that takes mommy away.

  • How you can navigate technology with your kids, especially if your job requires you to be on your computer or phone most of the day.

  • Why it is ok to be tired, bring in help, and release yourself from the heavy expectations of being a working mom.  

Mentioned in this Episode:


The holiday season is almost here! Oh my gosh, it can feel super overwhelming but it doesn't have to be that way this year. What if this year the holiday season was just as fun, just as magical and just as exciting for you as a parent, as you’re trying to make it for your kids? My course, Merry Little Christmas, will do that for you! It is just $15 and I know that it will help guide you through a simple, yet fun holiday season!

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who doesn't love a GIVEAWAY?

Reviews are everything on iTunes! Would you take a minute and click here to leave a review? Email hello@alliecasazza.com with a screenshot of your review on iTunes. You'll be entered to win one of Allie's amazing courses for FREE!  

If you have a question, comment or a suggestion about today’s episode, or the podcast in general, send me an email at hello@alliecasazza.com or connect with me over on Facebook & Instagram


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Mom life. We are surrounded with the message that it’s the tired life. The no-time-for-myself life. The hard life. And while it is hard and full of lots of servitude, the idea that motherhood means a joyless life is something I am passionate about putting a stop to. I’m on a mission to help you stop counting down the minutes till bedtime, at least most days. I want you to stop cleaning up after your kid’s childhood and start being present for it. Start enjoying it. I believe in John 10:10 “that we are called to abundant life” and I know mothers are not excluded from that promise. Join me in conversations about simplicity, minimalism and lots of other good stuff that leads to a life of less for the sake of enjoying more in your motherhood. I’m Allie Casazza and this is The Purpose Show.

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Hi, beautiful friend! I hope you are ready to be set free today! I have been sitting on this episode for a while. I have been seeing this topic come up a lot and just wondering how to communicate what I wanted to say.

I feel like working motherhood has so many different angles. There are different types of working moms. There are different lifestyles and schedules of working moms. Everybody has their own version of guilt surrounding motherhood and so I didn't want to just come on here and blab about my experience. I really wanted to make this useful for everyone or at least as many people as possible. I don't think anything is ever useful for everyone and someone will always hate anything and everything, but I really wanted to do well with this episode.

I had a meeting with my business manager, Hayley, and we were talking about something totally different and she just randomly said, “You know, I was thinking recently that you should do an episode about working mom guilt because I keep seeing it come up everywhere and there really isn't anything that's super helpful and I just think it could be really good.”

And I do think there's plenty of things out there that are helpful. But you know, we haven't talked about that here. And I haven't talked about it on my blog. I've really never talked about it, and it's something that's been a big part of my life and my personal journey. So, as I prepared this episode, I jotted down a couple of highlights that I didn't want to forget to say that have to do with my struggle and my journey to working motherhood because it wasn't always this way for me.

And then I talked to another amazing mom on my team, Ashley. She's the one who does the show notes for episodes and she's amazing. She does my press. She's awesome. And she's an amazing working mom, and she kind of shared with me. I just kind of asked her like, “What's your experience with working mom guilt and can you talk to me about maybe a couple things that are hard for you?” She shared a few things with me and kind of helped form this episode. So, I feel good that this isn't just coming from me.

My hope is that this episode is helpful for all types of working moms, whether you work outside of the home, you work at home, you work full time or part time, or you switch between out of the home office and your home office, or you hate your job or you love your job. I hope you love your job. I just want this to be helpful in some way, even if it's small for all types of working moms. So that's my hope.

So having said that, I just want to share a little bit about my struggle as I went from a stay-at-home mom to work-at-home mom, and not even really just to work at home mom, but an entrepreneur, a business owner, and then that kind of just evolved into being a full-on CEO with a big team to run and this big company that, you know, it's just turning into this big thing that I never dreamed it would. It's really neat, but it's like every level comes with a different type of struggle, a different type of guilt. So, I just want to share a little bit about that.

When I became a mom, I was very surprised to find myself pregnant, not in the way of like, oh I'm shocked that I got pregnant, we weren't married or anything like that. We’d been married for about eight months. I was surprised because I was told that I would probably have a really difficult time having kids, if I could have them at all.

Brian and I met in junior high school and we got married a couple years after high school. We were really young and we weren't really jumping to start our family or anything. Birth control made me incredibly sick, like violently ill. I'm allergic to latex so you can figure that one out. So it kinda just felt like this struggle to prevent pregnancy. Young and dumb, and in love, and just kind of over it, I just kind of figured, you know, if birth control makes me violently puke, get hives and get nausea, and pretty much all methods of birth control make me so sick, and if I can't even really probably have kids, I'm just going to stop.

And then there was Bella, so I became a mom and I got my real estate license actually, shortly after Bella was born. You guys might know already; I've talked about this a little bit before but I had postpartum depression and I was just like a mess when Bella was a baby.

But towards her first birthday I got my real estate license and I started to work and I hated it. It was super boring for me. I just really didn't like it. I was driving to my first job. I was going to go and put a lockbox on this house. I was driving and I heard God say (one of two times that He has talked to me like almost audibly) and He just said, “This is not what I have for you. I want you to turn around and go back and be with your daughter.” And so, I did. Super dramatic story, I know.

And then I was a stay-at-home mom from then on. I stayed at home with Bella. I stayed at home with Leland. I stayed at home with Hudson. Brian got a job at a big company and he was working. He was working his butt off. We were able to make ends meet barely, but we did.

There was a lot of good seasons in that job, like where he was able to work a lot of overtime and we had the money that we needed. We were able to pay our bills. I was a stay-at-home mom and that's where we felt good for years.

Then I had Emmett and we moved to the Midwest for his job and everything just kinda started to change. And if you've listened to episode six, you already know our money story, our business-starting story, and all that. I won't get into that. But basically, God just showed up and changed our life and lead us into this place where we didn't have any family. We had very little friends and we didn't really know anyone. We were kind of just brought out away from everyone so that He could change our lives and give us this message of, “Okay, it's time for you to do this now.”

It was basically turning my little hobby blog into a business. I had had a lot of ideas for that, but really didn't feel like it was something that I needed to do, was supposed to do or really knew how to do. We just kinda got thrown into making this a big focus.

I worked my butt off and I learned. I had already kind of taught myself how to do some coding and I knew how to make websites. I knew how to blog. I'm a writer at heart, so I loved to write, and I was good at that part of it. I had a message that I was really passionate about with helping moms simplify. I just wasn't doing it as a business. My audience was asking me for that and asking me to create a course.

And so, I did. You guys know the story probably, and it all just kind of exploded. I mean I say that like it happened overnight and it didn't. I worked my butt off and it took a long time. But long story short, there I was a previously stay-at-home mom running a full-on business. Then I hired somebody to help me with email. I hired somebody to help me with images and graphics and design. Then I hired someone to take photos for me because I found that it is illegal to use other people's photos and I didn't know that before.

Then I hired a business manager and a project supervisor and CFOs because I'm not great with money, and all of these things started adding up. Now here I am, CEO of The Purpose Group, Incorporated, and it houses The Purpose Show podcast, the blog, the website, the courses and The Abundance Academy, which is the school where all my courses live. It's this big thing and it's crazy.

Through that process from going from stay-at-home mom to mom, business owner, work-at-home mom, (my office is at home and I typically work at home. I don't have an outside office) I have dealt with a lot of different types of mom guilt. And it was really unique for me, I feel like, because the process from actually exiting stay-at-home motherhood and getting into work-at-home motherhood was very abrupt for me.

It wasn't like, “Hey, I think we're going to talk about this. I think I am going to go to work. I think I'm going to get a job.” It was just like, okay, everything is going terribly and something needs to change and we both really feel like God's pulling us over here, so let's go.

Then one thing led to another, led to another, led to another where it was like, not only am I now work-at-home mom, but I've got this big role and a lot of hours and a lot of time going into my business, all these things happening and all these people to manage. And now I'm the breadwinner, because Brian left his job and we did this full time, and oh my gosh, it's just a lot.

And what I want you to know, first of all, is that we all deal with mom guilt and I think that's okay. It's okay that it's there. But the key might be to recognize what's causing it for you. What is the guilt circling around? I don't want this episode to become Allie’s story from stay-at-home mom to work-at-home mom, and my mom guilt, so I want to kind of exit that part. I'm just letting you know that I relate and kind of how my story went very briefly.

But I really want to get into this now and get into the mom guilt stuff. So, like I said, let's first start by, because you know me, I'm always trying to help you take action, what is the mom guilt circling around? Is there a key that you can recognize of something that's causing it?

For example, do you always have mom guilt around the fact that you sometimes miss your kid's baseball games for example? If so, how can you find a way to make it to the game? Is that even possible? Could you work out with your boss to get those nights off? Could you structure your schedule if you work at home to be done working by then?

If not, if it's not a possibility for you to make it, then can you have a conversation with your kid and just kind of talk it out with them? Be candid with them about it and explain it to them like, “This is what I'm doing, this is what's going on for me. I just wanted you to know that I love you. I care and I'm supportive. I'll always make it to your Monday night practice, I just can't make it to your Wednesday night games,” or whatever it is. Talk to them about it. I think a lot of the time our kids care much less than we assume they do.

So often we can find or create solutions about our problems, the problem here being guilt, but we just don't. We let it feel hopeless and we do nothing so it becomes this lifelong struggle. We linger and sit in this mom guilt that could have been solved.

Don't think that mom guilt is just something that you can't do anything. I think it's normal. I think it's going to be there in some amount, and it's okay. It's just being a mom. But if you chronically have guilt around something kind of stop, step back and think about it, look into it a little deeper and ask yourself, what is this guilt circling around? What's it stemming from? And get specific and like, okay, it's because I always miss my daughter's swim meets. See if you can find or create a solution to that problem and then it will cure that guilt. Okay?

I also think, I mean I know this has been said before, but I want to say it to you again. You're providing for your family. You should be so proud of that. Step into that awesome role and feel good about what you're doing. You’re doing something awesome. That is not a small deal. Try to come back to that pride place where it's like, look at what you're doing. That's so great.

I also think it's really important to note how you feel about your work, how you react to it, how you talk about it in front of your kids, how you treat it. That's how your kids are going to see it.

So, if you're coming at your work from a place of, you know, “Gosh, I'm just so sorry that I always have to do this, and oh my gosh, I just can't do it all,” and you're yelling all the time, you’re stressed, your burdened and you're treating it like that or talking about it like that, that's how your kids are going to see it and that's how they're going to see work in general especially if you have girls and they become mothers and they're working, so be grateful for it.

We'll talk about that more in a few minutes, but be grateful for your job. Be positive about it. Let your kids see how strong and amazing you are, that you have something else going on too. Not just being their mom. Not that there's anything wrong with that, like please don't message me, “I can't believe you said that.” That's not what I mean; this is a working mom episode.

You have something else that you're doing. It's a big deal. It's good. You're amazing. So be grateful. Be Positive. Use positive words. Have a positive vibe and energy around your job because how you feel about your work, how you react to it, how you talk about it, how you treat it, is how your kids are going to see it. So, they won't know that it's negative, stressful, or there should be guilt around it unless you make them feel that way.

Also, next, let's talk about taking breaks. It's okay to take a break from work and prioritize your kids for five minutes. I think a lot of us tend to get into this “all or nothing mode” where we feel like, okay, right now I'm working so I'm going to have to finish this task completely. Then I can be with you guys, be with the kids. Nothing has to be “all or nothing” unless you make that choice to have it be that way.

I think one of the definitions of, especially if you work at home, one of the definitions of work at home motherhood is that you're going to be interrupted, and you have to get really flexible and really good at coming back to things, getting interrupted and doing one thing, then doing another and then coming back to the other thing. And women are great at that, so you can do this.

Break it up. Do some work, and if your kids are coming up to you and tapping on your leg, or asking for your time…Ashley, the girl that I told you about that’s on my team, she was telling me that her son will come up and just close her laptop and it's kind of her sign of like, okay, you need me. Take five minutes and go on a walk with them, Build a castle out of blocks with your toddler. Have a dance party in the living room real quick. Get them a snack. Give them a kiss. And then get back to work. It's okay to break things up. Allow yourself to be flexible and do what you need in the moment.


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Hey friend, can you even believe it? The holiday season is almost here. It's coming! It's crazy that it's already here!

Oh my gosh, this season can so easily feel super overwhelming, not very fun, really stressful, and it just doesn't have to be that way this year. What if, imagine with me for a second, this year the holiday season was just as fun, just as magical and just as exciting for you as a parent, as you’re trying to make it for your kids?

I've put together a little mini course called A Merry Little Christmas and it does just this for you. I created this last year and it's been enrolled in by thousands of moms all over the world and they are loving it. It's coming back this year and here's what it does for you.

It basically will simplify everything about Christmas and the holiday season for you as a mom. You get an aerial view over what you want your Christmas season to look like.

We talk about what your intent is, what's important to you, what your focus will be. We talk about decorating your house with a simplicity mindset and prepping your house for the holidays.

What if your husband wants to go super overboard and doesn't want to simplify the holidays? How do you handle that? How do you transition your kids to a simpler Christmas when they're used to you just going all out? How to make new traditions. How to handle buying your kids presents in the minimalist way? What about relatives and all of their gift giving? How do you handle after Christmas? And a bonus for me is all about decluttering the toys for purposeful play.

This is a really awesome little course. It really packs a punch and it's only $15. So, head to alliecasazza.com/jolly and you can enroll for just $15 and get your holidays started off on the right foot.

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There was one issue that Ashley brought up that I thought was great and it was really specific. I want to address it. She was talking about that torn, weird feeling that you can get because a lot of us who work are on our phones, tablets or computers pretty often. I have dealt with this for sure. I think that's why Ashley brought it up. I was like, “Yes! I need to talk about that.”

My job is on my phone. In my business I have a lot of things delegated that I used to do that I don't do anymore, but my job description now is basically being a public figure. I write my emails because I love connecting with you guys and talking to you guys. I do Instagram stories and I record the podcast once a month, but day to day I'm responding to you guys on Instagram. I’m responding to your comments. I'm posting things. I'm checking in. Like it's my job to show up, and talk to you, be there and encourage you. Like that's my job, so I'm on my phone a lot.

It can kind of feel weird when you're doing that, because it's your work, and so your kids see devices and technology as normal, as almost like expected entertainment. They can throw a fit if you're on your stuff and you're trying to limit their technology, not wanting to hire Netflix to babysit them every day when you're working. They don't understand and you feel hypocritical. Like they're going to think, “Well, mommy's on her phone, why can't you be on your tablet though.” And I just want to speak truth to that. If anyone is struggling with that, especially if you have toddlers, it can be really hard to communicate to them that that's different.

I just want to let you know…let that go. That's not a thing. It doesn't have to be a thing. It doesn't have to be something that you feel weird about. It's such a blessing to be able to do your work from your phone. I'm so thankful that I can take my kids to the park, let them run crazy, have fun and play while I sit on the bench and catch up on Instagram comments. Don't feel guilty about that. Don't feel weird about that.

We live in an awesome time where work can be done from anywhere. So if you see another mom judging you for being on your phone at the park, she doesn't even know. That's happened to me before, and I'm like, “Girl, you don't even know. I'm sitting here encouraging, inspiring and equipping other moms because it's my job. Because I worked my butt off to be able to work from this park bench. Don't you raise that eyebrow at me or I will rip it off.”

But don't let that be a thing. Let that go. Of course, set boundaries and be intentional, but if you have to do your work and it's on your phone, let that be that way. Be grateful that you can do something like that on your phone so easily and it's just right there. It’s something that you can do anywhere.

Also if you do have toddlers and they just don't understand…I was telling Ashley this…I did this with Emmett because he was the only one that was really, really little when I was growing the business and stuff. So, when he would come up to me and basically be asking to play a game on the tablet or borrow my phone because I was on my computer or whatever, say things like, “Mom’s working. Emmett doesn’t work. You silly boy. No, mom’s working. You don't work. You do this.” Show them a toy and just kind of explain, “I'm working. This isn't a free-for-all tech time. I'm working.” I know that's really specific, but I know that I struggled with that and I always felt kind of weird.  

Also in my job, I talk about being intentional with your phone time. I have to text my team and make sure things are going well and answer any questions. My text time is a lot more than other people. But my text time for pointless reasons, like just texting people because they have my number and they think they can ask me something, is almost nothing.

My Instagram time is my job. My texting time with my team is my job. So it's okay. Let that go. Don't let yourself feel weird about that. If it's actually your job, don't let it be an excuse, but you guys see what I'm saying.

Another thing is to realize that it's okay to bring in some help. You absolutely cannot do it all. And if you are doing it all, you won't be doing any of it very well. So what does this look like for you? Child care, having some help with your kids? Housekeeping help? Hiring a housekeeper? A meal delivery service so you're not having to prepare so many meals? Get creative and think through that.

And if finances are a problem, I mean do what you can. I know that every single time I've been kinda like, “Man, can we afford this? I'm just going to do it and just see how it works out because I just can't do it all. I need help.” Every time I've delegated something, I have more energy and more time and I end up making more money because I feel better. I'm less stressed and I'm able to focus more on what I am doing.

So, every time I've hired a team member or every time I've delegated something like hiring my housekeeper or a personal assistant to help run errands and do returns and stuff like that for me, it's come back to me and then some because I'm less stressed, I'm more present. I spend more intentional time with my kids and my time with my kids isn't spent running around and cleaning and doing all that.

I'm delegating and exchanging for more time and energy and that always ends up being more revenue because I'm doing more of what I'm good at. I'm good at owning my business. Showing up for you guys. Inspiring you. Telling you about the courses and equipping you there. Showing up in the groups, being live and doing all those things. It always ends up being more worthwhile because I delegated the things and I was able to show up better at what I am doing.

Okay. When you're feeling mom guilt, if you feel like you just have guilty in general about working, one thing that really helped me is… and you guys. I'm sorry, this episode is kind of random. I literally just brain dumped what helped me and I'm just reading it to guys. I have bullet points, like here mention this, this, this and this, because it's just a mess. Working motherhood is messy, so I think it's kind of funny and ironic that this episode is random points too.

Anyway, when you have mom guilt about working, decide what's important to you and prioritize it. To you. Not to anyone else or everyone else, but to you. So, what breaks your heart to miss? Find a way not to miss it.

There's an example that Jessica Turner shares, which I love. She's an author. She wrote the book Stretched Too Thin. It's awesome and it's for working moms. I'll link to that for you guys. But Jessica Turner loves Halloween and every year she does themed family costumes and she puts a lot of effort, planning and time into that and that's really special to her. Like it would break her heart to miss that. So, she prioritizes it and makes it happen.

So, what's important to you? Is it important to you to throw an awesome super themed over the top Pinterest-y party for your daughter every year? Then do that. If it breaks your heart to miss that, then don't miss it. Prioritize it, but let other things go. Don't do anything out of obligation or “I just want to perform, I just want to be the best mom.” No. What really breaks your heart to miss? Don’t miss those things.

For me, around the holidays, it can be tempting for my business to get ultra busy because my business is for moms and during the holidays us moms have a lot of things going on, a lot of fun things that we're doing, and it can be really easy for me to come up with a lot of content and form my business around being really busy around the holidays.

But for me the holidays are really no fun if I am too busy. I already feel stretched way too thin. On my husband's side of the family there's some divorce and so the family is split and we're kind of like double doing family plans. It's just kind of a mess and I tend to kind of not enjoy the holidays. I've learned to really prioritize that time of year and make it enjoyable for me and my family.

So, if I were to miss going to the pumpkin patch multiple times during October, if I were to miss enjoying my family during Thanksgiving, if I were to miss baking cookies and going to see the dancing lights in our city that are famous around here, if I were to miss going to Legoland for the Christmas decorations, I would feel so sad.

Those are the things that would make me feel like, “Oh no!” But if I have to miss one of the kids' games…I'm bummed, and I feel like a crappy mom for a second. But then I think, “Wait, I'm running an awesome company. I have a purpose here. It's okay. They don't mind, I just talked to them.” Work it out and move on. Find what breaks your heart and find a way not to miss those things and prioritize them. You can't not miss everything.

And that leads me to my next point which is that you have to understand that there will be seasons. Sometimes work will be busier and you are less present with your family and you are missing a little bit more than you normally do. Sometimes your home and your personal life will be busier and you need to dial down your efforts and your hours at work. This is the only work/life balance you're going to get because perfection doesn't exist. Work/life balance is a total lie. It's such BS and I'm so glad that multiple people have been speaking out about that lately because it is just fueling the working-mom guilt fire.

And this is such, such truth. And I really only tuned into this truth this year, in 2018. As a working mom, I have decided like, “Okay, we're going to go into a busier season as a family, and we're going to go ahead and sign up for these extracurricular homeschool activities. We're going to go ahead and say “yes” to these sports for these kids. ‘No’ to this one, and ‘yes’ to this one. But we are heading into a busier family season, so work needs to take a back burner.”  

I have been working a lot less hours in the last couple months because of my personal life. If you guys follow me on Instagram stories, you've seen that we have constant sports practices and games. The kids are in Spanish, piano, theater, guitar, baseball and softball. And we love doing that in seasons because our kids are homeschooled and I feel like it really helps us find the balance between them making friends, being out and about and busy interacting with other people, but we don't do that at the same time as, you know, a giant launch in the business that can take a lot of time and energy.

I will plan a really busy season of the business at the same time as we're dialing down at home. So, there's less extracurriculars or our schedules are a little less full. Or I'll work a deal out with Brian where it's like, “Okay, I need this busier season in the business, but there's also a busyness in our family. Do you want me to wait on this busy season in the business or do you want to take 75% of the busyness with our family so I can focus on the busy season in the business?” And we've done that before too.

We have a unique situation to where we're both home and we kind of share the load of everything, but we'll kind of work it out to where he'll take over most of the homeschooling and I kind of let go and I'll just do some things with Hudson who's in first grade and needs a little bit more care and attention but requires less time each day in school. I'll kind of just take over his stuff and Brian will take over the older kids and the bulk of the homeschooling. He'll take them to practices and stuff and I'll just show up at games. I'll spend the bulk of the day working on projects.

You have to just understand that there will be seasons and it’s all give and take. If work is busier, that's okay. It's okay that you're missing more than usual. Just let it be a season. Sometimes home will be busier and you won't be killing it so much at work. And that's okay too.

I think it's also really important to focus on feeling satisfaction and joy in your work. Do you love what you do? I think this is so important for ditching mom guilt. So if you're listening to this right now and you're thinking, “No, I don't love what I do,” then bring it to the Lord. Pray about it. Figure out a way to maybe go a different route. Maybe you should look for a different job. Maybe you should start being open to that opportunity.

But if you do love what you do, don't feel bad about that. That's so amazing. Step into that and let yourself feel it completely. What a gift that is, that you get to provide for your family and go to work and have a purpose and you love it. That's awesome. I think we let so many things steal our joy and we don't let ourselves really just get still and feel the joy in what we're doing. Even if you're not like super passionate about your job, but you like the environment at work and you're making good money, let yourself feel that joy.

One other thing that steals our joy is comparison. Comparing yourself to other people.

It's so hard not to do that, especially with social media, but remember that this is your life. Your story. And you’re making yourself emotionally unhealthy if you compare yourself to other people. You are not them and you are not supposed to be them. You are you. You're living your story right now, so focus on that and understand that work is a part of that. At least for now.

I think just accepting that even can be so huge. And letting go…if you see an Instagram picture of a mom baking cookies with her toddler and you're at work sitting at your desk like, “Oh my gosh, I feel like the worst right now,” that is so emotionally unhealthy for you and mentally unhealthy. Don't let that lie sink in there. That mom is doing something awesome and so are you. You're making money. You're providing. You're showing up in that way. And that is so awesome

Another thing that I notice is that a lot of women seem to think that it's not okay to be exhausted, like they need to be full of energy. This was one thing that was big for me. Ashley and I talked about it too when we were kind of talking out the points of this episode.

This was one thing that was particularly really hard for me to get over. I actually don't work that many hours. I used to, when I was starting the business. I used to work all the time, but now I really don't work that many hours. However, I'm an introvert and the hours that I do work are spent doing things like live streams, pouring my heart into an email. Talking into my microphone (like I am right now) sharing my heart with you, encouraging you in a podcast episode. Answering questions live on Instagram, writing content for Instagram or whatever it is. It's all extroverting, so the few hours that I do work, I'm exhausted when I'm done.

It took me forever to learn that it is okay to be tired. You’re amazing. You’re working and you're being a mom. The two hardest things in the world. I mean I'm going to drop a word here, so if you have kids around watch out, but honestly, how much more badass could you even be? Don't ever let anyone make you feel “less than” for working. And work-at-home moms, don't ever let anyone make you feel “less” for working from home. Like it's less legit than working outside of the house. That's total BS. Don't you take that! Don't you take that! You're amazing and you're doing a lot. It is okay to be tired. It is okay to rinse and stack the dishes and leave them for tomorrow because you worked all day and you are just freaking exhausted. It is okay.

I think another thing that I learned is that a lot of the judgment I was worried about…becoming a working mom, I realized that I am very concerned (or at least I used to be) about judgment from other people. It's what caused me to shrink back in doing what I do in my business and being a public figure. When I see people judging me, which people always do anyway, I used to shrink back and share less or be less vulnerable. And honestly, being a working mom has taught me to overcome this so much and I hope it does the same for you.

People will say things and people will be rude and that's fine, but usually when it comes to working mom guilt, most of our judgment actually comes from ourselves. It only freaks us out when we maybe see a glimpse of it from other people because it's just solidifying what we feel about ourselves and we need to deal with that.

Have you ever really heard another mom say, “Oh my gosh, she's such a terrible mom for working outside the home?” I haven't. I think if you will realize that you have expectations of yourself and you’re the one making yourself feel judged. Deal with what you expect of yourself. Think about where it comes from, usually our childhood, and let go of it. It doesn't have to have power over you for one more day, so really think about it.

Is anyone really judging you? Maybe you're like, “Yeah, my mother-in-law or my dad is” or whatever, deal with that too. But a lot of the time, I think most of the judgment that we're feeling is actually coming from inside of ourselves.

And one last thing that I want to leave you with is this: the fact is when our kids grow up, it's very, very likely that they're going to work. Our daughters, our sons, it's really likely they're probably gonna work. So, it's so important that we model a healthy work life relationship for them and not act super guilty, stressed, burdened and victimized by our role of worker.

Remember that you're setting an example for them, that you're showing them what this life looks like. If you're a mom and you work, if you own a business or you have a job, you are their main example of that lifestyle. Whether you chose it or financially, you have to have that lifestyle, you’re that example.

So, let's change the way we're treating our work. Let's change the way we're talking about our lifestyle. Let’s change the way that we are treating our jobs and our roles. It doesn't mean show up, be perfect at everything, have a super clean house, be an awesome cookie baker, come to every game, be super rich, run an amazing business or do amazing at your job.

It means prioritize what matters. Show up well where you can show up. Find work/life balance in seasons, like taking turns with what's prioritized and what's not instead of trying to have everything prioritized perfectly balanced all the time, because that's never gonna happen.

Show them what a healthy work life relationship really looks like, how grateful you are, how awesome you are, and what it looks like to thrive in these two roles of worker and mother.


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This was an episode of The Purpose Show. Did you know there is an exclusive community created solely for the purpose of continuing discussions surrounding The Purpose Show episodes? And to get you to actually take action and make positive changes on the things that you learn here? Go be a part of it. To join go to facebook.com/groups/purposefulmamas.

Thank you so much for tuning in. If you are ready to uplevel and really take action on the things I talk about on my show, and get step-by-step help from me, head to alliecasazza.com. There are free downloads, courses, classes, and ways to learn more about what the next step might look like for you and to focus on whatever you might need help with in whatever season you are in right now.  

I am always rooting for you, friend!

See ya next time!

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