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7 Mother/Hustlers On How To Secure A Bag & Your Sanity At The Same Damn Time

These smooth Mother/Hustlers refuse to let the grind, grind them to death.

Mother/Hustler

In xoNecole's series Mother/Hustler, we sit down with influential mom bosses who open up about the ups and downs of motherhood, as well as how they kill it in their respective industries, all while keeping their sanity and being intentional about self-care.

Securing a check shouldn't cost you your sanity. Let that sink in for a minute. Your hustle shouldn't hustle you out of your peace of mind and these smooth Mother/Hustlers refuse to let the grind, grind them to death. xoNecole sat down with 7 mommy moguls who broke down the secret to getting both your mind and your money all the way in alignment and according to LA-based digital content creator Jessica Pettway, there's power in having patience with yourself.

"Listen, I'm still trying to figure this out!" she explained, "Especially since I do it on my own––no nanny, no childcare, plus I homeschool. Life as a mom is so unpredictable at times, that you sometimes go off schedule. But I don't beat myself up over it. You just make adjustments and move on."

Along with saying goodbye to doubt and negative self-talk, Jessica, who has a six-year-old daughter and a bun in the oven, says that getting a good night's sleep and creating boundaries between her personal and professional life has allowed her to stay in her bag while keeping others out of her business. "I love the fact that my life is my life and I don't have to explain it to the internet. I share just enough, but my business is my business. That's how you stay sane in these social media streets."

For more tips from 7 wise Mother/Hustlers on how to secure a bag without sacrificing your sanity, scroll below!

Jessica Pettway, Fashion & Beauty Blogger

How (and how often) do you practice self-care?

"I try to practice it as much as I can, even if that means just 30 minutes a day. I love just getting fresh air and walking outside. It can be by the beach or someplace in LA. I enjoy people-watching too, so sitting in a cafe with a latte and watching strangers is my idea of 'me time.'"

What tips do you have for financial planning, both professionally and for your family?

"I always say, do not try to impress folks who aren't financially contributing to your lifestyle. Enjoy life, but be honest about your income. Be content with what you have and you'll always have more than enough."

For more of Jessica, click here!

Nadirah Ali, CEO of For Brown Gurls 

How (and how often) do you practice self-care?

"I practice self-care every day. I believe if you look good, you feel good, you'll do good. I work out every day to keep my body in shape. I eat healthy and regularly pamper myself. My favorite way to spend me time is visiting the spa. I like to get massages and facials. I also love to read new books and listen to motivational speakers."

What tips do you have for financial planning, both professionally and for your family?

"Time management is so important when being a mommy mogul. If you don't plan, you're planning to fail. If you can't buy it 10 times, you can't afford it. Whether its a piece of gum, a brand new car, or getting your nails done. You should be putting your money into things that can make you more money."

For more of Nadirah, click here!

Monica Bencomo, Lifestyle & Fitness Coach

How (and how often) do you practice self-care?

"Every. Day. I won't get out of bed until I've meditated, prayed, gone over my gratitude, and asked for guidance. For me, self-care is not an option or a luxury; it's vital to my overall health and happiness as a mom."

What tips do you have for financial planning, both professionally and for your family?

"Have family meetings. If you're married, you and your partner need to be on the same page. If you're single, you can do this yourself. My husband and I meet weekly and monthly to go over things like finances, goals, etc so we're on the same page. Develop a vision as a family, and practice discipline! If you decide you want to buy a home in the next two years, for example, plan to spend more frugally and save a certain amount each time you're paid. Set tangible goals you can measure. And check progress each time you meet."

For more of Monica, click here!

Kathlyn Celeste, Lifestyle Blogger

What is your favorite way to spend "me time"?

"Do trips to Target count? This is something I'm trying to get better at. This [past] year, I made it a priority to have 'date days with Jesus' where I schedule out a huge block of time one day a week where I spend time in my word, journaling, and just talking to God all day. Through this, I've learned so much about myself by spending time with the One who created me. It's literally changed me in ways I'm so grateful for. [This] year, I'm planning to start taking violin lessons as part of my me time! I played in elementary school and when I think about doing something for myself that has nothing to do with work or anyone else, I thought that would be cool to try again!"

What tips do you have for financial planning, both professionally and for your family?

"Budget, budget, budget! Save, save, save! Take some time to create a spreadsheet and list out all of your income coming in, and every penny going out. Each week, you should update this sheet and it'll give you a better idea of what you can actually afford and where you may have to cut back. I think once you get started, you'll fall in love with managing your money and being in control of it, rather than it controlling you!"

For more of Kathlyn, click here!

Shanicia Boswell, CEO of Black Moms Blog

How (and how often) do you practice self-care?

"You hear this a lot now, about self-care not just being about getting your nails done and spa days. It is true. I practice self-care mentally by reserving time to myself. I practice self-care financially by protecting my assets and creating stability in my credit to be able to purchase a home. I practice self-care in my spirit by not being involved with things that truly serve no higher purpose to my well-being. On a not-so-deep level, I love to tell moms, find a way to make self-care realistic for you. Every woman doesn't need a two-week vacation out of the country. Sometimes you just need a Snickers bar hiding in the bathroom from your kids. Don't feel guilty for that."

"Find a way to make self-care realistic for you. Every woman doesn't need a two-week vacation out of the country. Sometimes you just need a Snickers bar hiding in the bathroom from your kids. Don't feel guilty for that."

What tips do you have for financial planning, both professionally and for your family?

"Financial planning is self-care. Can we put that on a t-shirt? My advice to women for financial planning is don't let the daunting thought of getting your finances in order scare you from actually doing it. Get help. There are so many programs and companies that help with credit repair and homeownership. When it comes to your business, learn how tax breaks can help you and where to invest your money for greater returns. Financial freedom should always be the goal and the only way to do it successfully is to just start the process. Just start."

For more of Shanicia, click here!

Jehava Brown, Lifestyle Blogger

How (and how often) do you practice self-care?

"Once a week, I have a night out with a girlfriend. We typically go somewhere good for dinner, but it's so relaxing to unwind and eat alone in peace. When I go back to my family, I feel energized and ready to take on the busyness of life. This is something I made a priority a few years ago, and it has made all the difference."

What tips do you have for financial planning, both professionally and for your family?

"Every month my husband and I sit down to plan out our household budget and where we want our money to go. We also do quarterly goals for savings, paying off debt, investing and so on. We did this when we had 2 cents to our name and we were trying to save $50 in a month, and we still do this now with a six-figure household.

"As far as business goes, I have multiple accounts for business expenses, savings, and taxes. This makes everything so much easier at the end of the year. I make sure that I pay everything out of these accounts, and never cross them with our family accounts. A plan makes all the difference in reaching your financial goals. Be sure to give yourself little rewards to stay encouraged along the way as you meet those milestones."

For more of Jehava, click here!!

Brandi Sellerz-Jackson, Doula 

How (and how often) do you practice self-care?

"I try my hardest to practice self-care before I become overextended or in need of it. Keyword… try. For me, sometimes self-care looks like going to the Korean Spa and taking a soak. Sometimes, it looks like me preparing an amazing dish, just for me. Other times, self-care looks like me intentionally going to bed early. Self-care is all about listening and responding to your body's needs. Because I have three boys, one can imagine that our home is pretty loud. When I need 'me time', it usually involves some level of quiet. I love to sit in complete silence and just gather my thoughts. Put pen to paper. Breathe."

What tips do you have for financial planning, both professionally and for your family?

"Budget, budget, budget. Vision board or simply write down your financial goals. Whatever it looks like, keep the goal front and center."

For more of Brandi, click here!!

Featured image by Shutterstock

ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
Sign up

Featured image by Shutterstock

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