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.


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

Jamie Foxx and his daughter Corinne Foxx are one of Hollywood’s best father-daughter duos. They’ve teamed up together on several projects including Foxx’s game show Beat Shazam where they both serve as executive producers and often frequent red carpets together. Corinne even followed in her father’s footsteps by taking his professional last name and venturing into acting starring in 47 Meters Down: Uncaged and Live in Front of a Studio Audience: All in the Family and Good Times as Thelma.

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When I was ten, my Sunday school teacher put on a brief performance in class that included some of the boys standing in front of the classroom while she stood in front of them holding a heart shaped box of chocolate. One by one, she tells each boy to come and bite a piece of candy and then place the remainder back into the box. After the last boy, she gave the box of now mangled chocolate over to the other Sunday school teacher — who happened to be her real husband — who made a comically puzzled face. She told us that the lesson to be gleaned from this was that if you give your heart away to too many people, once you find “the one,” that your heart would be too damaged. The lesson wasn’t explicitly about sex but the implication was clearly present.

That memory came back to me after a flier went viral last week, advertising an abstinence event titled The Close Your Legs Tour with the specific target demo of teen girls came across my Twitter timeline. The event was met with derision online. Writer, artist, and professor Ashon Crawley said: “We have to refuse shame. it is not yours to hold. legs open or not.” Writer and theologian Candice Marie Benbow said on her Twitter: “Any event where 12-17-year-old girls are being told to ‘keep their legs closed’ is a space where purity culture is being reinforced.”

“Purity culture,” as Benbow referenced, is a culture that teaches primarily girls and women that their value is to be found in their ability to stay chaste and “pure”–as in, non-sexual–for both God and their future husbands.

I grew up in an explicitly evangelical house and church, where I was taught virginity was the best gift a girl can hold on to until she got married. I fortunately never wore a purity ring or had a ceremony where I promised my father I wouldn’t have pre-marital sex. I certainly never even thought of having my hymen examined and the certificate handed over to my father on my wedding day as “proof” that I kept my promise. But the culture was always present. A few years after that chocolate-flavored indoctrination, I was introduced to the fabled car anecdote. “Boys don’t like girls who have been test-driven,” as it goes.

And I believed it for a long time. That to be loved and to be desired by men, it was only right for me to deny myself my own basic human desires, in the hopes of one day meeting a man that would fill all of my fantasies — romantically and sexually. Even if it meant denying my queerness, or even if it meant ignoring how being the only Black and fat girl in a predominantly white Christian space often had me watch all the white girls have their first boyfriends while I didn’t. Something they don’t tell you about purity culture – and that it took me years to learn and unlearn myself – is that there are bodies that are deemed inherently sinful and vulgar. That purity is about the desire to see girls and women shrink themselves, make themselves meek for men.

Purity culture isn’t unlike rape culture which tells young girls in so many ways that their worth can only be found through their bodies. Whether it be through promiscuity or chastity, young girls are instructed on what to do with their bodies before they’ve had time to figure themselves out, separate from a patriarchal lens. That their needs are secondary to that of the men and boys in their lives.

It took me a while —after leaving the church and unlearning the toxic ideals around purity culture rooted in anti-Blackness, fatphobia, heteropatriarchy, and queerphobia — to embrace my body, my sexuality, and my queerness as something that was not only not sinful or dirty, but actually in line with the vision God has over my life. Our bodies don't stop being our temples depending on who we do or who we don’t let in, and our worth isn’t dependent on the width of our legs at any given point.

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TW: This article may contain mentions of suicide and self-harm.

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