Sophie is a 37-year-old social media manager (training with Digital Mums) who lives in south west London with her husband Dan, daughters Milla (5) and Ruby (3) and Dot the six month old schnoodle pup.
A burgeoning career as a social media manager beckons for Sophie whose CV has almost come full circle. She started working in advertising after university and no doubt some of those core skills will prove useful in the future. A decade spent as a teacher defined her professional identity, however the familiar story of crippling childcare costs and a vocation which demands a huge amount of time meant she has chosen a different career, one which allows more flexibility around family life. Like so many of us Sophie refers to feeling guilty: “As a working mum you feel like you are always letting someone down; rushing to leave work to get to nursery, rushing the kids out of the house to get to work etc. It’s a vicious circle. That’s why I’m hoping the Digital Mums course will give me the flexibility to pick the kids up from school, but still get the fulfilment of working.”
Although ‘flexible working’ is still in its infancy in the Adams household at least Sophie’s in control of the hours she does, even if it does “involve working all evening and crawling in to bed at about 1am!”. Setting a positive role model for her children is an important aspect of life and one I can relate to. It’s about finding the balance between being around whilst the children are little and fulfilling the desire to have a professional identity.
Sophie’s top tips for finding a work/life balance is to “find a job/career/hobby that you’re passionate about, and can make a bit of money from it without compromising your family life, surely that’s the dream!”. Digital Mums have certainly captured the imagination of thousands of women like Sophie, and although I’m not a ‘Digital Mum’ in the official sense, I’d like to think I’m championing its values and ethos.
Despite the compromises motherhood naturally brings, like precious time to yourself (goodbye spa weekends, retail therapy, lie-ins, I could go on…) one thing is clear we wouldn’t change it for a thing. Although daydreaming for a moment, if Sophie didn’t need to work she might be “a very leisurely artist – painting as and when the mood took me and selling my paintings for big bucks (I can dream…)”.
Taking a leap of faith and deciding to be your own boss is a really challenging prospect and particularly hard for a lot of mums who suffer with that dreaded self-doubt we all feel. Hearing stories, like Sophie’s, gives me huge motivation and confidence to have more self-belief. “The idea of being my own boss is really exciting on paper, but the reality of having to go out there and get the work, do the hustle is a bit terrifying! But I have to challenge myself.” I’m really looking forward to following Sophie’s journey and hearing about her success.
Sophie on social media…
“Hopefully its opening up a whole new career for me. Since having kids and spending those lonely hours in the middle of the night on Twitter and Instagram, I’ve been watching the platforms evolve and the power they now wield is incredible! Its just in its infancy, though, and the future is exciting!”
Sophie’s daily digital routine…
“Email, Instagram, Facebook, the Guardian, the Daily Mail gossip (sorry!), Instagram, Twitter, Instagram, Instagram, Snapchat etc”.
“Via Instagram I’ve found HUNDREDS of mums/bloggers/vloggers – its now such a powerful tool & some of them definitely influence where I shop & what I buy etc. I find them much more interesting than celebs!”
@cissywears: “runs an amazing business whilst having four children”.
@steph_dontbuyherflowers: “runs a really successful business since having her children”.
@toomuchmotheringinformation: “an ex-teacher like me who became, through circumstance, a stay at home mum; I realised we were starting the Digital Mums course at the same time and she’s running a lovely campaign focussing on SE London @indikidsldn“.
Interview with Amy White