Last week, I finally had the chance to paint for the first time since Naiya was born. It was only for about an hour but I walked away feeling like I found a little piece of my pre-baby self again. It made me realize just how much my life has chanced since becoming a mom and how much harder it’s been to give my creative passions as much attention as I’d like. Between mom-ing hard, commuting to work and #girlbossing, I barely have enough time to breathe, let alone create. This has been driving me crazy! Recently, I’ve received a bunch of messages asking advice on how to balance being a working mom with being multi-passionate. I figured I’d round up how I’ve been making this happen with you today in hopes that it might help to open up some authentic conversation. Spoiler alert: I’m also still very much a work in progress and have a long way to go too.
Multi-Passionate Life Before Mom-ing Hard
For those of you who have been following along for a while, you’ll know that I’m driven by creativity. One of my favorite things to do is to paint fashion illustrations (more here). Painting has always helped me to unwind, relax and decompress and it has become such an intrinsic piece of who I am.
Prior to having Naiya, I also loved to spend as much time singing, writing, taking photos, making jewelry, going to hot yoga and running as possible. I loved being active, creative and uber-busy. This worked out well because even though I’ve always had a full-time job, I knew exactly how to carve out the time to make these things happen.
The Big Creative Change: Prego and Mom Life:
My ability to go after all of my passions at my convenience changed for the first time in my life during pregnancy. I was sick with severe morning sickness for all nine months and not a day went by where I wasn’t puking my brains out. Nights were the hardest so I’d usually come home from work and go right to sleep.
Looking back, I had such a hard time losing those extra creative moments in my day because I was never able to fully recharge.
After having Naiya, it became even harder to get those creative moments back. Like most new parents, we didn’t sleep for months, we were finding our new normal by the minute and we were stressed out of our minds! Any spare time was spent sleeping rather than creating because it was all about survival. That said, I had severe creative FOMO and wondered if I’d ever be able to find myself again.
How I’m Trying To Balance It All
Since I truly believe that finding the time to be creative makes me a better mom, ever since Naiya started sleeping, I’ve started to stick to a schedule after work to ensure I get some “me” time in. For the past few months, it’s been working!
I come home from work and get a bunch of Naiya playtime in and/or a family walk. From there, we take Naiya up for bath time around 7:15pm. Afterwards, I read to her, nurse her and she falls asleep by 8:00pm or 8:15pm.
Night Owl Creativity
Next, Phil and I have some one-on-one time together too. We usually cook dinner, Netflix and chill. We’ve been working on savoring these quiet moments together too because it’s so important to catch up with one another in moments when we’re not juggling a screaming baby.
From there, I rarely get into “creative mode” until about 9pm at the earliest. Phil goes to bed and I usually blog or paint the night away until 12am or even 1am. I don’t recommend this unless you’re a night owl like me because this is of course exhausting. Also, most nights, even Phil probably thinks I’m nuts.
That said, I literally don’t know when else I would get everything else done because #workingmomlife. Also, 9pm-12am are the only hours in the day where I can really let my mind go and focus because I feel most productive.
Hopefully, as Naiya gets older, I’ll be able to sneak in more “me” time during the day so I know this is only temporary. For now, though, I’m savoring it.
Advice For Multi-Hyphenates
Given everything I shared above I think the most important way to balance being multi-passionate is that you have to carve out the time to fulfill your creative needs.
Likewise, if you haven’t already honed in on the hours in which you feel the most creative, that’s also good place to start. If you’re a night owl, carve out an hour or two before bed to work on your side hustle. If you’re an early riser, try getting creative before work and inspire yourself for the rest of the day.
Remember to be gentle with yourself. Chances are, you’re doing the best you can. It’s perfectly acceptable to take a night (or even a few nights) off. We’re all human and treating ourselves like machines will not make us any more productive or creative. Instead, it’s about finding a balance that works best for you that will help you to thrive. I’m trying to remind myself of these things daily too even though it’s not always easy!
Are you multi-passionate? How do you balance it all? Did you go through a big transition if you had kids? Tell me about it in the comment section below. If you’re still with me, you can scroll down for today’s outfit details!
Outfit Of The Day
Today, I’m wearing a dress I scooped up from Zara that I’m absolutely in love with. I love the classic A-line silhouette, the bow that cinches the waist, the floral pattern and the collar. It’s been the perfect look to wear to the office or to dress up for date night with Phil.
Today, I paired this dress with one of my favorite seagrass handbag for summer, basic nude sandals, white cat eye sunnies and threaded gold earrings. Sharing a few similar looks below that I also have my eye on.
Photography: Azusa Takano