I know I am not alone. With the popularity of multi-level marketing organizations, more and more women are running side hustles in addition to working 8-5 day jobs. Plus, let’s not forget about every dedicated mother are raising children on top of working all. day. long.
We work 8 am - noon, run chores on our lunch hours, work 1-5 pm, then go home and then work some more. Heck, let’s be realistic, even mothers who aren’t “gainfully employed” are working all day long; and I am sure there are other women (non-mothers) doing the same. We are driven, goal oriented women; so, we work, and then work some more.
For me, I work a daytime "muggle job" at a really great engineering firm (WGM Group) from 8-5 and my side hustle is running the Levitation Nation Aerial Studio. But it is not just a side hustle. It is a necessity. It is my dream. It is what I am called to do in this life, so I make it work even though my schedule is crazy and some days I am dog-tired.
On a normal day, I wake up around 5:30 or 6:00 am. I usually spend some time meditating with my really weird cat who only comes out in the silence of the morning. After meditation, I work on the computer updating Levitation Nation’s website and social media pages. Then, I carve out an hour for myself for a workout with my 6:45 am boot camp peeps. I love starting the day with a workout because it makes me feel in control of my day. Sure, it can be hard to take this hour of “me-time” when there are so many other things to do. But, I have learned that I can be of better service to my friends and family if I am taking care of myself first and foremost. So, I make it happen.
After my morning workout, I am off to my day job, where I work at a desk 8-5. I get a lunch hour but it usually consists of scarfing down food while running errands for the studio or trying to squeeze in a 45-minute aerial practice. After 5 pm, I either teach classes or head home to I answer emails and messages that have come in for Levitation Nation. I try to leave my Saturdays open to squeeze in one day of snowboarding (in winters) or hiking (in summers) and I use Sundays for food prep, rest & recovery. But those things happen usually only after spending a few hours at the computer working on advertising for Levitation Nation, articles for The Montana Woman Magazine, or my blog (i.e. this article). It can be exhausting to work so much.
Sure, I could take some things off my plate. I could quit writing for Montana Woman or give up my blog. Heck, I could even shut down the studio. But I know that disregarding my life’s purpose is not the way to manage my time.
The answer lies in learning how to say “No.” There are so many great causes, but when asked to help with things that aren’t critical to my life’s purpose, I find the words to decline. My favorite verbiage I picked up somewhere along the way: “While my heart wants to say yes, the reality of what is on my plate makes this a no for me.” It still stings to not be able to help everyone who needs it, but I am no help to anyone if I spread myself too thin. Worse yet is making a commitment and not being able to follow through.
I dream someday the studio may be busy enough to be a sole source of income for me, but we aren’t there yet. In the meantime, taking me-time and leveraging the power of “no” helps me keep my sanity. Since you have read this far, I know you are a sister who relates to this busy life. I would love to hear your pointers on staying afloat! I would especially love to hear from you if our studio classes are part of what helps keep you sane. There are getting to be more and more ladies coming in to the studio for me-time, and it brings a smile to my face that we can be there for you. YOU are the reason for all of my hustle, and you are so worth it. XOXO, Mindy
Mindy is the founder of Kalispell’s Levitation Nation Aerial Studio, where the catch phrase “fitness is fun” is embodied alongside a culture of movement & women empowerment. Mindy is also a columnist for "Montana Woman Magazine." Her column "The Real Levitation Experience" shares expertise for elevating health & wellness that she has acquired through her certifications as a personal trainer, nutrition coach, and life coach. For more about Mindy, please visit: https://www.levitationnation.org/mindy.