We had the good fortune of connecting with Mariah Sage and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mariah, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
To me, a better work/life balance is one of the biggest draws and the biggest learning curves of entrepreneurship. When I first quit my day job, I struggled a lot with this – feeling the pressure that how much I succeeded or generated was a direct result of how much work I put in. But I realized pretty quickly this wasn’t serving me.
Today, I balance my time by focusing on following a sense of rhythm & flow, rather than strict scheduling or structure. Of course, I have commitments, deadlines, and appointments, but I also have really strong boundaries around when I schedule those and what I say yes to.
The rest of the time, I use tools like having a weekly (rather than a daily) to-do list, trusting that when I’m rested, I’m ten times more productive, and if I’m having a day where my focus isn’t great, I move things around.
My brand is called Easeful Mama, so this is part of what I teach my clients. You can have an easeful approach to your life that fits your unique rhythm and your needs, and still get everything done and be the mom (or person) you want to be in your life.
This approach gives me space to feel like myself in my life and my work. I serve my clients better when I feel free, taken care of, and fulfilled. And it leaves plenty of space for me to take an afternoon off to hike with my husband when I need it, and then to lose myself in work the next day.
The really interesting thing is, when I shifted out of being strict on myself in this area, I started earning more money.
What should our readers know about your business?
Easeful Mama is all about helping parents learn a more relaxed + easeful approach to parenting. We live in a culture that gives us the messaging that if you’re a parent (and specifically a mom) and you’re not exhausted, overwhelmed, and sacrificing your own needs for your family, then you’re doing it wrong.
I teach parents that it doesn’t have to be this way! Through improving family dynamics, learning tools for communication and conscious, positive discipline, and setting up clear systems in your home – you can be the parent you want to be, still have a thriving life and/or career, and be the person you want to be in the world.
This doesn’t mean parenting will ever be EASY. Raising small humans is one of the biggest tasks we can take on in this life. But it really is possible to have a family life that’s joyful, easeful, and fulfilling – with way less drama and way more taking care of ourselves.
The thing I’m most proud of in my work is the results I help my clients create. It brings me so much happiness to see families healing relationships, growing deeper connections with their kids, and learning to discipline and communicate in ways that get results, but that also serve their children’s development and help the kids grow into capable people with good relational skills and strong boundaries.
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned so far in my business is that when I’m doing work that aligned with my values and what I love, everything flows much more easily. But it took me a long time to figure out what that was for me! I would describe my first few years of working for myself as a lot of trial and error. Learning about how I wanted to serve, about how to course correct when something isn’t working, and about balancing the many tasks of running your own business.
I’ve gotten where I am today by being willing to be flexible and not giving up while the vision of what I really want to build has become clear to me. I don’t think you have to have it all figured out to start a business, you just have to know yourself and what you value and stay true to that over and over again until you find the path that feels right.
Although there have been plenty of times when I’ve felt lost or defeated on this journey, I’ve never wanted to give up on the work I do because I love it and believe in it so deeply. The feeling I get when I help a family and see their lives change makes every single day worth it. I believe that when we heal families, we heal the world. Most of our deepest trauma and wounding comes from our family – but this is just because parents don’t have the tools they need. Every parent does their best with what they have. And that’s my mission with my work. To help more parents have the education and support to be the parents they want to be and raise amazing kids who grow into amazing people.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I grew up in Austin and after moving away for several years, the thing that really brought me back was the nature. One of the gems of this city is the Barton Springs Pool – an acre long spring fed swimming pool in the middle of downtown. It connects a huge greenbelt along an aquifer fed creek system. I consider it the soul of the city.
I love that as Austin has grown, it’s a beautiful mix of trendy restaurants and fun nightlife, with a side of the hippie town I remember growing up in. Plus the food is incredible!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My family is the reason behind what I do and so much of my success. My mom and sister, Gigi and Makena Sage have been like my entrepreneurship angels – guiding and supporting me along every step of the way. There’s absolutely no way I would be doing what I am today without their encouragement and love.