March 8th is International Women's Day, a day where women worldwide celebrate and advance women's creative endeavors in every sphere. This year's theme is #choosetochallenge gender bias and instead mark achievements.
To show support for my diversified community of women, I invited my friend Reena Ceschia, founder of Elle Muse Journal, to share her story and journey as a female entrepreneur.
What are you passionate about?
I'm very passionate about being a voice for women in midlife. A few years ago, I realized that we are not talking enough about this life stage. We are concealing how we feel about the physical and emotional changes we go through after 40. I believe this has something to do with the way we grew up. Women between 40 and 55 are the latchkey kids who grew up independently. As I said in one of my articles, we are the cool girls who went back to empty homes, pulled out the house keys from under the mat, and waited for our parents to come back home from work. Our moms were discreet and proper and kept their feelings to themselves. Therefore, we struggle to understand the changes, and we have difficult times conversing about them. I want women to feel good about aging and be confident externalizing their feelings.
What makes you uncomfortable?
I always need to be doing something, whether it's working or moving. I am incredibly uncomfortable with staying put or idol even for a day. Therefore, I always keep myself productive one way or another, either by exercising, reading, or coming up with projects.
How do you push through your worst times?
I practice self-talk and self-motivation, especially during rough times. Positive reinforcement is the one thing that helped me deal with life's ups and downs. I also practice self-care in the form of exercising and prayers.
How do you balance family life and career?Routine! It's my favourite book in the dictionary. Not only does it help us organize activities and chores, but it also sets limits and boundaries. Each member of the family knows what they must do and when. My family knows that I put my work mode on in the day-time. I like waking up before everyone else (around 6 am) to have "me time". That's the time I workout or review my schedule if it's a busy day. 2020 was chaotic, and I admit that I struggled with finding balance at first, but we learned to cope with the situation by accepting change and encouraging each other.
What's your most memorable experience as a blogger and content creator?
Most bloggers and writers dream of having their work showed in national magazines or newspapers, so am I. In May 2020, the editor of a prominent Canadian publication loved one of the blogs that I wrote about a female entrepreneur and requested publishing in their magazine. That was a childhood dream come true and reading my name in the magazine felt exhilarating.
What's the biggest thing you struggle with as a content creator?
During the age of COVID, finding some quiet time to think is the most significant struggle. I miss going to the library and spending hours planning and writing content in a peaceful zone while sipping on a Starbucks Flat White coffee. Staying at home, day in and day out, lessens the sense of creativity, and I need visual stimulus to keep these creative juices flowing. I crave living amid the hustles and bustles of city life and social interactions because this is how I can connect with people and come up with unique and relevant ideas.
Describe your style?
I don't have a particular style or a signature look. I am very much in tune with my visual sense and appreciate everything beautiful. In fashion, when I like something, I always want to make sure it suits my body type and is well-made before committing to buying it.
In home decor, I prefer simple aesthetics, and for that reason, I admire modern and mid-century designs. However, you'd be surprised to find some unusual ethnic decor pieces collected during my travels scattered around the house.
How do you plan to celebrate International Women's Day?
For International Women's Day, I plan to take part of the #choosetochallenge mission for 2021 and feature some of my favourite female entrepreneurs in Canada and USA. And I also want to thank you for inspiring us with your wonderful designs and support for female entrepreneurs.