You can find these shoes in…
They belong to…
I’m 37 years old, a mum of one, wife, four time marathon runner and in training for my biggest run yet – 60km in March.
What it’s like to walk in her shoes for a day…
It might sound crazy but I ooze passion every waking and I am sure sleeping moment. I found my love for running about 12 years ago and it has shaped me into the woman I am today. So, when I am in training, as I am now, I’m excited by the challenge ahead of me. I wake early, hopefully before my daughter if she doesn’t wake at 5am, I meditate for 5 -10 minutes and then depending on the day I will stretch, do yoga, foam roll or journal. Then my daughter wakes and we eat breakfast together. (This was my WHY for starting my own business so I could enjoy these moments together without the rush). Then she will go to care or kinder and I will do a training run and then get stuck into inspiring other women to embrace their passions.
Growing up in her shoes she was…
I grew up in a pretty standard Australian family. Mum is Australian, Dad was born in Croatia and migrated here as a boy. I loved being at school and learning, some would call me a nerd but I wasn’t, I just simply liked doing well at school. I supported my brother and sister in their sporting endeavours but never pursued my own, not until 25 when I found running. My dad was sure that I would go to university, get married young, have kids and be a stay at home wife. He chose the wrong daughter to put the assumption on. He wasn’t sexist by any means but it was the world he knew. I was defiant that that wouldn’t be me. I used to say to him, “why would I go to university, travel and live a life to then drop it all when I had kids” – not this girl. My mum also used to tell me to live my life before kids because you don’t have one after kids. This has stayed with me and definitely shaped the mum I am as well as further fuelling my running passion and purpose in business.
Her biggest challenges day-to-day…
When I was working in a corporate role as a new mum, I struggled with the juggle. I struggled with being taken seriously as a worker again because I wanted flexibility in my days and hours and I was working with lost ambition and passion in a male dominated industry that I don’t think gave enough interest in the person behind the job role. Today, working in my own business, I don’t feel those challenges anymore but what does sometimes rear its ugly head is self doubt. In a world where everyone is on show, comparison-ism is one skill I’ve had to master to not get the better of me, particularly as a mum and business owner.
What are the advantages of being a woman in the 21st Century?
Our ability to be able to do what we want. Running marathons for example was forbidden for women not that long ago. Being a mother who worked was not the norm and most definitely running your own business as a woman would’ve been out of the question. Women today crave freedom, flexibility and control when it comes to their life and we go and seek it. I love that we can squash the “should” mentality and do things because we want to. Particularly, in the small business world the sisterhood is alive and well and that is because we thrive on making an impact to other women, we want to support other women and we want to be the best role model we can for our children.
Flashbulb memories (s) or what it’s really like to walk in her shoes…
2017 I ran the New York Marathon, an incredible experience to say the least. At the time whilst I was training, I was working 4 days, being a mum to a 2 year old, running a small business and being a wife. I didn’t scrimp on any those things to fit it all in, I prioritized, managed my expectations and lived with love and kindness to myself. It was a profound experience for me because it showed me that life is a juggle but its important to juggle the most important things without neglecting those your love or yourself.
Things you should know if you’re going to walk in her shoes…
It’s not selfish to pursue your dreams. It’s not selfish to look after you. And it’s not selfish to love you…motherhood taught a very naive 30 year old woman (me) just what a change it makes to your life. We sign up for it not knowing, just as well as we don’t know. 🙂 But everything is possible, I just have decided what my everything looks like and prioritize my time and energy around it.
Anything else we should know?
Your energy flows where attention goes – and so I am a big believer in putting your energy to things, passions and dreams that keep you healthy, well and happy.
Hey you, can you relate to Natalie’s story? Do you have a favorite quote or thought? Share it in the comments
How about YOUR shoes?
“This is Natalie’s story, it is unique, it is hers and it tells you something about being a woman in the 21st century.
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