Radio host. Wedding Celebrant. Journalist. Blogger. Mother. Wife. Possible wearer of too many hats? Perhaps. Helen Farmer is an inspiring, multi-award winner momtrpreneur of her blog The Mothership Dxb. We asked her some questions, and here is what she had to say. Meet Helen Farmer.
Please tell us a little about yourself in a nutshell—where you’re from, how long you have lived in the UAE, what you do and what brought you here and inspired you to start your business.
I’ve been in the Middle East for nearly 12 years, with 11 spent in Dubai. I came here for a job in book publishing, then moved in magazines, working as an editor. About a year after my first daughter was born, I decided to go freelance, set up The Mothership, started taking on writing projects and voiceover jobs, and working as a wedding celebrant.
Earlier in 2018 I started working on Dubai Eye 103.8, and now host a show every weekday afternoon.
Please tell us about some of the Awards/Achievements you have had as a momtrepreneur (not before being a mom). How did you attain them?
For the last three years I’ve been awards Time Out’s Parenting Blogger of the Year, was an OK magazine all-star (still not sure what that means!), was short-listed as in the Stylist social media awards and been featured across numerous websites and titles. It has been an exciting few years, and I feel really, truly fortunate to have had these accolades.
What inspired you to start your business and what have you learned from it?
I was trying to find balance between career and family – and I’m still trying to find it. Working as a freelancer meant that if I was with the kids during the day, I would need to write at night, but now I juggle the blog and my radio job, which means I can do school drop off and spend time with my younger daughter in the morning, but don’t get home until bedtime.
It has been a steep learning curve in terms of being licensed, invoicing and managing my time, but I’m thankful that I enjoy what I do, which makes a huge difference.
Describe your favourite dish.
The tandoori chicken from Biryani Pot – it’s insanely good.
Tell us about your pet peeve.
Selfish drivers and those who don’t put their kids in car seats.
Tell us 3 things you learned from your kid/s alone.
Be in the moment, sleep when you can and you get a lot more from life if you ask nicely.
If there is one element you wish you could change from your journey through being a momtrepreneur, what would it be and why?
I wish I had surrounded myself with fellow freelancers more, as it can be lonely working alone. You still need a tribe, people to bounce ideas off, and to have a good rant about some of the ‘quirks’ of freelancing.
What is your favourite quote?
“The obligation for working mothers is a very precise one: the feeling that one ought to work as if one did not have children, while raising one’s children as if one did not have a job” – Annabel Crabb. The juggle and struggle is real.
Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
I’m still learning about radio, and I want to feel like I’m at the top of my game. I love Dubai and would like to still be enjoying all it has to offer, and see the kids grow up swimming and being outdoors. And hopefully I’ll have found some balance!
What would you tell your much younger self if you had the chance to speak to her?
That it’s okay to need help and guidance, and to accept it when it’s offered. And that saying ‘no’ feels pretty great sometimes!
What advice do you have for fellow moms and momtrepreneurs?
Be authentic – be true to yourself, your needs, and what will make you feel happy and fulfilled. Find your motivation, and go for it.
Picture Credit : Stephanie Hamilton