Elayna Fernández, known worldwide as The Positive MOM, is an award-winning Latina influencer whose mission is to empower moms to create joy, balance and success on their own terms. We recently had a chance to sit down with Elayna and hear her thoughts on motherhood, happiness and mompreneurship.
Tell us a bit about yourself. Why did you decide to start a blog?
I was going through a very painful time in my life, having become a single mom of two toddlers (one and two-year-old girls) and feeling defeated by the uncertainty of not knowing what to do. I didn’t have a job or a bank account, and I didn’t know how to drive, so I decided there was not much I could do. But I was in control of who I could be: a healthy role model for my daughters, a loving mom, a conscious mom, an intentional mom, an engaging mom, a connected mom, a playful mom and a present mom. I could be a positive mom!
When I took a leap of faith and became a mompreneur, I started creating content to help moms create income, influence and impact, and The Positive MOM was born. My platform evolved into a source of motivation for moms who experience fear, guilt, worthiness issues, shame, regrets and low self-esteem, just like I did (and still struggle with at times).
I know many moms feel overwhelmed with the responsibilities of motherhood, and my mission is to empower them to turn their pain into positive growth, step into balance and create joy and success on their own terms in all areas of life. It’s been a very rewarding journey because I know my content impacts so many moms around the world and it sustains me in my journey as a mom as well.
Since you call yourself a “student of pain,” could you tell us what you mean by that? Can a positive attitude really help people get through extremely painful times?
In the defining moments of adversity, trials and hardship, your circumstances do not define you; your mindset does. When you change your mindset―your self-image, your attitudes and your responses―your perspective changes. A positive perspective that is rooted in your true identity allows you to reset, reinvent and recreate your life, and ultimately become who you are meant to be.
I remember laying on the ground, curled into the fetal position on the cold tile floor, telling myself I was worthless and hopeless and contemplating putting an end to my life. I looked up and saw a glimpse of light in this dark moment by looking at my daughters and feeling a sense of gratitude that shifted my mindset.
I consider myself a student of pain because I have discovered that pain is inevitable because it is a gift. The lessons I’ve learned through painful and traumatic experiences have been the most valuable of my lifetime. My stories help bring understanding and infuse hope in other moms, because they can see that it is possible to raise happy, successful and well-adjusted children no matter what circumstances they are going through.
Even though I suffered deeply through these experiences, I am grateful that I was raised in a slum, physically punished for “being bad” as a child, kidnapped, brutally raped and almost killed at nineteen years old. I am grateful for the experience of becoming a single mom, and I choose to be grateful for the pain I experience on a daily basis. It is through owning our story that we are able to rewrite it and heal our wounds.
What is the Millionaire Mom Mindset? How can this approach help families rise out of poverty and/or climb the income ladder?
I mentor many moms through my training courses and coaching, and for years, I have researched what keeps moms up at night, what sabotages their success and what blocks them from creating the life they would love to live.
I am passionate about teaching moms what issues rob them of their joy and confidence to succeed as a mom and as a woman. I help them develop a healthy relationship with money and adopt powerful daily habits for success. I call this the Millionaire Mom Mindset because it is rooted in self-discipline, self-development and the power of positive thinking to grow.
Finish this sentence: “The most important suggestion I give to moms who are trying to find a work-life balance is…”
… to get clear on their calling and their top five priorities. Once you have clarity of purpose, you are equipped to make choices that are in alignment with the mom you wish to become and the life you want to create. It’s empowering to know what to say yes to and what to say no to without feeling guilt, resentment or regrets.
How can tools like prepaid debit cards help families stay on budget?
Using a prepaid debit card can help families and mompreneurs stay on budget because they have a specific and limited amount to spend, and they don’t have an overdraft or transfer option that may justify an unnecessary (yet tempting) purchase. By using a prepaid debit card, there is only so much money I can spend.
Also, a prepaid debit card is helpful with tracking spending and separating business and personal expenses. When I started my business, I assigned a monthly amount to invest, and a prepaid card makes not going over budget quite easy. Keep in mind prepaid debit cards have fees. Learn about Green Dot’s prepaid cards and simple fees here.
Finally, what advice do you have for all the moms out there who feel overworked and underappreciated?
We’ve been conditioned with the belief that being a good mom means to compromise, sacrifice, accommodate and set aside your needs. You forget yourself, get lost in motherhood and make it your life’s mission to make your child happy by saying yes to everything and everyone, all while trying to satisfy all the demands you had before motherhood.
People pleasing is the reason you are wrestling with depression, disappointment and depletion. In order to stop these feelings of failure, frustration and loneliness, you must forsake the lie of “super-motherhood” that sets you up to feel like you’re not enough. You must learn to meet your needs and understand that your job as a mom is not to make your family or your kids happy, but to create an environment that allows them to be happy. In other words, your child’s happiness is not your creation, but a byproduct of who you are. The best you can give the people in your life is a happier you! Make sure you are asking for and getting what you need, without settling.
Be positive and you’ll be powerful.
The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of Green Dot Corporation.