In a world where the lines between personal and professional life blur, there are stories that inspire, stories that reflect the struggles and triumphs of everyday individuals. Donna’s journey from a healthcare professional to a stay-at-home mom and then becoming a content creator exemplifies this spirit of resilience, and her blog, “Rise and Shine, Mommy,” beautifully captures her transformation and the wisdom she gained along the way.
From Scrubs to Strollers
Donna’s story began when she graduated from college; she entered a world of patient care and medical routines. However, life took a different turn when motherhood came calling and she decided to stay at home with her children. This new chapter brought both excitement and challenges, as she navigated a completely different world from her healthcare career.
“I noticed as I went through the journey, I began losing who I was, because I didn’t have patients to attend to, I didn’t have… to be at work at a certain time, and there was the schedule that I used to have it now was just centered completely on the kids.”- Donna Stephens
Finding Herself Again
As she adjusted to life as a stay-at-home mom, Donna realized that she couldn’t be the only one feeling this way.
She said, “How many other women feel like this? Like, it can’t be just me. So, I actually started talking to other women. They’re like, yes, it’s the worst. And I’m like, okay, we’ve got to fix this!”
This realization prompted her to reflect on her own journey and sparked the idea for her blog,
“Rise and Shine, Mommy.” Donna wants to encourage women to find their identity beyond motherhood and help empower them to pursue their passions. “So, Rise and shine, do what you have to do, never stop chasing your goals. Never stop doing what you want to do! Motherhood is just an added entity to everything you already have.”-Donna
Building a Community
The birth of her blog marked the beginning of Donna’s mission to inspire women and mothers. “Rise and Shine, Mommy” became a platform where she shared her own struggles and triumphs, encouraging others to rise above challenges and chase their dreams. This blog resonates with fellow moms by creating a community of support, shared experiences, and valuable advice.
“Not only do I feel like I’m helping someone else, but they’re actually helping me as well. I rely on a lot of more people probably, then I ever thought that I would, because we’re all moms, we’re all women, we’re dealing with all of these situations, and it really helps so you don’t feel alone.”- Donna
Capturing Moments and Memories
Like most moms, Donna realized how fast her kids were growing,
“I started realizing… Whoa, they’re so grown! So, from there it was how to make lasting memories with the kids but ones that when they do grow up, you can look back and they can have these fond memories.”
By focusing on creating these memories, you can see the passion and love in all of Donna’s videos and she has learned how to use them to connect with her community. It follows the adage of doing what you love and love what you are doing.
Balancing Creativity and Authenticity
As a creator, it is easy to fall into the trap of trying to show an ideal life, with perfectly made-up kids and a picture-perfect home. The reality of life is not always what we see in the pictures and Donna learned to embrace the imperfections of everyday life, and not shy away from sharing real moments, even when they were messy or less-than-perfect. This authenticity became a cornerstone of her content creation, resonating deeply with her audience and creating a genuine connection.
Overcoming Challenges and Embracing Change
The world of content creation can present its own set of challenges and Donna wasn’t immune to those. Her transition from a healthcare background to the creative space required a completely distinct set of skills and needed a reframe in how she scheduled getting it all done.
There was a time when she wondered whether it was worth doing as she didn’t feel like she was connecting but a reader reached out and shared how her blog had given the reader the strength to get up in the morning and keep trying. This was just the validation Donna needed to hear at that time to help her keep going too.
Doing this alone though, was something that was all about to change when Donna decided to attend her first Mom2.0 summit.
“I was able to be in the room with people that were starting out and also people that had been in this content world for 20-30 years. To see where they are, where we could go, the connections that I made, all of that was such a game changer for my career now.”-Donna
Empowering Others Through Collaboration and Journaling
Donna’s first collaboration with her children not only marked a milestone in her content creation journey but also inspired her family and audience. This experience allowed her children to see her in a new light. Donna reflected on the experience,
“That one was really special because the kids got to see me in a different light. They didn’t see me in my scrubs and everything at that point, they saw me doing something different. Which allowed them to understand that change is possible, and change is good.”
Since this first collaboration with her children, she has included them in this journey which has helped her learn things about herself as a mother and her children in a meaningful and impactful way. The documentation/journalling of her conversations and everyday moments not only allows her to connect with her audience but most importantly her family.
“…if we just take the time, it’s not even a lot of time that we have to take with them, we don’t realize the impact that we have on our children, just by giving them a few moments out of our day. The fact that you’re engaged, and they understand that they have your attention, it will mean the world to them…,”- Donna
The Future of "Rise and Shine, Mommy"
The sun is radiantly shining for the future of the “Rise and Shine, Mommy” blog and Donna is eager to explore affiliate marketing, which aligns with her mission of empowering women and mothers. This year as she attended Mom2.0 she won a year membership to Shared Vision’s Pro Account which will allow her to start fulfilling her desire to offer useful products to her readers and to help support her family.
There are many things in the pipeline to share but She has recently created online content that will help parents connect with their children on a deeper level. One example is a journal called “Love Letters to My Daughters” which helps mothers cultivate a new and hopefully lasting bond with their daughters. Check it out here.
Donna Stephens is a talented creator who is passionate about helping other moms. Her journey from a healthcare professional to a stay-at-home mom and a content creator exemplifies the power of authenticity, resilience, and embracing change. Her blog is a valuable resource for moms, and her advice is inspiring. If you are a creator, we encourage you to check out her blog and learn from her experience: Rise and Shine, Mommy
- Embracing Identity Beyond Motherhood: Donna’s journey highlights the importance of finding identity beyond motherhood.
- Building a Supportive Community: Her blog, “Rise and Shine, Mommy,” builds a supportive community for mothers to share experiences and advice.
- Capturing Meaningful Memories: Donna emphasizes creating meaningful memories with her children to connect with her audience authentically.
- Balancing Creativity and Authenticity: Authenticity in sharing life’s imperfections forms the core of Donna’s content creation.
- Empowerment Through Collaboration and Journaling: Collaboration with her children empowers her family and audience, fostering meaningful connections.
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