Interview with Author and Founder of My Project Me, Kelly Pietrangeli
Kelly Pietrangeli is the Mama Motivator behind www.myprojectme.com, an online platform dedicated to inspiring and empowering mothers to become pro problem-solvers and find a happier balance by looking closely at what is and what isn’t working well in their lives. Her tools and resources make it easy to take small steps that lead to big results.
Kelly’s candid about her struggles and openly shares what has and hasn’t worked in all areas of her life. Her ongoing quest for personal and professional growth is an inspiration to all that follow her blog, read her guest publications, attend her workshops and retreats and participate in her online programmes.
Despite claiming to be ‘not a morning person’ for decades, I now wake 30 minutes before my kids to do a guided meditation in the Insight Timer app, followed by some journaling. My older teenage son and I then do a short Tapping ritual using positive affirmations and setting our intentions for the day ahead. (It’s all far too woo-woo for my hubby and younger son who think we’re a bit loopy!)
Once the boys are off to school I have a full day ahead of me to work on my online business, write and connect with mamas from all over the world. I get to the gym three mornings a week and aim to meet up with friends once a week. When you’ve written a book for mothers about keeping a good balance across your 8 Key Life Areas, you have to walk your talk!
We eat dinner together as a family, then the boys disappear to carry on with ridiculous amounts of studying and homework. Hubby and I usually snuggle up and watch a Netflix series. Life is SO much easier now that our kids are older.
What do you feel are your biggest achievements?
Nineteen years of happy marriage and two amazing teenagers – who actually talk to me! When our boys were very small our family life was a hot mess. It felt like everyone was shouting and/or crying much of the time. (Usually me.) I feel proud of the way I took proactive steps to turn things around in such a dramatic way by doing a parenting course with The Parent Practice, then a series of life coaching workshops, before forming a personal mastermind with two other mums.
The fact that I now teach other mums how to overcome their challenges feels like a major achievement. I’d have laughed in your face if you’d told me I’d be doing this back in those crazy early days. Look at me now!
What’s in your handbag/ satchel?
I’m following the ‘Life Changing Magic of Tidying’ ritual of emptying out my handbag every single day into a small drawer and starting over fresh each day. I wasn’t sure how long I’d stick at it, but it’s been over a year now, so it seems to be working for me.
When I go out, I tend to put these 8 things back into whatever handbag I’ve chosen: phone, wallet, house key, lipstick, mini hairbrush, breath mints, tissues and a book.
What are your ambitions in life?
I want to turn Project Me into a global movement for mothers who are ready to take control of their busy lives and find a happier balance. I dream of being in a position where I can give back a solid portion of profits to vulnerable mothers who don’t have the luxury of feeling overwhelmed by the things that stress most of us out.
What do you wish you’d known at the start of your career you now know?
I started off in the entertainment industry doing all kinds of fun and glamorous stuff, like being Johnny Depp’s press assistant, working on music videos for MC Hammer and Tina Turner (am I showing my age?) and designing record covers for the big artists of the 90’s. I never imaged that the career I’d feel the most fulfilled in, is one where I work in solitude in front of a computer most days!
I understand now that writing is one of my true gifts and that I’m actually an introvert who gets my energy from plenty of quiet time. I prefer one-on-one connections to large groups and feel the most fulfilled when I have given someone a fresh perspective on their challenge and some tools and resources to get them into a happier place.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
My hubby and I hatched a plan many years ago to move to Ibiza once the kids flew the coop. That time is now nearly upon us and in 2020 we’ll be off! One way to get your kids to come and visit you is to move to Ibiza.
What advice would you give a budding author?
If you don’t have a platform yet, such as a blog or social media – it’s a great idea to start there. It would have been extremely difficult for me to get a book publishing deal without a following. My audience soon became my tribe and I could bounce ideas off of them for the book, get proofreading, feedback and insights. My book wouldn’t be what it is now if I’d tried to write it before launching Project Me.
What do you wish you’d known about motherhood before having kids?
I was such a short-fused, stressed out mum in the early days and wish I’d been given the advice I give all mothers now: Carve out some me-time into each week. Use that time to meditate, do yoga, read personal growth books, set goals and journal. The more you stay connected to yourself and understand your emotions, the easier it is to navigate through the tough parts.
Finally, happiness is…
Finding a film on Netflix that the WHOLE family want to watch and munching on copious amounts of popcorn together.
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My debut book is my guide to surviving and thriving at work and at home and offers insight into how to create a digital business or return to work with confidence.
Mumboss: The Honest Mum's Guide to Surviving and Thriving at Work and at Home (UK 2nd Edition)