Nikiah Seeds is the owner and creator of Mama Goddess Birth Shop, a Vancouver-based eco-friendly on-line store offering high quality home and hospital birth supplies, water birth pools, organic baby products and more.
What or who inspired you to start your business?
I was inspired like many mom entrepreneurs – by another mother who was in business.
This was many years ago when I was still doing doula work, was pregnant with my second baby and at the same time I was setting myself up to teach prenatal classes and I needed to buy supplies for all of these things. Needless to say, at the time there was just not a whole lot of choices for mothers, doulas and childbirth educators when it came to supplies.
So my initial vision came from noticing a need in the birth community, and grew from there.
Mama Goddess also grew out my passion and love for working with pregnant mothers in their Childbearing years, as well as my own desire to birth my children at home with Midwives and seeing this great disconnect for women to find a quality source for products that they felt secure buying.
I also wanted to see a place for parents to be, birthing professionals, and folks who care about the earth to come and be taken care of, so this meant to me that Mama Goddess Birth shop become not just a place to buy Natural, Organic and unique items, but also a place to learn.
I was, and still am inspired by the thought that anyone who drops by my site will come away with something even if they do not buy a thing, this is why there are so many articles, tips for birthing and healthy recipes scattered throughout my web-site and Blog.
What motivates you?
I love working with women, and nothing motivates me more then when the mothers drop by, or pop me an e-mail with questions and I really get a chance to connect with them. I am also hugely motivated by the charity work Mama Goddess does with Shanti Uganda.
Through Shanti Uganda, Mama Goddess puts together birthing kits for women in Africa/Uganda who literally have nothing when they give birth to their babies.
This is making a huge difference to infant and maternal mortality. Here is a link to see what we are doing: http://www.shantiuganda.org/pages/birth
How do you balance being a mom and an entrepreneur?
My office is away from my home space! We moved my office downstairs into our suite after two years of running the business up in out loft space and this made a huge difference to the quality of my family life. I remember the first day that I was fully moved into the new space, I walked out at 5:00, shut the door and did not look back all night.
My kids were astounded that I was actually done work for the day! Later my husband got a new lap top and gave me his old one, so now I can check my e-mails upstairs after work (because I am hopelessly addicted) and that works out really well because it does not tempt me to go back downstairs at all after my working day is done.
What do you love most about what you do?
There are so many answers to this questions it is hard to say!
I love being able to set my own hours; being able to be home for my kids if they are sick and not having to worry that I am disappointing a boss.
I love the creative ability owning my own business allows me, whether it is researching a new product, creating a new product for our personal branded line, or making up a newsletter for our customers, owning a business is never boring and always keeps me on my creative toes!
What single piece of advice would you give someone who is starting out?
The risk is worth everything, no matter what anyone says. Hire an accountant. Leave work at 5:00 and do not look back at the end of the day.
Adapted from an article that originally appeared in Go Go Mama Go.