(Q&A + Giveaway!) Chilling with Michelle Hon
Updated: Aug 10
For Love’s Sake has invited Michelle Hon, also known by the moniker @thechillmom, to share her insights on balancing marriage, family and business and her experience with mum guilt. Let’s hear some tips and tricks from this wonder woman who manages 3 kids while running 4 businesses.
Michelle Hon started her motherhood lifestyle blog when she was pregnant with her first child in 2013. The Chill Mom quickly grew in popularity with its quality content that provides pregnancy, self-care, children development and mumpreneurship resources for mothers. Michelle’s latest business venture is the MomBoss Academy which enables mothers to start their own businesses from home. Other than her endeavours in entrepreneurship, Michelle also released a book “The Chill Mom – How to go from anxious expectant mother to relaxed, confident mom” that is filled with practical advice for soon-to-be and new mothers.
Read on to find out how you can win her book during our July giveaway!
Q1: Hi Michelle, thank you for agreeing to do this written Q&A with For Love’s Sake. To start off, can you share a little about your husband, Nick and how the two of you met?
Hello! Thanks for having me. My husband, Nick is a Malaysian-born Australian Chinese, and he’s an entrepreneur himself. We met while I was on a holiday in Sydney. It’s a long story and if anyone’s interested, I’ve blogged about it here: https://www.thechillmom.com/2014/03/ourfourthweddinganniversary.html
Q2: We understand that when you first had Lauren, you were a stay-home mum for approximately six months before you started your first business (The Chill Mom blog). What were some reasons behind your initial decision to leave your F&B business and become a stay-home mum?
From the moment Lauren was born, my priority shifted. I knew I can’t leave her in the care of someone else to go back go 13-hour days managing the F&B business. I wanted to be there during her growing years.
Q3: When you wanted to start a blog, what was Nick’s response?
I didn’t discuss it with him. I just started. He has always been supportive in everything I do and never question my decisions ever. And I’m the same for him, we only offer our opinion when the other party asks for it and ultimately, the decision is mine.
Q4: How about you - Did you have any concerns/doubts about managing a newborn and a new business at the same time? If so, how did you resolve/manage them?
To me, the blog wasn’t a business at all. It was more of a hobby and it was nice that it brought in a bit of income after a few months. Compared to managing a couple of F&B outlets every day for 2 years, staying home with a newborn and write was easy-breezy.
Q5: Most new mothers, especially those who just returned to work, would struggle with mum guilt as they feel torn about their responsibilities at home and at work. Some might even berate themselves for failing to be the perfect mother and contributor at work. Behind your success as an entrepreneur and author, did you struggle with mum guilt as well? Could you share more about your experience?
Of course I have mum guilt. I think as human beings, we all have moments when we question ourselves whether we are good enough in everything we do. That’s totally normal. And I don’t think that it’s necessary a bad thing. Because having mum guilt is our inner self telling us that we can do better, because we want better. And that’s how we can improve.
Q6: What are your top tips to manage mum guilt?
As mentioned above, I use mum guilt as a motivation to do better. Do your best and your best is good enough.
Q7: For Love’s Sake advocates for shared parenting as a way to manage mum guilt. In your opinion, what are some ways for fathers to be involved during the early stages of parenthood?
Instead of asking their wives what they can do to help, just scoop in and help. Pick the baby up when he/she is crying, don’t assume that it’s your wife’s job. Instead of offering to change the diaper - just change the diaper, wash the dishes, play with your baby so your wife can take a longer shower. Every bit helps.
Q8: Could you share more about how Nick and you parent as a team?
I used to take on a lot when it comes to the kids. It was never communicated but somehow, I was in charge of their routine, their paperwork, school and enrichment schedules, pick-up and drop-offs and while I don’t mind doing it all, it was the mental burden that got to me - having to remember EVERYTHING!
So late last year, I told Nick that it’s causing me a lot of stress and now, he does some of the pick-up and drop-off and he takes on the paperwork.
As parents, we has a set of family values laid out, printed and hung on the wall. Those are the values we practise as a family and we want our kids to grow up having those values ingrained in them.
Nick and I often discuss and evaluate whether our current actions and interactions with them are supporting that goal. We are both still learning along the way.
Q9: Given that both of you lead busy lifestyles as entrepreneurs, how do the two of you find time to spend with the family?
Just like other working parents, we make it a point to not work on Sundays. I work mostly from home and in-between “work”, I spend plenty of time with the kids. Also, the upside of running your own business is that you get to dictate when you want to work and when you don’t. Every year we take the entire December off to spend time with Nick’s parents in Australia.
Q10: Other than supporting each other as parents, how do you and Nick balance your marriage too?
We have the date of our date nights for the rest of the year booked and scheduled in our calendars! To be honest, taking time for our marriage is probably ranking lower than kids and work at the moment, but hey, when the kids have all grown up and left home, we have all the time in the world for the two of us.
Thank you Michelle for sharing your thoughts in this honest Q&A and offering three of your books “The Chill Mom – How to go from anxious expectant mother to relaxed, confident mom” for July's #sharingfromtheheart giveaway.
In case you missed it earlier, here's how you can stand a chance to win Michelle's book:
1. Go to @forlovessake.sg and find the "Family Values" IG Story template in our highlights called "Templates".
2. Screenshot, fill it up and repost on your own IG Story.
3. Tag both @forlovessake.sg and @thechillmom to qualify.
- If your account is private, just send FLS a screenshot of your IG story!
- For extra chances, follow both @forlovessake.sg and @thechillmom.
As this giveaway ends on 31 July 2020, head to @forlovessake.sg on Instagram and take part in it now!