You can do it if you see it
If you see it, you can be it
You believe it, you achieve it
You just D.R.E.A.M!
I never thought I'd be quoting a 17-year-old former Dance Moms star, but the recent news about the YouTube sensation, author, and merch mogul (whom my daughter is obsessed with) JoJo Siwa coming out as part of the LGBTQ+ community, and her 2018 hit song D.R.E.A.M., reminded me of the importance of examples.
The idea for our series She Succeeded (and You Can, Too) actually came from seeing countless stories in the media about the professional devastation women have suffered during the “SHE-cession” of the COVID-19 pandemic. In September 2020 alone over 865,000 women left the workforce, coinciding with the return of children to school at home. Others throughout the pandemic were furloughed, laid off, or quit jobs that were no longer satisfying. During this time, women have been given an opportunity to re-evaluate their priorities, reconsider their career goals, and pursue new hobbies they may not have had time to explore while working full time.
While many women may have been inspired to pivot in their careers or start new businesses, it often takes seeing an example or someone else’s roadmap in order to take the first steps toward a new direction or D.R.E.A.M. Our She Succeeded (and You Can, Too) series provides women with the details of how other women have changed the course their careers, overcoming obstacles and listening to their hearts to begin new ventures.
This week we feature writer, cookbook author, and business guide Maggie Battista. Maggie had studied Journalism in college because she loved to write but afterward took an available job in tech where she flourished. Feeling the tugs of her heart, Maggie later began to write a food blog where she experimented with recipes and told the stories of artisanal food makers. The relationships she forged with these makers led to Boston-based pop-up and online retail space Eat Boutique, and her first cookbook, Food Gift Love. Over time, a journey of self-reflection and exploration of her relationship with food led Maggie to write her second cookbook, A New Way to Food, which includes the recipes that helped her lose 70 pounds and create a healthier relationship with her body. Her experience of tuning in to her body to create successful businesses inspired Maggie to launch We Are Magic Studio, where she now guides women and non-binary entrepreneurs to create and maintain values-aligned businesses of their own.
I hope you’ll enjoy listening to Maggie’s inspiring story as much as I did. We hadn’t planned it this way, but this episode launched during National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, and a key to Maggie’s success was overcoming the internal obstacle of learning to love her body exactly as it is. How many of us can relate?!! Part of understanding her relationship with food and sharing her story with others has been part of her own “magic” which she now shares with current and newbie entrepreneurs. Please share your comments on the episode below, or share your favorite cookbook, recipe, or your own food story that we all should know about. Your story could inspire others, too.
You can follow Maggie Battista on Instagram and Twitter at @MizMaggieB and @wearemagicstudio. Jojo Siwa can be found on IG and Twitter at @ItsJoJoSiwa.