A Mother’s Touch To Create Inner Peace
by Molly McDonald
I first learned about Molly’s work a few years ago…and all I thought was, “YES!” As a newer mom, I understood deeply the importance of Molly’s work and how the positive vibes it brings to parents and children will elevate lives for generations. Let’s give Molly a warm Mindful Mavericks welcome! Read Molly’s story here…
- What’s your mission? Tell us about your organization/business.
My mission is to help every baby feel seen, heard and valued… so they may grow to see, hear and value others for exactly and only who they are in this moment. As a Massage and Craniosacral Therapist, I work with newborns, children and grownups through bodywork in my local business. The grown ups are often coming in to ‘reconnect’ with the wisdom in their body. When newborns come in, they are of their body and every little current that is flowing (or not flowing) through it. It made me realize- we are born to know ourselves! Then, unfortunately, over time, our culture slowly shapes us out of paying attention to ourselves. What if we just help our babies hold on to the innate wisdom they are born with? In steps TAD: Touch-A-Day Baby Welcoming eCourse. How can we see, know and understand our babies? -through touch, interaction and intention. When we model respect, patience and compassion through our daily interactions, our children learn those values from the inside out. The skin is the largest organ of our bodies. Touch is our first form of communication.
When children know, on a visceral level through daily experience what ‘safe and respected’ feels like, they will know, by default what mal-intent looks and feels like too. Protecting our children comes through our interactions, not just our words. Helping them build a life of knowing themselves, comes through our willingness to know ourselves. Helping has always been a part of my mission. Long before I was a business owner and entrepreneur, I was a weekly volunteer at a Crisis Nursery in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. (1999-2003). While living in Amman, Jordan during 2003-2004, I volunteered hands-on bodywork for the infants in the refugee camp Intensive Care Unit. There, I saw the depth of what simple, loving touch can do in even the most dire of circumstances. Touch is free, it is available to anyone with skin and an inclination to connect with one another. However, in our culture, our sense of ‘how’ to touch, has been lost in our fear based mentality. I took a few years of ‘field research’ with my own child from 2006-2009. Then, in 2010, when faced with divorce and needing to provide for my own household, I decided to open Body, Mind & Molly.
I spent the first three years of my business also offering my services (weekly) at reduced rate to support families who may not otherwise be able to afford the hands-on bodywork that would help their babies succeed at breastfeeding. I did this through a local, non-profit organization that supported birth education, postpartum care, and a place for tired moms to come get support by other moms. I have offered education to early childcare providers around the midwest. I also, occasionally volunteer my hands-on services to moms at a local non-profit, breastfeeding support group. So often, babies just need a moment, to settle in to their body, and hit the reset button. When we, as humans feel safe and secure in our surroundings, we are able to do amazing things!
TAD: Touch-A-Day Baby Welcoming eCourse is still very much in its infancy of the impact it will have in its lifetime. Currently a percentage of sales, annually from TAD go to a non-profit who is helping new families thrive. And, I have much larger plans for ‘giving back’ in the near future.
- How long did it take you to reach important milestones in your business or organization?
For my local business, I feel it took 3 years to build a solid following and word of mouth that kept my books full… I am still working on the online piece of the business- but the ‘wins’ are coming closer together now!
- Tell us about the “start-up scares”: Was there a moment where you ever seriously contemplated quitting?
Every day – only I am a stubborn Taurus who knows deep in her heart that this work is needed, desired, and will help thousands of people live fuller lives with deeper relationships.
- Did you ever “fail” or make a substantial mistake in business or organization? Any serious Challenges? How did you overcome and resolve it?
Yes… and no. I feel some of the choices I have made that may have increased my challenges were when I decided to take on more, sooner than later. I invested 5 figures in creating a heart-felt offering which can support people at one of most imperative rights of passage in life… becoming a parent and bringing a new human into the world. I did so with repeated knowledge that parents wanted support from home, and ‘at 3 am’ when no one was around. TAD offers that support. The only challenge that was created was debt (which I am still working through). I am overcoming that challenge by being highly selective in what new directions I take on until the debt is paid of in full. This also means growing my online biz in more organic ways vs. paid advertising, etc.
- What’s the most impactful action you’ve taken to reach your goal/s?
The most impactful actions I take are continued education. While I am more selective now on where I put my money, I will never hesitate in figuring out a way to learn more about something I feel will truly serve my work or my personal growth in this world. I am a lifelong learner, and love to share what I have learned with others.
- What would you tell your younger/earlier self? Any piece of advice?
Just because someone doesn’t yet understand what you offer, it doesn’t mean there is no value to it.
- What the best advice YOU’VE ever received about pursuing your vision?
‘Just do something’. It is so easy for me to get caught up in a swirl of anxiety and overwhelm with all the choices I have, all of the ideas I have, when I am my own boss. Whether it is a load of laundry or writing your manifesto, on challenging days ‘Just do something’.
- Has having success in your business/organization or money changed you? In what ways?
If anything I would say I am in a state of feeling humbled. I am humbled that people trust me with their body while they are trying to get pregnant, or are pregnant, humbled that they will allow me to work with the precious, brand new body of their newborn to help them successfully breastfeed when something has gotten in their way. I massage babies and help parents learn how to massage babies for a living- helping humans feel connected to themselves and one another- What an honor! There will be a day when this business also builds a thriving bank account, but, for now, the look on a parents face when I hand back their baby, supple and comfortable in her formerly fussy body. Or, when the toddler of a family going through TAD develops a ‘morning massage’ routine with the newborn… My heart could not be more full.
- How do you create, innovate or break the rules in your life/business/organization?
Well, for one, I use technology (i.e. hands off) to help people connect physically and emotionally (hands on) through my TAD: Touch-A-Day Baby Welcoming eCourse. Also, Moms these days are caught in a swirl of conflicting communication about how to take care of themselves and their new babies. ‘Stay home and nest’ vs. ‘reach out, connect with other new moms’. Offering the online community of TAD support allows them to do both and quit with the ‘mom guilt’.
- Tell us about your most successful launch. What was it for and what really moved the needle for you to make it a success?
When I finally raised my prices in my Midwest college town for the services I offered. I raised them considerably- I felt it was a scary amount, and definitely was at the top of what my town had to offer in the way of bodywork. There was the added stress of losing business since I am the sole income of my household. But, I did so with complete integrity. I felt very clear that the work, the education and the service behind the offering held more value than cost. I also offered people the opportunity to purchase a package of up to 6 of my services at the current rate during the weekend of my price raise. That launch brought in a healthy 4 figures in a weekend. Thank you Denise Duffield Thomas! What I loved about this is that instead of creating a sense of scarcity with raising my prices, and a fear of backlash, it brought in the energy of monetary growth.
- Stevie Wonder or The Beatles? (this, I must know.)
Stevie! –always gets me to dancing J
Note from Jen: Ding, ding, ding! Correct answer!!
Check out Molly McDonald’s Body Mind & Molly As an Educator, Licensed Massage Therapist/Craniosacral Therapist who uses science, psychology, spirit and touch, Molly brings health, balance and consciousness into your growing families and everyday lives.