Can We Have It All? With SpamellaB

Spamella B (real name Pamela Higgins), is the third amazing mum that I’ve interviewed on my podcast “Can We Have It All?”. Have you listened yet? If not, what’s stopping you!? Go on, run a bath, grab a vino and pop your headphones in (safely!).

The podcast interviews are all about women who have left the 9 to 5 and we talk about their journeys and everything to do with navigating life, career, kids and everything else in your thirties and forties.

In the episode, I have a good ol’ natter with friend and fellow Content Creator Spamella B and I think you’ll find her journey inspiring and relatable.

Alongside the podcasts featuring amazing guests, there will be these posts, a Q&A with my interviewee. If you missed the first one with Carly Rowena or Gemma Wade, go check them out and come back.

Can We Have It All SpamellaB?

A bit about you… Can you, in a nutshell, explain who you are, what your biz is and where we can find you?

My name is Pamela aka @SpamellaB, a Manchester based health food freelance recipe developer and blogger over at Basically I work with health food brands creating delicious, healthy #IndulgingInnocently with their products, photographing and sharing across social media. Alongside that I’m a mum, fitness and music fanatic and love the outdoor life!
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How many children do you have? / What’s your family set-up?

1 husband (married 3 1/2 years), 1 toddler (nearly 2)

How long have you run your business and/or been out of the 9 to 5?

I went freelance in September 2015 so nearly 4 years!!

What did you do before all this?

Since graduating from university in 2010 (nearly 10 years ago holy shit!) with a First in Media & Communications, I worked in online and social media marketing for various companies, from the university careers department to a student cooking tv site which was such a fun job – it didn’t feel like work!

What is your best advice for someone who wants to quit their job and pursue a passion or creative idea?

To have a plan but also be willing to not have a plan. That might sound like I’m contradicting myself but here’s what I mean: Have something in place that gives you a little security before fully jumping ship – build it up while you’re still working full time if you can, so when you take the leap, you’re not starting completely from scratch. But also take that leap of faith and don’t stress too much about having a year-long plan because honestly, weeks and months can all change – they say being self-employed is a roller coaster and damn, it really is!
Some months can be a bit quieter and work might dry up but then BAM your inbox will suddenly be on fire and you’re wondering how you’re going to fit all the work in! I’d also say that as much as it’s great to get excited about work coming in, so much about being freelance is not expecting things to drop in all the time – you’ve got to CREATE opportunities too. Have the confidence in yourself to make things happen.
can we have it all spamellab recipes

What has been your biggest struggle along this journey? And how did you overcome it?

I’d definitely say everything revolving around loneliness, feeling isolated and imposter syndrome! Although I’m a mostly positive person, I’m also a perfectionist and VERY self critical, and sometimes being your own boss with your own thought can actually be destructive if you don’t think you’re good enough. Especially if you might have a set back or a project doesn’t work out, it can feel like the end of the world and that you’re shit, you could have done better – but cut some slack!
I’ve learnt that these things happen just like in any business, and you just have to take it in your stride and not let it affect you personally (easier said than done!). At the end of the day, you are taking on so many roles being self employed so don’t be too harsh on yourself, but proud!

What does an average day look like for you? Feel free to break it down into hours/times – whatever works best. Do you have help/childcare/colleagues etc? Do you work from an office/studio/home? etc etc

I find that each week is different but two days in the week my little boy is in nursery which is a MASSIVE help in terms of having some time off from being mum and getting space and time to focus on work! I get up at 6am and always start the day with a coffee and a workout (I need those to function for the rest of the day!).
If I have Thomas we’ll play, go to the park or a playgroup, go for a long walk, do some form of activity and I’ll try and get some bits done around the house or make some easier recipes while he plays in the kitchen then it’s dinner time. If I’m by myself sometimes I’ll head into Manchester for a meeting, meet-up, restaurant review or fitness class, otherwise at home I’ll smash some housework then onto emails, written work, recipe planning, blog write-ups and make recipes in the kitchen for a few hours before photographing them.
I always break up the day by going for a hike in the woods on our doorstep for fresh air and to clear my head, with a podcast or some techno, then before I know it it’ll be time to go and pick Thomas up! Playtime, supper, bath time then bed – then chill with the husband or crack on with more work until bed at about 11pm.
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What is your top life-hacks/productivity hacks that help you on a daily basis? (Perhaps an app, or a time-saving discovery of yours)

LISTS. On paper, post it notes – not on anything digital because it just doesn’t sink into my head. I like the write out a work plan on a Sunday night ready for the week ahead, and also daily lists in the morning of general things to get done in the day. I feel like I have so many tabs open in my head, I just need to get things down on paper then I feel more organised and less frantic 🙂

Who are your inspirations and why?

Madeleine Shaw (health food coach), Carly Rowena (fitness Youtuber and blogger), Annie Mac (radio presenter and DJ), Zoe Blaskey (host of #TheMotherkind podcast), Susie Verrill (mum blogger) and Holly Wood (WeBlogNorth founder) – all incredibly inspiring and wonderful mums who are girl bosses and totally own everything they do.

What book should we all read to help us on our journey?

I’m not a big reader to be honest!

Is there anything else you’d like to share, that might help to inspire other women looking to pursue a career/job/flexible working environment they love?

To go for it. Life’s too short to not give something a go and fit it around your lifestyle, whatever that may be. I genuinely think the working world is starting to change in the sense that roles are becoming more fluid and flexible and I hope this will continue in the future. We CAN create our own opportunities and do something we love – it might seem like there are lots of risks and yes there are things to consider but just do it.

If you’d like to hear the full conversation with SpamellaB you can listen to my the podcast episode here.

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