Mama Feature: Monet Bush
We are so excited to feature Monet, a mama we connected with on Instagram, and founder of Earth and Olive. Earth and Olive is a multidisciplinary firm designing for the wellness community.
Words by Monet:
Earth and Olive is the result of the need to thrive doing something I love while also honoring my wellness journey.
The spaces I chose to work, weren’t safe spaces. There was no space for a black woman healing from generational, racial, and childhood trauma. There was no space for someone with ADHD, and PMDD needs to work while also having safe boundaries. Usually I was a productivity machine with an allotted period of time to care for myself. If that doesn’t scream colonization...I don’t know what does. None of us are productivity machines sent here to do others bidding. Furthermore, many of the companies I was helping to gain traction, actively cut corners, perpetrated harmful cycles for minorities or used ingredients that could harm people. The money was good, but it felt “not chill” to say the least. So, with the strength of my ancestors, a fantastic support system, and determination to make my livelihood match my souls intent...I made the space.
"So, with the strength of my ancestors, a fantastic support system, and determination to make my livelihood match my soul's intent...I made the space"
From full-service branding to social media marketing, Earth and Olive propels brands that make their consumers' well-being a priority, our priority. We make sure our clients impact their market before other, less conscious options. Working with people in the wellness world is a dream. We work with small alternative medicine firms, sustainable rural farms, organic product lines, full-spectrum to social movement brands. Wellness isn't singular, and there are so many categories. One day we could be signing on a chocolate brand that travels to source their cocoa beans for a more sustainable approach to a barter system Coop in London. I took the corporate training, applied to those going above and behind to make this world a better place, and made a business model that made our services accessible to those with or without corporate budgets.
"We are in the business of showing care for our team and our clients, and they do the same for our team."
Not only are we helping, but we build relationships with the audiences of those who benefit from brands - we build relationships with our clients. It's not uncommon for us to randomly send over a pack of Kin Euphorics or receive cakes from Milkbar on our birthdays. If a client has surgery - we're there for them, groceries delivered, and care package for healing. We don't hound about deadlines and send passive emails like "Hope you're well...also where's XYZ so we can move forth." We are in the business of showing care for our team and our clients, and they do the same for our team. It truly feels like a family. Knowing if a client receives an "Out for a Mental Health Day" email - there will be a cheer of, "That's spot on, might take one too!"
Here at Earth and Olive, we perform and meet deadlines while ALSO remaining human and sharing space for a workspace that cultivates wellness as we brand for those who but humans first daily.
T A K I N G T I M E
Motherhood & entrepreneurship is oil & water - so I have to be very intentional with self-care. I believe it's that way with everyone, but I noticed I had to set very clear boundaries with myself post-baby. Both are top priority but baby takes the cake! Then business is calling and it time to learn how to answer the call of business while also answering my inner self. For example, when I didn't have little Kovu - I would sometimes say, "Oh, it's no problem to work on the weekend this once!" Now, I've made it very clear to myself that working on the weekends is a hard boundary. It's effortless to get into that limbo of okay - I HAVE to work now because I've been breastfeeding the little guy all day! But that's not true. Often resetting and making sure I ebb and flow, allowing me to show up for my clients in a more profound way - than a 2 am a sleep-deprived version of myself.
I also have PMDD and ADHD. With ADHD, I learned time blocking is essential, and so is music. So, even if I'm off schedule, I can look at what blocked off "time period" I'm in and get back on track with tasks in that time period.
Here's My Self Care During the Weekday:
First, it's important to note that I allow myself unlimited mental health days at work.
Wake Up, Shower with essential oils based on mood, Breakfast + First Change with Kovu, assess my mental space quick or long breakfast based on when I wake up in the time block.
Check the "SCRUM BOARD" to see what's in the cue for this time period.
Lunch, yoga, an errand, anything but work really.
Check the "SCRUM BOARD" to see what's in the cue for this period
Family Time, Work-Off, Relax and recharge. Soft boundary - Can work late if off track throughout the day with mom-life if it's due to ensuring the weekend stays clear and provided its not the second day in the row of doing so.
Hertz Therapy, Catching up with Texts.
Here's My Self Care During the Weekend:
Saturdays // Free day. Dassssit:
>> My only responsibilities are keeping Kovu alive, writing out a fun meal prep list & getting groceries delivered from the list of the fun meal prep items I pick out for the following week!
Sundays // Meal prep and Body Care:
>> I cook all the fun things. My self-care involves fun meal prep. It may be a vegan seafood chowder, pasta sauces, etc. Some meals are prepped the day-of, but the hard, intensive ones are made on Sunday to make Meal TIme free and fun throughout the week.
>> face masks, body stretches, walks, pool time with the family, outdoors - you name it
On the weekends, the most significant self-care boundary is that everything is on "my time." Meaning the color-blocking and being "in a time period" is out the window. It allows me to practice trust in myself that things will get done because I know what's on the routine. If I need more rest, I can do that - if I don't, I can knock things out and be free for social time. It allows me to remember I'm not a productivity machine.
Lastly, the SCRUM Board. My good friend Suzanne Tudman taught me this trick when she saw me struggling mentally in a space we worked together. She used them when she worked in Game Production as a 3D Environmental Artist before her position in the team we met each other. The boards consist of "to-do" "in-progress" "in-limbo" and "done" categories. It's a pretty simple concept, and you mover post-its with tasks to each category. I use a full-blown project management system - but this SCRUM board is in rotation every day. My categories switch based on the year (I've used this system since 2018), and currently, my sections are as follows:
1. To-Do (Today)
2. Up Next (Basically the cue to schedule for tomorrow)
3. The Goals (Upcoming this month or so)
4. Upcoming (In the next 3-6 months)
The To-Do (Today) section is blocked off by color and time. I'm working on partnering with a few people to hold workshops on this, so stay tuned! In this season, my rule started that I could have no more than five post-its in each category - as over the years seeing all my tasks could get overwhelming. Now it's more like no more than 5-8 post-its in the To-Do today section....but that's where ebb and flow comes in.
There is this common misconception I've seen that self-care is simply self-indulgence. It's more than that to me...it's showing up for yourself in the areas you lack. Accountability to help show up better than you did the last day so you can serve yourself, your family, and your purpose at the best capacity. My only sentiment I can leave you with is, you don't have to start where anyone else is on their journey. Start with self-reflection and finding what areas you want to show up more in and at what capacity....then find the "boats" to get you there. Sail consistently. Dock when you need to, coast when you need, prepare for the storms you see coming, and adjust your sail when you need to.