About Stacey and Midwife for Your Life
When you think of your purpose, do you draw a blank? Do you feel like you’ve lost yourself (especially now that your kids have left home)? Do you have a voice inside your head that says you should be happy with what you’ve got and who do you think you are for wanting more? Even if you did find your purpose, no one would listen or care anyway, right?
Midwife for Your Life will inspire you with proven strategies to discover your purpose and create meaningful work, happiness and success!
The fastest way to get started is to read the interview below, sign up for my eZine, and then come back often to read my blog. I’ve designed everything to help you give birth to your BIG dreams.
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How long have you been doing what you do and how did you get to be a mentor to women, and especially moms who feel they don’t know who they are anymore now that their kids have left home?
To answer this question, it’s probably best that I share with you some of the story that brought me to where I am today, mentoring women who feel lost and confused and want clarity on their dreams and traction on their goals.
I’ve worked as a certified nurse-midwife for almost 15 years, working in a prenatal clinic by day and catching babies in the hospital at night. I’ve been with my husband for almost 20 years and we have a 7 year-old son. When I had my child and I looked at how I would do anything to ensure his happiness that was when I really looked at my own life and my own happiness.
A defining moment in my life came early in 2011: I felt so lost. I felt like all these bad things were happening and I couldn’t understand why.
One night I woke up in a panic and I asked God, the Universe, whoever would listen, “Why is this happening?!”
The very clear answer I got was, “You’re not supposed to be here.”
I knew the voice didn’t mean “here” as in my bed. I knew it meant something much bigger and deeper.
Before I get into that more, let me back up a little further: A little over three years ago I decided to start my coaching business as a side gig. I still loved midwifery more than anything and at the time I couldn’t imagine giving up that job. I loved caring for the women and the salary and benefits the work provided for my family.
And while I still love helping women bring their babies into the world, I never really enjoyed all the bureaucratic aspects of my job. And as I “became my own boss” in my business, I bristled more and more with the expectations my employers had of me as an employee at the hospital. Couple that with a downturn in the economy and severe cutbacks, and about this time last year I knew that my days as a staff midwife were numbered.
But my husband is seriously underemployed. Steady income and health insurance are things I ALWAYS provided for my family. How would we be able to survive without my staff/salaried/benefitted position?
I knew that I didn’t want to stay on staff at the hospital, but I believed that our family needed the “security” that my job provided. I thought my coaching business and writing career could support us, but I had no guarantees…which led me back to wondering why I couldn’t just be happy with my job at the hospital. It wasn’t that bad, was it??
Those stressful thoughts are what led to my breakdown back in February. I couldn’t believe I was in such a bad place – overwhelmed by doomsday scenarios and too scared to think straight.
But as I’ve talked about before, the breakdown is almost always followed by a breakthrough. It’s always darkest before the dawn, you know?
So here’s what happened. Along with all the dark fears, I’d also get a moment of clarity when I knew I should give up my staff position. BUT then the moment would pass and my heart would start racing again and I would be in tears thinking that I couldn’t possible leave.
And then I would get another flash of insight. It was like I was walking on a dark road and every once in a while a car would go by and its headlights would illuminate the path and show some sign, like a guidepost, and I would know again that I was on the right track. But the insights and the clarity always seemed so fleeting. I would get them and almost immediately I’d be back in the fear and despair.
I couldn’t believe that I was in such an undesirable, untenable position. I couldn’t believe that I had been brought this far to fail. All I kept thinking was about what I didn’t want. At some point in the depths of that despair, I heard a small voice inside that said, “What do you want?”
My answer was “I want both my husband and I to do work that’s completely aligned with our life purpose. I want to do work I love, and be paid handsomely. I don’t know what the future holds, but I know we can figure this out.”
Once I got clear about what I did want, I started to get all these ideas about how I could make it happen and those are the secrets I love to share with my clients.
I learned from that experience that there is always a solution to meet everyone’s needs – but it may require really thinking outside of the box. I learned that the same passion and focus I brought to my family, friends, community and job can be applied to me and my other interests. I came out of that experience with the firm conviction that anyone really can create the conditions for their own happiness and that’s why I created Midwife for Your Life – so that I could help other women (and some very cool men) give birth to a life they love.
What also separates me from other coaches or mentors is that I’ve created proven system, The Multi-Passion Mama Mastery Program and The Heart Based Business Success System that gives my clients extremely specific, step-by-step processes for getting more clarity on their dreams and serious traction on their goals.
How do you know your system works?
First of all, I use it myself: In the last two years I published a best-selling children’s book, wrote 2 other books, and ran a business all while maintaining my job as a nurse-midwife and living joyfully with my husband and 6 year-old son. Last year I quit my hospital job to focus on my coaching business because I had built it to a level that could support my family. I rarely feel overwhelmed. And if I do, I know there’s nothing wrong – it just means that I need to take a nap, or take a long walk with my dog, or go see a movie. I’ve also used my system with my clients and they’ve had similar results — you can read their success stories here.
What are some typical issues your clients want to work on with you?
Here’s the thing: Studies show that happiness is dependent on feeling heard and valued for exactly who you are, having good relationships, and doing something meaningful – these are all within your control, but most people don’t believe that. They think happiness is waiting for them somewhere “out there.” My clients are ready to poke holes in that thinking, but they also need support and encouragement to buck the dominant paradigm.
Most of my clients want to learn how to get out of their own way, to quell the voice that constantly says, “You can’t do it, no one will read/listen/care.” They want to create something (separate from their families). Here’s another thing: All human beings crave novelty and challenge, but they may feel overwhelmed by or afraid of their great, big dream. I help my clients take the seemingly insurmountable goal and break it into smaller, manageable pieces.
How can people bring more fulfillment or joy to their lives RIGHT NOW?
By acknowledging all of the joy that is in their lives RIGHT NOW. Even if it’s something small like their child’s laugh, or the impossibly blue sky, or a hot cup of tea, look around – it’s like Melody Beattie said, “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more.”
What advice do you have for moms “in the trenches” — those whose lives revolve around their children?
Well, I’m one of those moms and here’s what I tell myself all the time: Never underestimate the power of a small chunk of time. One of the things I loved from doing interviews for the Multi-Passion Mama Mastery Program is that I found that every one illustrated the value of devoting even small chunks of time to a project.
One of these stories came from American essayist Krista Bremer, who is an award-winning writer. Her eldest child is 11 and she said when her children were young, before they were even in elementary school, she was often really frustrated because she felt like she wasn’t making any progress with her writing, and she really couldn’t establish a writing routine. But she would take an hour wherever she could grab it and just jot down some thoughts. And she said, though she was often exasperated that nothing was happening, the reality was that those pockets of time added up incrementally and there was a momentum building for her writing.
So, I think that it’s really important when mothers feel frustrated by their lack of time that they just take what time they can and devote it to whatever their interests are. As Krista’s story illustrates – it really adds up, and I think that sometimes we are own worst enemies when we tell ourselves that we don’t have enough time, and what we’re doing isn’t good enough and it never will be.
What if I don’t know what my passion is?
I think the better question is, “What if I do know?” And you do. I promise if you ask yourself, “What do I really, really want?” every night before you go to bed and you set the intention of knowing, you will know very quickly. I think another great question is, “What would I do if I knew I couldn’t fail?” and then find some time, even if it’s only 15 minutes a day, to take determined action (concrete steps) toward that goal. But here’s the thing: Your transformation will happen much more quickly if you work one-on-one with me.
As a mama with multiple passions, what’s your passion and deepest hope for your coaching programs?
My passion is absolutely to help women give birth to their BIG dreams. Your best life may not look exactly the way you envision it – so much of that seems to be influenced by comparisons to other people’s lives – when you really have no idea what those lives are really like. Your core needs – to create meaningful work and feel valued for who you really are – are absolutely achievable. The motto for my systems is “Live imperfectly with great delight.” The goal isn’t to achieve “perfection.” Instead, the goal, in my opinion, is to string together many happy and satisfying moments, first by creating the conditions for them, then by reducing stress so that you can savor them, and finally by helping you recognize and remember them after they’ve passed.
How can I sample your work to see if it’s right for me?
A great way to sample my work is by subscribing to the Special Delivery eZine, my weekly email newsletter. It’s free and in it I share stories and articles that are filled with tips, tools, and techniques to create an authentic and happy life. And I’d love to share it with you. You can subscribe here.
What if I want to work one-on-one with you, can I call you?
Yes, of course! If you’re interested, I’ve created a completely complimentary “discovery session” that helps us know very quickly if we would be a good match for working together. To find out more about the discovery session, and schedule yours, click here.
I can’t wait to see you succeed and I’d be honored to be the one to help you.
Stacey Curnow is a life coach and the founder and owner of Midwife for Your Life. She also works as a certified nurse-midwife, and over more than 17 years her career has taken her from western Indian reservations to a center-city Bronx hospital to the mountains of southwestern Mexico.
She received her bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College, her nursing degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her master’s degree in midwifery from Yale University.
She has been an enthusiastic student of positive psychology for years and applies it to her midwifery and mentoring programs with great success.
Hundreds of her articles have also been published in print magazines and online.
She lives with her husband, young son, dog and 4 chickens.
She welcomes contact by email or phone (828) 484-1308.