Popularly called ‘The Electric Temi’, Temi Ajibewa is a highly sought after author, speaker, trainer and results coach in the personal development niche in Nigeria because of the way she ignites her audience and clients into possibilities. Temi is a 2 time Amazon Bestselling Author and has published 3 books in the past 12 months – ’How to Make Millions in Your Nightgown’, ’How to Make Millions Doing What You Love ’ and ’A Millennials Guide to Mentoring.’She is the founder of Ignite Her Africa, a global brand that helps savvy and passionate women to discover and maximise their potentials so that they can create impact, influence and affluence doing what they love. She is also the founder of The Millionaire Housewife Academy and The Ladies In Business Club where she provides best practices, mentoring, accountability and support to thousands of women.
A Certified Results Coach, NLP Practitioner, an Ericksonian Hypnosis Expert, a Neurological Repatterning Therapist, a Performance Consultant & Results Technologies Advisor, Temi holds two degrees in B.A English from Lagos State University and LLB Law from the University of Lagos. She was awarded The Entrepreneur of the year 2018 by The Women on Fire Initiative and The Business Coach of the year by the Entrepreneur Africa Awards.
On Growing up, Dreams and Aspirations
Growing up, being a mompreneur was never in my thoughts for my future. I couldn’t even imagine it because my mum, who was a single mother, was an entrepreneur who encouraged women to be independent and the idea of being a housewife didn’t sound pro-independence for me. As a young lady, I was highly enterprising as I was known to always sell one thing or the other to my classmates while in the University.
However, because I so wanted to be a lawyer so I could sue my father, I went ahead to study Law after my first degree in English Language. But all through my 5 years in Unilag studying law, I was engaged in one trade or the other. Trade ranging from selling bread to noodles, to sunglasses, to shoes and bags, and so on. I knew I had a flair for buying and selling but my major ‘success marker’ was for me to become a lawyer or judge as the case may be. Incidentally, I got married during my 3rd year studying law and a year later, I had my first son. Things got a bit tough and I stumbled into an online business (Data bundle reselling) that allowed me to buy and sell without having a physical contact with my customers nor carry physical goods anywhere and so I began to ‘settle in’ but it was never in my contemplation to become a mompreneur.
The Tipping Point
I decided to become a mompreneur after I realized that having an online business allowed me the freedom to take care of my family and run a successful business alongside. Leveraging on the internet, I was able to grow my home business from N10,000 to over N1,000,000 within 4 months in 2015. With that kind of income, working from home with little or no overhead cost became more appealing than getting a job at a law firm.It was liberating for me and so I decided to give it my all. The idea of leveraging on the internet for business was new to me so I soaked myself into learning it and investing in it. I ran this business successfully until I finished my law degree and began to train other women on the business via BBM groups. While at the law school in 2016, I went all out with my virtual training by advertising it to other women on a popular blog and that was how I got the title ‘The Millionaire Housewife’.
I must confess that by this time, law was no longer appealing to me. In fact, I couldn’t see myself working for a salary anymore because of the level of freedom and satisfaction I was getting from my online business. Another thing that happened was, while I trained these women on how to resell data bundles, I would also train them on money management, exploring multiple streams of income within the same business, marketing, book keeping and so on. Basically, I was teaching them everything I had done to grow my business from N10,000 to over N1,000,000 in 4 months. Not long after that, my students in the BBM and WhatsApp groups began to call me ‘Coach’. It was not a title I embraced easily but the more I tried to shake it off, the more it stuck.
So, I decided to run some certification programs that year and became a Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistics Programming (NLP) and Ericksonian Hypnosis, trained as a Results Coach, Peak Performance Consultant and Business Coaching. After I finished law school and was called to the Nigerian Bar, I saw that law wasn’t a dream for me anymore. It didn’t appeal to me like teaching and impacting knowledge into people the way I was doing. Also by then, I had long forgiven and reconciled with my father.
Downsides of being a Mompreneur
The number one challenge that comes with being a mompreneur is ‘thinking’ you have time to do ‘everything’ so sometimes we don’t prioritize and we end up doing nothing worthwhile at the end of the day. Another challenge is thinking you have to be the one to do everything. From house chores, cooking, cleaning, childcare and so on. I learnt very early that if I wanted to be a wholesome human being, I needed to embrace help and not play Super woman. In fact, my idea of a super woman is a woman who knows her strength, thrives there and employs others to fill in for her weaknesses.
Being a mompreneur also comes with plenty distractions that women who work outside the home do not experience. I mean distractions from children who need cleaning or even permission to do something. These interjections can rob one of valuable productive working hours if not careful.
Conquering Societal Perceptions and Myths
One general myth people have is that you have all the time in the world. There is usually this misconception that being a mompreneur is not a big deal and that you are lazy if you cannot ensure that your house is always in order. This is so untrue because when bringing up young children, the house chores never stops. Even when they are in school, there is always something that has to be done before they get back and before you know it, the day is over and you would wonder what you have achieved that day. One thing I have done to navigate this is to employ as many hands as I possibly can. From my shopping to cleaning to childcare and so on. Let’s just say, I invest money into having more time for myself. I have been able to make my husband see that some things are not a good use of my time and though it wasn’t easy at first, he now respects that because he loves me and needs me at my peak performance.
Another misconception is that mompreneurs are/should be dependent fully on their husbands. That’s not true and personally even though I am a ‘housewife’, I do not consider my husband as a strategy to wealth. I do not even see him as an income stream. Rather, I have built myself to a place of being inter-independent and not dependent on him. I am clear on my goals and I pursue them with zest. Yes, this make me selfish sometimes but I have since settled it in my mind that the value of my life is beyond my life and if I don’t take care of me, there is no way I would ever be able to take care of those around me effectively. If I am messed up mentally, I cannot be a great mum nor a great wife so I make my self-development and self-care rituals a daily must-do for me. Those around me understand this and support me.
The Role of Spousal Support
Spouses can help their wives by encouraging them to engage in self-development activities such as reading, writing, attending seminars, enrolling for webinars and taking online courses to grow their minds. What help looks like for me now is having my husband’s support in the morning rituals of taking care of our kids and preparing them for school.
I also get help by buying things online as against going to the market. I have a live-in nanny and also very supporting in-laws too. But I will say the greatest support I have enjoyed from my husband is him giving me peace to be me and to explore my potentials. If anything, I feel very fulfilled knowing I can always count on his support. Of course it wasn’t always like that and in fact at the beginning, things were very tough between us but becoming self aware helped me handle things better. I began to understand him and also began to invest in his peace. The more peace I gave him, the more peace I enjoyed from him and right now, I can say he’s my number one fan.
Strutures for Navigating the Mompreneur Life
Learning to book-keep properly really helped to facilitate my business growth. Also hiring virtual assistants have been very helpful and economical for my business. I also invest in training and coaching that help structure my business in a way that it can survive without me. Above all, I spend money on quality adverts and creating sales funnels for my business over and over.
Hindsight view of the journey so far
So far, it’s been great. Yes tiring sometimes when you have a sick child in your hands and you are saddled with the sole responsibility of taking care of him while your spouse has gone to work but largely, it’s been fulfilling for me. Being able to wake up without the pressure of a job, do homework with my sons after school, work from the comfort of my home, and being able to impact the world and build an 8 figure business all from the comfort of my home within 4 years have been pretty fulfilling.
Mentors and role models
I look up to women like Serena Williams, Ibukun Awosika and Nike Adeyemi who embrace themselves unapologetically and shine their lights everywhere they go. You know it’s a different thing to be living an amazing life but it’s a different thing to let others see the life you are living and be inspired by it. This is why I consider them as torch bearers that encourage women to be comfortable in their own skin and not seek for another’s life or validation from the world. I particularly love Folorunsho Alakija because she is an embodiment of what hard work coupled with the grace of God can do for a diligent woman. These women inspire me to be the best version of myself daily.
The Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T.Harv Eker
Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins
One Thing by Gary Keller.
Advice for Mompreneurs
You need to find yourself and own yourself shamelessly. Find your core motivators and run with them ruthlessly. Invest in your mind and increase your level of self-awareness. Learn the art of being complete by yourself without the attachment of being a mother or wife. Oh yes, those are great blessings from the Lord but Sister, believe me when I say He made you for a more grander purpose that transcends your lifetime or those in your immediate environment.
Secondly, I’d say get a mentor because mentorship gives you all the experience minus the pain. There is nothing you want to do on earth that has not been done before so get on the shoulders of giants so you can see further and avoid as many mistakes as possible.
Before I became a life and business coach, I went to Google to search for the top 10 in the industry and it became my major goal to connect with them one by one. I must confess that connecting with these minds have had a huge impact on my growth and success so far.
Lastly, I’d say love yourself and stop taking yourself for granted because you are the one who will show the world how to treat you. Invest in yourself because at the end of the day, you are all you’ve got and if you don’t take care of you, who will?