We all have hopes and dreams. While it might seem scary to actually go after them, Steph Adams fully believes it's a must.
Beginning her career as a model, Adams knew this was not what she wanted to do; She was destined for more. As of 2017, Adams is now an art director, editor and founder of LAQUA Magazine and also a best selling author.
The Game Changer, co-written with Samantha Brett, is a New York Times best selling novel tips, how-to's, and advice for women around the world. It also contains interviews with females we all look up to.
We asked our favorite new author some questions to help us motivate our own dreams like she had done. Here are her tips and a few details on what motivated her.
Good to Glow is the ultimate bible for the healthy obsessed! It features recipes hand picked from around the world from different celebrities, hotels and cafes.
What made you decide to write a food book? What is your favorite recipe from it?
I had just published a coffee table book on the best hotels around the world for a client when a friend approached me about producing a healthy recipe book of different celebrities and hotels around the world. Good to Glow is the ultimate bible for the healthy obsessed! It features recipes hand picked from around the world from different celebrities, hotels and cafes. Myself, along with my co-author Tali Shine, had this book published with Teneuse and is now available all over the world from most book shops.
I had just found out I was pregnant at the time with my first child so it was a great new project to be focusing on in a new direction in my career as a first time Author. My favorite recipe is Melissa Odabash's protein balls - they are delicious!
What are your keys to success in the ever-changing influencer world?
Post High quality photos
Keep it authentic and unique and true to your style.
Vary your images from flat-lays and portraits to full body shots, landscapes and things that you love.
Change from black and white to color
Try to offer inspiration - an image tells a lot about who you are. You should aim to inspire.
What inspired you to write 'The Game Changers'? How did you pick the women you featured?
My co-Author; Samantha Brett and I would often take a lot of walks discussing ideas and concepts and we thought it would be great to bring a book of successful women together.
It was just before the whole wave of women's rights was really coming in to the forefront, so we hit it at the right time. We were probably a little ahead of our time. We chose women that we loved and who inspired us. We were very lucky when we interviewed Meghan Markle as we had no idea she was dating Prince Harry when we interviewed her, so when news hit, the book took the wave of the media along with Meghan and it was featured in over 100 newspapers across the globe. I remember we were in Sydney over Christmas and we were contacted by the Producers of Good Morning America. It was a great and proud moment for us. Part of the proceeds of the book were also going to the breast cancer charity; Pink Hope after we lost our dear friend to breast cancer.
What does it feel like to be a best-selling author?
The reason we wrote the book was to inspire and support a charity and when a book does well it gives you a sense of achievement that you can continue to publish more books whilst also helping more charities.
Can you tell us a little about the charities you have worked with?
I have worked with various charities over the course of my career, supporting different initiatives. Most of these have been very close to my heart. Charities I have worked with have been: Pink Hope, The Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children, Global Goals Australia, Barnardos x Sass & Bide, Fashion Targets Breast Cancer, Belvedere x Red and Jeans for Genes.
As the editor and founder of LAQUA how do you think the media industry is changing?
It's rapidly changing now into much more of a digital space. Being a digital magazine you can see how many people are clicking on different items, purchasing each product, clicking on each page etc. Its the way of the future now.
What is your next book going to be about?
Myself and my co-Author Samantha Brett are still in the middle of putting our next book together which will support another charity close to our hearts. I feel this next one will be a great inspiration to many.
What advice do you have for aspiring authors and influencers?
To follow your heart and inspire!
Which celebrity has been the most exciting to work with?
Every celebrity is different in their own unique way, but its really nice when they feel strongly about reaching out and giving to others. That really makes an impact.
If you could interview anyone, who would you pick?
I've always admired the work of Oprah and Amal Clooney, so they would be very inspirational to bring to the readers!
"Steal the mesh underwear you get from the hospital," a friend said upon learning I was pregnant with my first daughter.
It was the single best piece of advice I received before giving birth in December 2013. My best friend delivered her daughter eight months previously, and she was the first to pass along this shared code among new moms: you'll need mesh underwear for your at-home postpartum recovery, and you can't find them anywhere for purchase. End result: steal them. And tell your friends.
My delivery and subsequent recovery were not easy. To my unexpected surprise, after almost 24 hours of labor, I had an emergency C-section. Thankfully, my daughter was healthy; however, my recovery was quite a journey. The shock to my system caused my bloated and swollen body to need weeks of recovery time. Luckily, I had trusted my friend and followed her instructions: I had stolen some mesh underwear from the hospital to bring home with me.
Unfortunately, I needed those disposable underwear for much longer than I anticipated and quickly ran out. As I still wasn't quite mobile, my mother went to the store to find more underwear for me. Unfortunately, she couldn't find them anywhere and ended up buying me oversized granny panties. Sure, they were big enough, but I had to cut the waistband for comfort.
I eventually recovered from my C-section, survived those first few sleepless months, and returned to work. At the time, I was working for a Fortune 100 company and happily contributing to the corporate world. But becoming a new mom brought with it an internal struggle and search for something “more" out of my life--a desire to have a bigger impact. A flashback to my friend's golden piece of advice got me thinking: Why aren't mesh underwear readily available for women in recovery? What if I could make the magical mesh underwear available to new moms everywhere? Did I know much about designing, selling, or marketing clothing? Not really. But I also didn't know much about motherhood when I started that journey, either, and that seemed to be working out well. And so, Brief Transitions was born.
My quest began. With my manufacturing and engineering background I naively thought, It's one product. How hard could it be? While it may not have been “hard," it definitely took a lot of work. I slowly started to do some research on the possibilities. What would it take to start a company and bring these underwear to market? How are they made and what type of manufacturer do I need? With each step forward I learned a little more--I spoke with suppliers, researched materials, and experimented with packaging. I started to really believe that I was meant to bring these underwear to other moms in need.
Then I realized that I needed to learn more about the online business and ecommerce world as well. Google was my new best friend. On my one hour commute (each way), I listened to a lot of podcasts to learn about topics I wasn't familiar with--how to setup a website, social media platforms, email marketing, etc. I worked in the evenings and inbetween business trips to plan what I called Execution Phase. In 2016, I had a website with a Shopify cart up and running. I also delivered my second daughter via C-section (and handily also supplied myself with all the mesh underwear I needed).
They say, “If you build it, they will come." But I've learned that the saying should really go more like this: “If you build it, and tell everyone about it, they might come." I had a 3-month-old, an almost 3 year old and my business was up and running. I had an occasional sale; however, my processes were extremely manual and having a day job while trying to ship product out proved to be challenging. I was manually processing and filling orders and then going to the post office on Saturday mornings to ship to customers. I eventually decided to go where the moms shop...hello, Amazon Prime! I started to research what I needed to do to list products with Amazon and the benefits of Amazon fulfillment (hint: they take care of it for you).
Fast forward to 2018...
While I started to build this side business and saw a potential for it to grow way beyond my expectations, my corporate job became more demanding with respect to travel and time away from home. I was on the road 70% of the time during first quarter 2018. My normally “go with the flow" 4-year-old started to cry every time I left for a trip and asked why I wasn't home for bedtime. That was a low point for me and even though bedtime with young kids has its own challenges, I realized I didn't want to miss out on this time in their lives. My desire for more scheduling flexibility and less corporate travel time pushed me to work the nights and weekends needed to build and scale my side hustle to a full-time business. If anyone tries to tell you it's “easy" to build “passive" income, don't believe them. Starting and building a business takes a lot of grit, hustle and hard work. After months of agonizing, changing my mind, and wondering if I should really leave my job (and a steady paycheck!), I ultimately left my corporate job in April 2018 to pursue Brief Transitions full-time.
In building Brief Transitions, I reached out to like-minded women to see if they were experiencing similar challenges to my own--balancing creating and building a business while raising children--and I realized that many women are on the quest for flexible, meaningful work. I realized that we can advance the movement of female entrepreneurs by leveraging community to inspire, empower, and connect these trailblazers. For that reason, I recently launched a new project, The Transitions Collective, a platform for connecting community-driven women entrepreneurs.
As is the case with many entrepreneurs, I find myself working on multiple projects at a time. I am now working on a members-only community for The Transitions Collective that will provide access to experts and resources for women who want to leave corporate and work in their business full-time. Connecting and supporting women in this movement makes us a force in the future of work. At the same time, I had my most profitable sales quarter to date and best of all, I am able to drop my daughter off at school in the morning.
Mesh underwear started me on a journey much bigger than I ever imagined. They sparked an idea, ignited a passion, and drove me to find fulfillment in a different type of work. That stolen underwear was just the beginning.