Jessica Jane Sammut is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the inspirational quarterly glossy national print and digital magazine for the modern mother, Mama Disrupt™. Jessica is a former commercial lawyer turned leading journalist for the British/Australian national media and global brands, and a mama to two little balls of fire, five-year-old Finn and eight-year-old Zac (plus Salty the dog and Sky the cat). Originally from London, Jessica is now living her dream amongst the palms in Noosa, inspiring an army of modern mothers globally through Mama Disrupt™. Find her at @jessicajanesammut on Facebook and Instagram, and discover Mama Disrupt™ at mamadisrupt.com.
What is Mama Disrupt™?
Mama Disrupt™ is a modern mama movement in the form of a magazine that is changing lives. Every mother wants nothing but happiness for her child, but who is looking after mama? Say hello to Mama Disrupt™. Mama Disrupt™ is on a mission to change the face of motherhood, to flip it on its head to help mamas enjoy a kick-ass life alongside the little people in their world. Mama Disrupt™ is a place to go that ENCOURAGES and INSPIRES, so that we can become the BEST version of ourselves—without apology, without hesitation. We are the most INCREDIBLE WOMEN on the most INCREDIBLE ADVENTURE of RAISING HUMANS, and we deserve the world.
How did the idea for Mama Disrupt come about?
Mama’s guilt, parenting advice, judgement, fads, dos, don’ts , There’s a whole box of tricks out there that can make mamas feel bad. When I became a mother for the first time eight years ago, it was a shock to the system. As an ambitious London lawyer who had been used to doing what she wanted when she wanted, motherhood blindsided me. Overwhelmed by the love I felt for my son, I wanted to be a better person - a better wife, a better mother, a better human. But when looking for guidance in this unknown realm, all I found was that I was running in the dark, with the path forking in every direction with signs pointing THE RIGHT WAY on each corner.
And so, I looked to my own beautiful mother who, along with my hero of a father, had done such an incredible job of raising my two brothers and I. But I was a different animal. I was a product of the modern world. I was a result of my higher education, my career, my ability to know what I wanted and how to get it. I couldn’t switch this off and pretend I was anything other.
But, everywhere I turned for advice on motherhood I found a story that was different. Stories of how to parent, what to think and how to be a mum the ‘CORRECT’ way. Here was a sisterhood set against each other in a framework that fostered and applauded mother’s guilt.
And I knew right then that I was struggling. Struggling to see what the future looked like in my new role as lover/fighter/protector of my son, and where I would fit in it. And so, I read. Read and read and read: books , journals, overseas papers. And after that, I let my son guide me as I pushed back and tried to hear my own voice.
And from this, I grew. And as time passed, I came to learn and understand what I needed to do. I started to trust what I thought I knew about myself, and the more I trusted, the more my heart revealed to me. I was evolving, not just in my new role as a mother, but in every single way. You could say it was my coming of age, and you would be right, because my experience of becoming a mama had ultimately changed every thing. And whilst it had left me lost for a while, it had also allowed me to find the very essence of who I really was.
With no better reason on earth than my son, to become the very best version of myself (or as close as I could get to it ), it was time to shed a skin. Throwing all pre-conceived notions to one side, I imagined the life I truly wanted for my new family, leaving London behind for our ocean-inspired palm life in Noosa. It was time to create my future and to live motherhood on my own terms.
And so, here we are. Now, with two little boys, Zac Xavier, 8 and Finn Charles, 5 (not to mention Salty dog and Sky kitten), motherhood has not only given me the courage to live my truth, but it has also fuelled my desire to spread positivity, inspiration and hard-ass sass to ALL mamas, so that we may all live our truth in whatever form that may be.
Love your babies. Nurture your soul. Laugh at the crazy. Stand by your motherhood sisters. Let your guilt wash away with the well-meaning advice and out-dated rules.
These are not your rules. It’s time to make your own rules. It’s time for Mama Disrupt™.
What motivates you?
I am passionate about spreading the message that we as women can do ANYTHING and should not play by the rules. Listening to your heart and reaching for your dreams is not exclusive to motherhood. It is incredible the impact we are having. I love reading all the messages of love and support we receive from our readers on email and Instagram.
What do you love most about your business?
I love creating such a positive and empowering movement that is helping women rise up and feel good all over the world.
In one word, characterize your life as a start up/ business owner?
Who has been your greatest inspiration? Why?
I don’t have any one particular person who inspires me, but anyone who is smart, taking risks and pushing boundaries rocks my world. I love a renegade.
Where do you get your creative energy from?
I think when you are following your true purpose, that energy just comes from within naturally. It’s running through your veins.
What was a watershed moment in your business journey?
Launching our first issue of Mama Disrupt™ in December 2016 and seeing it in newsagents across Australia was mind blowing.
How is running a successful business different to what you may have thought it would be?
There is a lot of time that goes into setting up and running operations to ensure everything rolls as efficiently as possible.
What do you struggle with most as a business owner?
Time! Combining motherhood with running a business is a constant juggle and one that I am always looking to finesse. It only takes something small to blow the whole thing out. I am hands-on mum – I take my kids to school, I pick them up, I help them with their homework. And I want to do this. I want to be a present mama. But, I also work 60 hours a week running Mama Disrupt™ at the moment while we are in start-up mode. I have a very supportive husband who I share the family chores with, and I have fought hard to arrange my life so that I am able to work around my children. I MAKE it work. I work my hours around my kids during the day and then start again at night when they go to bed. You can make anything happen if you really want it, and this is my message to other mothers. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.
What’s next in store for you and Mama Disrupt™?
There is so much on the horizon for us, we are travelling at the speed of light! We are growing our website (www.mamadisrupt.com) and I am now being booked to do lots of speaking engagements to tell the story of Mama Disrupt™, which is amazing. We are also looking to build on our stable of preferred retail stockists (in addition to the newsagent network), which is very exciting. Plus down the track, a book, merchandise … the world is our oyster!
Given your experience, what (three) pieces of advice do you have for women starting a business?
- Prepare to become obsessed with it. You will need to be to make it happen.
- Be authentic. It’s a quality that is lacking in today’s commercial platform and will set you apart.
- Never ever give up. You will need to be tough.
Any destination – where could we take you today?
London. As a Londoner, I love to go back to my European home when I can.