Claudia of Claudia Mae Jewelry Says Redefining Productivity Has Allowed Her to Create Space for Creativity and Confidence

The jewelry designer opens up about taking risks and following her passion.

Thrive Global: What gives you energy?

Claudia: Having fun plans to look forward to! Whether it’s travel, a concert, or just dinner with friends at my favorite sushi restaurant, a full calendar keeps me motivated and energized.

Thrive: When was the last time you felt you failed and how did you overcome it?

CM: In my work there is a ton of rejection, which I sometimes internalize as failure. As much as I’d like to, I will never be able to create something for everyone… that’s not the way art works. It takes a lot of self-talk to remain confident in my work even when people tell me no. I think that being able to handle rejection and not lose sight of the big picture is really important, both personally and professionally.  

Thrive: Do you have any role models for living a thriving life?

CM: My 91-year-old Granny Janet should be everyone’s role model for living a thriving life! She completely embodies the idea that age is a mindset. At 91, she still cooks, cleans, does the weekly crossword puzzle, walks a mile each day, and keeps a busier social calendar than I do.

Thrive: What was the biggest turning point in your life?

CM: Quitting my corporate job and committing to building my business full-time has been a huge turning point for me. It has been a slow process to unlearn some of the toxic ways of working and thinking about work that are so commonplace in the corporate world. We are wired to think that if we aren’t working 24/7, we are slacking. It’s been a big shift to understand that productivity does not have to look like that. Becoming my own boss and learning to trust myself has been my biggest test of confidence.

Thrive: What advice would you give your younger self about reducing stress?

CM: My stress has always been task-related. A particularly long to-do list or the prospect of completing a task that I don’t exactly know how to do is enough to put me over the edge. I would tell my younger self what I now tell my older self: Just do the thing! Stressing about something usually takes up more time and energy than just simply doing the thing itself.

Thrive: You unexpectedly find 15 minutes in your day, what do you do with it?

CM: Call my sister. 

Thrive: What was the last photo you took?

CM: My cat, Matcha, will almost always be the last photo I took. Daily photoshoots have become a key part of our wellness routine. 

Thrive: What’s your evening routine that helps you unwind and go to sleep?

CM: I cannot go to sleep without taking a bath. A shower works too, but if you’re like me and will do anything to avoid ruining a blowout, then you know a bath works much better. I recently bought a Sonos speaker (I’m very late to the game on this) and I like to put on relaxing music or a 10-minute meditation from the Calm app.

Thrive: Share a quote that you love and that gives you strength or peace.

CM: My great grandfather used to say, “Everything will work out. Why? Because it always does.” Whether things go “our way” or take another, unexpected direction, I have surrendered to the idea that regardless of how or why, it will always work out. 

Visit to shop Claudia Mae’s jewelry collections. 

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