Realize that even in the little moments, the 10 minute drive to school, the 5 minute wait in a doctors office, even small amounts of time are opportunities to connect and bond with your child.
I had the pleasure to interview Tiffany Ann Beverlin, CEO of DreamsRecycled. After her own divorce, Tiffany was forced to recycle her life. She was repeatedly told she was unemployable since she was out of the workforce so long. After a fortuitous dream about problems selling her own engagement ring, she created a company for that purpose. DreamsRecycled.com started as the only marketplace that specializes in selling goods from one’s divorce.Today the site consists of the marketplace, articles, secondary divorce services directory and a great interactive community. Tiffany has appeared on AOL News, FOX News, CBS News and dozens of national publications and radio shows, bestowing hard-hitting advice on divorce. She is also Author of My Dreams Recycled, and a certified Life Coach. )
Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us your “childhood backstory”?
I was born and grew up in UK not far from London, my father was a famous drummer in the UK and although I didn’t realize at the time my upbringing probably wasn’t the norm. I graduated from University and the first job I was offered happened to be in Orlando FL, as an eager college graduate I was thrilled to trade my coats for bikinis and move to Florida at 21.
Can you share the story about what brought you to this specific point in your career?
My story is not the usual story of wanting to be an entrepreneur, I was happy being a stay at home mother to my 3 small children. After 16 years of marriage and over a decade as a stay at home mother, I found myself both divorcing and according to recruiters “unemployable”. I was forced by my circumstances to think outside of the box. During my divorce I literally dreamt of the idea for my company and on a wing and a prayer I launched DreamsRecycled.
Can you tell us a bit more about what your day to day schedule looks like?
My schedule starts at 6am, as a reluctant morning person my daughters school times forces me to be up and ready by 6.40 to take her to school. I check my email as she gets ready, and by the time I return at 7.20am my work day is in full on mode. I spend my day at work having meetings, creating content, working on marketing and growth and connecting with as many divorcees and would be partners I can. At 2pm I take my lunch break which coordinates with picking up my daughter from school. After lunch I return to work and multitask work meetings, podcasts, writing, interviews, children’s homework and after school activities as late as 9pm, due to clients in every time zone. I make sure not to schedule anything from 4pm Friday and use the weekends as unwind, and child time.
Let’s jump to the core of our discussion. This is probably intuitive to many, but it would be beneficial to spell it out. Based on your experience or research, can you flesh out why not spending time with your children can be detrimental to their development?
Children have a plethora of needs to be met. These needs are constantly changing as they grow, being a single parent means the responsibility on a daily basis to nurture, love and help guide my children falls on me. Children need attention, no two ways about it, a happy child is one who is paid attention to, spent time with and loved unconditionally.
On the flip side, can you give a few reasons or examples about why it is so important to make time to spend with your children?
Children model the behaviors of those closest to them, if you want to be that positive role model to your children, you need to be spending time with them so they pick up those traits big and small, from saying thank you, to showing kindness to others. Lecturing your child is no where near as effective as showing your child how to navigate the world we live in.
According to this study cited in the Washington Post, the quality of time spent with children is more important than the quantity of time. Can you give a 3–5 stories or examples from your own life about what you do to spend quality time with your children?
I have always loved car rides to and from school with my children, you are forced to interact 1–1 in a confined environment, some of my favorite memories and most telling conversations have occurred on these rides back and forth to school.
My children and I love to go to the beach, something about watching your children play in the sun and sand, reminds us all to be carefree and enjoy the little things in life. Watching them laugh explore and bury things or each other in the sand is bonding and quality time away from electronics and enjoying nature.
Each child is unique and as such so are their interests, my two boys have introduced me to Marvel and spending time with them watching these movies and then listening to them discuss and dissect them afterwards, is a joy and pleasure and I believe they are grateful I have made the effort to connect with them on their level, plus what’s not to love about Captain America.
We all live in a world with many deadlines and incessant demands for our time and attention. That inevitably makes us feel rushed and we may feel that we can’t spare the time to be “fully present” with our children. Can you share with our readers 5 strategies about how we can create more space in our lives in order to give our children more quality attention?
1. Realize that even in the little moments, the 10 min drive to school, the 5 min wait in a doctors office even small amounts of time are opportunities to connect and bond with your child.
2. Replace work outs with family walks, or work outs, staying fit and healthy as a family is a great way to spend quality time and help your children grow up with healthy lifestyles.
3. Let the small things go, if your house isn’t spotless, if you have to pick-up last minute food so you have more time with your child do it.
4. Set designated no work times, I set Friday from 4pm to Sunday at 8pm no work zone. It lets your children know what to expect and like adult’s, having a schedule is a good thing.
5. Accept that each child is different and set designated times for each child to pick what they would like to do as a family, this allows each child to feel special and really paid attention to on their terms.
How do you define a “good parent”? Can you give an example or story?
I think being a good parent is nurturing a relationship with each child that fulfills their needs. Building bonds that let your children know you may not always approve or like their choices, but that you are always there and available to talk to about anything or everything. I think I am a pretty good parent because my children tell me everything, good bad or otherwise, they trust me to give them sound advice and that’s all I could ask for, trust.
How do you inspire your child to “dream big”? Can you give an example or story?
Through modelling, I have shown by children to dream big, I could have probably got a low wage job after my divorce, but I have always felt that its just as much work to dream small as to dream big. Starting DreamsRecycled as national company and potential global brand, has made my children reassess their goals in life. My daughter wants to be a CEO of a fortune 100 company so I think I must be doing a pretty good job.
How do you, a person who masterfully straddles the worlds of career and family, define “success”?
I define success as having kind, hard working children who understand that the best thing you can do in life is help your fellow man, combined with a company that helps make peoples lives happier and hopeful.
What are your favorite books, podcasts, or resources that inspire you to be a better parent? Can you explain why you like them?
I love the book “How to be a happier parent” by KJ Dell’Antonia. It took me a while to understand that being the best parent involves a lot of self love and care too.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy. Not on fighting the old, but on building the new”. It is the quote I built my companies philosophy around, let go, move on and focus all energy on the new life you are building.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
My goal and the DreamsRecycled movement is really about understanding that although we don’t advocate divorce, like anything else in the world there is a healthy and better way to do it. DreamsRecycled helps divorcees navigate the divorce process and build better healthier lives after divorce, we believe everyone deserves a second chance to be happy in life.
Thank you so much for these insights! This was so inspiring!