Entrepreneurial Hardships


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Manda Rasmussen-Clauson

Many people have been affected by the shut downs, regulations and Medical Martial Law.  As a small business owner I would have to say that I have been affected drastically in many aspects of my businesses.  Some parts have flourished and others have failed.

Birth Work

One of the longest business industries I have been active in (as an owner) is in Birth Work – a Doula.  If you don’t know what a doula is, please visit one of my website blogs at www.minnesotadoulas.com or www.ecdoulaservices.com.  Although it has never been my main source of income, it was the goal.  Nonetheless, who could have predicted the crash of 2020?  In late 2019, I was debating on making an exit from attending births to shift my focus elsewhere.  Then, I was hired by my first Wisconsin client, which gave me hope that I could continue with birth work.  Just after I attended that birth, the 2020 crash happened.  My goal was to create an internship & training program for my area since there has been a drastic need for it.  With being at home this was something I felt could be done remotely until we as a team could start attending births again.  Many know that hospitals didn’t allow visitors or support personnel, that homebirth wasn’t an option for everyone, in addition not as easily accessible financially.  This created a high impact on doulas practicing in my area.  In an industry already swinging in prices, potential clients facinging financial issues, impacted doulas as well.  After 6 years as a doula, I have been unwilling to move my prices down.  I have always taken payment plans, but still I have been outbid on potential clients because of financial reasons.

The most impacting aspect of the crash has been the FEAR of having in person contact.  Being a doula is not just an ear or a hand to hold.  Doulas are there for both the expecting parents, physically, emotionally & educationally.  I can’t do my job via zoom when it comes to support during a birth.  I can’t give a first time father hands on tips/tricks on how to physically support his wife during labor via video chat.  It is a hands on job!  It has been extremely frustrating to me on how much the crash has devalued Birth Work.  With that, I have been shocked by my colleagues’ mindsets.  As an industry built on personal choices, self education, “no cookie cutter” practices – has become the most one sided mindset!  I guess, nasty people lurk everywhere.  The shunning, lashing out and fear is out of hand.  When the shutdowns first took place, I thought I could ride the wave through it and focus on reorganizing my practice, however, a year into this bullshit – I am done.  Done riding this wave.  Sometimes I feel like a failure in the industry but other times I wonder if it is just mental exhaustion from all the drama within it? Regardless of what it is, I am done with it.

So, what do I mean?  Well, simply, I will stop hiding.  I will continue to support women and families on their choices without fear, without guilt of charging my worth.  I promise to keep growing in my passion for bringing back traditional aspects of womanhood, birth keeping and motherhood.  Despite what others may presume to know, think of me or disagree on – I have come to the point where I don’t care. Love me, hate me, done.  D-O-N-E.  Done.

Digital Marketing

Since I was in business school, I have been slowly working towards being my own boss with the ability to work from home.  For many reasons this has been ideal, as well as successful.  For the past 3 years, the digital marketing industry has shifted and exploded which I have actively been a part of through YOMA (your online marketing assistant) which turned into Midwest Business Adventures with my friend Hannah.  Our business had started out working with small business start ups to get them going with digital marketing needs (logos, websites, social media set up, management & consulting).  For better or for worse, things have been busy, yet have become VERY challenging.

Without going into too much detail, I will say this: I hate being ‘plugged in’.  All of it is a double edged sword.  A catch 22, or however you want to phrase it.  When I think about it, I am shocked how much things have changed in the digital world, and how much I have changed.

But what can I do about it?  Well, despite what so many people think, money is not the end all be all.  I would rather work a little harder and take a cut in money to be happy.  Mentally, I have become drained working online with particular platforms with aspects of needs from my clients.  I do not pretend to be perfect or have all the answers.  Going back to the basics of helping new/small businesses start up & optimize their online set ups is where it is going to be at.  Generating helpful content for them to use, personalize or inspire, could be great passive income.  In my opinion, I feel this is where Hannah & I will refocus on.

In closing, if you are a small business owner looking for help on setup or optimization please reach out to Hannah & I at info@midwestbusinessadventures.com .  If you are a birth worker looking for content prompts the 2021 Birth Worker Calendar is ready & available on our website here:
2021 Social Media Content Calendar for Birth Workers | Midwest Business Adventures

Stay tuned for more updates.

Thanks for reading,

Manda Rasmussen-Clauson

Manda Rasmussen-Clauson

Despite working in many different industries, she has a true passion of doing anything outside. Homesteading is becoming Manda’s new reality, she has much to learn but is excited to do so.


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