Over the past few years, we’ve shared stories of women who are doing incredible things in midlife and inspiring others to do the same. All over the world, women are reinventing themselves, starting new and exciting journeys, and making a difference.

And you don’t have to look far. Sometimes, you’ll find the most interesting stories right in your own community.

Just a few weeks ago, I met one of those influencers who just happens to live a few miles away in the Chicago suburbs. Peggy O’Flaherty is like many of our members and followers. She just turned 50, has been married for 25 years and is raising five kids. That would be enough for most of us, right?

But Peggy decided she wanted more out of midlife. Over the past five years, she’s started three companies. And her latest project may be the most ambitious yet. Peggy, along with her two co-founders, just launched Mavely, an app that rewards women for doing some of their favorite things: shopping, sharing and influencing. Peggy and her team are poised to disrupt an entire industry.

Recently, I had an opportunity to sit down with Peggy, share a cup of coffee and learn more about how she found her game-changing new path.   

Finding Your Focus

Most of us are constantly being pulled in too many directions. We struggle to find the balance between family and career, while also trying to find time for ourselves. Let’s face it. Just when we think we’ve figured it all out, our roles change.

Peggy’s story is no different. When her youngest started grade school, she realized she had more time and wanted to contribute. But she also realized that she desperately needed more structure and focus. So Peggy adopted three key principles to help her manage both her family time and changing roles:

Live a Disciplined Life. Ever had one of those days when you wake up with the right intentions, but everything seems to get away from you? Peggy’s daily goal is to give “the right amount of time to right amount of people.”

Get the Family Involved. Sometimes, you just have to be a little creative. If the thought of juggling five kids, a husband and the family dog—all while launching a new business—makes you a little anxious, get everybody involved. She finds that it gives her a little room to breathe.  

Shut the Technology Down. When we’re shuffling too many daily tasks, our responsibilities tend to drift. Peggy thinks it’s really important to block time for family. Between 4:00pm and 8:00pm, she shuts down the technology. But you’ve got to stick to it.

One some level, Peggy’s simple rules apply to many of us. Whether you’re launching a company, starting a new career or just need to find more time for you, it starts with embracing change and creating structure.

Harnessing the Power of Communities to Reshape the Shopping Experience

Not long after her previous company was acquired, Peggy’s co-founders approached her with a new opportunity. They recognized that women between 35-55 years old control a significant amount of household income. They also strongly influence buying decisions and relationships with other women. Peggy and her team believed that, together, we have the power to influence good for our families, good for the world, and good for our wallets.

Mavely was born.

Mavely is an app with which women can shop, share, and earn money back on products that they love and use every day.  And though you may have heard of similar apps, Mavely is unique in a few important ways. First of all, products are curated. Currently, the Mavely app showcases more than 15,000 products from over 100 different brands, many of which are either female-led or female-focused, and includes names such as Allbirds, BarkBox and Brooklinen.

Secondly, the Mavely platform is built on community. If you’re like me, you naturally want to share products that you love and that your friends can get excited about. It doesn’t matter if you’re an influencer, online shopper or entrepreneur. You’re a Maven. As connected as we all are today, and as Peggy mentioned during the interview, women who shop in community and share their influence tend to thrive.

Finally, you can get rewarded for being a Maven. When you discover and shop, you’ll earn 5% on every purchase. Then invite your family friends to join Mavely. Every time they shop, you’ll both earn 5% back.

Best of all, the experience couldn’t be easier. Just download the app and start browsing products that have been handpicked from other members of the community. But again, you’re a Maven, so your opinion and influence are what make this work. You can give feedback on brands or products and even nominate new products.

A New Opportunity to Connect, Shop and Share Our Influence

When I launched Menopause ChitChat in 2010 and empart just a few years ago, I was hoping to create a safe place where women in midlife could connect, ask questions and share their experiences. But since then, we’ve become so much more. Today, we’re a strong community with almost 10,000 members and I really feel like we’re making a difference. And I’m so grateful to all of you for supporting our forum and each other.

I’m also thankful for Peggy, not only for taking time for our interview, but for extending a special opportunity just for our community. She’s created a code exclusively for members and followers of Menopause ChitChat and empart. We’ll be able to suggest products and brands, share our opinions with other members, and give feedback within our community.

Just click on the link below from your smartphone or download the app and use invite code “empart”. After you’ve completed your profile, you’ll be able to start discovering, shopping and sharing with friends. And better yet, you’ll be able to spread your influence and get rewarded.

(The Mavely app is currently available in the United States only.)