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Episode 262: YQD Success Stories: Navigating the Messy Middle Of Entrepreneurship | Denise Varughese | The Connected Reader


Episode 262 features Denise Varughese of The Connected Reader. A previous student of ours, we talk about navigating the messy middle of entrepreneurship. Listen now!

Episode 262: YQD Success Stories: Navigating the Messy Middle Of Entrepreneurship | Denise Varughese | The Connected Reader

Denise Varughese is a reader, writer, partner, mother, and friend. She is U.S. based, originally from New York, and now lives in Texas, with her husband, 3 children, and dog, Blue. Denise has 16 years of experience working in K-12 Education and loves facilitating communities where people can connect and grow. She is a co-author of Imperfect Parenting: Honest Stories from Global Parents and is currently building a community for women who view reading as self-care over at The Connected Reader and @theconnectedreader on Instagram.

Denise discusses her journey of building her dream as the founder of The Connected Reader. As she states, she’s in the messy middle of building the life she wants and deserves.

After years of doing all the things—being the eldest daughter and all that comes with that, earning a BA and M. Ed, getting married, buying the house, having 3 kids while trying to advance in her career (never mind navigating 2 layoffs and a global pandemic), Denise was exhausted. To the point of feeling like she can’t move, can’t think, can’t do more than go through the motions because she’s tired.

In the past 2 years, Denise has slowly started chipping away at the burnout to find herself again, which means making choices about finances and her career that are scary and uncertain. Denise knows so many women who feel the same and believes in transparency to talk openly about the struggles that comes with entrepreneurship, in order to build and validate our community of women.

This week, we explore topics such as choosing a career path, feeling stuck and seeking change, investing in yourself, recognizing accomplishments, overcoming self-doubt, setting boundaries, seeking support, dealing with burnout, addressing misalignment, redefining self-care, and the lessons she learned from the Jumpstart Your Blog Bootcamp. Denise shares her experiences and offers advice for those navigating similar challenges.

Episode 262 Takeaways:

  • Investing in yourself is essential for personal and professional growth.
  • Recognize and celebrate your accomplishments, no matter how small.
  • Setting boundaries and carving out time for yourself is crucial for self-care.
  • Seek support from others and build a network of like-minded individuals.
  • Address burnout by identifying the causes and making necessary changes.
  • Embrace misalignment and make scary decisions to pursue your true passions.
  • Self-care goes beyond superficial activities and should focus on what truly nourishes your mind, body, and soul.


  • 00:00 – Introduction and Background
  • 01:22 – Choosing a Career Path
  • 04:32 – Taking Control and Seeking Help
  • 07:17 – Overcoming Guilt and Doubt
  • 09:01 – Celebrating Accomplishments
  • 11:26 – Carving Out Time for Yourself
  • 14:13 – Recognizing and Coping with Burnout
  • 16:31 – Addressing Misalignment
  • 24:22 – Reframing Self-Care
  • 26:21 – Biggest Lesson from the Blog Bootcamp
  • 28:11 – Supporting The Connected Reader

It’s an honor to have incredible women like Denise in our circle. It’s so inspiring to see an idea that she had come to fruition. And we love to see the passion she has talking about what she’s doing. It’s always a humbling and gratifying experience to give people like Denise permission to do something different. To follow that dream and to never give up on it. We LOVE to see it! And know that can be you, too! Thank you, Denise!

Loving episode 262? Leave us a review on Apple podcasts. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, TikTok, LinkedIn & YouTube!

Until next time, stay empowered, stay inspired & #staypoderosa ✨💎

Watch The Full Video Episode Now On YouTube!

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