I am the CEO and Founder of Essential Rose Life, which is the first-ever mood-balancing beauty® brand for mental health and healthy skin. Our mission is to revolutionize the personal care industry through our beyond "skin-centric" approach to beauty. Beauty is more than how look - it's a feeling™, which is why our Mood Oils® combine the power of essential oils and mindful mantras to promote emotional resiliency, a positive mindset, and self-connection while nourishing the skin. Sparked by my life-changing wilderness intervention at age 16, our brand is driven by a powerful mental health mission to help women around the globe nurture, accept, and fall in love with themselves as they are. My own journey navigating mental illness to wellness is the inspiration behind our uniquely mood-enhancing products, self-care programming, and truly holistic approach to beauty as self-love. To support our mental health initiative, we donate 5% of all net profits to StompOut Bullying; the nations' largest anti-bullying campaign.
I stay motivated by… my connection with my life's purpose. I know what I’m here to do and I'm inspired to work everyday to bring this mission to fruition. this keeps me going through the moments of rejection, self-doubt, and the baby steps. I constantly hold the greater vision in my mind's eye and visualize the woman I am becoming.
Three adjectives that describe me are… passionate, courageous, sensitive.
If I could have dinner with one person it would be… Louise Hay, because she overcame so much adversity in her lifetime and created an empire from her pain and used her story and teachings to heal so many people in the world! She knew the power of positive thinking and self-connection, and the work it takes to love yourself everyday. And how important it is to commit to this work, and to create a space for other people to do the same. One of my biggest dreams has always been to become a published Hay House Author. Keep your fingers crossed, for me!
What motivated you to become an entrepreneur? Is having your own business something you always wanted?
My business was born from my personal journey of healing. It was actually created out of my college dorm room as a stove-top apothecary! It was a way for me to create meaning out of my own experience, and to give back to the women of the world through the products I love and the lessons I've learned along the way. I am fortunate enough to have supportive and entrepreneurial parents who never pressured me to pursue a specific career path or degree. In fact, they always told me that as long as I was able to discover what I was passionate about, I could create a job for myself around it. Using that as inspiration, I double majored in Philosophy and Religious Studies and pursued an exploration of human behavior, ritual, spirituality, and my own personal development. Once I graduated, I did some work here and there, but all the while was working to really launch Essential Rose and gave myself a timeframe to measure my progress - 6 months. During that time, I also became certified in various holistic healing modalities, such as Advanced Clinical Aromatherapy, Yoga, Mindfulness Meditation, and more, and used this education to shape my products and brand.
What do you think is the biggest obstacle for female founders? How can we overcome it?
I think the biggest obstacle for all founders is having the trust, confidence and persistence to keep going every day, and women most likely subject themselves to even greater self-doubt than men. Every business will have its ups and downs, no matter what industry and your level of expertise. You will be rejected often by clients, partners, perhaps your own staff. The most challenging thing is having the courage to see through these temporary moments of defeat to the heart of your vision and keep going. To trust that you are worth it, that your vision is worth it, and that you are destined to create something epic if you just keep going. Entrepreneurship takes emotional resiliency for this reason and definitely creates more of a thick skin, but the more times you keep going the stronger your conviction will be, the greater clarity you will have, and the more the elements and resources around you will conspire to support your path.
PS - This rejection thing is not easy nor is it spoken about nearly enough, especially in a social media age where people portray perfection. I will be the first to speak honestly about this because it's an aspect of entrepreneurship that is inevitable and an essential growth experience.
How far are you willing to go to succeed?
This is sort of similar to the question about obstacles, but the truth is I will not stop until I succeed. This willingness in itself is the key to my own success, and to your success. It's about being persistent every single day and trusting in the worth and value of what you are creating, even if (and when) it takes time to manifest. It's having patience, celebrating the small steps and wins, and constantly measuring your progress overtime to validate your growth and expansion. I truly think where there's a will there's a way - even Thomas Edison failed 10,000 times before he was able to create the lightbulb! At least, that's the example the book "Think and Grow Rich" uses. He only succeeded because he tried that 10,001 time. Persistence and trust is everything, and radical self-care in the interim to keep you focused and positive while everything is coming together.
What do you think about company culture? What are some of your tips on being a good leader?
I don't have any other full time employees, but I do have people working for me on a part time consultant basis, and I think the best way to create a company culture is through respect. It's about the golden rule - treating each and every individual the way we ourselves want to be treated. It's creating a safe space for questions, collaboration, growth and innovation. It's taking the time to connect with our employees / consultants on a personal and emotional level and making sure they truly care about the company's mission and vision and are on the same page with its trajectory. It's also about letting go and letting the people we hire take their time to do their work and reveal to you their integrity and dedication. As a controlling, perfectionistic person, it has been a real learning curve for me to release and empower the people who work for me, but I know that good work can only come when each person feels trusted and has the space to actually create. Finally, I think it is about partnership. The people who work for you are being paid, yes, but they are also investing their time, energy, and 100% attention, and you are trusting them to do so. When you can create a feeling of equality and equilibrium in the name of co-creation, collaboration, and mutual growth, verses a hierarchy, then everyone feels empowered and inspired to really do the work.
What is your biggest dream? Why?
My dream is to create a multi-level platform for mental and emotional healing. Yes, there is a line of beauty wellness products. They are beautiful, inspired, and truly healing. Bliss in a bottle! But it's also about a lifestyle. It's about how people can you use those products in tandem with practical and approachable self-care rituals to radically transform their lives, their self-care, and their degree of self-love. It's products that combine with a library of online courses and programming, in-person speaking engagements and events, a 501(c)3 for mental health advocacy, and an inspired trademarked methodology for forming a positive and nurturing self-relationship. I want to support women around the globe through this platform, and bring them together in community so they can celebrate their uniqueness, feel safe in their bodies, and learn how to love themselves from the inside out. Ultimately, I want my life to be in service - a philanthropically-motivated and action-oriented woman - who transcends the people in my target market (who I of course will continue to touch) to bring tools to the greater community of people needing skills for mental and emotional well-being.