It's not easy to start a business. Let's face it. It sounds great - make your own hours, gain independence, you are beholden to no one, be your own boss. It looks so exciting on social media.
What you don't see is the work, the grind, the hours put in, the sheer grit that it takes to start a business, run it day to day, and grow it. Most people, like my husband and I, work full time jobs during the day and run our company Two Sparrows, in the evenings, weekends, in spare moments in between our other day to day responsibilities. Let me tell you it is tough. But we wouldn't trade the feeling of knowing that we are making products ourselves that are helping people and we have the opportunity to grow an idea into something bigger than ourselves. We had to just jump in and do it!
Now in addition to the Effortless Art Crayons we have our product design and development company and we love helping people realize their ideas and bring them to life. What started with an idea for a crayon has grown into a dream for our future and our son's future.
Again, it hasn't been easy and my husband and I have been blessed to have people in our lives that have supported us along the way and new ones we have met that have inspired us and helped us gain traction and speed in this journey.
I mentioned we both have full time jobs. Well, I am lucky enough to teach future teachers at a university in NW Pennsylvania. Working in a School of Education is one of the best jobs in the world and it doesn't hurt that I have the best coworkers on the planet! We all know that life is messy and when things come up and schedules can't change, you have to punt.
In my case I am lucky enough that I have coworkers that will step up and help out whenever needed. Our son, Crayon Kid, has been coming to work with me since he has been born. My work is a second home, and my coworkers treat him like family. Take the video below. I had to go in for a meeting a few weeks back and instead of finding a sitter, our school's secretary watched him for about an hour, playing BINGO, reading books, coloring, and keeping him very entertained. I couldn't ask for more supportive friends and colleagues.
Along the way we have met amazing people who have helped us grow in our skills and helped our business to thrive. We have met many other therapists and entrepreneurs doing the exact same thing we are. We are lucky enough that they remember what it was like starting out and they try to support young businesses through promotion and collaboration.
That's really what it is about in the helping field and helping markets - collaboration and partnership. We appreciate and value what each other brings to the table with their expertise and talents and work together to add value for the other person - when we lift each other up we end up rising with them.
I had an incredible call this morning with a company and am so excited to share some big news soon with you all. We have some exciting collaborations coming down the pike and I can't wait to tell you about them.
The most important thing I've learned through starting a business is that collaboration is key and it's all about the connections you make with others. We could not do this alone. We are only two years in but have made amazing gains and know that we will continue to meet incredible people and together do incredible things.
Find your tribe. Find your supporters. Find the people who share your passions and values. There are more of them than you know. Just go out and do it.
Till next time,
"I always wondered why somebody didn't do something about that; Then I realized I am somebody. I just needed to spread my wings and fly."