Tell me a little about you and your company.
Tumbleweed Apothecary started on a walk—we were discussing the various plants around us and how we would use them to improve our lives and the lives of our families, however, this gave us pause. We are both herbalists, we know about plant medicine and how to combine it with nutrition to enrich our personal lives (and those of our loved ones), but not everyone knows how easy, accessible, and life changing plant medicine can be. So we set out to create a business that could not just support our health, but the health of our various communities.
Tumbleweed Apothecary is all about education and empowerment. We want to create content that makes it easy and fun to understand why going as natural as possible with beauty products, cleaning products, food, and herbal medicine is not only healthy for us as people, but is a great way to support biodiversity and our earth. After we create content that helps illustrate the benefits of going natural, we then create products that make it easy to incorporate into daily life.
How long have you owned your own business?
Tumbleweed Apothecary has been a dream for quite some time, but we launched it officially on October 1st, 2015.
What made you decide to start your own business?
We wanted other people to be able to benefit from wild food and herbal medicine. While this is second nature to us, it can be a bit overwhelming for people who have little to no foundation in creating a sustainable, natural life. Community is so important to us, and we really want to cultivate it.
What was the best advice you received when you started your career?
Know and understand the laws surrounding your industry. Many of us go into business because we are passionate about our abilities and products and we are excited to share these with the world. However, if you launch your business without knowing the regulations and laws surrounding it, you may be putting yourself, and potentially your customers, in danger. While it isn’t the most glamourous aspect of running a business, knowing the laws and various procedures of your industry will ensure that you are able to operate and grow your business in peace. And that is amazing.
What do you wish someone had told you when you started your business?
To be patient. While you have spent an extraordinary amount of time creating, preparing, and launching your business (and you are super psyched and think it is amazing), it is BRAND NEW to everyone else. Gathering customers, followers, reviews, sales, EVERYTHING takes time. It can be a bit disheartening when business seems slow.
What are the three skills that new entrepreneurs need in order to succeed?
Tenacity: Sometimes you are going to be the only one who can see how amazing your idea/product/business is going to be. Having a thick skin and the capability to champion not just your business, but yourself, is key.
Organization: Seriously. Start at the very beginning. If you create procedures and outlines to keep you organized from the beginning, your life is going to be so much easier. Being organized also helps you keep your business separate from your personal life…and this as an entrepreneur is very difficult because for some time YOU WILL BE your business. Make sure you are organized so you don’t mix your two lives together and become overwhelmed.
Humor: What is that saying? If you want to make God laugh, make a plan. Yeah. If you want to make an entrepreneur laugh, make a plan…and then wait. What you thought was a well thought out idea, will soon start to develop holes. And while it is our job to patch those holes (and we do), it is so much easier to do this with a bit of laughter than tears. Life is long, hopefully your business will be too, so it is important to laugh (and learn) from whatever pops up and move on.
What routines do you have in place to help your days run smoothly?
Schedules, to do lists/tasks, and communication. Tumbleweed Apothecary is run in two states: Mississippi (Katie) and Colorado/Arizona (Racheal). We don’t have the luxury of seeing each other every day…or every week…or every month. So learning how to communicate, and then create schedules and tasks we can both see (and that are clearly defined who is doing what) is so important.
How do you find balance as an entrepreneur?
We just launched and so much of our time is wrapped up in our new, sparkly, wonderful business…it is very hard to take a break from it. However, we know about burn out and we want to continue to feel happy, warm feelings towards our business. We’ve created a few *general* guidelines: There is no expectation to work on the weekends (we can if we want, but really…we shouldn’t) and we acknowledge the importance of life outside of our business. If we need a day off for whatever reason, that’s okay. Nothing is so important that it can’t wait a day.
What is your favorite thing about being an entrepreneur?
How creative we can be! We created Tumbleweed Apothecary with the hopes that this will be our last job. That means we want to create a business that grows with us…that isn’t static in its mission or products, that can meet the needs of our community. This means we are constantly dreaming, creating, and planning. And that is so much fun.
What do you do to unwind?
We go back to nature. The roots of our business are in plants and we believe the roots of who we are as people are also in plants. Whenever possible, we take our dogs out and walk and listen and breathe the fresh air.
We also drink a lot of tea and read a lot of great books.
What is a project that you are working on right now or just finished?
We are getting ready to launch the rest of our skincare line, which, by the way, is so much more than beauty. It’s about supporting your body’s various systems and organs to function at their best. We believe when you are healthy, your beauty just shines. And that’s what we want to encourage—natural, unique, 100% you beauty.
We are also getting ready to launch our herbal medicine products and cleaning products. This will all be happening January 2016. We are SO excited about this part of our business and it is definitely something we hope our communities love as well….I mean, we are creating these products for them (and you!).
How can people get in touch with you?
Our website! Here you will find our latest products, blog posts, and a way to sign up for our (exclusively amazing) newsletter: tumbleweedapothecary.com.
We are also very active on our social media accounts: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest.
If you really want to chat, drop us a line at our email: firstname.lastname@example.org We adore meeting new people and we LOVE sharing what we do.
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