Business 06 January 2020
My entrepreneurial journey started when I was kid. Growing up, my mom and dad were both entrepreneurs. I remember that with everything I did, even then, I always thought I could turn it into a business. My mom put me in gymnastics, and when my friends would come over I thought I should charge each friend $10 and give them gymnastics lessons. Not realizing certifications, insurance, etc., I just wanted to figure out a way to make money. I was eight.
My mom would ask me for a massage after a long days' work, and I would ask her if I did this every day, would she pay me so I can start a massage business. I would walk into a laundry mat and think how cool it would be to do people's laundry, listen to music, and fold clothes. It would make so many people's lives easier, and I could charge per load of laundry.
I always thought at the time that all my ideas were great, and I could make a lot of money by word of mouth. I just had that desire to be on my own, make my own money, and be successful. Fast forward to me trying to think of ways to earn extra allowance. I don't know if I was a shopaholic, but my mom did want me to earn my own money so I could stop asking her to buy me clothing at 13. My mom said if you want it, go out and get a job.
My first job was in my town, Montville, at an arcade called Game Town where I helped with all the parties by waitressing and bussing tables. For 13, I was making a lot of money. It was cash tips, so it became addicting to have cash in my pocket at all times. I went on to waitress at a local diner and work for one of my Dad's companies. Then I ventured out to try different jobs until I figured out what I wanted to do. That didn't happen until I was about 28 years old, but I finally found my niche.
I moved to Poughkeepsie, New York in 1998 and worked for a psychiatrist and then at an Assisted Living facility. I soon decided that though I loved where I was working, I wanted to move to Westchester instead of staying in Poughkeepsie. The owner of the assisted living complex owned an apartment complex in Yonkers so I moved there and rented an apartment from him.
I quickly realized that I needed a second job to pay for the gas back and forth to Poughkeepsie. and went into a local Italian restaurant to ask if they were hiring for a bartender. I never bartended a day in my life. But I was hired. The first drink was a screwdriver, and even then I was stumped. I am eternally grateful that the owner was happy to train me and the customers were patient while I learned, because in 2015 a partner and I purchased that same restaurant where I started bartending at just 21 years old.
Prior to purchasing, I waitressed there while I started a PR firm that I thought was going to start small and stay small, maybe one other employee that services local accounts only. Three years in and I was referred to multiple celebrities and reality stars that I am thankful to this day. These early relationships put my company on the map and turned it into a firm with 10 employees and over 30 clients spread across the entire country.
Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that one day I would be flying out of the country to manage celebrity events like the Cannes Film Festival. At one point, clients were flying me to Los Angeles once a week, if not more, to manage the celebrity and talent wrangling for major award shows. It was fun to experience new things and make friends wherever I went. I soon found myself partnering with a celebrity on a wine brand, growing my PR firm, purchasing a restaurant, and partnering with one of my employees on a non-invasive beauty business.
Through all of these experiences, I have grown to appreciate being an entrepreneur in so many ways. While there are many hurdles, struggles, and stressors to being in your own business, once you get to a place of stability, the rewards are so worth it. It's definitely not for everyone. Sometimes you just don't know where you are getting a dollar to pay a dollar back, but I stuck it out somehow. Looking back on this entire journey, it's been the most rewarding position I have ever been in.
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Help! My Friend Is a No Show
Dear Armchair Psychologist,
I have a friend who doesn't reply to my messages about meeting for dinner, etc. Although, last week I ran into her at a local restaurant of mine, it has always been awkward to be friends with her. Should I continue our friendship or discontinue it? We've been friends for a total four years and nothing has changed. I don't feel as comfortable with her as my other close friends, and I don't think I'll ever be able to reach that comfort zone in pure friendship.
Dear Sadsies,I am sorry to hear you've been neglected by your friend. You may already have the answer to your question, since you're evaluating the non-existing bond between yourself and your friend. However, I'll gladly affirm to you that a friendship that isn't reciprocated is not a good friendship.
I have had a similar situation with a friend whom I'd grown up with but who was also consistently a very negative person, a true Debby Downer. One day, I just had enough of her criticism and vitriol. I stopped making excuses for her and dumped her. It was a great decision and I haven't looked back. With that in mind, it could be possible that something has changed in your friend's life, but it's insignificant if she isn't responding to you. It's time to dump her and spend your energy where it's appreciated. Don't dwell on this friend. History is not enough to create a lasting bond, it only means just that—you and your friend have history—so let her be history!
- The Armchair Psychologist