Today was a particularly hard day in The Healing Farm start-up. I'm discouraged for many reasons and am constantly challenged by feelings of inadequacy. Other than the fact that I've run my photography business for the past 15 years "flying by the seat of my pants" as I like to say, I have no formal business school training. I am taking the UC Berkeley Small Business and Entrepreneurship Program, but do feel - especially in the hyper-smart and business-savvy Bay Area - a bit of an additional struggle to legitimize myself. Starting The Healing Farm to bring practical and affordable wellness, spa and retreat experiences to middle income people is really a HUGE passion. Also, I'm inspired to show the world that a business can be started and run not for increasing profit for shareholders, but for helping others and changing the world all-the-while creating a culture for its employees that will help them enjoy work, get paid fairly and grow their own vision and life-work balance.
In comes my lack of business training. I've been hearing the term "BCorp" floating around for a few months now. I'm sure in some circles it's been floating around for years, but in my tiny world (mostly because I spend my time trying to devote myself equally to my work AND myself and my friends and family) it's a pretty new term. But, it's peaked my curiosity enough, that I just inserted it as a possible structure in my executive summary for The Healing Farm business plan (which I'm starting to write in my class).
So here I am, trying to start a business while exiting another, hubby is trying to write his first screenplay, and I'm alternating freaking out and completely elated - depending on the day. Today was pretty harsh. Said hubby gave me a pep talk and I settled pretty glumly into reading a chapter of my textbook for class while every five minutes or so, contemplating dropping the class. Then I decided to make dinner. Always a stress-reliever once I get started.
Brennan was writing and didn't want to stop so I ate dinner alone. I remembered that I picked up a copy of a magazine called "Conscious Company" at the Piedmont Market the other day and figured I may never have the time to read it. I sat down to eat my stir fry and opened it up. Holy cow was I inspired. Not only by the vision of the founders of the magazine but by everything in it. THIS is what I want to do with The Healing Farm. I want The Healing Farm to be a responsible business which gives back to its community(ies) and I want it to be a place where employees feel like they are making a difference, love their jobs and know that the company actually cares about their well-being and their life-work balance.
Can I do it? I don't know. But damn. I'm inspired again to try. Thank you to the Conscious Company team. You are absolutely speaking for a whole slew of socially conscious entrepreneurs who may not yet know how to articulate what they are trying to create with their own companies. Keep on keeping on!