1/First of all, we would love to know about your business, how you started and what inspired you to start Peaces Of Mine. We would appreciate if you could give us a short statement explaining your journey and outlining things that inspire you.
During the first Covid lockdown many of us realised how important it is to take care of our wellbeing, prioritise our mental health and slow down, in this fast-paced world we live in. With lots of us leading busy lives, using social media and technology each day and usually being "switched on", I believe there is so much power in slowing down and living mindfully. When we were told to stay home, having known for a while that I wanted to start my own business, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to start helping others to look after their mental and physical wellbeing, make time for self-care each day and live a more peaceful lifestyle, with beautiful selections of products that are kind to our planet too. I'm also passionate about being kind to all beings and supporting small businesses, which is why our boxes are filled with vegan, cruelty-free and eco-friendly products, all sourced from small, independent UK businesses who align with our ethos and values. Starting my own business was as scary as it was exciting and I'm so grateful for every bit of support I've received so far on this wonderful journey! It's a true joy to do what I do and I'm excited to see what 2021 holds for Peaces of Mine.
2/So, Peaces Of Mine - Where did the name come from?
The name Peaces of Mine came up when my partner and I were bouncing business name ideas back and forth. I strongly felt that my business was going to be about finding and enjoying some peace and calm in the busy world we live in, so when we came up with "Peaces of Mine" and realised how clever it was I knew it was the one! The meaning is threefold: it's a play on the phrase 'peace of mind' (what we hope our boxes help you to find), it refers to the peaceful moments and self-care practices of yours that our boxes encourage you to create, and, lastly, the products in our boxes are "pieces" of yours.
3/As a small business owner, what's your work/life balance like? Do you ever stop working (haha)?
A work-life balance can certainly be difficult to achieve when running any small business! It's definitely a balancing act and a work in progress for me. Switching off at the end of the day can be a challenge, especially due to social media being such an important part of what I do, but I've come to set boundaries to create more of a balance, such as taking some mindful time for myself in the morning before work, generally stopping work (excluding social media activities) after a particular time to enjoy my evening and turning off my business Instagram notifications when needed. I think creating these boundaries is really important and helpful to avoid burnout and keep you feeling positive and motivated while you work. Generally I work hours similar to a 9-5 job, but I really appreciate the flexibility of running my own business. Sometimes I might take a break for a few hours and then work a little in the evening or give myself the afternoon off. Working at the weekend is also very common for me, such as catching up on admin or getting ahead on packing orders for Monday, but usually not for more than a few hours each day. I'm also present on our social media each day so some time is always dedicated to that even if I'm doing no other work at the weekend.
4/Where do you get your ideas from and motivation to keep going? Are there any particular websites, films, social media profiles that you motivate you to keep going?
What motivates me is much more internal than external. As someone who has struggled with my own mental health problems, I have a mission to help people make their mental health and wellbeing a priority and I'm also motivated by the idea of supporting people to live a slower, more peaceful lifestyle. My vision of a community of people who prioritise taking time to practise self-care whilst enjoying beautiful, thoughtfully made products which are gentle on us and our planet also keeps me going. Many of my ideas come from the things that have helped me in my self-care journey. I hope to provide others with tools they can use to look after different aspects of their wellbeing to make practising true self-care more simple. I am also inspired by the amazing fellow small business makers in the Instagram community and I don't think I could name any profiles in particular as there are so many! I admire their passion, hardwork and dedication and some of my ideas are inspired by the topics and themes of content they share which align with our ethos and values. I've made lots of wonderful friendships through Instagram and I'm so grateful for the support and encouragement I receive from other small business owners which motivates and empowers me each day. Receiving great feedback from my lovely customers is also a big source of motivation for me as it reminds me that I'm making a difference, helping people to experience calm and joy through the boxes I create.
Words of advice I would give myself when I was starting Peaces of Mine would be to keep reminding yourself why you started, of your ethos and values and how you want to help people, but also pay attention to what's working and don't be afraid to evolve and make changes along the journey as long as they stay true to what you believe in. Also, I would tell myself to take proper breaks, practise what you preach and not to compare your small business journey to others. Comparison is the thief of joy, right?!