I have to tell you guys a story. Something that has been with me for a while and feels like it’s time to share. Bare with me if somethings don’t make much sense but I think this post will help us relate to each other better.

When I was 21, I opened my first business, an online fashion boutique. The idea was to create an online store that sold beautiful, elegant, romantic pieces – basically, sell things I would wear. My business partner (meaning investor) was my dad, and my mom was the person that helped me all operations. Of course, in the beginning things were slow but I was determined to create something great and it started growing little by little. Androbel was the epitome of small, family-owned business. We did everything from my home’s kitchen. We went to trade shows, we ordered shopping bags, pink tissue paper, hired someone to create our logo and website, uploaded all items ourselves, weighted them, took their picture, somehow edited the pictures, managed the social media, went to trunk shows to sell more and eventually sold some things online.

Starting a small business story

Androbel was a dream come true. I saw hard work come to live. There were tears of happiness and sadness. There were fights as well but it taught me that sometimes timing is off. I was young (very young) and needed help, needed guidance. It turns out at that time, bad things were happening to my dad and he just couldn’t be there. For a while, I internally blamed him (sorry day) but the truth is, it wasn’t his fault. I know he would have loved to be there for me and guide me in my business venture but it wasn’t possible.

Those “bad things” I mention, took a toll on everyone at home and so, Androbel stopped and it broke my heart. It’s been almost 5 years and the thought of it still brings tears to my eyes. Now, I want to stop thinking of Androbel as a bad experience. It wasn’t bad. It did well and although I have a bunch of inventory sitting in my brother’s bedroom, it taught me about failure and success.

Starting a small business story

For a while, I identified myself as having failed but it’s not true. One of my best friends always tells me… you do so much! Don’t think of yourself as a failure. My boyfriend over the weekend told me “You are 25. You have done so much; You are one of the most successful people I know.” So, I realized – success for me has been 100% completely aligned with money. How. Sad. 

It makes me sad that I have put myself in this position because it sets me back from all the things I really do want to do. Androbel was a dream and it was made a reality. I worked on it and made it come true. I haven’t failed, I’m still here sharing this story with you to let you know that it’s ok to be knocked down. It’s okay to cry for nearly 5 years for the same reason. It’s ok as long as you don’t identify yourself as being a failure. With every crisis, there is an opportunity and it’s up to us to get our of heads and identify how you can better yourself.

Starting a small business story

Also, don’t worry too much about what others might think of your business. I can tell you, no one even brings up Androbel that much anymore – it is just gone and no one thinks twice about it. If there’s something you failed at – don’t think twice about it. Just. let. it. go. You can do it! It took me 5 years – maybe it will take you less :).

Androbel was my crisis, A Hint of Life is my opportunity to change people’s lives.

What have you “failed” at? What opportunity did it bring you? Let me know in the comments below!

I really hope this story resonates with you. It’s not easy for me to share this but I know it’s important. Thank you!

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