With Carrie McLean –
Carrie McLean is one tough cookie. Her small business journey has been one hell of a rollercoaster and there’s no way she’s getting off that ride.
She is the Director of All Organic Store with the desire to help people and encourage them to be the best they can through healthy and toxic free products and food. Aside from helping others she has had her own personal health and mental health journey which led to starting her business. She suffered with chemical sensitivities that lead her on a quest for non- toxic products and subsequently finding the bene ts of going organic.
Running your own small business can be one of the biggest challenges of your life, but when you couple that with financial struggles that end up making you homeless while you’re struggling with depression and contemplating ending it all –it’s enough to make you want to walk away from the business. “When I started the business,I had a good idea of what business was. I did have a business coach to start with, however some of the things they suggested had sucked up my funds a lot quicker than I had expected. So,for 6 months while I was running this business I was actually homeless. I was couch hopping –I have some beautiful friends. It was tough. And 2 years in financially it’s still very tough because I want to make sure my customers are getting good quality products.”, shared Carrie.
Carrie has recognised her curiosity for life as what keeps her going, the opportunity to meet fabulous people who understand what she is going through and that she is not alone. The truth is small business is damn tough and while we often share the success stories and the positive mindset behind them, it’s also important to share the stories that aren’t quite as rosy.“One thing I have been fighting for a long time is depression. I put on a brave face here and there but there are some dark days. There are days when you just think life isn’t worth it because you hear so much negativity –I’ve been bullied in school and the workplace. Nobody deserves that. On dark days I’d sit there,and I’d think –how can I end this? And the curiosity of how’s life going to end for me –how does it get better –it’s got to get better than this. So,my curiosity has pretty much kept me alive. Determination to keep going and pushing through even when there are days when I sit
in a corner of the kitchen crying because it’s all too hard”, said Carrie.
Her online store allorganicstore.com.au stocks a wide range of products that are organic, gluten free, toxic free, cruelty free, eco-friendly, vegan friendly and paraben free. All products are tested and proven to help people with chemical sensitivities. All Organic Store also pays it forward with 10% of pro ts donated to The Hope Foundation, which assists women wanting life change from addictions and/or the sex industry, providing a brighter and more positive future for these women.
The importance of investing in and taking responsibility for our own health through sourcing responsibly produced organic products is something Carrie backs 100%. “When we study, we spend money to invest in our brain, so buying organic is an investment, not an expense.”, said Carrie.
“In your shower, you know how people have to scrub their showers every week with chemicals to get the gunk off the tiles? Well when you change to products without the parabens and the toxic chemicals you don’t get the gunk that you do when using chemicals to clean. If that’s what it’s doing to your tiles–imagine what it’s doing to your skin!”, explained Carrie. Simple changes to non-toxic products can have a signi cant effect on your health and wellbeing as well as the environment. These changes have a knock-on effect to our minds and bodies –small changes can make a big difference in the long run.
Carrie’s focus on the future is to grow her business to be able to provide competitive pricing and shipping for customers, ef cient supply chain, and a staffed warehouse with same day delivery. She has been creative in bundling and packaging products to make them more affordable for customers by recently launching a wellness sample box for as little as $25 per month.
Carrie’s Top 5 tips for a woman in small business include:
- Write down your passion and why you are doing this.
- Get a business coach particularly if you haven’t been in business before.
- Network – you can learn and grow so much from networking and getting the support you need.
- Set goals and be really specific and clear on your vision – use a vision board.
- Take care of yourself – have some you time.
And lastly, never give up!