Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Blaise Harris, Founder of G Squared Consulting and Counseling Services, PLLC, located in Wendell, NC, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business is G Squared Consulting and Counseling services, where I provide individual and group therapy to BIPOC and first responders. I work with ages 18 and up.
Tell us about yourself
As first responders, we are taught to keep our thoughts, feelings, and emotions to ourselves because we may see something extremely different from one call to the next. We are taught to "keep work at work" and "home at home." That's unrealistic when you are going through a divorce. My divorce was extremely difficult, and it led to a diagnosis of major depressive disorder after two unsuccessful suicide attempts. As someone that is always the "happy-go-lucky type," going through this was something that I never thought would happen. I figured if I could go through this, how many other first responders suffer in silence out of fear of being judged? At that moment, I decided, initially, to become a mental health counselor for first responders. We are not going to just talk to anyone. We want to be able to talk with someone that "gets us" where we don't have to explain everything, and we are allowed to be ourselves without fear or consequences. As I started graduate school, though, I realized that men, specifically men of color, have difficulty expressing their thoughts, feelings, and emotions as well. This led to me changing my approach and becoming a therapist for men of color, specifically Black men and first responders.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment as a business owner is actually having the courage to step out on my own! I never thought I could run my own practice. Working for an agency was the plan until I realized that I do not fit the mold of a typical mental health counselor. With my own practice, I get to do therapy my way, all while providing the services my clients need on their mental health journey.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things about being a business owner is the time you have to invest in making your business run. There are a lot of things I did not know about running a business, and I put a lot of time and effort into learning what I needed to do to keep my practice afloat. There were several times when I would miss out on events because I was working to make my practice happen. It's all worth it because I am genuinely happy doing what I want to do my way.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Ask for help when you need it. There's no need to burn yourself out trying to figure out what you should/shouldn't or can/can't do. If you have a question, link up with others in your field and pick their brains. There's no need to reinvent the wheel, and they will have the tools to help you get where you need to be.
- Accept help when it is offered. There's nothing wrong with accepting help. I know that we can be stubborn and want to do everything, but the reality is we just can't. There are people in this world that will have your back in whatever you do. Allow them to be there for you.
- Bet on yourself and take that chance! You are your biggest cheerleader. Go out and make things happen. You know you're dope. Embrace it!
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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