Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Bria Spencer, Founder of Body By Bria LLC., located in Stamford, CT, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I'm a Ketogenic Diet Coach where I provide one-on-one coaching helping women of color who consist of mothers, whether they are stay-at-home moms, working moms, single moms, or just busy moms, lose weight while still enjoying foods they love and helping them identify their own positive coping skills to be successful long-term with their weight loss goals.
Tell us about yourself
I started my journey six years ago, six months after my daughter was born. I suffered from post-partum depression and was at my highest weight of 235 pounds. I'm an emotional eater, so when I feel stressed or unhappy, I love a good brownie or plate of West Indian food (lol). I recognized my post-partum depression was caused by trying to adjust from my old life, just taking care of myself, to now stepping into motherhood which I knew nothing about. I mourned my old body as I was trying to get used to my new body while operating on no sleep. I wanted to improve my mental health for the sake of my daughter. I wanted to be healthy and live a long life, so I decided to contact a close college friend of mine who was a personal trainer focusing on my nutrition. I trained with her for nearly a year, and during that time, I actively began to identify that my relationship with food was connected to my emotions. I went to therapy; I learned my own positive coping skills and how I can use that when I'm triggered so that I don't fall into a binge. I followed a low-carb diet but noticed that I still had cravings which led me to the Ketogenic Diet which. I learned that I can still enjoy foods that I love with substituted ingredients, and it made me love cooking again because I knew how I was nourishing my body plus seeing results. I lost 30 pounds; I had more energy, I had clarity, and I began to feel confident. I incorporated fitness to further assist with balancing my mental health and grew to love that weight loss doesn't just have to be a number on the scale but how you feel mentally, emotionally, and physically because it's all connected. What motivates me is empowering my clients to see that they can control their own narratives, even as a mother. That as a mother, it's okay to put ourselves first, be healthy, define what health looks like without being pressured, and feel strong and beautiful in our new bodies. In addition, what motivates me is to be the face for mothers and women of color who look like me to not feel alone in their journey because, in the health and wellness field, there aren't many of us who have the support or community.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment is the impact I've had on my clients' lives. For instance, I had a mother with a two-year-old feel more energized to keep up with her active son, felt heard, supported, and motivated on her weight loss journey because she learned that she already had the skills instilled in her to be healthy.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The hardest thing that comes with being a business owner is not having a clear vision of what you want to do. I had to come to terms that as a black woman of Haitian-American descent, I needed my own help first to fully show up authentically for my clients, who are women of color and mothers who may be fighting silent battles. As a business owner, you have to understand how you want to serve your ideal candidate and allow yourself to be vulnerable to connect with your client. As a business owner, it can sometimes trigger your own mental health challenges, and you have to face your own beliefs along with your values and cores to be able to foster a connection that encourages change.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
My top three tips would be:
- Know your "Why"- Knowing your why is part of the foundation of bringing your vision to life. Your "why" will keep you motivated even on the days when you feel like you are in over your head and imposter syndrome kicks in. Knowing your "Why" is the essence of you which is the essence of your business.
- Know who your ideal client or audience is-knowing who your client and who you want to speak to essentially comes from your own story and building from that.
- Surround yourself with people and places that share the same vision as you. Having a strong support system will help keep you accountable, lift you up on your hard days, and help you network with others who align with you, leading to more opportunities.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I'm Haitian-American with my bachelor's from Fordham University in Political Science and a Master's degree in Social Work with a focus on family, youth, and children from Columbia University. I have 12 years of experience working with families, youth, mental health, and healthcare. I've followed the Ketogenic Diet for four years and launched my business two years ago, coaching women one-on-one utilizing my experience and research. I also co-host The Millennial Babes Podcast, available on platforms discussing mental health, fitness, and travel which was birthed at the height of the pandemic in 2020 alongside my business. My podcast has allowed me to gain speaking engagements at the Millennial Social Work Conference for the past two years. Body By Bria LLC has been able to gain collaborations with Clean Juice, tour with Celebrity Trainer Jerry Joseph, and partner with Switch LLC, forming SwitchXBodyByBria.
Body By Bria LLC services:
- 1:1 Keto Coaching
- Accountability Journal
- 30-Day Keto Challenge Coming Soon
Fun facts: I love to dance, meditate, and sing 90s R&B music.
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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