Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Tam Veilleux, Owner of Choose Big Change, located in Brunswick, ME, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Choose Big Change serves men and women seeking fun, fast, transformational products and services. Our customers want a simple but powerful approach to creating a new point of view. The goal: happiness. The tool, our website.
Tell us about yourself
I've been in the mind/body/spirit-based coaching industry since 2012. It all began following a major life transition and my own battle for joy. I never grew up saying, "I think I'll help people transform their lives." It came to me when people started commenting on how much happiness I live with. After yet another person asked me, "How did you become so happy?" I realized I was meant to lead others to their own greatness. After reading many dozen self-help books and attending multiple workshops, I developed my own process for creating change and quickly built a website. There my coaching career was born.
About six years into coaching, I felt lost and hit my knees in prayer, begging God to return me to my creative roots. The next thing you know, a book was born. The Energy Almanac is the signature product that I was born to create. Today I call myself an artist, alchemist, and Astro-junkie, and it's truly who I am and what I was born to do. As an artist, I create bold work with a sharp edge of fun. The alchemist in me is the transformational coach who develops worksheets, ebooks and brings together groups of people who want to shift. The astro-junkie is still studying the inch-wide and mile-deep topic of astrology and teaching it in a way that is easy to apply because what good is knowledge if you can't actually apply it? Every morning I hit the floor excited to enter my big pink office and create. I love stringing together words and creating visuals that help my audience understand a concept more quickly. My constant ambition is service to humanity. I have a small goal of touching one million lives before I retire.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
When God tapped me on the shoulder and whispered, "You're going to write an annual astrology book with 52 weekly astrology predictions," I bawled like a baby. I fought the entire concept and denied that it was my project. How could I know that 24 weeks later, the first annual book would be born? I pushed past fear of rejection, personal judgment, self-deprecation, and straight-up doubt to illustrate, write, and guide the ship that is now an international selling publication in its sixth season.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
The hardest part of being a solopreneur, for me, is self-doubt. Part of that is my Virgo wiring which comes with a natural tendency toward judgment, but the rest of it is just beating down the voices in my head. Thankfully, I've gotten good at managing my mindset and have a big toolbox of self-help strategies I can and do work with.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
As a coach who often works with people starting a business, the three suggestions I'd offer are:
- What you resist persists. When you have to take the next step but you just never seem to move toward it, look deep. "What old story is creating the resistance that keeps you stuck?" Stuck really stinks, so it's worth it to do the work of identifying old stories about worthiness, money, and failure.
- You can be a solopreneur, but don't go it alone. Have a community. This is one I resisted because I really enjoy alone time, but having a mentor, coach, mastermind group, and networking association is key to both personal and professional growth. I never would have gotten where I am without the many breakthroughs created through conversations with coaches, peers, and, sometimes, my dog.
- Never stop learning. The only thing constant is change, so don't think you have all the answers. New technology, fresh points of view, as well as different courses and topics, can shift and propel your business in ways you didn't know were possible, so don't be shy about investing in your own education, no matter what it looks like.
- A fourth tip, if I may, is to take risks. Nothing great was ever done easily. Every great reward comes with some level of risk. If the water is deep enough and clear enough, dive in head first.
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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