Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in mental wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brittney King, Founder of Imagination Beautiful, LLC, located in Memphis, TN, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Imagination Beautiful is a virtual private counseling practice specializing in anxiety, life transitions, stress management, coping skill development, and women’s issues. We work primarily with women ages 25-40 dealing with anxiety and stress.
Tell us about yourself
I knew around the age of four that I wanted to be an entrepreneur. Initially, I thought that dream would be fulfilled by attending law school, but following a few political science classes, as an undergrad student, I realized that wasn’t my path. So, I did what many college students do. I changed my major. Public administration - nonprofit management was my new home and opened my mind to pursuing a service-based career. Then came the random girl chat I will never forget. I was standing outside the campus library, on a truly beautiful day, during the fall semester of my junior year. I just remember it seems to all make sense while talking with one of my friends from freshman year. I said, “Yep, I am going to go to grad school for counseling,” and that was the end of my confusion about what was next for me. I had previously attended counseling and was praying for the next step in my career, and on that day, counseling became the clear path.
Following undergrad, I attended graduate school and received my Master of Education in Clinical Mental Health. My first post-graduate job was working in the college counseling center, where I interned. I continued my career in college counseling, at various universities, for about eight years, and during this time, my childhood dream of becoming an entrepreneur grew exponentially. On October 7, 2019, I launched my private practice, Imagination Beautiful, LLC. Two years later, I took the leap of faith into full-time entrepreneurship.
A lot has changed since that warm fall day outside my college library and since October 7, 2019, but my motivation is knowing that dreams do come true. I know it sounds cheesy, but every day I get to operate my own business and help women dealing with anxiety. Every day, I live inside of what I dreamt of all those years ago. I never want to take that for granted, and I am cultivating new dreams to grow the practice into the premiere group practice and training facility for young therapists.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
What entrepreneur doesn’t want to say eating? It can be scary to put yourself out there, be on your own payroll, and keep going when things get complicated. If there is any achievement I would label as the biggest, it would be consistently choosing my business. You see, there are a lot of services out there for counselors to use these days, and while I think they are fantastic as someone with an entrepreneurial spirit, they can become a distraction from my bigger picture. In 2022, following the untimely death of my granny and mother, I took some time to grieve and heal, of course and then removed all distractions to focus solely on Imagination Beautiful. Initially, that was difficult and costly, but I knew it was time to fully invest in and focus on my goals as an entrepreneur.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
You must know so much about everything. I am clinically trained, and every other part of my business exists because of prayer, instinct, good advice, books, and YouTube University. I know how to be a therapist, but being a business owner requires you to be a marketing director, accounting executive, strategic planner, spokesperson, social media manager, insurance buff, admin, and the list goes on. This is difficult to balance, and as the practice grows, the need to learn more grows right along with it. There are some standards of private counseling practice, but then there are some unique ways that you want to put your fingerprint on the business. Just think, on any given Tuesday, I might see six or seven clients, run payroll, and do strategic planning. I love it, and I recognize that it is taxing. Therefore, my need for self-care, healthy boundaries, and administrative support are not to be overlooked.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
Organization is essential. You can make all the money in the world, but if you aren’t organized, how will you know what you made in order to manage it well? When starting a business, take some time to sit down and think about how you want things to flow and your desired client experience. Use this information to develop your organization system and a strategy to help you maintain, review, and update this system consistently.
Know what you need:
There have been times when people offered to help me, and I had been so busy that I didn’t know how to answer them. This may sound simple, but recognizing that I am the leader means people are looking to me for direction. Any entrepreneur needs some help but help without an established goal only creates chaos and more work. To lead well and have a healthy understanding of what I need requires me to constantly switch hats from therapist to executive, which is not always a simple or seamless task.
Then there are times when people won’t offer, and you need not be afraid to ask. We can be so bogged down with our fears about failing that it becomes difficult or even embarrassing to ask for help. This is your que to free yourself from that mindset and not allow fear to keep you from the support you need.
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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