Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Miriam Gauci Bongiovanni, Founder of PainOutsidetheBox, located in Dingli, Malta.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I am a Chronic Pain Coach, and I help people who have been struggling with a variety of chronic symptoms for months or even years. My customers are individuals from all walks of life suffering from unexplained back, leg, arm, or neck pain, as well as fibromyalgia sufferers and those who have been diagnosed with RSIs, or whose old injuries cannot seem to heal. I teach them about the mind-body connection and how our emotions, past experiences, and thoughts can actually affect our pain levels and make symptoms persist. As they develop more self-awareness and adopt a new mindset around their symptoms, most people find that the pain starts to subside. It's a healing that takes place by rewiring the brain and calming the nervous system because all pain is ultimately controlled by the brain, and the brain is plastic - which means that it can be rewired!
Tell us about yourself
I myself used to suffer from debilitating chronic symptoms that had taken away all my freedom. I healed myself from all of these symptoms within a few weeks and resumed all normal physical activity - which is something that I had believed was impossible. This was such an inspiration to me that I continued to study Pain Neuroscience and the MindBody Connection, then got certified as a Holistic Life Coach and MindBody Practitioner. Since I have always loved to write, my business started in the form of a blog to educate people with chronic pain about the possibility of recovering. Every day, I am motivated to keep spreading the knowledge because I know that my teachings make a huge difference in individual lives, and I see a lot of potential for the future as society becomes more open to the possibility of working with the mind-body connection.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I don't have one single accomplishment that stands out from the rest. In my case, it's looking back to see how many people I've already helped and how my website and programs are reaching more and more people. Each time I receive an email or message about someone having reclaimed his or her life back, it makes my day!
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
It has to be accountable to yourself when you are your own worst critic! There is no boss to give you a pat on the back, no colleagues to share your successes or your struggles with. Instead, you need to learn to trust the process, set your own goals and deadlines, and remind yourself about your purpose and why you are doing what you're doing. It gets easier as things progress and you start forming partnerships with other business owners.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Recognise that anything is possible, but possibly doesn't mean easy, so make sure not to give up the first time something doesn't work out. Find out why it didn't work out, and rework your idea or solution.
- Bring your authenticity in to make your business stand out to reflect your uniqueness. At the end of the day, although you're likely selling a solution, everyone else is also selling a solution, so you need that factor of authenticity for your solution to resonate with your ideal clients!
- Consistency is key. I started out blogging once or twice a month while still working my day job. It took about a year for my website to start ranking. Even if you are using paid advertising to grow faster, whatever your strategy, be consistent!
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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