Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Ann Kent, Owner of Peas and Hoppiness, located in Fort Collins, CO, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Peas and Hoppiness is my nutrition private practice where I make mealtime easier for busy families.
Tell us about yourself
I’m a Registered Dietitian who came from a farm. I enjoy laughing with friends, food puns, and making dinner for people I love - and I especially love taking the mystery out of eating better.
I grew up on a farm in Central Kansas, where I learned how to hold a paring knife and make a roast from my mom. When I learned about a profession dedicated to food, I knew it was for me. I started my college career in dietetics and nutrition and never looked back. I loved learning how different foods and nutrients fuel the body in different ways.
After college, I worked as a diabetes educator in an endocrinology clinic and learned, and then taught patients how to use food as medicine. It was there I began to understand that food exists in 3 separate silos: agriculture (how it’s grown), food (how it’s prepared and eaten), and nutrition (how it nourishes our bodies). Thus was born the blog: Peas and Hoppiness, with a mission to unite these three silos: to teach my fellow humans how food is grown, the science behind different eating patterns, and how to make “healthy” food actually taste good.
Today my hobby blog has grown into my full-time small business. I created the Peas & Hoppy Meal Guide Membership to take the overwhelm out of mealtime and teach busy families how to get real food on the table every night. My motto is, “Life’s too short for bad food,” and I embody that phrase in everything I bring to my clients and members.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I am so proud of the Peas & Hoppy Meal Guide membership. Every week I send members a seasonal menu, including recipes and a shopping list in a convenient app. Each member is able to customize their meal guide to create a meal plan for their family - they can adjust serving sizes, delete or add recipes, and add their own family staples to the pre-populated shopping list.
I’ve written, tested, and photographed all of the 800+ recipes in the app, and members can sort through them based on their dietary needs, which season we’re in, or cuisine.
I work hard to make sure the menu has variety, is nutritionally balanced, and, as an added bonus, teaches members to eat a more plant-forward diet - which is better for them, better for their families, and better for our planet.
Plus, I use the app for my own meal planning for my family, and it’s made my life so much easier! I never forget my grocery list anymore because it’s right on my phone. So handy!
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The most challenging thing for me has been to trust the process because it takes a long time to see results. There is always the problem of “everything is on fire all at once” - I must manage my time carefully to spend it between product development and marketing.
There never seem to be enough hours in the day to tackle my endless to-do list, so I’ve had to be careful to set boundaries around my business, so I can continue to take care of myself and my family - otherwise, the workaholic in me would be out of control!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Find your community: there are going to be many days when you’re not sure you’re doing the right thing, so make sure you have really good support. Whether that means investing in a business coach, going to therapy, or being intentional about your friendships - this is a must!
- Be prepared for a marathon, not a sprint: there are many, many people who will claim to help you earn a million dollars in the first six months of business… and maybe a few people are able to do that, but it’s the exception, not the rule. Make sure you’re prepared financially, mentally, and emotionally for a long journey. There’s a reason most small businesses don’t make it!
- Be honest - really honest - with yourself: If something isn’t performing well, you need to let it go rather than continue down a path and waste your time. If your “ideal client” isn’t who you thought it was, you need to niche down and pivot to meet their needs. You need to have the self-confidence to fail because this will ultimately help you succeed!
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I love, love owning my own business. It’s allowed me to combine so many of my passions, and I have a great vision of where I want to go. Even though it’s not been easy, it’s been so rewarding!
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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