Thinking through whether to start a business – whether to take the risk, whether to go out on your own – isn’t easy.  So we asked some entrepreneurs we admire to tell us about how they thought through the process of starting a business.

Karissa Whitman | Pregnancy/Postpartum Advocate & Motherhood Blogger

When I started FitMommyStrong, my motherhood blog, I did it because I wanted to help other moms have the answers & resources that I didn’t have, at the tips of their fingers. I knew firsthand how difficult life could be as a first time mom struggling to find help & support – so I figured if I could at least help just one mama out there avoid going through what I did, it’d be a mission we’ll accomplished! Read more>>

Courtney Wegener | Founder of Coural Care

I’ve always struggled with sensitive skin and had a hard time finding skincare products that worked with my mild eczema, rosacea, acne, and acne scars. When I was 19, I was diagnosed with melanoma and knew I had to step up my sun protection but I didn’t love the options available for me. I wanted a product that worked for my skin but that also had the ethical and environmental qualities I was looking for. When I couldn’t find anything that fit all my needs, I decided to start my own sunscreen company! Read more>>

Ryan Wallace | Veteran | Photographer | Visionary | Designer | Digital Rockstar | Semi-Mastermind

The brand started off as a gift to my one of my best friends. I was deployed in Spain while serving in the United States Navy, and we were both going through or own tribulations at the time. I thought it would be a good idea to take a cropped version of the artworks he was going to dedicate to a musical compendium and apply it to a 3/4 raglan baseball tee. On the back it said LFxNYC. Which stood for then, what it stands for toady; Lonely Floater by New York City. Lonely Floater started off as a gift to my one of my best friends, Lovans Florial. Read more>>

Jamie Jeraminas | Esthetician & Spa Owner

The thought process behind starting my own business was several factors. First, I wanted to create a situation where I had a flexible schedule so I could be a successful working Mom. Second, I had my own struggles with my skin and I wanted to create the environment that I was so desperately seeking. I wanted to be the esthetician that would team up with my clients and pursue their skin goals together. I didn’t want to just treat my clients and send them home, I wanted them to feel like they could get the care they needed without being nickel and dimmed. Read more>>

Liz Murphy | Vegan Chef & Owner at Santosha Nutrition

The thought for Santosha is very simple: eating more plants can change the world. This simple thought has evolved into a company mission that encompasses growing, eating and using more plants to increase sustainable practices throughout our community and the world. Read more>>

Cinderella de Groot | Holistic & Healthy Lifestyle Guru

Up to the age of 21, I worked under contract for a company. However, waking up early AM to an alarm, while it is still dark and cold outside I could not bare at all! My biorhythm just didn’t seem to agree with that routine, and so, one day, I made a promise to myself; I want to be in control of when I wake-up, when I work and how to live my life. Since that day I have never worked for anybody but myself, started several business ventures and travelled around the world with a one way ticket and landed in Carlsbad, CA. After becoming a mother of 2, who lived all my dreams, I reflected and decided I want a bigger purpose besides me living my best life. Read more>>

Regina Gerrato-Greenhaus | Director of College Counseling

I had always known that I enjoyed working for myself. Since I was a teenager, I was the kid with the business. I was always very entrepreneurial. I was the kid with the lemonade stand adding other food and drink to the menu. The idea of starting a business was not new to me. I had several small businesses throughout my college days. I worked my way through college by starting a children’s party planning business and doing princess dress-up parties. It was a natural path for someone who enjoyed child development, drama, and business. Read more>>

Betty Arsenault | All-Star Cheerleading Coach

I knew that starting my own business would have challenges, but in the end would be very rewarding. Being able to do what you love, and provide services that you feel benefit others, really makes life worth living. I’ve been so lucky to have met amazing athletes, coaches and families along the way that have impacted may life as much as CALI COAST ELITE, our All-Star Gym, has impacted theirs. Being a part of a gym culture that feels like family is very special. Read more>>

Quintin Carson | Destination Wedding and Portrait Photographer

I have always loved how looking at photographs made me feel. The ability to transport me back to that particular place and time and relive those special moments. My thought process behind QueEighty8 Photography was I wanted to be able to capture authentic moments for my clients that they could relive over and over again for generations to come. Read more>>

Ruth Weber | Ruth and Emilia-Mother/Daughter children’s educational music duo

When I decided to make music my career I knew that I would eventually need to include starting my own business. A large portion of musicians make some part of their living teaching privately, or performing as freelance musicians. I am fortunate in that I enjoy working at so many different music jobs; music education, choral directing, performing as a classical musician, and performing as a children’s music artist. The same is true for my daughter Emilia. We enjoy the variety this brings to our lives. There is always something new happening and this keeps life interesting. We began performing children’s music together when Emilia was only 3 years old. Read more>>

Lauren Patterson | Fiber Artist

I did not intentionally learn how to macramé in order to start a business. It started as a hobby and once I got the hang of a few types of knots, I began making larger pieces to decorate my own home. A few friends asked if they could purchase one of my pieces and I realized that I loved the idea of people enjoying my work in their homes. This sparked the idea of turning my hobby into a business. Read more>>

Allison Meade | San Diego Hair Colorist & Extension Specialist

I feel like a lot of people in my industry want to be their own boss. It starts with the idea of controlling you schedule to profiting solely from your hard work. After working 11 years at a wonderful salon, helping build it and growing it, I find its time to move on. I see a lot of areas where I want to do things differently. So my thought process is to find a space where I can, and possibly others too, fully express my self, my talents, in a welcoming and supportive environment. To continue honing my craft and inspire others to be their most bad ass self. Read more>>

Zina Alahmad | Esthetician & Makeup Artist

As I am working in the beauty industry, as an esthetician and a free lance makeup artist, my main goal was to enhance ones natural beauty and help make them feel comfortable in their own skin. Read more>>

Chef Rosalind Cottingham | Private Chef

My first thoughts led me to realizing that I was working between 60-70 a week for someone else. At this point I decided that my time was luxury and I needed to adjust it accordingly. That’s when I decided to take a risk and leave my comfort zone from an organization I had worked with for many many years. This happened in 2008, and I haven’t looked back since. Read more>>

Marisol Rerucha | Consultant & Author

It was freedom that called to me. In June of 2019 I left my career in the educational system to begin full-time consulting. As an educator with over twenty-one years of experience, I was very comfortable. I had a great salary, amazing benefits and a wonderful network of friendships. In 2017 I started This Chingona Sews, a sewing side-hustle. While developing this business I completed the Sewn Product Business Certificate program at San Diego Continuing Education. This program taught me how to be a successful entrepreneur. Read more>>

DeAndra’Nicole Calvin | Hairstylist

A nervous wreck! …I told myself after all that I have been through I never gave up on anything that I tried to achieve whether if I succeeded or failed I tried. So this was a little different there was a huge monthly bill with monthly expenses to keep the doors open. I prayed and it all made since that I could do it, I was capable and if I worked hard I will prevail. Read more>>

Tarek Khaled | A curious 21-year-old

(Step 1) Upon realizing and acknowledging that the learning curve at my job was tapering off… (Step 2) I explored an online business opportunity that was capable of generating survival-income relatively fast, with a scaling potential in the longer term. Disclaimer: This decision was personally so important that I dug into my emergency fund to pursue it. The purpose behind my writing is simply to share my thought process – this is not meant to act as the correct approach nor serve as financial/investment advice to you. (Step 3) I determined whether or not I had the financial capability to pursue this decision. Read more>>