We had the good fortune of connecting with Justice Klein and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Justice, how do you define success?
Success to me is the simple recognition of how far you have come, & celebrating it. The journey of life is not always easy and just waking up receiving a new day is considered a success to me.

There is no sliding scale for success, no number, no dollar amount, that defines success in my heart. I have sat with this question many times before as success in our society is attached to the physical, what we have made, who we know, what we have material-wise, and so on.

However, to really feel successful begins within. We have to take time to acknowledge our path, the steps we had to take to make it to this point in time and see those steps as miracles.

When we start to see how far we have come in this light, success starts to live inside of us with purity and without attachment. This creates an inner world more alive and vibrant, an energetic match for the success we are calling in even if that is something physical!

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I am the founder of Cacao & I, a fair-trade ceremonial cacao company with pure intention. This business was born in October 2020, with my earth community in mind. I’ve been studying this plant medicine for the past 8 years and have witnessed the numerous benefits it provides to those around me as well as to myself. The goal of starting this company was to bring this high-quality plant to more people, giving my community a reliable source. Cacao and I believe that everything we do has an impact on our collective. This is why one of the pillars is sustainability, ensuring that everything we create and send out is eco-friendly and gives rather than takes from the earth.

We also want to honor those who have carried this medicine’s message for millennia, as well as the cacao lineage and its origin, by elevating ceremonies and rituals related to sharing and intaking cacao. Cacao teaches us to slow down and be intentional about what we put inside our bodies and how we consume it.   We care for our planet, our community, and all beings in between. We are here to start a health movement by demonstrating to others that there is a way to feel vibrant, alive, and rejuvenated with the help of plant medicine. We want people to recall their vitality in body, mind, and spirit. to feel connected to the earth with which we share our home.

What distinguishes us from others is our willingness to prioritize the environment. We have taken the time to ensure that every step, every inch of this project contributes in some way to the earth from which we are taking. Everything about this project is environmentally friendly. One of our favorite features is that every package we ship contributes to global reforestation. Taking care of the people, our brothers and sisters, working with fair-trade prices, and giving back to the small village where our cacao is harvested are all top priorities at Cacao & I. We make certain that every village we deal with and the resources earth provides us are not forgotten.

A vision, desire, passion, and trusting myself. This was the driving force behind this company through the challenges. Trying new ideas.  Some worked, some did not. Starting a business is never easy and there are many lessons along the way.  It’s hard work and unwavering focus.  Working with indigenous communities presents some challenges and miscommunications. However, the relationships that form and the connection to these communities is beyond rewarding.  The small village that now has a consistent income as a result of this project, as well as how they manage their finances, makes overcoming those challenges very worthwhile.

Lesson I learned along the Continue to move forward. Maintain focus. There will always be moments of chaos, uncertainty, and things not going exactly as planned. However, when you choose a business that is full of passion and leads from the heart, you will always be motivated to keep going. When passion is your foundation, you can always build on it. The chaos provides opportunities to learn and grow the project.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love nature so I would take my best friend all over to see the beautiful scenery of San Diego. The first stop would be sunset cliffs, a beautiful beach in ocean beach. The view is stunning and the ocean view is like nothing else. We would go eat at second nature a healthy local spot on Cass st for a healthy meal. The next morning I would bring them to the local spot Konos for breakfast right on the water.

Some other places I love here is; Spirit Yoga Studios, Maya Moon Cafe, Oriental Thai Cafe, Trilogy Sanctuary, & Balboa Park.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I have been blessed with many beautiful souls that support my journey. I would love to shout out my mentor & dear sister, Nazli Takesh. I have had the privilege of learning from her & also hosting an array of events, retreats, & workshops by her side. She has always been a light in my life even before we knew each other. I remember looking up to her and everything she was offering in awe of her wisdom & heart. The support she brings to her students & anyone in her circle is outstanding and I am beyond grateful to be a part of it. She always brings fresh ideas and supportive ways to expand. When you find someone who aligns with your core beliefs it is a special connection & something I value very much in Nazli & I’s relationship. Thank you Nazli for being a driving force in my success.

Website: cacaoandi.com

Instagram: cacaoandi, justicia_klein

Image Credits
@current_creative @justicia_klein

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutSocal is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.